Hi Everyone. Well, after 15 years the RV-Dreams Community Forum is coming to an end. Since it began in August 2005, we've had 58 Million page views, 124,000 posts, and we've spent about $15,000 to keep this valuable resource for RVers free and open. But since we are now off the road and have settled down for the next chapter of our lives, we are taking the Forum down effective June 30, 2021. It has been a tough decision, but it is now time.

We want to thank all of our members for their participation and input over the years, and we want to especially thank those that have acted as Moderators for us during our amazing journey living and traveling in our RV and growing the RV-Dreams Family. We will be forever proud to have been founders of this Forum and to have been supported by such a wonderful community. Thank you all!!

Members Login
    Remember Me  
Post Info TOPIC: Drinking Water Pump Questions

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 76
Drinking Water Pump Questions

Have any of you ever had to replace your fresh water pump? I ask because we'll be mostly boondocking in our rig. New Mexico (VLA!!!) Arizona and extreme Socal in the winter (Bagdad, Amboy other places along 66), comfortable places in the summer, with lots of sun, a place on the water and world-class trout fishing. I am headed to Henry's Lake my first spring.

I've watched water system repair being done on YT and it seems pretty simple but there are a couple questions to ask:

1. To what extent will I be able to repair the existing water pump? If the motor is strong, the rest of the parts (at least with another Shurflo) appear to be readily available. So, repair or replace? What do you do? I like doing things on the el-cheapo, so for me, that's a no-brainer. However, the time may come when the pump don't pump (motor) and from what I've been able to tell the motors are not user-replaceable but anyone with experience will know better than I. A replacement, then, is in order and will be ordered or bought (if it fails while we're 'docking at Coyote Howls, I'lll have a spare unit). Chances are, when we get the rig, I'll install a new pump, rebuild and keep the old one in reserve. Or buy one needing repair (but not the motor) on Ebay and rebuild both units, install the best one and keep the lesser in reserve, as a spare. What do/would you do?

2. Do any of you use an accumulator to smooth out the starts and stops? Seems like it might be worthwhile.

3. How about the inline water filters? These will be must-have for us and several spares will be carried. I figured I'd ask how well they work, and if they make a difference on the taste of certain water supplies (southwestern AZ, anyone?). Even if they don't affect the taste (we WILL have bottled water in the desert), if they keep one insect out of the delivered water (as in tank to faucet) while making it cleaner and clearer, it's another no-brainer.

So, hardy road-trippers, what say ye about all these things?

Want to improve your tone? Learn to play better.

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 297

All fresh water pumps will fail, and usually at a poor time. I've always carried a spare. We owned a trawler for 13 years and the water pumps for marine use were the same manufactures as RV's. The cost of a spare unit far outweighs the benefits of not having one on hand when needed.

I can remember decades ago being in the middle of the San Juan Islands trying to fashion a new diaphragm from a inner tube tire. Not much fun when at anchor.

We always used an accumulator on the trawler. We haven't needed one on either motorhomes we have had. It's an easy and cheap add on if you need one.

We've had both expensive and reasonably priced water filters over the years. Right now we have a new Culligan system. The filters cost less than a 1/3 the price of our old system that we used for 5 years. Time will tell if we like it as well. It's too soon to know. I'll have an opinion in a year or two.

It's all an adventure out there. In some locations the water available is only suitable for showering, at best. In those areas we use our supply of bottled water for drinking and cooking. Some water is so hard that it is difficult to wash the soap off when showering. It's part of the adventure.


Russ & Terri Ranger

Travel since July 2013

Home base: Buckeye,AZ

Wandering the USA & Canada in our Holiday Rambler Endeavor 40' PDT Motorhome

Travel so far: 49 States - International Travel -19 countries


RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 80

2): If you have a place to put in an accumulator tank then I would highly recommend to do it. Don't waste your money on a small one. Two gal is the minimum size you should consider. The tank can go pretty much anywhere inside the pressurized side of the system. Easy to install. I'm anything but a handyman and did it myself.
A two gal tank will allow you to tap about a gal and a bit before the pump starts running and refill the tank.
I love the noiseless water particularly at night.

3): aside from inline water filters there are other options. We use a portable Berkey to filter our drinking water (in addition to the built in house filter). Excellent system which works purely on gravity. Only weak spot is salty water. Clogs the filter elements and the water still tastes salty.

-- Edited by The Schweitzers on the road on Saturday 10th of February 2018 10:35:44 PM


2009 Alpenlite 31CK Limited

2016 Northern Lite 10.2 CD SE

both hauled by 2015 GMC Sierra 3500HD Dually (one at a time ...)

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 38

I have installed accumulators in the last two trailers I owned. They make a nice difference in how much the pump runs when no city water is available . . . $30+ expansion tanks commonly available, "T'ed" into the high-pressure side where you have a spot to place the tank. There are pics/videos online (sounds like you researched some already).

My trailer is a Forest River product. They had a house-sized in-line water filter with their expensive brand specific filter with high priced replacement cartridges. It worked good, but the cost was excessive. I threw theirs in the garbage and installed a whole house filter I bought at Home Depot with commonly available cartridges. All for less than their cartridge itself.

I used this tank both times https://www.homedepot.com/p/Watts-2-1-gal-Pre-Pressurized-Steel-Water-Expansion-Tank-DET-5-M1-HD/205556413 

Hope that helped with a few questions.

-- Edited by Zeek on Sunday 18th of February 2018 09:13:59 PM

-- Edited by Zeek on Sunday 18th of February 2018 09:17:07 PM


2017 Ford F350 Platinum, SuperCrew, Diesel, DRW | 2014 Palomino Sabre | Andersen Ultimate 2 Hitch

"I spent most of my money on alcohol, women and RV's . . . the rest I just wasted . . ."

RV-Dreams Family Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 2074

If a water pump goes out while boondocking then it is a huge issue as pertains to continuing without it.  I have always carried a spare water pump.  One doesn't need to spend hundred's of dollars on that spare.  A good (enough) one can be found on Amazon for less then $75.  Or purchase as a "spare" the one you would buy if the current one failed and you had you choice.  Most will fail.  (Having said that, neither of mine has in the last 12 years.)  I would not bother trying to repair one in the field.  Not worth it IMO.

Changing water pumps is easy.  Hard part is usually just getting to them in some cases.

Yes, I'd install an accumulator tank.  IMO one doesn't need to spend a lot on those either.  Sureflow has one for $41 on Prime.  Works just fine.  Easy install.  

Nose around Amazon and you'll find all you need.


Bill & Linda

Page 1 of 1  sorted by
Quick Reply

Please log in to post quick replies.

Tweet this page Post to Digg Post to Del.icio.us