We tend to take the caravan cold-water system for granted. It is simple and straightforward, and in theory, it will never go wrong. Or perhaps it can?

Our tourer had its annual caravan service late in the year, but prior commitments meant that it was not watered ready for use until quite recently, in preparation for early-season trips (making up for lost time!).

We fitted the new immersible pump and switched on, to find the flow at the cold tap was very slow. When the tap was turned off, there was also insufficient pressure to turn off the pump, which continued to run.

In addition, the water-heater took an age to fill. We came to the conclusion that something was definitely wrong.

Check the flow

There was much scratching of heads until we came up with the bright idea of connecting the pump wires off the caravan socket by two short lengths of wire, each with insulated crocodile clips on the ends.

This enabled us to see that the pump flow was excellent, so the problem was clearly in the caravan system itself.

We checked the pressure switch, but this is connected at a T-piece and water doesn’t flow through it, so that clearly wasn’t the difficulty.

Finally, we removed the blue filter cover, just above where the pump connector is plugged in. The old filter looked well past its best and actually fell apart on removal. The thought occurred to us that perhaps after three years, it was clogged and not functioning properly.

The damaged water filter
On inspection, Tony found his caravan’s three-year-old filter to be in a sorry state

The blue cover was replaced with no filter in position and the system tested again. Eureka! We now get an even better flow than with a new filter in place, which is how we plan to go on.

With hindsight, telling the service engineer every year that we did not need a new filter at further expense, as we only use the caravan water supply for cleaning and washing, wasn’t the best course of action.

That said, despite the monthly replacement filters and recommended seasonal sterilisation of the entire system, we have always kept a compact water-carrier in the kitchen for drinking and cooking. That is, of course, a matter of personal preference.

Filled up water carrier
As a personal preference, Tony keeps a water-carrier in the kitchen for drinking and cooking water

After more DIY tasks to carry out? Then why not try these:

Future Publishing Limited, the publisher of Practical Caravan, provides the information in this article in good faith and makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Individuals carrying out the instructions do so at their own risk and must exercise their independent judgement in determining the appropriateness of the advice to their circumstances and skill level. Individuals should take appropriate safety precautions and be aware of the risk of electrocution when dealing with electrical products. To the fullest extent permitted by law, neither Future nor its employees or agents shall have any liability in connection with the use of this information. You should check that any van warranty will not be affected before proceeding with DIY projects.

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