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Old 02-18-2015, 01:40 PM   #1
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Is it normal for pump to kick on after 4 or 5 hours?

We have a new 2015 Serenity and went camping a couple of weeks ago.

I noticed that the water pump would randomly kick on about every 4 to 8 hours for just a second or two.

It was cold and we were running heater as well as water heater full time to prevent freezing.

Is this normal or do you think there is a tiny leak somewhere? So far I have not noticed any drips or water anywhere and I have opened all cabinets to examine the plumbing but all looks good.
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:53 PM   #2
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Totally normal as water cools and reduces pressure, the pump may run for a second to increase pressure. It's wise to turn off pump when you leave the trailer and leave it off at night for quiet rest.
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:55 PM   #3
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It will kick on periodically, to stay pressurized.

If it is running a lot, or non stop, rather than a leak there more likely is something not completely tight, allowing air in.


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Old 02-18-2015, 02:33 PM   #4
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One "leak" which will cause the pump to come on now and then, but causes no harm, is leakage back through the check valves of the pump itself. Our old pump (1980 trailer--and it might have been the original pump) used to run a few seconds every few minutes when it was turned on and water was not being used.

Last year I replaced it with a new pump and now it only runs a few seconds every few hours to keep the system pressurized. (Incredibly quieter than the old pump, too.)
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Old 02-18-2015, 02:47 PM   #5
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I think the system should hold the pressure. I think it would take about a pint of water lost to bring the pressure down to starting the pump. There may some pressure lost back through the check valve, but I would still pull out some drawers, look for leakage around the PEX crimps and valves, look under the trailer for a drip or two, see if there is any sign of a visible leak.

As mojo said, it's good practice to shut the pump off when not used overnight or several hours. My friend had an overnight internal toilet valve stick partially and by morning the black tank had filled overflowed into the bathroom.
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Old 02-18-2015, 02:54 PM   #6
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Mine only does that if there's a leak. Maybe different pumps act differently, but if the system is watertight, it can go all night without running. If we hear it kick on, that's a sure sign there's a leak somewhere.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:08 PM   #7
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The only time you should experience this is because of a leak but I have also had an air pocket in the lines that has caused some slight pump cycling.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:17 PM   #8
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The cooling water explanation may have some merit - we do turn our water heater off during the day and overnight, and occasionally the pump will run briefly. I've always guessed this is because the water is cooling and contracting, so the pressure drops a bit. There are no signs of leaks anywhere in our water system.

Every 4 to 8 hours is rare enough that I wouldn't worry too much, but I'd be listening and watching for more frequent pulses and signs of leaks.

It also could be a little water is coming out of the overpressure valve or drain plug of the water heater.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:19 PM   #9
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Leaking back through the 'check' valve is most likely...and the water merely runs back into the 'fresh water tank'.
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Old 02-18-2015, 03:28 PM   #10
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I've heard our pump kick on about once in an overnight situation. And it is really brief. Never have found any evidence of leaks but it does seem to have some relationship with weather. The more the variance between daytime and overnight temperatures, the better chance of this occurring. It would seem to me that if there was a leak, especially when I'm in a full hookup site for a lengthy stay, I would eventually see some evidence of a leak. Especially when the system is potentially under higher pressure than what the pump maintains.

I chalk it up to possibly a pump issue and its internal construction and sensor that detects the pressure in the system. I know the hot water heater will cause a build up of pressure in the system. I had a long talk with a county inspector who was checking out my water heater installation at home. He noted that my new water heater had a drop of water on the safety valve outlet. He said this was typical due to the pressure on the water system as the water heater heated the water. In some homes he noted that the water supply pressure regulator required by code can relieve this pressure. But as the regulator ages, it becomes calcified up which in turn stops that relief. In turn, that pressure from the heating process can slightly push the safety valve enough to expel a few drops of water. Once the tank cools down to it normal holding mode, the pressure in the line decreases and the valve closes.

As the Airstream's water heater cools, especially when it isn't being used (like overnight), there could be enough of a pressure drop in the system to cause a pump sensor to possibly activate. Is multiple times a night normal? No. But once in an overnight? Yep, it's possible. Personally I just can't get overly excited about this unless you start hearing this pump either starting to cycle longer or more often, or you see evidence of water. I really think this is an issue more related to the pump itself than a leak in your water system.

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Old 02-18-2015, 03:59 PM   #11
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I had my water pump burb every few hours and found a leak. At first I couldn't find it but when I saw water dripping out of weep holes in the Rotocast water tank enclosure under the trailer I first thought it was the water tank leaking. I was in a panic. Further investigation discovered a slow leaking fitting. Water dripped down the access hole to the top of the water tank and after some time poured down the sides of the tank to the bottom of the Rotocast shell and then to the weep holes. Once I repaired the fitting the pump didn't burb.

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Old 02-18-2015, 04:00 PM   #12
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This is normal and I've also come to believe it is the check valve in the pump itself - however - what I have yet to figure out is why it only does this at night after we're in bed and in a deep sleep ......


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Old 02-18-2015, 04:06 PM   #13
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This is normal and I've also come to believe it is the check valve in the pump itself - however - what I have yet to figure out is why it only does this at night after we're in bed and in a deep sleep ......


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Old 02-18-2015, 04:12 PM   #14
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