Author Topic: Changing the water bypass valve question.  (Read 149 times)

Offline Ericb760

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  • Posts: 39
  • Member since: 2019
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain 28
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Changing the water bypass valve question.
« on: January 12, 2020, 09:37 PM »
Can someone advise me on how to replace the bypass valve on the water tank? It's the red handle in the pic. I am certain it has been tightened too many times beyond spec and it now has a constant leak of about one drop every ten seconds. My wife is in China for a month so I've been alone in the rig, and I am going through too much water for one person. I have some experience with plumbing of this nature. I assume I just remove it when the tank is empty and swap in a new one? Or maybe even repack this one?
1989 Winnie Chieftain 28'

Offline Rickf1985

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  • Posts: 5679
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2020, 09:39 AM »
Ah yes, that is the same messed up system I have on mine. Actually there is nothing behind that panel but the valves and all the piping, the tank is on the other side of the RV. You will need to take all the screws out of the plastic housing that surrounds that area. Also take out the screws for the water fill plate. Basically you want to loosen everything attached to the plate so it is easier to move around. If I remember correctly there are screws into the plastic surround from underneath also. Once the plastic housing is out you can see all of the hoses and fittings behind it and if you have any plumbing experience it will become apparent what is going on at that point. It is not really a hard job once you identify the two main pipes and disconnect them. Then you can take the entire unit out and work on it on a bench. I suggest you replace the inlet fitting at the same time since it will start to leak at some time and as you can see, it is a pain to get to.


On edit, I was looking at your picture again and I notice the gas line in there. Mine i does not have the gas line in that compartment probably because mine is a 31 footer. But I also notice that the metal plates that the valves are mounted on is cut into sections so that they can be removed separately. You may have to do that instead of removing the plastic, just take out the screws from the plate that has that valve or each on separately. In any case once you get behind the plate it is easy.

Offline skloon

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  • Posts: 78
  • Member since: 2017
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1992
  • Make: ITASCA
  • Model: SUNFLYER
  • Chassis: GMC
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2020, 01:33 PM »
On my 34 foot this is the same but the water tank is in the back in the middle I replaced the washers inside the tap and installed a quick connect on the fill - this got rid of leaks

Offline Jamo

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  • Posts: 39
  • Member since: 2017
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2020, 10:54 PM »
I hope I'm about to learn something new here...That red valve handle is connected to a built-in bypass valve for the water heater? How does it work? (no manual) I have a bypass valve on my other little Toyota motorhome. It consists of two brass valves installed in the back of the water heater tank so that the tank can be isolated from the rest of the water system when winterizing.


John
"In your guts you know he's nuts"

Offline Rickf1985

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  • Posts: 5679
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2020, 09:44 AM »
That valve on our later ones is for filling the tank and diverting from either the tank to the pump or street inlet to the inside plumbing.

Offline Jamo

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  • Posts: 39
  • Member since: 2017
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2020, 11:15 AM »
So does the valve act as a bypass valve for isolating the water heater tank when winterizing?
"In your guts you know he's nuts"

Offline DaveVA78Chieftain

  • 16 year member
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  • Posts: 3576
  • Member since: 2003
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1978
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Dodge M400
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2020, 02:59 PM »
As delivered, I do not believe that year model had a water heater bypass system.  Per the operators manual (page 4-1) that valve is only used for tank filling.
Far as I know you could add a water heater bypass setup or possible a PO added one already.

Offline Rickf1985

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  • Posts: 5679
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2020, 06:32 PM »
So does the valve act as a bypass valve for isolating the water heater tank when winterizing?
No, It has nothing to do with the hot water tank. On mine the hot water tank is under the closet floor and is a real bear to get to so putting in a diverter valve would mean a LOT of work. Ans unless you plumbed it so the shut off was made accessible from the closet it would be a problem to get to the change it also.

Offline Jamo

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  • Posts: 39
  • Member since: 2017
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2020, 08:03 PM »
Thanks, Rick. My water heater tank is under the bed near the back of the coach. Without a bypass valve, I had to fill the whole six gallon tank with antifreeze. My wife, the boss, didn't want to spend the $150 extra for the installation of the bypass valve. That will change next Fall...
"In your guts you know he's nuts"

Offline Rickf1985

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  • Posts: 5679
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2020, 09:16 PM »
Why didn't you just open the drain valve and drain it out? The only thing that gets anti freeze in mine is the drains. I open the outside faucet and let it gravity grain until nothing else comes out and then I run the pump and let it pump out whatever it can. Then I put a little air pressure into the street fill fitting with all of the faucets and hot water tank drain open until no more water comes out. I also have my wife hold the toilet flush valve open so that is empty. I forgot that one the year before last and it broke. Most units have drain points for all of the lines but mine does not so it has to be blown out. Check your manual, you may have drains. After all of the lines are clear I put a little RV anti freeze in the sink drains and the shower drain. Half a gallon does the whole deal.

Offline Jamo

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  • Posts: 39
  • Member since: 2017
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Changing the water bypass valve question.
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2020, 11:16 AM »
I should have done that but I'm not really mentally competent to own a motorhome...
"In your guts you know he's nuts"

 

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