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Old 07-06-2014, 08:08 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by 73shark View Post
Wouldn't pumping antifreeze through the system until it comes out the output hose eliminate this problem?

That is exactly how I winterized my 2014 Ext this past year and it survived the harsh Illinois winter just fine.


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Old 07-06-2014, 08:40 AM   #22
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Mine did, too, the first year. The second year, though, it started leaking from the casing. There is about two or more gallons of liquid trapped in the hose at all times which fills the macerator and partially fills the hose on the reel. If the pump can't push it out, liquid won't flow uphill. This most likely shortens the life of the pump and it may be more of the cause of failure than freezing.

I am planning on adding a clean out on the input hose if I can figure out a way.

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That is exactly how I winterized my 2014 Ext this past year and it survived the harsh Illinois winter just fine.


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Old 07-06-2014, 08:56 AM   #23
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If yours is like mine, when the tanks become empty, the hose starts chugging as the pump mixes the trapped liquid with air and the liquid becomes frothy. Adding antifreeze should work if you can get enough mixed in the liquid to protect the pump. But it takes a LOT of antifreeze. It makes a pinkish froth so it is hard to tell when enough antifreeze is mixed with the liquid to protect the pump and hoses.

Draining it is the only way to be absolutely sure in my opinion.

All I know is this. The pump started leaking after the second winter. When I removed the intake hose after I had winterized there was about two gallons of pinkish liquid in the intake hose. Do I definitively know that caused the pump to fail prematurely? No. But the macerator on my Roadtek-the exact same model-never failed in four years. And all liqiud drained from the hose.


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Wouldn't pumping antifreeze through the system until it comes out the output hose eliminate this problem?
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Old 07-06-2014, 01:25 PM   #24
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There is about two or more gallons of liquid trapped in the hose at all times which fills the macerator and partially fills the hose on the reel.
Whenever I drain my black and/or gray tanks, I reel out ALL of the hose, even if the dump station is only two feet away. That way, no water is trapped in the hose; the only places it could be trapped are in between the macerator pump and the reel, or upstream of the macerator pump, but nothing ON the reel.
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Old 07-06-2014, 07:57 PM   #25
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Whenever I drain my black and/or gray tanks, I reel out ALL of the hose, even if the dump station is only two feet away. That way, no water is trapped in the hose; the only places it could be trapped are in between the macerator pump and the reel, or upstream of the macerator pump, but nothing ON the reel.
gmillerok1 is talking about the input hose, not the output.
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Old 07-07-2014, 07:39 AM   #26
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Correct. I do the same thing to drain the liquid from the hose on the reel, but it has no effect on the liquid from the macerator back to the tanks.

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gmillerok1 is talking about the input hose, not the output.
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Old 07-07-2014, 08:01 AM   #27
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One of the main problems with Airstream's macerator design is that the intake hose will never become clear of liquid. When the tanks are empty, the hose becomes half full and the macerator can't pump half water and half air. It is not possible to winterize it with antifreeze. The only fix is to remove the hose and drain it. The macerator will be damaged if it freezes, or perhaps the standing liquid may shorten it's life. This is not a bashing of Airtream, just a note of poor design.
Just wondering; what if you empty both tanks the way you would normally do it for winter storage then open the gray valve and pour antifreeze down the bath or kitchen sink? Wouldn't that fill the fairly short run of 3" hose to the point where antifreeze would flood into the macerator intake port?
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Old 07-07-2014, 09:31 AM   #28
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That is exactly how I winterized my unit. Plus, I ran the pump until pink liquid came out the hose. Still, the macerator leaked after I de-winterized in the spring. From now on I will disconnect the hose and drain the liquid from the hose.

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Just wondering; what if you empty both tanks the way you would normally do it for winter storage then open the gray valve and pour antifreeze down the bath or kitchen sink? Wouldn't that fill the fairly short run of 3" hose to the point where antifreeze would flood into the macerator intake port?
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Old 07-07-2014, 09:36 AM   #29
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That is exactly how I winterized my unit. Plus, I ran the pump until pink liquid came out the hose. Still, the macerator leaked after I de-winterized in the spring. From now on I will disconnect the hose and drain the liquid from the hose.
Did you determine what the failure mode was with the macerator? In my case one of the short studs that held things together broke off in the housing. I am guessing that this happened due to water freezing inside the housing.
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Old 07-07-2014, 10:23 AM   #30
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It was leaking between the seal and the electrical housing. A kit could have repaired it, but the cost wasn't that much less than just replacing the entire pump and it was a lot easier that disassembling it which requires a special tool I did not have. Airstream told me it would be replace under warranty if I could prove it wasn't a leak caused by freezing-which of course I could not. Their quick answer made me think it hadn't been the first time the question had been made to customer support leading me to believe this is a common issue to fail.

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Did you determine what the failure mode was with the macerator? In my case one of the short studs that held things together broke off in the housing. I am guessing that this happened due to water freezing inside the housing.
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Old 08-04-2019, 05:10 PM   #31
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Where to buy new hose?

