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Old 08-20-2019, 04:53 PM   #1
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Houston we have a problem

Hello All - New to community and already need your help.
We just purchased a 2014 25' Flying Cloud from a private owner took our new baby to the Airstream dealer with instruction to go over and advise what was what. When completed with their list we gave them the green light to do everything on the list except for cosmetic stuff. Now here we are 1000 miles away and discovered a leak. It appears that the black plastic tank that's banded by metal has two small holes (pictured). Can someone identify the what this tank holds and what we need to do to remedy.
thanks in advance.
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Old 08-20-2019, 05:34 PM   #2
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Wow. That looks like your freshwater tank but something is very wrong. There is no metal shroud/ tank cover. Looks like someone replaced the. Tank with an aftermarket tank and did not reinstall the tank cover. It should look like this.....
Here’s a pic of mine dropped. Note where the metal straps where located.
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Old 08-20-2019, 05:39 PM   #3
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Look at your valves and see which valve is attached to that tank. Have you recently filled the fresh water tank? Sometimes the fill hose leaks when the fresh water is full.
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:37 PM   #4
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Could that be a cover? In one picture the hole (which is obviously too perfect to be accidental) is adjacent to what looks like a diverter. Possibly it’s the fresh water overfill drain?

Most curious indeed...

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Old 08-20-2019, 07:41 PM   #5
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I suspect you are missing your low point drains. I will get a pic of mine and post in a few mins..
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:43 PM   #6
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Is that a tank shroud or an aftermarket tank?
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:44 PM   #7
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Here you go. These are located on the passenger side on my 2015 25ft RB..

Apologies for the gravity defying pic.. joys of posting from the smarty phone...
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:49 PM   #8
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Pic fix
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:49 PM   #9
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And the view from the other side. Probably also defying gravity...
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:50 PM   #10
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Thanks GMFL!
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:51 PM   #11
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Welcome.
I learned something new. I’ve never seen a plastic tank shroud.
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:54 PM   #12
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Right, nor had i before this! I did lose a drain during a cold snap, the dealer replaced it for me while doing other warranty work. So I know what the problem is but as I didn’t fix it myself i am not able to advise any further! Hopefully someone else will step in.
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Old 08-21-2019, 12:16 PM   #13
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Hey, Shorty! Welcome.

Step 1: Take a deep breath... stuff like this is common with RVs.

Step 2: Gather facts, particularly facts that are relevant to your specific trailer. Consider what we pay for advice here on the Forum. That's precisely what some of it is worth.

I have essentially the same trailer that you have. I wrote an extensive post (profusely illustrated!) about that mysterious black box, what's inside it, and how to remove and replace everything in there. Here's a link: http://www.airforums.com/forums/f443...ml#post2166842

Now... what you have is undoubtedly a fresh water leak. That's all that's in or above that box. (For info on black water leaks and the mysterious galvanized tank in front of the black plastic one, watch for my upcoming post about replacing a black tank dump valve using only hand tools at a campsite... but I digress).

Inside that black box is a separate plastic tank to hold fresh water. That tank has four active connections (the fill tube, the vent, the water pump connection and the drain). The low point drain lines pass through the box and emerge through the bottom where the valves are attached. There are also water lines in the space above the tank.

Something in that series of hardware items is leaking on your trailer. The weep holes in the bottom of the tank enclosure are there to let leaking water escape. That's a good thing!

Question for you: Just how much fresh water are you leaking? I was losing about a gallon or two per day. I lived with that for a couple of trips until I had time, learning and a place to undertake repairs. Your leak may or may not require attention urgently. I'm inclined to think your situation isn't urgent.

The next step is to decide how you want to locate the source of the leak and repair it. The first step in that process is observational. It is quite possible that the water fill tube or its connection to the tank is leaking. Does the leak only occur after a fill up? Does it stop after the tank is drained down a bit? Or it could be the pump and it's lines. Does the leak stop when the system is depressurized or maybe stop when on city water as opposed to the pump?

