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Old 06-28-2012, 01:25 PM   #1
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1971 31' Excella 500
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How to tell if my water pump is bad?

Noob question - how do I know if my water pump needs to be replaced?

I have a 1971 31' Excella, all original appliances. Looks like most of the copper pipes have been replaced with black PVC piping so its possible one of the owners replaced the water pump at some time. Water pump is under the kitchen sink. I've had it plugged in to power and battery, ran the water and nothing happens on the pump. Am I supposed to turn it on somewhere? Here is a picture for reference.



Thanks!
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:15 PM   #2
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Do you have water pressure without being connected to an external water source and with water in the tank? If so, your pump is working. You can usually hear it running. I have a 2012 FC and I can certainly hear my pump running. Typical pump sound signature.
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:53 PM   #3
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While your plumbing may now be non-standard, there are a couple possible explanations..
1. The faucets open and close to allow draining of water pipes for winterization.. Could either be that faucet upstream or dowstream of pump is closed and preventing water flow.
2. Pump runs on 12V sytems, and possible that battery is problem, or 12V fuse (separate from 110V AC fuses) is missing or blown.
3. If pump sounds like it is turning and piston is moving, then problem most likely either lack of water flowing inot pump from tank, or that valve is closed blocking flow..
4. If pump cycles on and off quickly and frequently, that is usually symptom of pressure leak somewhere in piping, which will become water leak once water flowing in pipes.
5. If there is power to pump (check for voltage at pump terminals) and no sounds or activity, then pump may indeed be dead or frozen, and in need of replacement...
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:24 PM   #4
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How to tell if my water pump is bad?

Greetings africaroots!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Airstream ownership!

Quote:
Originally Posted by africaroots View Post
Noob question - how do I know if my water pump needs to be replaced?

I have a 1971 31' Excella, all original appliances. Looks like most of the copper pipes have been replaced with black PVC piping so its possible one of the owners replaced the water pump at some time. Water pump is under the kitchen sink. I've had it plugged in to power and battery, ran the water and nothing happens on the pump. Am I supposed to turn it on somewhere? Here is a picture for reference.



Thanks!
The pump in your photo, though slightly obscured, appears to be a PAR or Peters and Russell which would have been the brand pump installed by the factory. These pumps can be rebuilt for a modest investment in parts, and they will outlast any of the typical pumps used by other manufacturers. Rebuild kits and individual pump parts are typically easiest to find at a power boat dealer as they are more common in the boating industry.

Your PAR pump operates on 12-volts, and will require either a good coach battery or a fully operational power converter to supply the power that it needs. There should be a water pump switch mounted on the Monitor Panel that has a number of gauges and informational lights . . . it may be on the wall or possibly inside one of the cabinets. If the switch is in the on position and the pump isn't running, the fuse is likely blown . . . the fuses are typically on a panel that is mounted to the Univolt Power Converter . . . or in a panel mounted near the power converter that replaced the Univolt.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:15 PM   #5
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Thanks all. Headed to check the fuses first. I'll reply back after I have eliminated all of the suggestions.
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Old 07-14-2012, 08:15 PM   #6
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You may want to check the wiring just prior to the pump, I found a "bullet-quick connector" that was a little loose. You may also want to clean up the screws / terminals on the red box in front of the pump. I've managed to get the motor to work, but no suction. After replacing all of the old rubber hoses (dry rotted) from the storage tank to the pump, I need to get this system working so it's time for a new pump. I will keep the PAR and try to rebuild it. Good Luck, hope you have better luck than I have.
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