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Old 11-19-2016, 03:09 PM   #1
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Pex clamp or Sharkbite?

There's been some discussion here about whether Sharkbite connectors are as good as Pex clamps with the water pipe used in a lot of travel trailers today. Long story, but I've removed the water filter and need to attach the two Pex lines together with a coupling. Have heard pros and cons to Sharkbites on TTs because of all the rocking and bouncing the pipes endure. What's the consensus on the subject?
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Old 11-19-2016, 03:26 PM   #2
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I've used both.. Pex are great and will probably never come loose, but as most spaces where water lines in rv's are tight and almost impossible to get a proper pex tool in, sharkbites are much easier. And' if done right, they also, will not come loose.
Just have to make sure the line is cut perfectly stright with no burrs.
I did exactly what your doing...did away with the filter and just used a piece of pex and two connectors. That was 3 years ago, and hasen't leaked a drop.
Additionally, when I replaced the kitchen and bathroom faucet's with some quality fixtures, I used push on connectors and adapted some stainless braided lines. That was 2 years ago, and no leaks.
I keep a supply of pex and an assortment of sharkbite push on connectors in our Lexi, just in case...
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Old 11-19-2016, 03:36 PM   #3
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I'm in the manufactured housing business. Not RV. I use shark bite for repairs often. I would not be concerned about the conditions of transportation one bit. Provided shark bite and or any other type of fitting is installed correctly.
There is one reason shark bite type fittings are NOT used by manufactures or new home builders. COST. There much more expensive however work 100 % for repairs and are then cost-effective.
Go for it. I modified some pex in my TT and have zero fears...
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Old 11-19-2016, 04:26 PM   #4
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Properly cut Pex is accomplished with a Pex tubing cutter, not a knife or saw! Like. stated above properly install will Not leak! Youroo! !
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Old 11-19-2016, 05:16 PM   #5
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I removed our onboard filter as soon as I got our trailer home. As mentioned, them are tight quarters....I consider myself pretty flexible, but not very easy to work in there with a pex crimping tool. I tried it, and my connection leaked. I started over after talking to an RV repair man, who told me he doesn't fool around anymore in hard to reach places, he goes straight to the Sharkbite, says he has yet to have one fail on him. For us DIY guys, they cost more money but you are only going to use a couple at most, so I would rather have it done right so it doesn't leak, and its quick. I carry a couple Sharbites in my plumbing repair toolbox and a length of pex in the trailer if ever we need to repair something while we are out on the road.
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Old 11-19-2016, 05:18 PM   #6
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As youroo mentioned...use a Pex tube cutter, gives you a nice clean cut every time. They only cost a few bucks at Home Depot or Lowes.
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Old 11-19-2016, 05:39 PM   #7
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Thanks again guys, Sharkbite wins the day and I'll carry some extras along with me. It's a real pain to have a leak while relaxing at a campsite!
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Old 11-19-2016, 07:01 PM   #8
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Thanks again guys, Sharkbite wins the day and I'll carry some extras along with me. It's a real pain to have a leak while relaxing at a campsite!
Also get some plugs that will fit the fittings that go on to the faucets. IIRC they are 3/4". I have had more than one faucet break on me over the years. By being able to plug the lines I could keep camping and still have water.

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Old 11-20-2016, 07:13 AM   #9
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I keep a couple of these sharkbites valves for emergency repairs. The sharkbites use an o-ring to seal the fitting. The key is to make sure there are no sharp edges on the PEX tubing that could cut the o-ring when you slide the fitting on. Also, just before sliding the fitting on, wet the tubing with a little soap. I put a little soap (any kind) on my fingers and wipe the tube. This lubricate the tube.

If you use the crimp style fittings, the key is to use the correct tool, and do not twist the fitting after its installed and crimped.
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Old 11-20-2016, 02:38 PM   #10
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I have a strong preference to PEX using brass fittings. The RV industry uses a lot of plastic fittings and I have replaced a lot of them. And I am not alone. I recently installed a reverse osmosis system in my residence and the kit came with shark bites. Two leaked (being static) no matter. The manufacturer replaced the fittings with PEX because they were aware of the problem with leaks. If shark bites are in an area where they are not subject to bumping up against something while traveling, they may be worth a gamble if you can't use a crimp tool.

Also be aware that PEX does not work well on braided lines because the ID is slightly larger than PEX fittings and will not crimp down enough to prevent a leak.
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Old 11-20-2016, 05:06 PM   #11
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QUESTION??? Why did you replace the inside filter??? Assume you still use a filter at outside tap??
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Old 11-20-2016, 05:21 PM   #12
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I tried sharkbite and it leaked. Maybe I did not do it correctly. I then used regular screw down hose clamp and no leaks.
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Old 11-20-2016, 06:24 PM   #13
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I keep a couple of these sharkbites valves for emergency repairs. The sharkbites use an o-ring to seal the fitting. The key is to make sure there are no sharp edges on the PEX tubing that could cut the o-ring when you slide the fitting on. Also, just before sliding the fitting on, wet the tubing with a little soap. I put a little soap (any kind) on my fingers and wipe the tube. This lubricate the tube.

If you use the crimp style fittings, the key is to use the correct tool, and do not twist the fitting after its installed and crimped.
I'm probably being picky, but that isn't a Sharkbite fitting. Sharkbite is a registered trademark of Reliance Worldwide Corporation and according their catalog, all true Sharkbite fittings are made of lead free DZR brass. What you have is a straight in-line valve compression fitting. I couldn't find one exactly like yours, but Lowe's sells one similar that is made by Blue Hawk.

I make no comment on whether Sharbites are better or worse than the non-brass versions.
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Old 11-20-2016, 06:33 PM   #14
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I'm probably being picky, but that isn't a Sharkbite fitting. Sharkbite is a registered trademark of Reliance Worldwide Corporation and according their catalog, all true Sharkbite fittings are made of lead free DZR brass. What you have is a straight in-line valve compression fitting. I couldn't find one exactly like yours, but Lowe's sells one similar that is made by Blue Hawk.

I make no comment on whether Sharbites are better or worse than the non-brass versions.
You are correct...the true Sharkbites are brass. What is in that poster's pic is a Sea Tech fitting, same idea as sharkbite but just made of some form of plastic. The Sea Tech fittings are common in the parts section of many RV parts departments. I have also seen them at Home Depot by a different name than Sea Tech, may have been Blue Hawk but can't say for sure.
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Old 11-20-2016, 06:36 PM   #15
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QUESTION??? Why did you replace the inside filter??? Assume you still use a filter at outside tap??
Just do a search on the topic of leaking water filters, there are tons of posts in here of people that have experienced major leaks with the inside filters. I still use a filter but it's outside, if it leaks, no damage done, and I can put the filter in the fridge between trips so the filter isn't sitting inside a camper that gets over 100 degrees while it is sitting.
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Old 11-23-2016, 07:22 AM   #16
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I keep SharkBiteģ fittings in my repair box.

They do make smaller crimpers for the the Pex rings, but even then you may not be able to get into the space where you need to. I have cut long sections of plumbing out, reconfigured them, reinstalled and only had to crimp at the ends. It is like one of those crazy wooden Chinese puzzles we used to get as kids. Makes your brain hurt!

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