In my case, a fitting at the bottom of the tank was cracked. Mine leaked all the time until it ran dry.

Digest that a bit. Send more questions as you have them or as you learn more about your situation.
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Old 08-21-2019, 03:23 PM   #14
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GammaDog - Thank you for getting me down off the cliff.
After my purchase we drove the AS to our home in NC while we wait for septic tank fix and Duke to run power. So, it sits, not plug in to any power it's just waiting for permanent home . It's was raining for a few days when we arrived so my initial thought it was just the rain ..after several sunny days with a wet mark running down the drive. I crawled under to investigate and found 2 locations dripping ..The Holes! So, if I understand you correctly the black box is merely a container for another box that holds the fresh water? Do I need to remove black box to check the fittings you mentioned? Is this a job for a novice? I have tools and know which end of the screwdriver to hold but I'm not a wrencher.
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Old 08-22-2019, 11:37 AM   #15
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Ok, let's get methodical about this...

First, the diagnostic steps that can be undertaken with the power of observation alone:

1. Can you estimate how much water you are losing per day or hour? For a slow leak a tray or pan under the weep holes might help. For more significant water loss the fresh water tank gauge above the stove might even allow you to track % lost over time.

2. When you are using the trailer and not hooked up to city water does the pump ever run when nobody is drawing water from a sink, shower or toilet? Why does this matter? There are a couple of water lines that run across the top of the tank. The low point drains whose valves are on the underside of the tank are also on the pressurized side of the pump. A leak on the pressurized side of the pump could put water into the black plastic tank box which would then drain through the tank box weep holes. The observable indicator that this was the cause would be occasional running of the water pump as the leak (and not intentional water use) caused water pressure to drop. There are other causes for unexpected pump running... but for now let's assume that "water on floor + pump running unexpectedly = leak in pressurized water system in or above tank box".

3. From the time you noticed the leak has it ever slowed or stopped? Why does this matter? Well, a leak near the top of the tank (e.g.: at the fill tube or the tank vent connection) will only leak while the tank is full but will stop once a quantity of water is drained down so that the leaky point is no longer submerged. Or, there could be a leak in the feed line to the water pump or in its connections. That leak would potentially only be seen when the system was in use and therefore would stop over time if the trailer was parked even if the tank was full.

4. If you drain the tank and turn off the pump, does the leak eventually stop? (It should). If you then hook up city water does it resume? Why does this matter? There is a slight chance that the leak is on the city water feed side. I wouldn't bet on that, because that plumbing isn't in or above that tank enclosure box, but the floor is cut out above the tank enclosure and a leak in the city water feed could run across the floor, through that cut out and eventually exit the tank box weep holes. The smart money in Vegas isn't on that bet, but hey... strange stuff happens when you put your house on wheels and shake the sh!t out of it driving around America.

A point to keep in mind: The fresh water tank itself sits in that black plastic box. The box is lined with styrofoam. It takes time... even hours with a slow leak... for water to find its way from the leak to a weep hole. If the leak is dripping, rather than a steady stream, you may need to wait hours to detect a change that would point to the source.

Let's move on to active steps toward diagnosis of a leak. For now, I will not address steps involving removal of the tank box and tank from your trailer. That's fully described in the thread I linked to in my earlier post above. There are, however, some steps you can take with simple tools.

1. It sounds like this Airstream is new to you. You may not have discovered the myriad doors, hatches, panels, etc. that hide mechanical spaces. Those come in handy at times like this. The easiest and most helpful one in your trailer to open now is the panel directly below the wardrobe... the one with the furnace vent in it. On my trailer that door hinges open. Your cabinetry may be different despite our trailers being the same year and floor plan, but see if it swings open (no tools required). Use a flashlight to look around under there just in case the leak is from the pump (which is in that space) or the shower plumbing or anything else. There should be zero wetness in there.

