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Old 06-19-2021, 09:27 AM   #1
UnklJoe
 
2015 28' Flying Cloud
Box Elder , South Dakota
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 97
Fresh Water System Low Flow/Pressure

I am stumped--and I haven't searched AirForums for an answer to my problem--but I am also traveling and want to get this out there.

Last night I hooked up at a campground with very good (not excessive) water pressure. I used a Camco filter, and my pressure regulator--the pressure regulator seems to have died--but there is good flow and pressure through it. And, through the filter (when it's disconnected from the AS). This is my first camping since last summer. Water pressure/flow was okay last night, but was really bad this morning. No shower possible. "Burped" all the air out of the system--except for the shower (have some things stored in there at the moment...).

Water heater works fine, and bypass valve is in correct position. We get good hot water--just at a very low flow. I had time this morning to check the pump strainer (it was clean), and put some water in the fresh water tank to check pump operation. After burping air from the pump through the galley faucet, flow improved a little--but it's still not good. (I haven't installed the new galley water filter yet.)

I pulled the city water connection to find the AS-supplied pressure regulator to be a part of the assembly. I connected it to the hose from the campground--good flow at reasonable pressure.

I'm stumped. I haven't re-installed the outside shower head/hose to check pressure/flow there, and as I wrote I haven't been able to use the inside shower yet. Flow in the toilet is good; flow in the bathroom sink is okay--not great, but okay. Flow in the galley sink is better now (since running the DC water pump a little), but still not as good as it should be given the good pressure from the campground.

Where is the check valve between the city water piping and the DC water pump? Damn manual is soooo crappy when it comes to diagrams.

My trailer is a 2015 28FC rear twin beds, manufacture June 2014. Does anyone have a fresh water diagram for this trailer?

Does anyone have any ideas why my flow/pressure is so low? Clean Camco filter at city water inlet; no filter yet in galley. DC water pump strainer is very clean (I always clean it when winterizing). Water heater bypass valve is in correct position (valve handle in line with piping). The city water inlet pressure regulator is fine. The brass pressure regulator I was using is toast (no good--though it did allow good flow and pressure when testing, it just doesn't regulate pressure with the adjustment). I blew out the system with air (very well--in my personal opinion!) when winterizing. No leaks under the trailer or in the trailer--none. I'm just stumped--and pressed for time at this point (spent two hours troubleshooting this morning when I could have been driving/towing....

THANKS!!!
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Old 06-19-2021, 10:16 AM   #2
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1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
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We had a similar problem when traveling a month ago. Like you, I had good flow from the city water hose to the trailer. I had good flow in the toilet bowl. But I had low flow at the bath vanity sink, shower and galley sink faucets.

I took the bath sink faucet "aerator" off and it was full of debris. Cleaning it restored good flow there. My sink faucet is a sprayer type and doesn't have an aerator so to speak. But I did scrub the galley faucet end (where the water comes out) and it helped some. But the hot water side of the faucet is still kinda slow flow. I suspect I have debris inside the faucet.

Maybe faucet aerators are something you could check.

David
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Old 06-19-2021, 11:37 AM   #3
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
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Hi

I *think* you will find that the check valve is part of the pressure regulator assembly. This Airstream, never the same way twice, so it's only a guess.

I agree that it sounds like you took a slug of debris into the water system. Just why your filter didn't stop that is unclear. Could be scale off the lines in the trailer.

Bob
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Old 06-19-2021, 11:06 PM   #4
UnklJoe
 
2015 28' Flying Cloud
Box Elder , South Dakota
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 97
Hi, and thanks for the tip.

I am unable to remove either aerator (galley or bathroom) without a pair of water pump/channel locks….

So I’m going to wait until I have replacements in hand, as the DW will not like (1) being without aerators, and (2) having scratches on the existing aerators—even if that means the low pressure/flow problem is resolved before the new replacements arrive.

David, I do now remember your post, and had even put a Moen aerator tool in my Amazon cart.

