Common RV Plumbing Issues and How to Fix Them

What kind of plumbing issues can your RV have while you’re on the road?

One of the best things about an RV is that it comes with plumbing. It gives you the luxury of having hot showers and comfortable restroom breaks while camping in the woods. However, as helpful as this feature may be, it can be highly inconvenient when you run into some RV plumbing issues.

Unfortunately, plumbing issues are some of the most common problems that RV owners face. Even worse, they can happen at any time and without prior notice. It’s essential to know how your plumbing works and know how to solve common issues. Of course, some plumbing problems are better left to the experts, but learning the basics can save you from headaches.

To get you more acquainted with your vehicle, here are common RV plumbing issues and ways to fix them.

Water Leaks

Water leaks are almost inevitable regardless of how durable or high-tech your RV is. Regardless of where it’s coming from, leaks can cause significant damage to your vehicle. Aside from turning your interior into a soggy mess, they can rust metal fixtures and potentially short-circuit your electrical system. Overall, leaks compromise your RV’s structural integrity.

Given this, it’s essential to address leaks the moment you first notice them. Start by checking all connections and water lines to find the source of the leak. Generally, you should be able to address small leaks by applying some sealant.

If you’re having trouble locating the leak, it will be best to contact a professional for mobile RV repairs. Similarly, you’ll likely need help from expert RV plumbers for larger leaks that can’t be fixed with sealant.

Toilet Issues

Toilet issues are undoubtedly one of the most frustrating RV plumbing issues you can experience. However, having access to a clean and sanitary bathroom is a massive advantage of having an RV, so the last thing you want is to find the system broken during your camping trip or vacation on the road.

The good news is that toilet or drainage problems are usually easy to fix. For example, one leading cause of clogs and backups is flushing down too much toilet paper or not using enough water. In this case, you can remedy the issue by fixing your toilet habits. It doesn’t mean you should waste water excessively but use enough to prevent your black tank from clogging.

Water Pump Issues

Water pumps play a key role in your RV’s plumbing system. They maintain pressure in the water lines to pump water to different areas like your toilet, faucet, and shower head. So, if your pumps are malfunctioning or not working as intended, check on them immediately to avoid more significant plumbing problems.

There are many possible water pump issues you can encounter. These are some scenarios you might encounter and their corresponding solutions:

Water is Not Flowing Properly

If there’s no water flowing to your faucets or toilet, start by verifying that your holding tank has water. Your pump might sometimes not work if the tank is at low levels. Next, check for loose or worn connections in the water lines leading into and out of the water pump.

Cycling Pump

If you notice your pump cycling on and off, even if your faucet or shower is turned off, this may be a sign you have a leak somewhere in the system. To solve this concern, you’ll need to inspect your system thoroughly to find the source of the leak, then address it accordingly.

Unusual Noises

If you hear strange noises from your RV water pump, this may be due to faulty installation or loose pipes. Solving this may be a bit more technical, so it’ll be best to ask a professional RV plumber for help.

Water Line Issues

Having a broken water line is another common culprit for leaks in your RV. Many times, this happens when your water lines freeze and split. The main solution is often to cut out the damaged section, then join the two ends with a fitting. Make sure to use a tubing cutter if you’re dealing with copper lines, then use a utility knife for plastic lines.

You have many fittings to choose from, but compression union fittings are generally the best for this purpose. Now, if your water line has more extensive damage, you may need to cut out a longer section. In this case, you’ll need to get a replacement line with a similar length, then use two fittings to join the two ends and the new line.

Leaky Pipes

Another common RV plumbing issue is leaky pipes, which can happen for many reasons. Examples include corrosion, overflowing pipes, poorly installed plumbing fixtures, cracked seals, and unsupported pipes. Again, you should first identify where the leak is coming from, so you can address the issue adequately.

You likely need to replace part of or the entire PVC piping if the problem comes from freeze damage. Alternatively, if the leak comes from a valve in the pipe, try to tighten it. If the pipe still leaks after, you’ll likely need to replace it.

When dealing with pipe-related problems, it’s not as easy to solve them yourself compared to other RV plumbing problems. Generally, if you have experience replacing pipes at home, you may be able to take on the job. Otherwise, it’ll be best to get professional help.

Schedule Mobile Repair Services for Complex RV Plumbing Issues

Knowing the basics of your RV plumbing system can go a long way in keeping your vehicle in tip-top shape. As an RV owner, it’s critical to familiarize yourself with the common RV plumbing issues because they happen so often that you should be prepared to inspect or resolve your pipes whenever necessary.

That said, some problems are trickier or more complex to solve. So, in these cases, AA Mobile RV Repair is ready to help you. So, the moment you get stuck with a plumbing issue in your RV, call us at (727) 310-4662 for mobile RV repairs and inspections throughout Pinellas and Tampa Bay.