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Old 12-02-2016, 12:14 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
2008 30' Classic
Martinez , California
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 7
Fresh Water Drain Valve and tubing

I have a 25ft, 1987 Sovereign. There are drain valves below the floor under the kitchen cabinet. The valves are leaking and I would like to replace them. My issue is the plastic tubing 3/8"OTS X 1/2" O.D. .062 03-09-87 POTABLE TUBING -2P-2P-2P-2P.

Where can I find fittings, tubing that are compatible?

Air Stream Tech Support says "Shark Bite" fittings will work.

Has anyone had experience with these fittings?

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Old 12-02-2016, 07:04 PM   #2
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1986 34' Limited
1975 27' Overlander
Conifer , Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 6,122
Images: 1
Hello natasha9, welcome to Airstream Forums. I have found a wealth of information here. So I will try to give you some insight on your leaking plumbing.

My trailer is a year older than yours, and a bit longer. But both trailers have a lot of similarities. I have just finished fixing the same kind of leak you are experiencing. It isn't fun.

The gray plastic plumbing in our trailers is polybutyle. This material and plumbing systems has now been replaced with PEX. Sharkbite fittings are in the category of "push to connect" fittings. They do work good if you have room to work. In our case, there isn't much room.

My 86 Limited developed a plumbing leak just where yours did. I've owned my trailer for 10 years but have never used the low point drains. I bet the fresh water tank is under the floor somewhere close by.

Chapter 1: My leak showed itself the day before our planned trip of course. I dried it, cleaned it with alcohol, and slobbered two part epoxy on the offending valve and joint. My leak was on the 12v pump circuit, not the city water circuit. It worked! The next morning we hitched up and left.

Chapter 2: My repair held for two years and 10,000 miles. But it started leaking again this summer. I just finished taking the fresh water tank down, and replacing all the polyb plumbing under the floor and to the kitchen sink and from the bathroom. Big job, but no more leaks. I left out the "low point drains" as I am a air pressure blow and then install RV antifreeze winterizer. I never found the drains very effective and don't trust them to get all the water out. But I do trust all the extra joints for the drains to leak someday. Less joints, less leaks.

So try some epoxy and see if you can smear some into the offending leak. And have nightmares about a big plumbing job coming up.

The photo is my leaker with epoxy after I removed it from the trailer. The other photo shows the three valves under the galley cabinet. No room to work.

Maybe you would like to read my thread on how I replumbed this area on my trailer. I left out all the cuss words, honest.

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Old 10-21-2018, 04:36 AM   #3
Retired Navy Submariner
1993 25' Excella
Ellicott City , MD
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 22
Hi, I recently purchased my first TT, a 1993 AS 25 ft. I have a pretty large leak from the lower stem area of the cold water header drain valve. Sounds like what you had. Were you able to find any successful method of repair other than complete replacement? Many thanks, Phil
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Old 10-21-2018, 05:28 AM   #4
2 Rivet Member
1988 29' Excella
2008 25' Safari SS SE
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 37
Sharkbite fittings will work, however they can get pricey compared to crimp fittings depending on your project.

Home depot carries a PEX to Polybutylene (PB) adapter (when their bins are properly stocked ), along with other various PEX parts and tubing.

I recently replaced all of the old PB plumbing in the bath/vanity area with PEX and used a couple of these to adapt to existing cold supply line and hot return line for remainder of trailer.

I have the smaller 'pocket' PEX crimper (requires large vise grips). This is good for an emergency kit and small projects, but I strongly recommend full size PEX crimper for doing more than just a few crimps, such as a kitchen or bath PEX upgrade.

In my 'trip saver' emergency kit I intend to keep a minimum of 2 elbows, 2 PEX-PEX splices, 2 PEX-PB splices, 2 tees, 1 valve, 1 bag of 1/2" crimp rings (10 ea.) and a couple of short lengths of PEX, and the 'pocket' PEX crimper.
I like shiny objects.
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