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Old 05-05-2019, 10:02 PM   #1
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Where's the Pump? Any tricks on helping it prime?

My 2014 water pump won't catch prime from a full fresh tank.
1) Are there any tricks for helping it prime?
2) I don't know precisely where it is. I can hear it in the general area of the converter. In the HW277 there is a cabinet above the converter that contains the water filter. It sounds as if the pump is in the same space as the converter. That's puzzling, because one would expect some separation between water an 120 volt power.

Before I start tearing things apart, has anyone located the pump? If so, what's the best way to gain access?

Thanks,
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Old 05-05-2019, 10:28 PM   #2
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You're on the right track. If your not sure where it is, sound is the first clue to chase. Generally they put them behind a blank panel with a couple screws holding the panel so it's removable OR in a place that's reachable without moving anything like inside a cabinet or in the underbed storage area with a piece of plywood covering it.

In a popup, I'm thinking it may be near the water heater, Sink or the fresh water fill area. May even check under the shower to see if there is a removable piece of plastic near the shower base.

Wish I could be of more assistance. Hopefully with the same camper will come along and lead you directly to it.
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Old 05-05-2019, 10:28 PM   #3
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Does your unit have a winterizing kit with a valve set one way to draw anti-freeze out of a jug OR set the other way to draw from the fresh water tank?
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Old 05-05-2019, 10:50 PM   #4
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The cabinet above the converter has a removable bottom. Take it out just a few screws, and u will see it
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:54 AM   #5
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Check that it's winterize valve first. It's under the camper by the fresh water drain.
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Old 05-06-2019, 09:32 AM   #6
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2516.... Ours was under the couch by the hw tank. Stupid place....can't even remove the couch bottom..... A very big pia! I had problems with our s not priming. I finally said forget it, and forced water thru the line from the fresh water tank and that did the trick. Hope that helps, I feel for ya....very frustrating!
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:58 PM   #7
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totalcomfort is correct - remove the bottom of cabinet you should see it. and yes, the water filter and pump are all around the converter, That was the main reason i removed the filter in my HW277 when i had it. if it ever broke, there would be water all over the converter and the breaker panel.
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Old 05-09-2019, 09:20 AM   #8
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If the pump is lower than the water level in the tank, simply open the faucet and let the air out and the water level will fill the pump. Then turn on the pump, it should be primed.

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Old 05-09-2019, 09:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmoore13 View Post
My 2014 water pump won't catch prime from a full fresh tank.
1) Are there any tricks for helping it prime?
2) I don't know precisely where it is. I can hear it in the general area of the converter. In the HW277 there is a cabinet above the converter that contains the water filter. It sounds as if the pump is in the same space as the converter. That's puzzling, because one would expect some separation between water an 120 volt power.

Before I start tearing things apart, has anyone located the pump? If so, what's the best way to gain access?

Thanks,
You've received good comments on where and how to bleed.

I'll just add... don't be surprised at how the factory runs plumbing and routes/places H2O things near electrical. Some of what I've seen has me still scratching my head.
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Old 05-09-2019, 10:33 AM   #10
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Thanks for the input.
I think Total Comfort's response is correct. As luck would have it, that cabinet is where we store small appliances such as our espresso machine, so it's packed to the gills with stuff. I didn't see the screws on the "false floor."

To those suggesting the winterizing valve and other responses:
  1. I winterize with air, so I have never looked for or used the valve to intake RV antifreeze in the system.
  2. This air process leaves the pump dry, so I anticipate that the pump seals are a bit dry.
  3. If there is a winterizing valve, I willl attempt to moisturize the pump seals by pouring water into the winterizing intake hose and hope for the best.
  4. And FYI to those who only use hookups, the fresh tank is below the floor, and the feed to the pump would, of necessity, be at the lowest point in the tank. The pump must lift water, in my case, approximately 24 inches to the pump. That's a pretty good lift for a cheap centrifugal pump.
  5. If priming is easy because of an intake hose for RV antifreeze, that will be great. If not, I may install a squeeze bulb primer in the water line from the tank to the pump...even if I replace the pump with a new pump.

