I don't use the tank water for drinking nor ever use a "city" water hook-up. Always boondock it, using bottled water (or beer or soda) for drinking. My Micro-Lite 23LB came with an inline water filter. Today, when it came time to winterize the water lines, I thought I would by-pass the filter seeing I never drink water from the RV and I didn't want to waste any antifreeze filling the filter housing. Only problem was those Pex fittings and couplings. I don't have a Pex crimping tool (about $60.00 at Home Depot) so I had to figure out how to build a by-pass using hose clamps. The solution, I found, was that the filter has 1/2" male threaded fittings with a barbed end on the "in" and "out" sides where the Pex pipes are crimped on to.
Here's what I bought:
* Two 1/2" female swivel adapters (about $5.00 at Home Depot.) Here's a link:
* Two hose clamps ($1.50)
* One foot of RV water hose ($1.07)
* Teflon tape (I had a roll in the tool box...about $1.00)
* Relieved pressure from the water lines and removed the filter cartridge housing.
* Unscrewed a male fitting from of one side of the filter with the Pex pipe still attached. The barbed fitting turned within the Pex pipe (but never leaked afterward.) On the opposite male fitting, to be on the safe side, I turned the complete filter head (minus the cartridge housing) while holding the male fitting with a crescent wrench to keep the seal of the Pex pipe and barb intact.
* Wrapped the threads of the 2 male fittings, I removed from the filter, with teflon tape (very cheap insurance against water leaks.) Then screwed the 1/2" female swivel adapters onto the two 1/2" male fittings and snug them hand tight.
* Placed two hose clamps on a small piece of RV water hose (about 5" or 6" long) then inserted each end of the hose on the barbs of the two female swivel adapters.
* Tighten the hose clamps.
* Attached the by-pass hose piece to the top of the water filter housing with two zip ties to help support that line run.
When I winterized today and pressurized the water lines, there was a small drip on one fitting. I tighten the hose clamp with a nut driver, and no more drip.
The one Pex crimp is still water tight even when the barb was turned around within the Pex pipe when removing the first male fitting from the filter. They are very strong connections and/or I was lucky. I think it was a bit of both.
They say a picture's worth a thousands words so I'm attaching a photo of my filter by-pass to better illustrate all the above.