Sunday, April 25, 2021

Awning and Plumbing Repairs…

Well, with Sharon away in North Carolina, it finally became time to do a couple of repairs on the RV I have been putting off for some time. As long time readers know I replaced all our slide topper awnings about three years ago during a winter stay in Florida.


This year while wintering down in the Rio Grande Valley I noticed that one of our new slide toppers was showing signs of damage which of course shouldn’t have so soon. Upon further inspection it was seemingly coming apart and appearing as if it were about 15 years old. I contacted Tough Top Awnings whom I purchased them from and told them my story.


After hearing my dilemma they said there was no way these toppers should have failed and it must have been defective material. They therefore agreed to simply send me a new one at no charge as there was a five year warranty on them. Nice, but now I have to put it on. Last time I did this I had help from a friend (Ed) and I sure found myself wishing he was here. I did manage to get the new one on but I can tell you that doing it by myself was not nearly as easy as having help.


With that task out of the way another non-pleasant task awaited me which was a water leak problem. Water was slowly bypassing our city water valve and as such would slowly fill up our fresh water tank only to eventually trickle out of the overflow cap.

After scouring the web I thought it was a faulty check valve in our water pump so I ordered an inline one to bypass the one in the water pump since it was harder to replace. It took less than half an hour to do this but alas, it wasn’t the problem. It turns out the problem was the city water diverter valve. Fortunately Amazon also had one of those.


With the water turned off and the fresh water tank drained I was ready to start. This was certainly not going to be an easy task. Simply getting to this valve was a chore as all of the plumbing and connections on the face panel had to be removed to get to it. Once the valve was exposed I could cut it out. Since everything is pex I used my pex cutter which I had from replacing our hot water heater. 


Once it was out I still needed to take off all the fitting attached to the old valve since the new one didn’t include them. Then I reattached the old connections to our new valve so it was ready to install. I needed several shark byte connections to complete this task. I used a few unions and a “T” connection to complete the task. Once it was all back together I crossed my fingers for no leaks.


Hooray for no leaks! This was not an easy task and one I hope to never need to do again but it did solve our problem. Now it’s back to fishing and birding in the gulf coast of Texas…

NOTE:  While Sharon is in North Carolina I am currently at Angler’s Retreat in Rockport Texas until at least mid May…


  1. Nice that you are able to do your own repairs.
    A shame the Awning did not last longer.
    I'm certain you will be happy to join Sharon
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    1. One of the best ways to save money on the road is being able to do some of your own maintenance.

  2. I can see how replacing the slide topper by yourself would have been a difficult job. With a project like that, an extra set of hands would be invaluable. On a more upbeat note, what a pleasure (and a relief) to find a company that truly stands behind its products. A round of applause for Tough Top Awnings!

    1. You can imagine how pleasantly surprised I was to have them tell me I could get the topper replaced for free under their warranty!

  3. I know a guy we met down in Gulf Shores then moved with them to Florida for a short time. He is having the same water problem. Good timing on your post. I'm forwarding it to him. I had suspected it was a valve problem and also suggested on his fifth wheel to take the water pressure off before moving the valve between city and pump.

  4. Slide Topper and diverter valve would not be projects I'd be comfortable undertaking without a lot of YouTube videos! Glad you have the expertise and tools to take on repairs on the road.