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Old 06-17-2011, 12:51 PM   #1
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Fill up fresh water tank, drive around the block and it then reads 1/3 full???

2011 26BH Coachman Catalina.
Filled up for first voyage last night for today.
Water flowed out of overflow clear drop down tube in between the wheels once it seemed full.
Opened faucets to get air out.
Flushed toilet enough to get a clean pack in the black water tank.

Then Fresh showed only 1/3 full on the wall gauge.

Newbie here, have not even taken it out yet, well, will in 5 hours.

Thoughts? Advice?

I did a search and found that some say the rocking and rolling of the trailer will dump a good amount of fresh water out the overflow tube in travel. I only went around the block. I don't see how I could have lost the water that fast nor did I or my wife see a water trail on the street.
Soooo, I don't think that is it, but again, newbie and the instruction manual is less than desireable when looking at troubleshooting things like this.

And no, I can't see the tank due to a sheeting to keep heat in and out of the bottom of the TT. Insulation and sealed so to speak.


Oh, one more, how do I know if the water made it into the 6 gallon hot water tank? There are no turn on/open valves anywhere I can find. Tank is 40 gallons plus 6 extra for the hot water so technically should have 46 gallons fresh on board.
The manual says DO NOT TURN ON WATER HEATER UNLESS YOU KNOW THERE IS WATER IN IT. So how do I know is the burning question???

And help is much appreciated!!! We are going to a spot that does not have water so I need as much as possible for the weekend.

Thank you and Happy Father's Day!
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Old 06-18-2011, 11:09 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzron View Post
2011 26BH Coachman Catalina.
Filled up for first voyage last night for today.
Water flowed out of overflow clear drop down tube in between the wheels once it seemed full.
Opened faucets to get air out.
Flushed toilet enough to get a clean pack in the black water tank.

Then Fresh showed only 1/3 full on the wall gauge.

Newbie here, have not even taken it out yet, well, will in 5 hours.

Thoughts? Advice?

I did a search and found that some say the rocking and rolling of the trailer will dump a good amount of fresh water out the overflow tube in travel. I only went around the block. I don't see how I could have lost the water that fast nor did I or my wife see a water trail on the street.
Soooo, I don't think that is it, but again, newbie and the instruction manual is less than desireable when looking at troubleshooting things like this.

And no, I can't see the tank due to a sheeting to keep heat in and out of the bottom of the TT. Insulation and sealed so to speak.


Oh, one more, how do I know if the water made it into the 6 gallon hot water tank? There are no turn on/open valves anywhere I can find. Tank is 40 gallons plus 6 extra for the hot water so technically should have 46 gallons fresh on board.
The manual says DO NOT TURN ON WATER HEATER UNLESS YOU KNOW THERE IS WATER IN IT. So how do I know is the burning question???

And help is much appreciated!!! We are going to a spot that does not have water so I need as much as possible for the weekend.

Thank you and Happy Father's Day!
Assuming you are camping without shore power, before you turn on the propane water heater, turn on the 12V water pump using the wall switch. The pump will activate and fill the water tank. After the pump shuts off, open a hot water tap (or all of them) momentarily to let the trapped air escape. Water will start to flow - this tells you that your water heater is full. You can then turn on your propane water heater. Also, when you are filling your fresh water tank prior to the trip, if you want the water heater to be full as well, use the 12V pump to fill the water heater as outlined above. When the fresh water holding tank is full the water heater tank will also then be full.

...VTX-AL
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Old 06-18-2011, 11:13 AM   #3
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Just be sure the valves for your hot water heater aren't in bypass..... Might pop the relief valve on the hot water heater to be sure.....Have the pump on (for pressure) and pop the valve and you should get water running out.
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Old 06-18-2011, 05:51 PM   #4
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on your walkthrough at the dealer he should have shown you the bypass valves - they are likely inside the trailer behind where the water heater mounts - so under a bed or bunk or bankette are the likley spots.

Mine has 3 valves under the master bed for the water heater - an in, an out and the bypass that connects those two lines together. To use the water tank the in and out valves need turned so the handles are inline with the hoses and the bypass needs turned to be at 90 degrees. City water pressure or your pump will fill the tank - once the valves are in the proper setting turn on the hot water at a sink and you should get some air then water.

I doubt you'd dump out 2/3 of the water, or that much would be used to fill the lines. Now I could see 5 gallons for that and 6 for the water heater and 1 gallon spill- but that's 12 out of 40 so you'd still be 2/3 to 3/4 full.

