Repairing 1982 Fiberstream water heater feed - Fiberglass RV
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Old 10-11-2018, 08:13 AM   #1
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Name: JD
Trailer: Fiber Stream
Maryland
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Repairing 1982 Fiberstream water heater feed

This is the approach we took to fix a water heater feed line and valve that failed. It was faster and easier to transition form cpvc to pex then back into the cpvc. We're planning a full re-plumbing process in the next year replacing all lines with pex.

Note the white fitting extending from the heater inlet is a backflow preventer and must be kept in place. The current way the system is plumbed and the presence of this valve requires that antifreeze be used to flush water from the fittings. Additionally, the existing piping needs to be revised to assure better drainage to drain points.

We also observe that to assure this valve and turn-off and piping points are not damaged, antifreeze must be pumped from the fresh water tank to the water heater until is exits from the water heater drain point (the 3/4" anode port), and exits all cold water plumbing points. A trick we do to assure that the antifreeze reaches the hot water controls and piping is to run the cold water taps until the antifreeze exits, then, with the hot and cold water taps open, place a finger over the spigot outlet to force the antifreeze back into the hot circuit. This has worked well in both the Fiberstream and our Airstream.

Lowes had all the parts, and it was a quick, simple fix.

Currently, for cold weather camping, we have two 75 watt incandescent bulbs in work light holders for keeping the underbunk area from freezing.
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Old 10-11-2018, 04:38 PM   #2
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Name: Christina
Trailer: Casita
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Fiberstream

For what it's worth, for your Fiberstream, you may find "previous experience" help with "Drivin and Vibin" on YouTube. They've traveled full-time in one for a couple of years. Now refurbing an old Airstream
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Old 10-11-2018, 05:06 PM   #3
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Name: Kelly
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The RV supply store near me sells plastic screw on fittings that can be used to splice the old plastic plumbing lines to new Pex pipes. Just get a few of them and a length of Pex to keep in your repair kit until you redo the plumbing. That will make it easy to do on the road emergency repairs.


Instead of having solid panels on my underbunk cabinet doors I have woven vinyl coated wire mesh panels. That lets the heat get under there and also reduces the issue of mold and mildew as there is an air exchange. The mesh is a really strong product and it is also attractive, objects from inside the cabinets will not bust through it if they hit it on a rough road. One of the uses for it is making the seating fabric on outdoor furniture. keywords "sling vinyl mesh". No more need for heat lamps as underneath the cabinet will stay the same temperature as the cabin.
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Old 10-11-2018, 07:01 PM   #4
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Name: Randy & Ranae
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wild Coloradoan View Post
For what it's worth, for your Fiberstream, you may find "previous experience" help with "Drivin and Vibin" on YouTube. They've traveled full-time in one for a couple of years. Now refurbing an old Airstream
Great people, and they do have a lot of knowledge about the FS. Unfortunately, their home is a southern state, and the don't come to the freezing climates. Their experience in Oregon was it raining inside their FS due to condensation. There's a special strategy for camping in a FS in a condensating environment.

Two options for winterizing. Either the method used by the OP, or blow air through the system in a way that ensures ALL the water is out. I'm deliberating which way to go with for ours before winter.
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Old 10-11-2020, 11:40 AM   #5
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Name: Frank
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All this is good advice for winterizing! I think I will try a combination of antifreeze and blowing the water lines out with air. Thanks all for posting.

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Old 10-11-2020, 12:20 PM   #6
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Name: Darwin
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Just a thought, You can get the following that will automatically turn on the lamps when the temp reaches the freeze point.
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Cadet-Fr...-FB3/202849705
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Old 10-12-2020, 08:59 AM   #7
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Darwin;
That would be a handy item for cold weather camping. Thanks for the post!

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Old 01-15-2021, 04:00 PM   #8
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Name: Randy & Ranae
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Winterizing

All,

Best winterizing results:

Air compressor with hose adapter fitting, regulated to less than 60 PSI.
1. Work from distant to close items.
2. Flush toilet multiple times until you get nothing but air
3. Open cold faucet in restroom until nothing but air (NBA)
4. Open hot faucet in restroom until NBA
5. Open kitchen cold faucet until NBA
6. Open kitchen hot faucet until NBA
7. Raise passenger side of trailer, at least a couple inches above drivers side
8. Drain water tank (Could do any time)
9. Drain water heater using drain on outside of water heater near bottom. Repeat a few times, allowing air pressure to build again.

Repeat this 3 - 4 times, and all your lines should be empty. If additional low point drains were added, these need to be opened along the way, and left open when complete.

Once the water lines are clear, pour a cup or two of RV anti freeze in each drain and into the toiler bowl. This will keep the drains from freezing/breaking. It will also keep smelly's from coming up the pipes. I'd allow some into the holding tanks as well just in case. The presumes you already have well emptied holding tanks.

Please feel free to add to, or provide edits to this list if there is a better way.

In general, keep a heater in the unit, always keeping the trailer inside above the condensing point temperature. Also a couple Dry-z-air type units. This will keep the condensate point higher. Keep all doors, cabinets, fridge, range open. I like the thermostat option for keeping it the right temperature. A cover for the trailer is a must-have. Much cheaper to cover that repaint or replace the trailer, tires etc. Cheaper to keep it in good shape than it is to repair.

Thanks,

RnR
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