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Old 11-11-2019, 09:56 PM   #1
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Water pump runs continuously

We have a 2019 cherokee vfk with a problem. We noticed the white overflow hose dripping continuously for 2 weeks, then it became a full stream. The fw tank is full even though we didn't fill it. (Bought tt new, it was empty) After turning off city water the white hose stopped dripping immediately. We turned the pump on to start using the tank water to take its level down. But... the pump runs almost continuously in little grunts when there are no faucets open.

We do have a flow pressure device on city water that we keep at 50psi.

Sounds like we have a backflow problem by reading this thread but what relation does that have to the pump running with no faucets on?
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Old 11-11-2019, 10:27 PM   #2
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The pump runs because the internal check valve isn't holding pressure and the plumbing pressure is leaking back into the fresh tank (internally through the pump just like when on city water) which then lowers pressure in the system and the pressure switch (on the pump as well) kicks the pump back on.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:12 AM   #3
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They make rebuild kits for the pumps, but some people have elected to add an external check valve instead of fixing the internal one.

Here's one thread about doing that. Check Valve on Water Pump

If you can tell us what the make and model the pump is, we can help find a rebuild kit for it, if you need it.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:35 AM   #4
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My pump has an on/off switch, if your does also, turn it off when on city water. As others have said, your checkvalve is probably leaking by.
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:00 PM   #5
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Try this.
Shut off city water at pedestal
Run water from faucet until it stops.
Turn on water pump
Run water from faucet for a minute or so.
Close faucet and allow pump to stop.
Shut off water pump.
turn on city water.
Do not use water pump when connected to city water.
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:41 PM   #6
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Yep, very common. I have a an article on my site for how to deal with it:
https://learntorv.com/water-pump-check-valve/
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Old 11-12-2019, 01:37 PM   #7
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So, suppose the freshwater tank does fill up. Is there an efficient way to empty the tank without running the pump to pump it all out?
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Old 11-12-2019, 02:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOODMAN View Post
So, suppose the freshwater tank does fill up. Is there an efficient way to empty the tank without running the pump to pump it all out?
Hate to be Mr. Obvious but open the drain valve.
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Old 11-12-2019, 02:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadows4 View Post
Hate to be Mr. Obvious but open the drain valve.
That would be Captain Obvious to you!
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:18 PM   #10
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You might want to look into warranty replacement of the pump if you can't nurse it into proper operation using the tricks suggested by others.

A pump costs between $70 and about $120 for an exact replacement on Amazon or eTrailer, and it's a DIY job, but if the unit is still under warranty and you have the patience to work with the dealer, you can probably get the dealer to replace it.

Definitely do NOT run the pump while connected to city water. It is sucking air from the fresh tank. BUT, if the pump is running while on city water, it is, at least in part, because the trailer plumbing is not pressurized enough to tell the pump to stop. If you are on city water, the pressure in your RV plumbing should be considerably higher than the pump can actually produce, so it should NEVER run. If it does, consider replacing your pressure reducer valve on your city water hose, because yours may be defective and not passing adequate pressure. I know you didn't mention this, and I know you didn't say you were running the pump WHILE on city water, but both are worth knowing.

If the check valve has failed and is passing water to the fresh tank, back thru the pump, from the city water connection, that is a common problem, but should not be the case on a new(ish) camper.

But the price of these pumps tells you all you need to know about their ultimate reliability. Simple, cheap, plastic stuff can fail pretty easily.

By the way, the cost to tow your rig say 100 miles round trip from home to the dealer and back precludes warranty repair on such a cheap item. It's at LEAST $1.00 per mile to tow that trailer, and then there's the time, the round trip between drop-off and pickup at about $.60 or $.70/mile, and suddenly just replacing it DIY is lot's cheaper.

And to echo Captain Obvious, there is a drain on your fresh tank. Depending on your camper, it may be a short hose hanging below the underbelly, or it may be a valve right on the side of the tank. But your tactic of using the pump to empty most of the tank MIGHT exercise the check valve enough to get it to seat properly. Turn the water on and off multiple times using the pump and fresh tank, and you might get lucky. If not, get a new pump and save yourself the brain damage of trying to diagnose and repair a $100 throwaway part.
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:43 AM   #11
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We keep the pump off when we're on City water. The only reason we turned it on was to use water from the fw tank that had filled in its own.

That's when we found out the pump was not staying primed.
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Old 11-21-2019, 11:07 AM   #12
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Most probably a leak at the check valve, but it could also be grit in your pump. They are not hard to disasemble and clean. I carry a spare pump because we never have city water.
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Old 11-22-2019, 08:49 AM   #13
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Update: thanks fo everyone who responded. Luckily the pump was under warranty and we replaced it ourselves.

Unbelievable how much original construction debris was inside the pump area. We're all clean and running smoothly again.
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Old 11-22-2019, 09:02 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by flowerpsyche View Post
Update: thanks fo everyone who responded. Luckily the pump was under warranty and we replaced it ourselves.

Unbelievable how much original construction debris was inside the pump area. We're all clean and running smoothly again.
Thank you for reporting back.
Glad all is well now!
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