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Old 04-02-2013, 02:47 PM   #1
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Question help - trying to get water in the camper

I recently bought a 99 sandpiper. I have never owned a camper before so I dont know much about them. Im trying to get water in the camper. I put water in the campers fresh water tank and I turned the water pump on. but nothing is coming out of the faucets also on the meter for my tanks the black water tank is showing 3 dots (3/4 full) however I tried to empty the black water tank and nothing came out. I poured water in the toilet and it came out the hose so I know its not stopped up any suggestions and please keep in mind as I said before I am new to this and alot of terms used to describe things in the camper I might not know.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:08 PM   #2
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I recently bought a 99 sandpiper. I have never owned a camper before so I dont know much about them. Im trying to get water in the camper. I put water in the campers fresh water tank and I turned the water pump on. but nothing is coming out of the faucets also on the meter for my tanks the black water tank is showing 3 dots (3/4 full) however I tried to empty the black water tank and nothing came out. I poured water in the toilet and it came out the hose so I know its not stopped up any suggestions and please keep in mind as I said before I am new to this and alot of terms used to describe things in the camper I might not know.

Welcome Brat:

Welcome to the forum and to camping. I will offer a few helpful hints and hopefully those with much more experience or tips will chime in to. Not knowing the exact layout of your camper and the water lines I would first make sure that your fresh water tank has no leaks and the drain valve is closed. From there I would locate the pump and make sure it is working. If the camper has been sitting a while there will be air in the lines at minimum and if it was not winterized properly a water line might be broke. As for the black tank, it sounds like the meter hardware inside the tank is hung up. This could be caused by not flushing the tank, which leaves "debris" which hardens and clogs up the meter sensor. Couple of ways to unclog it are, buying a wand that connects to the hose and put it down the toilet. It shoots water 360 degrees and flushes the tank. Buy an adaptor that connects to the exterior black tank valve in between the valve and your sewer hose. It has a connection for a garden hose and shoots water up inside the tank, flushing the tank, and loosening the leftover contents. What I have done quite a few times is pour 10-20 lbs of ice down the toilet right before I leave for camping and llet it bang around inside the tank while I travel. It helps knock the debris off the sensors and sides of the tank.

Hope some of this helps you...

Golf
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:34 PM   #3
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Ty for the help with the blackwater tank and as for the freshwater there is two areas to put water. One says potable and the other says something about citywater hook up. The one that says potable water the tank goes into the bathroom. I saw it before because that's where my water pump is at. I figured out there is a release valve under it and I closed it. As for the fresh water tank not really sure where it is. I looked under the camper and there is a big black tank but it is empty so I'm assuming since I had the hose hooked up to it for about an hour the other day that either I have a leak or that is not the fresh water tank. Is there a way to figure out if that is the freshwater tank. I looked in the book that came with it but the diagram it shows in the book dosent match whe way my attachments are that I can see. Or is there somewhere I could possibly buy a book specifically for a 99 sandpiper the book I have is for all forest river rvs
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:37 PM   #4
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Lots of good advice from Golf!

When I have had used campers in the past, I was never sure how well they took care of the systems so I liked to inspect these closely. Here are a few steps that might help you with the water Pump...

Locate where the pump is inside your unit. You may need to unscrew a false panel for access. Make sure its working after turning on the water pump switch at the interior panel console. There might or might not be a water filter. If there is, it should be filling up with water. Note that you want to change the filter if you don't know its new.

If the pump does not seem to be taking in water, than a few items to check. Is it bypassed - check for an inline valve between the pump and the FW tank? Is there air in the line between the FW tank and the pump? Is that line crimped? Also, make sure you have enough water in the FW tank for the pickup hose. These are sometimes placed an inch or two up a side wall (don't ask me why that is).

If it seems to be picking up water, you may need to wait a minute or two for the pump to create enough pressure in the system. Finally, it will take several minutes to fill the water heater. All of those could slow down the process of getting water from a faucet.

