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Old 03-08-2019, 07:56 PM   #1
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Help me assemble a plumbing tool kit / must haves

Hello all,
We are total RV newbs. Ive realized that rv camping entails becoming a truck driver/electrician/ plumber/ mechanic so Ive embraced it.

Our plumbing is mostly the pex / blue/red plastic piping. What would be the must have spare parts and tools to keep n the RV?
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Old 03-08-2019, 08:03 PM   #2
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I carry zero. The beauty of pex is how great it is. garden hose washers are the only plumbing parts I carry.
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Old 03-08-2019, 08:27 PM   #3
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Flex Tape for emergencies. Shouldn't have problems with pex or fittings while on the road. Most other connections are hand tightened, so tools aren't really necessary. You will never have enough spare parts to have the one you actually need. I quit carrying any spare parts years ago.

I always carry water pump pliers just in case though. I probably use my multi-tip ratchet screwdriver set the most. Make sure it has lots of tips, including the square and star ones.
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Old 03-08-2019, 08:35 PM   #4
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Pex

Get to Lowe's and pick up a 6' run of 1/2" pex, some razor style cutting shears, two shark bite 1/2" connectors. No tool needed to assemble but a tool is needed to separate connectors if you move them once installed. You can now fix about any water issue youbbcan reach. Consider if you like your hot and cold low point drains. Swapping those out for real valves is a popular first mod....

If you are adventurous you could get a pex crimp tool, they are fun. Two types are made; 1) band style and 2) rachet band. Different tool for each, worth a walk thr plumbing. Or the toy store DW calls it.. Plus you get to upgrade to brass junctions as you make improvements.

I carry a 24 long tool box, so I cut my pex peices to 23".. but then I'm that guy who two is one, and one is none when it comes to tech support for camp systems on the road.
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Old 03-08-2019, 09:56 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Kimber45 View Post
I carry zero. The beauty of pex is how great it is. garden hose washers are the only plumbing parts I carry.
X2. I don't carry any plumbing stuff. A pair of plyers has fixed everything I needed to fix.
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:10 AM   #6
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There is so much to plumbing that CAN go wrong, but probably WON’T. I am a plumber and I carry tens of thousands of dollars worth of tools and materials on my work truck, but there still always comes a time when I don’t have something I need. I would need to drive a tractor/trailer to (almost) ensure I didn’t have to run by the supply house for that one thing I don’t have.

For the hand tools I use the most at work, I have a large Carhartt tool bag that I keep on my work truck and carry into every job I go to. I keep a “clone” of this bag and its contents on my personal truck that goes camping with me. The main purpose of this bag of tools is as a backup in case my other bag “goes missing”. If this happens, I will have everything I need and not lose time for work. The secondary purpose for this bag is that almost every tool in it is something I can use to fix almost anything in my camper. So, I do have just about every tool I could possibly need for fixing plumbing in the camper, but I do not carry any materials — it just doesn’t make sense — there’s too much stuff that might be needed that can usually be picked up at any hardware store or Walmart.

If you would like me to make a list of every tool I carry in my bag, I will do that for you. Let me know.

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Old 03-09-2019, 07:24 AM   #7
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I carry a variety of screwdrivers (including the square, hex and star), pliers, a rubber mallet (primarily for driving stakes into the ground to secure my satellite dish), vise grips and water hose washers - plus tire-changing tools. Oh, and an inexpensive ratchet/socket set in a black case.

That's pretty much it for me. As has been said previously you'll never have all the right tools if you actually encounter a significant problem. Just hope you're not too far from a decent hardware/tool store if/when that happens.
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:34 AM   #8
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Only thing I've ever needed to fix plumbing related issues was a wrench, pliers, square head screw driver. That's all I've carried since 1984
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deanm View Post
Hello all,
We are total RV newbs. Ive realized that rv camping entails becoming a truck driver/electrician/ plumber/ mechanic so Ive embraced it.