The priming bulb can move water from the tank to the pump intake, so the pump doesn't have to lift. Once the pump's seals are wet and lubricated with water, the pump will probably function properly. These are commonly used to move fuel from a portable fuel tank to an outboard motor. Many small engines, including the ones on my Generac inverter generator and on my Stihl gas trimmer, have bulb primers to fill the float bowl on the carb for cold starting. Manually lifting the water through a dry line to a pump 2' above would take a lot of the strain off the pump, and once primed, the pump's check valve should prevent the line from draining back into the tank.

I started prepping the camper, including sanitizing the potable water systems, and now it's snowing....days of snow. I'm running an electric heater in the open rig to (hopefully) keep things from freezing up. Temps are hovering around freezing overnight, and, for example, my bird bath is only partially frozen in the mornings. Fingers crossed. When the weather improves, I'll find the pump and see what happens.

I'll keep you all posted on the outcome.

Thanks again!!
But this, too, will pass, and I'll camping again in a couple weeks, come hell or high water.
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:01 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CincyGus View Post
<<SNIP>>

In a popup, I'm thinking it may be near the water heater, Sink or the fresh water fill area. May even check under the shower to see if there is a removable piece of plastic near the shower base.
<<SNIP>>
It sure would make sense to put it in the hot water heater compartment under the dinette seat....BUT NOOOOOO. That would be too easy and too smart!

There's a ton of room in there, the plumbing is in there (of course), and it would be very easy to service, AND the pump would have to lift the water a much shorter distance. BUT NOOOOOO!!!
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Old 05-09-2019, 08:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmoore13 View Post
My 2014 water pump won't catch prime from a full fresh tank.
1) Are there any tricks for helping it prime?
2) I don't know precisely where it is. I can hear it in the general area of the converter. In the HW277 there is a cabinet above the converter that contains the water filter. It sounds as if the pump is in the same space as the converter. That's puzzling, because one would expect some separation between water an 120 volt power.

Before I start tearing things apart, has anyone located the pump? If so, what's the best way to gain access?

Thanks,
My pump is behind the inverter which makes it really hard not to get water on the inverter when changing the filter mounted above it. The dealer actually took the inverter out to winterize the camper instead of using the stupid nipple way underneath the camper. I'm going to put a T and valves on the pump inlet hose, like my travel trailers, and fish the winterizing hose out of the water heater access cover. I won't need to do much other than take the drawer out to switch the valves and that access cover.

As far as the pump priming, I had that issue as well. I had to take the pump apart and clean the diaphragm valves. They got dirty from well water. Once I put the diaphragm valves back, the pump ran right. I didn't have a filter on that camper. Hopefully won't be bad with the new camper since it has a filter.

Here's a video of how to get to the diaphragm valves
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Old 05-09-2019, 11:29 PM   #13
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Quote:
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My pump is behind the inverter which makes it really hard not to get water on the inverter when changing the filter mounted above it.
Popups don't have factory Inverters so unless you or a previous owner installed one, you're talking about the CONverter.
All RVs come with CONverters, few come with INverters.
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Old 05-10-2019, 09:11 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by bikendan View Post
Popups don't have factory Inverters so unless you or a previous owner installed one, you're talking about the CONverter.
All RVs come with CONverters, few come with INverters.
Yes, auto correct, I swiped converter. You caught it before I did.
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Old 05-12-2019, 08:29 PM   #15
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Update and (perhaps) helpful trick for priming the pump.

Yes the pump is in a ridiculous location right next to the converter/power panel and literally buried under a rat's nest of wiring.
What a stupid mess.
And the removable cabinet floor is also a joke. Half of the carrying brackets are on top of the cabinet floor panel with 1/2" x 3/4" parting stop attached to the floor and screws going through the parting stop into paper thin interior wall panels. It's ludicrous.

But that said, there it was, and, like many, mine has an input filter/screen. My screen was clean, but I realized that this was the perfect priming port.