If the pump does not shut off after several minutes or turns on and off intermittently, there is a problem such as an open faucet or shower head or, possibly, there is a leak that needs to be corrected.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:42 PM   #5
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If the hot water tank isn't full It'll take awhile to fill that before water comes out the facets....... no?
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:43 PM   #6
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Ty for the help with the blackwater tank and as for the freshwater there is two areas to put water. One says potable and the other says something about citywater hook up. The one that says potable water the tank goes into the bathroom. I saw it before because that's where my water pump is at. I figured out there is a release valve under it and I closed it. As for the fresh water tank not really sure where it is. I looked under the camper and there is a big black tank but it is empty so I'm assuming since I had the hose hooked up to it for about an hour the other day that either I have a leak or that is not the fresh water tank. Is there a way to figure out if that is the freshwater tank. I looked in the book that came with it but the diagram it shows in the book dosent match whe way my attachments are that I can see. Or is there somewhere I could possibly buy a book specifically for a 99 sandpiper the book I have is for all forest river rvs
Brat.. Potable is your fresh water tank. It is just telling you to fill with potable (drinkable) water. Did you hook up to city and no water came out?
When you hooked up for an hour, did you hear water running? It should have filled the tank or be running down your driveway?
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:47 PM   #7
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In alot of the travel trailers i've seen, the fresh water tank is under one of the benches of the dinette, you should be able to trace it based on where the fill location is on the outside of the camper. As for the pump, you can usually hear it when it runs for a couple of minutes to build the water pressure. I've also noticed in the several travel trailers I've had that the water pump is usually very close to the water heater. Sorry if this isn't much help.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:58 PM   #8
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And one more thing, if the pump is runn and you have water in fresh tank, that pump may have sat long enough that the seals are shot and no suction or pressure is happining. A new pump or rebuilding the old one is the answer.
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:17 PM   #9
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I have 2 hook ups one says city water connect. That's the one I was putting water in. Its parker in the yard but when we was putting water in it no I didn't hear anything hitting the ground the other one says warning potable water only sanatize flush and drain before using see instruction manuel. We tried putting water in it but it was coming out on the ground today I did find the valve to shut that off but my battery was dead so I couldn't test it again. I have the battery hooked up and letting it charge now because I don't have a plug I can plug the camper into yet because it flips gfi when I plug it into the house so after I get it charged I'm going to try it again but won't be able to untill tomoro.ty for all the help and one more thing if the potable water is my fresh water tank ( located on the passanger side near the end of the camper) then what is the city water hook up for (located on the driver side towards the tounge of the trailor)
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:49 PM   #10
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Your City Water Hookup will not fill the fresh water tank. That hook up is used when you are at a campground with a water hookup. Always use a RV water hose specifically for POTABLE (clean,drinkable) water - not a standard garden hose. To use that hookup, connect the water hose from your water spigot to the city water connection. You may need a pressure regulator if you have really high water pressure, depending on the age of the RV. You can pick that up for just a few $$ at walmart. It goes on the end of the hose between the spigot and the hose and will keep the water from being too high pressure that can damage the RV.

Anyway, once you have the hookup connected, turn on the water full bore. Then turn on the spigots in the camper. You will have to have them open so the air in the lines has somewhere to go. It may take a minute or two, but you should get water flowing out of your sink faucet once the hot water tank fills. With the city hookup you leave the water line connected and turned on - there is no tank being used and so it relies on the water pressure in the line to run the water through. It also bypasses the water pump since again, the water is already pressurized from the city water line.

The other opening for fresh water is the 'potable' water tank. That one is more of a cap type that will open and you can hold the hose pipe up to the tank to fill it. That one you will need to sanitize before you go camping the first time, but to test it out, make sure the drain valve is closed (it will be somewhere under the camper) and then just run water into the inlet. It will not over fill, as once the tank fills up the water will run out the overflow. Once the tank has a few gallons at least, THEN you can turn on your water pump and you should get water coming out of the TT faucets. Same thing applies as running off city water hookup - you'll have to run the water a little while to get the air out of the lines.

Once you've tested the system, then you want to drain the fresh water out and sanitize before you actually try to drink or cook using water from the water tank.

General tips...
-you don't have to fill up the water tank at all if you are camping at places where you will have city water hookups. We never keep our tank full - for our TT it's over 300 lbs of extra weight sloshing around while on the road, and we always camp where we have water hookup at least.
-We do usually travel with a little (5-10 gals) of water in the fresh tank in case we want to stop and use the potty or wash hands from the TT while enroute
-before you actually use the water from the fresh tank, you do want to sanitize your system. Here's a great video about sanitizing if your owner's manually isn't very detailed. Actually, anything by that same guy (RV Education 101) is pretty good.

Ditto what was said about the black tank - if your sensors are reading that there is something in the tank but there isn't then it's probably gunk stuck to the side walls. Your camper may have a black tank flush system built in, but if not, there are videos on that too... RV GEEKS have some great videos too.

Hope this helps! Keep the questions coming and enjoy your new RV - we all were newbies at one point too!
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