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Old 09-30-2014, 10:45 AM   #1
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Water Pump Installation Advice

We recently bought a 1994 Starcraft that has a 20-gallon water tank and is set up for city and manual pump only. I would like to add a 12V pump and the faucet it will need, which doesn't sound terribly difficult. But for some reason 12V wiring intimidates me (see my earlier post on the trailer lighting.)

Can anyone point me to a step-by-step guide on the installation? The power center and water tank are located adjacent to one another, under the dinette seat. Also if you have advice on size/type/brand of pump?

Thanks.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:53 AM   #2
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http://www.campingworld.com/shopping...ter-pump/14929

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-RV-CAMPE...-/250369190485

just a basic pump is all you need....you will have to mount a switch in the dinette seat. then wire to your 12v converter
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:48 AM   #3
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I recently replaced my old pump with a new one. The OEM pump was a 2.8 surflo, but they don't make that any more so I went with a surflo 3.0 gpm. The key features of your pump need to be dry or self priming, 12v, with a pressure range around 40-60 psi.

The plumbing and wiring installs are very similar conceptually. Splice into the existing run, add in the component, and make sure your fittings are tight. Specifically with the water connections to the pump and the rest of the system, they need to be as air tight as possible, otherwise the system will not prime or stop pumping. (i.e. the system pressure can't get high enough to trigger the pump cut off)

Draw out a diagram before hand and make sure it makes sense before cutting. I also recommend using some flexible hose on the pump water connections so you can make the connections in free space, then mount the pump. One problem with my previous install was that due to the way the pump fit into the cabinet, it was hard to tighten the water connections and the connector ended up stripping on the pump.
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Old 10-01-2014, 01:51 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips, I plan to order the pump later today. One question I have where I've seen conflicting responses: I have the standard Leisure Components faucet, with two water inlets: 1 for city water, the other for hand pumping directly from the water tank. I never use (nor plan to use) the hand-pumping function, so can I just tap into that inlet with the line from the new pump? Or is that faucet not set up to seal enough to prime as you described?
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Old 10-01-2014, 02:09 PM   #5
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I would replace it with a new faucet.

I have to ask though...without having hot water and no holding tank for gray water, what would you use it for?

My pup that I sold had a 12volt pump and it wasn't on once. I put a cover over the sink to have more counter space as I never used it. Didn't like the idea of having to catch gray water then lugging it somewhere to dump. I just lugged myself to the washroom to brush teeth and do dishes
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Old 10-01-2014, 02:29 PM   #6
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More for the wife than for me. We have a drain hose if we're primitive camping, I run it out to about 25' (downhill), and just let the gray water drain that way. We only use it for washing hands, dishes, maybe brushing teeth. Always bring bottled drinking water for that purpose, might use tank water to make coffee. No restrooms with running water where we usually go (in AZ)
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Old 10-02-2014, 07:41 PM   #7
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I installed the 12Vpump, hooked right into the same water line that currently goes to the faucet, and fired it up. The pump works fine, pumps water at a pretty good rate. But it won't shut off unless I turn the power off.

At first I thought it was the old Leisure Designs faucet, maybe the diaphragm was bad and it just wasn't able to close so the pump would switch to 'on demand'. But I tried it on a brand new version of the same faucet, with the same result. Are those old-style faucets just not set up to work with on-demand pumps? The newer one I bought is the 'triple action', and includes a wire you can use to create a switchable on/off pump system, but I would rather not have to turn a switch on every time to get water.

Any input or suggestions? I've seen where some of you convert to a standard household fixture, are the adaptors easy to find to hook those up to the tubing on the PUP?
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Old 10-07-2014, 08:58 AM   #8
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maddoxdave-
you probably have a slightly loose connection somewhere. you can use a soap and water solution to look for leaks. this happened to me when i replaced my pump, and although there was not a water leak, the fitting was not tight enough to build to the pump cut off pressure.

alternatively, my pump documentation indicated a way to adjust the shut off pressure, so you might investigate that as well.

also, i only have power to the pump when i want water pressure. my system has a built in switch, i would definitely add one if i were you. my concerns are that i don't want the pump to run for some reason and deplete my battery.
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Old 10-07-2014, 07:59 PM   #9
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Thanks for the tips, I ended up keeping the Leisure Designs 3-way faucet, and using the built-in wiring so that the pump is only on when we pull the faucet...it actually works really well, and as you pointed out, don't need to worry about the pump running amok.

We took it up this weekend and noticed a leak underneath the faucet, but that turned out to be the other (unconnected) inlet; I did a little McGuyver job where I stole some of the new inlet hose, plugged it with an old bolt, and sealed each end with hose clamps. Voila.\

So here's my latest 'what were they thinking?' Design complaint: The drain valve for the water tank is right there on the tank, under the dinette seat, and empties under the middle of the camper. So when breaking camp, you have to either drain the tank before closing up the PUP (and deal with the mud) or leave the tank full and drain after you get home.

My next mod is to tap into the drain line, run an extension to the side of the camper, add a hose bib connection, and be able to drain the water away from the camper by hooking up a hose.
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