What I noticed on ours, at least with the black and gray tanks, is just a wee bit of tilt can move those readings a full bulb. And it's NOT a float guage like in a car gas tank - it's a contact on the tank wall. Say the tank is 9 inches deep. There will be a contact at say, 2, 5 and 7 inches. So if the water level is at 6-7/8" it will read 1/2 - there is not contact at the 7" sensor so it does not light up. Tilt the trailer 2 inches toward the sensor and it will light up - and you didn't add any water.

If you could see the tank itself you would see the sensors and their spacing.

Just remember on the grey/black the same thing holds true - it will read 1/3 and you'll rinse a coffee cup and suddenly it reads 2/3 cause you just got over that sensor. You have to use it for a while to get a feel for how your trailer, your 'level' and such work for you.
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Old 06-21-2011, 05:38 PM   #5
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Thumbs up

You all were very helpful. Thank you!

The valves were in the proper position for the hot water tank to fill and subsequently heat up. I did remember on the walk through where to check so I did.

So then I played around with the leveling right before we left. Yes those sensors are really sensitive. Bottom line is I was not level. I got level and then it read 2/3. Filled a bit more and boom, I was full!

So the tank is 40 gals and the hot water is another 6. I think I have this part figured out now.

Maiden voyage was great, had an awesome time. Wasn't looking forward to dumping the tanks for Father's Day, but it was a cinch and took 10 minutes. Easy and did the tank washout too as I had read to take another hose for this.

This forum, your experiences and help are just such a wonderful resource!
Thank you.

And I need to start a tradition here soooooo:




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Old 07-28-2011, 06:56 AM   #6
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I too was wondering why my tanks were reading 2/3 full when I went out for the first time. I was sure I had not used that much water. Good info on how the sensors work.
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Old 08-22-2011, 07:40 PM   #7
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I did not like crawling under a mattress to access my water heater, the water valves and pump. The mattress is in the front and not easily removed. I found myself lifting one side, crawling under it and supporting the mattress on my back. Very comical to onlookers.

Easy mod with a Lowes access panel. I think it was $10

needed to get to these valves. No more mattress wrestling.
I have plans to install a few more.
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Old 08-22-2011, 07:48 PM   #8
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Why it hits 2/3 so quick.

Look at the fresh water sensors in this photo.

The top one turns ON the full light when the level hits it.
It GOES OUT when the level drops below it.

The 2/3 light stays lit until the level drops BELOW it.

That means when that light goes out (only the empty and 1/3 light are lit), you actually have about a half tank of water.

In this photo the monitor reads 2/3 full.
Two flushes later it will read 1/3 full.

Note! Camper was NOT level in this photo. It was slightly nose down.
had it been more nose down it would have read 1/3 full.
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:35 AM   #9
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I have 110 gal of fresh water storage on my toy hauler. Most of the time it's just me and my girlfriend in the camper, and if we only go out for a 2 day weekend we obviously don't need 100+ gal of water. So, I used a 5 gal pale and a stopwatch to figure out how long it takes to fill 5 gallons. This way I can confidently say I have 50 gallons in my tank (or however much I think I'll need). You could do this as well to figure out how long it'll take to fill your 40 gallons
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:48 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzron View Post
2011 26BH Coachman Catalina.
Filled up for first voyage last night for today.
Water flowed out of overflow clear drop down tube in between the wheels once it seemed full.
Opened faucets to get air out.
Flushed toilet enough to get a clean pack in the black water tank.

Then Fresh showed only 1/3 full on the wall gauge.

Newbie here, have not even taken it out yet, well, will in 5 hours.

Thoughts? Advice?

I did a search and found that some say the rocking and rolling of the trailer will dump a good amount of fresh water out the overflow tube in travel. I only went around the block. I don't see how I could have lost the water that fast nor did I or my wife see a water trail on the street.
Soooo, I don't think that is it, but again, newbie and the instruction manual is less than desireable when looking at troubleshooting things like this.

And no, I can't see the tank due to a sheeting to keep heat in and out of the bottom of the TT. Insulation and sealed so to speak.


Oh, one more, how do I know if the water made it into the 6 gallon hot water tank? There are no turn on/open valves anywhere I can find. Tank is 40 gallons plus 6 extra for the hot water so technically should have 46 gallons fresh on board.
The manual says DO NOT TURN ON WATER HEATER UNLESS YOU KNOW THERE IS WATER IN IT. So how do I know is the burning question???

And help is much appreciated!!! We are going to a spot that does not have water so I need as much as possible for the weekend.

Thank you and Happy Father's Day!
Your bypass for the hotwater tank is more than likely under the bunk, that is where mine is on my Coachman Catalina 28DDS.
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