But for now, I live by the motto: Happy wife; happy life. Even if that means aesthetics over function (for now!).
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Old 06-20-2021, 04:33 AM   #5
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1994 25' Excella
Waukesha , Wisconsin
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We have a Moen kitchen sink faucet at home, and occasionally it will have a very reduced flow on one side or the other (hot or cold). For a while I was stumped, but then I found the problem.

A lot of modern faucets are made with very narrow tubing feeding the mixing valve. I had cleaned the mixing valve and found no debris so it was confusing, but finally it dawned on me that something could be blocking the works further down.

Sure enough, the inlet to the mixing valve is so narrow that it only takes a piece of debris the size of a grain of sand to start a downward spiral, as it will start a back up in the narrow tube.

Lots of things can be inside a plumbing system, even with a filter/screen on the inlet, which can cause problems so don't assume you don't have anything in there.

When my kitchen sink gets one side running slow, I find that it's possible to back flush it. I disconnect the feed on the problem side and drop it into a bucket, put my thumb over the faucet outlet, and then gently use the mixing valve to send water from the other feed back into the now-disconnected problem side.

Not saying that you have the exact same problem, but hopefully my experience with a kitchen sink suffering low-flow can help you think a bit beyond what you've already done as you try and hunt down the problem.
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Old 06-20-2021, 07:35 AM   #6
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
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Hi

There is an extreme solution:

Most (if not all) of these faucets are stock items at Lowes or Home Depot ( = they are not RV or AS specific). We have exactly the same faucet in our kitchen as in the trailer. My guess is that the "normal" answer is to simply replace the whole assembly. No, that's not what I do, but it is a way to get back to functional pretty quickly.

Bob
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Old 06-20-2021, 11:43 AM   #7
UnklJoe
 
2015 28' Flying Cloud
Box Elder , South Dakota
Join Date: Oct 2016
Posts: 97
>>success<<

Today, being Father's Day (which provides me with a little latitude with the DW) I got out the water pump pliers and without even the benefit of a towel I was able to loosen the aerators enough to unscrew them (with VERY LITTLE damage--though there was a couple of scratches) and find: What appeared to be sand, or maybe just some scale deposits.?.?.?

Washing them out and blowing in the reverse direction and re-installing them returned flow to what I deem as "normal."

Only once (when I didn't have a fresh inlet filter) did I connect to the city water inlet from a campground without a filter--but that may have been enough. I did have a good volume of air this last fall when I winterized, and maybe I moved it downstream.?.?.? Enough so that this spring when I applied water/pressure it went to the faucet and aerators. We showered this morning and flow/pressure was normal in the shower, so it was only the bathroom and galley faucets that were affected (again, the toilet flows were fine--though I did have a little trouble fully shutting off water flow when I first tested the toilet this past week. Maybe some debris was in the foot valve mechanism? (Who knows.)

Anyway, thanks to everyone for their help and advice. And to uncle_bob for reminding me that these are nothing special or peculiar to Airstreams and can be replaced "relatively" easily (if my old body will contort in the required ways to loosen and tighten the fittings up behind the sinks!). And, to Richard5933 for his suggestions, also. I notice that the line which feeds the galley sink from the RO filter is also very, very narrow, and I would have to imagine the mixing valve and connections behind the galley sink (and maybe the bathroom sink, too) are small diameter.

Once again, this forum comes through! Thanks!!!
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Old 06-20-2021, 11:59 AM   #8
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1988 32' Excella
Robbinsville , New Jersey
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A possibility is scale building up in the lines, then after you blew it out for the winter the scale dried out and flaked off the inside of the lines to get clogged once you started running water.
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Old 06-21-2021, 07:19 AM   #9
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
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Hi

Hard water will build up scale on the inside of the fresh water tank. Pretty much all the water you fill your tank with is hard water. That scale eventually will flake off (especially in winter storage). The flakes do not disolve. They simply wash down the line as solids.

Bob
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Old 06-21-2021, 07:57 AM   #10
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Lexington , Minnesota
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We have had that water aerator plug up issue several times, usually after dewinterizing in the spring. Now, we just take the aerators off the faucets when we winterize, and install after sanitizing the system in the spring. It helps to also flush out your water heater if you have a conventional one, in the spring. That's where a lot of the minerals come from. We do it annually now.


Kay
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