I pulled the screen cover and used a turkey baster to "inject" a bit of water into the "pot" the filter screen fits in. This little bit of water moistened the pump seals, and voila. The pump picked up prime and, with a few minutes of running, pumped like new.
So thanks to all who helped me figure this out.

BUT THE BAD NEWS is that the check valve that prevents water from bleeding off pressure seems to be leaking back, so the pump now pulses on and off every 10 seconds or so. I guess I can't gripe. The pump served me well through 5 seasons.

I crossed my fingers and hoped it would clean itself up, but it seems to be getting worse instead of better.

Given the ridiculous effort it takes to get to this thing, I think I'll buy a new one and install it, then I'll disassemble the old one, clean up the innards, and perhaps use it as a transfer pump.

What I will do is pull the converter/breaker panel to make it easier to get at the pump, swap pumps, then button things back up.

Since I boondock always, I carry four 7 gallon Reliance water jugs in the bed of my TV. I'm old. My HW PUP is lifted. A jug weighs 70 pounds when full. I'm sick of having to lift and hold the jug at least 4' off the ground to transfer water from the jug to the fresh tank.

I'm going to get a 35 to 50 gallon potable water tank and use a transfer pump to move water from the tank, via hose, to the PUP's fresh tank. I was thinking of getting a 120 volt transfer pump and running it off my generator. But if I semi-retire my RV pump, I could use it and run it off the cigarette lighter socket in the cab...running the wire thru the rear slider window.

I may assemble the tank and pump onto a sheet of 1/2" plywood to make it easy to load and store, and to keep things from flying around in the bed of the truck.

I've never run out of water when starting with a full fresh tank and carrying 28 gallons in jugs, but a 50 gallon tank would make it possible to shower more often and "waste" water rather than be frugal.

BY THE WAY, if you travel with a full fresh tank, the tank must be reinforced or it will give out. The photo attached shows my tank support....a fortunate use of the hanger brackets used to guide pipes and hoses. If you don't have these brackets, you could fabricate something similar out of light gauge sheet metal, and uses sheet metal screws to hang the brackets from the side of the frame.
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Old 06-02-2019, 12:08 AM   #16
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Does anyone know where the pump is located in a 164O ESP? I can’t even hear anything from mine when switching the button on. I believe the previous owner may have left it on and burned it out. Only had the trailer for 2 days trying to go through and fix everything. Thanks for your help if you can point me where to look it would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-02-2019, 12:00 PM   #17
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Does anyone know where the pump is located in a 164O ESP? I canít even hear anything from mine when switching the button on. I believe the previous owner may have left it on and burned it out. Only had the trailer for 2 days trying to go through and fix everything. Thanks for your help if you can point me where to look it would be greatly appreciated.
I can't help you locate it but make sure you are not connected to city water. The pump wont kick on when the city water provides enough pressure.

You may already know this but there have been many posts where folks thought they needed the pump on while connected to a spigot.
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Old 06-02-2019, 12:27 PM   #18
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The pump is usually located in behind a fake cabinet door. The pumps that I experienced are fairly noisy. They donít run continuously only when you turn on a water source.
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Old 06-02-2019, 10:37 PM   #19
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Does anyone know where the pump is located in a 164O ESP? I canít even hear anything from mine when switching the button on. I believe the previous owner may have left it on and burned it out. Only had the trailer for 2 days trying to go through and fix everything. Thanks for your help if you can point me where to look it would be greatly appreciated.
Crawl under the trailer. View the line from the fresh tank that goes up into the body of the trailer. It will be located there. It's likely to be on the floor. It's entirely possible that it's located right behind the Converter and breaker panel.

In mine, I removed the "floor" from the cabinet above this cavity, and there it was. I had to swap my pump, and it helped a lot to remove the converter/breaker panel to give more room to work. Don't forget to unplug from shore power before working on the converter.

Good luck.
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Old 06-02-2019, 10:38 PM   #20
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To all who helped. Thank you!!

I bought the new pump and it installed in just a few minutes. Only about $65 on Amazon.

Happy camper as they say.

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