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Old 06-22-2010, 09:44 AM   #1
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1990 34.5' Airstream 345
Lewiston , Maine
Join Date: Mar 2010
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'86 345 water system not used for 4+ years

Hi, and thanks for any advice. I am finally about to move in to my '86 345. The PO did not use the water system at all. Could someone give me a succinct description of what I need to do to get water working and safe?

Also any suggestions on water purifiers? I've been looking online but it is confusing.

The PO did put some water in, so I assume I should just drain all that by turning on pump and opening valves. Will tanks left that long be irreparably moldy/cracked/unsafe?

Thanks again.
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Old 06-22-2010, 10:26 AM   #2
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2010 30' Classic
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South of the river , Minnesota
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1) Check for leaks using both the pump and the city water connection. You want to inspect visually as much as possible and also confirm that the pressure does not drop over 15 minutes or more even with the pump off and city water valve closed. Fix any leaks before proceeding

2) Sanitize with chlorine bleach per the instructions on the bleach bottle. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/4 cup of bleach per 10 gallons of water is typical, but read the label since it technically has the force of law and I wouldn't want to give any contrary advice.

Ideally you'd partially dilute the bleach in a bucket then pour it into a half-full freshwater tank, then fill the freshwater tank the rest of the way with water. Then run the pump and run water so all the pipes and the water heater have the sanitizing solution in them. You'll have to run about 10 gallons of hot water out to make this happen. You should be able to smell the chlorine.

Let sit for 30 minutes or so or as per the label on the bleach bottle

Then drain and rinse with fresh water.

In practice if you have city water that is chlorinated it will work as a sanitizing solution without adding any bleach. Might want to leave it in contact for a longer period though, say 24 hours

That should be it unless you have some specific problem you have to solve, rust, scale, whatever.

Regarding water filters you have to select a filter according to the nature of the water problem you're trying to solve. So, tell us more, whether you're just going to filter drinking water, or all the water coming into the traylah, or what.
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Old 06-22-2010, 10:50 AM   #3
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If 345 is anything like 30LY you will find 3 valves under bed near pump, opening those, tank should empty, there could also be a valve between the hot and cold water line close to the water heater open it for draining, close after. Make sure you run the hot water to remove air before you turn on water heater. You don't need to heat water until needed for use, after all plumbing has been checked and cleaned.

You shouldn't need the pump on for any of the dumping, you can also open the sink faucets and shower to help drain lines, pumps like WH don't like to run without water, they tend to burn up.

CW sells a filter you can put on hose so incoming water is free of sand, even has carbon to get some chemicals out, cheaper to make one from Home Depot household filter and the replacement cartridges are easier to come by.
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Old 06-22-2010, 11:38 AM   #4
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i would NOT use the onboard water pump to dump OLD WATER.

any crud IN that water may get sucked up into the system and clog lines OR the pump.

drain via the tank drain values and perhaps use a basin/pale to catch some of the water as it exits...

for visual inspection.

one can also run a soft hose into the FILL tube and down into the tank and siphon OUT water this way.

sanitizing the system is easy, follow the cdc/nih guides or the proportions offered IN the owners manual or on the A/S website.

MORE organic stuff IN the water means higher concentrations or longer exposures are needed to sanitize.

IF the tank has been sitting with the SAME WATER in it for years, there is a reasonable chance that surface algae has developed.

this stuff is mostly harmless but can still muck up the system AND the idea of stuff growing ON the water is yucky...

one can use a flexible fiber optic scope to LOOK into the tank for stuff, these can be rented now.

and there are inexpensive water testing gadgets now that provide info about HOW MUCH stuff in in the water...

water FILTERS and FILTRATION is an entirely different subject with many many threads here...

once the tank is useable and full o'fresh water and the external water line is connected AND drainage is established...

run the water and pump and ALL of the fixtures a bunch while INSPECTING all of the connections and pipes...

it's not uncommon for minor DRIPS to be found that are solved by hand tightening connectors.

leaks not solved this way need more attention, don't ignore them.

yes to all of the water heater suggestions above too, and don't forget to CLEAN the PRE/screen for the water pump.

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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