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The large hose is on the inlet side of the pump, 3" or 4" in diameter like a slinky. The small hose, about 1" or 1-1/8" in diameter is on the outlet side and leads to the hose reel.There wouldn't be, if there wasn't a lot of liquid TO leak, which would be the case as long as the dump valves were closed.My guess would be a split hose due to inadequate winterizing. It's also possible that a pump seal could have gone bad, again due to inadequate winterizing. Suggest filling the gray tank with CLEAN water, possibly with pink stuff antifreeze added to give it some color, so that you can more easily track down the leak when you open the valve again. It makes no difference whether you try to dump the black tank or the gray tank while troubleshooting; both drain lines come together before you get to the pump.
Hi!
It’s Protagonist- my favorite. We have this issue now- where do I buy a new hose and how to install? The duct tape has failed!
Appreciate you always-
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Old 08-05-2019, 06:04 AM   #32
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Not sure what hose you need:
1) hose on the reel is 3/4" ID. This is what I bought recently to replace it. Used half now and saved half for later.
https://www.etrailer.com/RV-Sewer/Se...tion/SS25.html

2) Hose between the macerator outlet and hose reel is 1" ID. I have not needed to replace it. Flexibility is not an important as is the reel hose 1). Thinks I'd try to find right ID at a big box store.

3) Hose at inlet of the macerator is a strange Airstream part and I have not needed to replace it.
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Old 08-05-2019, 11:30 AM   #33
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kdselly
Not sure what hose you need:
1) hose on the reel is 3/4" ID. This is what I bought recently to replace it. Used half now and saved half for later.
https://www.etrailer.com/RV-Sewer/Se...tion/SS25.html

2) Hose between the macerator outlet and hose reel is 1" ID. I have not needed to replace it. Flexibility is not an important as is the reel hose 1). Thinks I'd try to find right ID at a big box store.

3) Hose at inlet of the macerator is a strange Airstream part and I have not needed to replace it.

Thank you. It looks like it’s leaking from a large accordion like tube. Is that the Airstream part? Thx again!
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Old 08-05-2019, 12:28 PM   #34
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the accordion piece is a bit large for the macerator inlet - and Airstream uses a lot of silicone caulk to install it and prevent leaks. A fellow forum contributor says he has used 3" (ID) kanifex hose - which I have not been able to find locally or in small quantities.
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Old 08-05-2019, 05:50 PM   #35
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The 3” Kaniflex is available on Amazon. 5’ lengths.
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Old 08-05-2019, 09:15 PM   #36
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the accordion piece is a bit large for the macerator inlet - and Airstream uses a lot of silicone caulk to install it and prevent leaks.
TITUS - is this still true up to current or at least my 2018? I know its easy to tell but only if I was to disconnect it. For now, I have no plans to do so and break the "seal". Unlike wiring, furniture, body, or even engine work - the sewer plumbing job I would only tackle once it becomes neccessary coz it a s***y job (ok I will spell it out - silly job)

PS, my macerator is Flojet if that helps determine inlet to hose compatibility.
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Old 08-10-2019, 03:56 PM   #37
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I replaced the Flojet macerator pump on my (since sold) 2011 three times in 7 years. A point of failure are the bolts that hold it together. Why do they fail? After talking with a Flojet customer support rep, because there's too much pressure on the housing. Why is that, I asked? Because of some blockage on the exit side of the pump. The only blockage I could find is 1" to 3/4" reduction that likely puts too much back pressure on the pump, as the pump is designed for a 1" ID hose, not 3/4".



Sad to say, but the Airstream design guarantees you will have an investment in macerator pumps if you use it very much or very often.
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Old 08-10-2019, 04:00 PM   #38
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the accordion piece is a bit large for the macerator inlet - and Airstream uses a lot of silicone caulk to install it and prevent leaks. A fellow forum contributor says he has used 3" (ID) kanifex hose - which I have not been able to find locally or in small quantities.

There is a trick to keep the 3" hose from leaking. The Flojet has a small "rib" on the inlet side next to the pump housing. Be sure to NOT push the hose over this rib as it will leak.
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Old 08-10-2019, 05:03 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by gmillerok1 View Post
because there's too much pressure on the housing. Why is that, I asked? Because of some blockage on the exit side of the pump. The only blockage I could find is 1" to 3/4" reduction that likely puts too much back pressure on the pump, as the pump is designed for a 1" ID hose, not 3/4".
GMILLEROK1 - Also the hose reel fitting elbow(s). And white pvc elbow at exit valve And for those who do not fully unwind entire hose. All 4 combined will cause lots premature failure. The best setup would be 1" hose, all straight elbows, and no hose reel.
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Old 08-10-2019, 07:49 PM   #40
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I replaced the Flojet macerator pump on my (since sold) 2011 three times in 7 years. A point of failure are the bolts that hold it together. Why do they fail? After talking with a Flojet customer support rep, because there's too much pressure on the housing. Why is that, I asked? Because of some blockage on the exit side of the pump. The only blockage I could find is 1" to 3/4" reduction that likely puts too much back pressure on the pump, as the pump is designed for a 1" ID hose, not 3/4".

Sad to say, but the Airstream design guarantees you will have an investment in macerator pumps if you use it very much or very often.
The older models had brass bolts/studs holding the pump together. Last year I installed the new versions made from stainless steel to repair a leak. Two of the old brass studs were broken.
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