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Saturday, June 23, 2007

My First RV Fifth Wheel Repair Today

We have been camping on the Central Californian Coast this week in my parents RV (Recreational Vehicle) Fifth Wheel at Pismo Coast Village that they so kindly let us use. (Thanks Mom & Dad!) This week thus far has been both fun and relaxing, definitely something that both Ashley and I needed greatly.

Last night we had an "fun" issue with the 29-foot Sprinter HP Fifth Wheel fitted with the STEADYfast system that led to my first repair of an RV / Travel Trailer. While we were kicking back in the trailer after a nice campfire and were head a loud "pop" followed by the sound of water spraying everywhere. I jumped out of the recliner and immediately started looking inside the trailer, but I could find nothing wrong. Still, I could hear the water spraying all over the place like a pipe or hose broke.

Not knowing what it could be, I went outside the trailer and preceeded to see a ton of liquid pouring from the underside of the trailer. My first thoughts were something must be wrong with the grey water, or potentially worse -- the black water tank. However, a quick sniff test seemed to dispell that thought. I then ran to the water hookup and turned off the water to the entire trailer.

After a few seconds, the sound of water spraying everywhere stopped. Then, after a couple more minutes, what seemed to be the last of the water seemed to drain from underneath the fifth wheel. After a few minutes and a call with my dad, I decided to leave it put for the night and look at it in the morning. Since the water was cold, it probably was just one of the cold water pipes that had an issue.

When I woke up in the morning, we had the aftermath of what happened. The entire underneath compartment was soaked as seen in the picture below.

Fifth Wheel RV Water Problem Repair Picture 1

After a few minutes of looking around the problem was discovered. It was a very simple issue, but one that never should have happened. Apparently at the main distribution for water in the trailer, stainless steel hose clamp had come loose basically firing water all the way across the trailer. Nothing was broken or required major repair. All I had to do was reattached the hose, and tighten down the stainless steel hose clamp to put the trailer back to normal.

See the offending hose and hose clamp:

RV Trailer Repair of a water hose and the offending stainless steel hose clamp

After a few minutes and making sure to tighten all the stainless steel hose clamps on the trailer, order was restored as well as the trailer water supply. However, work still remained (and is taking place as I write this). In order to allow the carpeting and the wood to dry, the entire compartment needed to be emptied and allowed to dry. Fortunately the day is pretty warm and the drying is going well.

Still, this brings me to my gripe. Why in the world was the main distribution of the water supply for the fifth wheel trailer fitted with stainless steel hose clamps rather than a regular screw type fitting? It is obviously the area with the highest volume of water and the most likely place for something like this to go wrong. I guess the bottom line is that it was a little cheaper for the manufacturer. That's annoying.