2. The next space to check is behind the panel in the back of the little storage space under the fridge. Several screws hold that panel in place. Important health and safety note: The area behind that panel and directly under the fridge on my trailer was loaded with fiberglass insulation that had been shed from the fridge above it. I would suggest gloves and long sleeves and, if you plan to rummage around behind that panel, a dust mask. Anyway, the lines that attach to the tank and the low point drains all pass through the cutout in the floor under the fridge behind that panel. An inspection mirror or cell phone camera can be used to look down through that hole to see all of those connections. If one of them is actively leaking you may be able to see it. There are pics of that area in my trailer in the thread I linked to previously. If you can get a pic please post it.

Beyond that, it's time to drop the tank box. I'm thinking that's a subject for a later post!

Post info on what you see and learn. Keep the questions coming.
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Old 08-28-2019, 12:28 PM   #16
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Houston

We purchased a used 2014 Flying Cloud at the end of 2016. Works great. One of the best and worse things is when problems occur. The good thing about problems is you learn more about how your Airstream works. We pay to park our home away from home at Airstream where we purchased this unique trailer. Not only is this Convenient for us but it allows us to make sure we only get Airstream Factory installed repairs and that we try not to have issues while we are away. I think you received enough input from others about your issue, my advice is before each trip or once a year have a top to bottom check for things that might need attention. No one said this life style is cheaper than flying and hotels..its better most of the time. I worry about each trip, not wanting any drama or setbacks. Thanks for your input,, I learned something.
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Old 08-28-2019, 11:16 PM   #17
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I may have missed it, but Shortmoney didn't indicate whether they had a front or rear bed.


There is a key difference regarding the fresh water tank between the two, in that the filler on a rear bed is located on the curb side while the front bed filler is on the road side. Low point drains and tank drain are also on the curb side in a rear bed (may not be different).



Also, a rear bed does not have a little storage space under the refrigerator. The refrigerator bottom is at floor level and either a microwave or storage is above the refrigerator.


The black plastic shrouded fresh water tanks tend to sag. I cut up some old bed frame angle iron and placed it between the straps and the shroud to limit the sagging. Made sure I tapered the leading vertical edge of the angle iron to limit the risk of snagging.


Finally, GammaDog's excellent writeup on removing the tank, while implied, does not explicitly state that it is not possible to remove the outside black plastic shroud but leave the inner tank in place.





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Old 08-30-2019, 05:10 AM   #18
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Good catch, Greg. I have actually spoken to Shortmoney. He does, in fact have an RB while my write up was for my FB. Bad assumption on my part that his trailer is identical to mine... it is not.

Does anyone out there know the orientation of the tank and location of the fittings on a 2014 25 RB? Is it simply turned 180 degrees (in which case the filler, vent, drain and water pump connections would all be on the curb side on Shortmoney's 25RB while mine are all on the street side)?
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Old 08-30-2019, 05:29 AM   #19
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I would...Fill completely and see how long it leaks.

Ours has been 'leaking' since new.
I was really concerned until found it was the lower vent hose clamp. It was not fully accessible without some serious interior disassembly. I tightened the clamp as much as possible, it still leaks, but only when I fill completely 'up-the-tube', once below the clamp...it stops.

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Old 08-31-2019, 11:07 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GammaDog View Post
Does anyone out there know the orientation of the tank and location of the fittings on a 2014 25 RB? Is it simply turned 180 degrees (in which case the filler, vent, drain and water pump connections would all be on the curb side on Shortmoney's 25RB while mine are all on the street side)?



On my 2013 Flying Cloud 25 Rear bed, the filler door and hose/vent, tank drain, low point drains, and water pump are all on the curb side, along with access to them through the hatch under the curbside wardrobe. I would assume the 2014 is the same.

City water hookup is on the street side, co-resident with the black water flush connector.

Lots of floor plan differences between front and rear bed, due to the fact that a large design constraint, the wheels, are not centered fore and aft in the body.



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