Wednesday, July 27, 2016

This is not about that -- Day 274

When we first started RVing, we were told that everybody has their special "black tank" story. For those of you that don't know what that is (and I count you among the specially blessed) the "black tank" is where all the water from your toilet goes after you use it. I am not a fan of bathroom humor, so I've never wanted to hear ANYONE's black tank story, nor was I planning to ever share one. I will still be sparing you the less pleasant details, because I'm that kind of guy, but today is going to be about what I've been doing for the last month.

And it involves a toilet, water (clean), and frustration (lots).

The last time that I even mentioned our plumbing system was back during the Grey Water Flood, and things had been pretty pleasant after that lesson. Staying in one spot for as long as we have been makes our maintenance schedule a little different because we don't have to worry about not having the right hookups on the day that we might need it, since we're in a full-service site until October. However, since we have been living full-time in Fezzik for over 9 months (!) we are still putting wear-and-tear on him, and that means that certain things may need to be repaired and/or replaced. So when the carpet in the bathroom started getting wet, it set off all kinds of alarms.

Leaks are particularly dangerous in an RV because if you don't fix them quickly, you have a good chance of losing your flooring, which means that you have a hole in your house. To stop a leak, you must first find the leak. 
Ours looks like the one on the left

Our leak appeared to be coming from the the foot pedal area on the front right side of the unit. There is a nut inside the hole that tightens onto a flange bolt that secures the toilet to the floor. Because we had water near that area, it was a safe assumption that the nut was loose -- so we tightened it. That wasn't the problem, so we had to pull the toilet out, which involved reaching a nut that was located in the back left corner (much more difficult than I make it sound.)

Once out, we discovered that the flange seal was decrepit (probably the original one from 1993) so I replaced that and then put everything back together. Turning the water back on, we discovered that the water line connecting the hose to the toilet was leaking at the connection. 

What started as one problem is now two

Since I was really only working on this problem during my time off, and I had to wait on Amazon deliveries for parts, this one day project stretched into three weeks. Two hoses, three connectors, two rolls of teflon tape, and two cans of flex seal later .... I had decided to just buy a new toilet.

And then I found out that they don't have this model available anymore, but the entire pedal mechanism is replaceable (with included gaskets) so that is the direction we're going this time. I even paid extra for the next-day shipping, so we'll see if that fixes my original problem. The secondary problem, the water line leading to the toilet, has also been fixed today by my neighbors who are much more adept at finding and fixing problems. We reached that critical point where it was determined that new is better than repaired, so the water line is now new and no longer leaks.

During this process, we also created a THIRD water problem, and that was the outside hose that brings the park water to the rig had sprung a leak. This was something that actually was slowly building over time, and reached the point where no amount of tightening was going to fix the problem. I tried new gaskets, teflon tape, and sacrificing a goat, but it looks like that will need to be replaced as well.

One day, we'll have running water indoors like the civilized folks!

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