Our plumbing is mostly the pex / blue/red plastic piping. What would be the must have spare parts and tools to keep n the RV?
I carry an assortment of hose fittings (Ys, a 4 outlet manifold for Goshen, etc.), gaskets for water and sewer hose, Channel lock pliers to tighten connections, PEX shear, a 3 foot length of PEX, and a few SharkBite fittings for a quick repair. I used to also carry a spare toilet valve, but I have a different model toilet now.
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:58 AM   #10
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Murphy's Law: "No matter what or how much you carry, you will not have what is needed."
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Old 03-09-2019, 08:06 AM   #11
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I carry [a] PEX shear.
While I agree with most people that there is a correct tool for every job, a PEX cutting tool is overkill for the occasional PEX repair — a sharp razor blade or a hacksaw blade — tools you probably already have, are just as good, and better in some situations. I own various PEX/CPVC cutting tools, but only use them when I am doing a job requiring multiple cuts. Those tools are not in my tool bag — they have a place on my truck, though.

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Old 03-09-2019, 01:58 PM   #12
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Tubing cutters, pex tool,assortment of pex fittings, assorted shark bite fittings, assorted hose clamps and hose washers. Y connector for hose
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:50 PM   #13
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Murphy's Law: "No matter what or how much you carry, you will not have what is needed."
Or you will have it but it's back home sitting on your workbench
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:52 PM   #14
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Special tool not needed

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Originally Posted by Hoglou View Post
Get to Lowe's and pick up a 6' run of 1/2" pex, some razor style cutting shears, two shark bite 1/2" connectors. No tool needed to assemble but a tool is needed to separate connectors if you move them once installed. You can now fix about any water issue you can reach. Consider if you like your hot and cold low point drains. Swapping those out for real valves is a popular first mod....
You don't need a special tool to release Shark Bite-style connectors. A Crescent wrench or monkey wrench adjusted appropriately and pressed against the joint will release it.

Larry
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Old 03-09-2019, 03:49 PM   #15
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You don't need a special tool to release Shark Bite-style connectors. A Crescent wrench or monkey wrench adjusted appropriately and pressed against the joint will release it.

Larry
I actually have a "Ford" wrench in my tool bag. It fits the axle nuts and loads of other uses. A SharkBite release tool is a new one!
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Old 03-09-2019, 04:04 PM   #16
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Ford wrench

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Originally Posted by Herk7769 View Post
I actually have a "Ford" wrench in my tool bag. It fits the axle nuts and loads of other uses. A SharkBite release tool is a new one!
I've got one of those, too. Not sure what size PEX it fits.

The PEX release tool is simply a U-shaped piece of plastic. I've lost a couple of those, don't attempt to keep them any more.

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Old 03-09-2019, 05:16 PM   #17
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I've got one of those, too. Not sure what size PEX it fits.

The PEX release tool is simply a U-shaped piece of plastic. I've lost a couple of those, don't attempt to keep them any more.

Larry
It will fit all of the PEX SharkBite fittings.
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Old 03-09-2019, 05:29 PM   #18
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Murphy's Law: "No matter what or how much you carry, you will not have what is needed."
I used to race motorcycles. The other part of Mr. Murphy’s Law is “whatever you have a spare for, will not break”.
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Old 03-09-2019, 06:09 PM   #19
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Only thing I've ever needed to fix plumbing related issues was a wrench, pliers, square head screw driver. That's all I've carried since 1984
I add to the above: garden hose washers, a couple inlet washer screens for the city water/tank fill connections, a roll of teflon tape and a few hose clamps for water and a spare for the sewer hose
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Old 03-09-2019, 08:15 PM   #20
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Ambiguous

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It will fit all of the PEX Sharkbite fittings.
My post was kind of ambiguous. I've got an old open-end wrench in my toolbox with the Ford script logo on it. It came in the tool kit delivered with each Model T or Model A, I guess. I don't know whether it will release any Sharkbite-style fittings. If it happens to fit 1/2" fittings, then it won't fit 3/8", 1/4", or 3/4.

I have used adjustable wrenches. They can be used on any size fitting.

The Sharkbite tools are size-specific as you can see from the attached images. And a little pricey for a piece of plastic: $1.70-$1.90 each.

Larry
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