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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Oh No! Another Leak!

Good thing the Journey is not a boat, or we’d have sunk by now.

When we were in Charleston last week, I had the chance to wash the Journey.  It came out spiffy looking.  That made me Happy-Happy-Happy (with apologies to Duck Dynasty).


There was a puddle of water under the Journey for several days afterwards, but I didn’t think anything of it because some of the other concrete slabs had puddles on them for several days after a heavy rain.

When we came “home”, I went to hook up the utilities and I noticed a drip of water from under the wet bay.  I had to check it out and found what looked like water dripping from the gray tank.  Uh oh.

Today, after a few sleepless hours trying to figure out what I’d do if the gray tank was really leaking, I grabbed my trusty tools and laid into the project.

First was removing the control panel in the wet bay to be able to see the gray tank.


Peering into the Journey’s innards, I could see the gray tank and it was not leaking.  Phew!  Dodged a major bullet.

What was leaking was a plastic fitting above the gray tank on a water line that screws on to a brass check valve.  The fitting has red tape on it indicating it is a hot water line.


Evidently from the brass check valve getting hot and expanding then cooling off, over the years it cracked the plastic fitting.  You can see the crack with the tape removed.


The crack enabled the water to leak in a steady drip.


I had this exact same failure on another hot water line on the other side of the Journey a couple of years ago.  At that time, we were not yet fulltime so the several days it took to get the plastic fitting was no big deal.  Now that we’re fulltime, I needed that fitting post haste because we’d have no water in the Journey.  My bladder is not that big…

I called my usual Winnebago Parts dealer, Lichtsinn Motors, in Forest City, Iowa.  They are a Winnebago dealer, one mile from the Winnebago factory.  If they don’t have it, they run down the street to the factory and get it.  It is faster and easier to use them and have the parts shipped than use a local dealer.

Well, they didn’t have the plastic  fitting in stock so they went down the road and picked up one.  And because I thought it might be a good idea to have one on hand, I had them pick up another.  Never hurts to have a spare, plus they only cost $5.  I set it up for them to overnight the two fittings to me here in SC.  I figured I could put the cracked fitting back on, wrap it in tape and get through the night with it.  My bladder breathed a sigh of relief.

Just for giggles, I decided to take a ride down to the nearby Camping World and see if they, by some amazing miracle, had one in stock.

Some days, amazing miracles happen and they had several in stock!  I bought one and headed home.  I made a quick call to Lichtsinn Motors and had them send the two other ones in the mail and canceled the overnight shipping.  That saved me some fifty bucks.  :c)

I installed the new fitting, first wrapping the threads with some Teflon sealing tape.  It went together like it was made for it.  Duh, it was made for it.


I tested the fitting installation with the water turned on.  No more drip!  That made me Happy-Happy…well, you know.

I installed the control panel and all is good now.  Removing and replacing that panel was the worst part of the job.


Of course, no job I do would be complete without me busting a knuckle and bleeding all over the place.  It’s sort of the way I sign my work.  :cD


Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.



  1. The house I grew up in had a bay window that my father had to replace the pane in every week or so as we launched baseballs through it. That was until the last time when he bought two panes. That was the last time he had to replace that window. Buying two saves labor.

  2. Are you sure you don't want to come visit?

  3. Can't believe all the stuff you can fix by yourself. Perhaps that's the reason Marti put up with you? ;)

  4. Poor David.....every time you write a post like this I send it to him and ask him to check Winnona for whatever problem the Journey had. But he still likes you anyway!! Thanks Paul you are my advance man trouble shooter!!

  5. Good job- I can never fix anything without a little blood either.

  6. I use Lichtsinn Motors for parts as well and have been very pleased with their service. Here's hoping we don't spring a similar leak, but if we do, I now know where to look. Thanks for the clear explanation!

  7. Better to have leeks from below than above, that's for sure. A bit of dripping water in a bay isn't anything to get too bent about. You'll need to replace that first one in a couple years or so, so having a spare or six is good planning.
    Just a guess.

  8. We need a handi man like you! You and john and your boo boos!

  9. We discovered a leak today today. Not exactly the same kind as yours but much worse. It seems the hose to our black tank at the cabin had a leak. Yep ... just as bad as you might think.

  10. You are definitely the fixer upper guy. I'm sure that makes Marti very happy, happy, happy :)

  11. At least you have a good supply of those valves for a while. It seems that plastic and brass fitting just don't go together well. Good catch though and sure saved a lot of money.

  12. I think having a spare (or 2) will fix the problem completely. Whenever something appears to be heading for demise, we buy a new one and the original fixes itself for at least a year :) We need more storage space just for the parts we buy and then don't need...yet :)

  13. I am just like Sherry in worrying about similar problems cropping up on our motorhome.

    Smart man to check Camping World just for giggles. Glad you are Happy, Happy, Happy now.

  14. Major crisis averted, glad it was a semi simple fix.

  15. May all of our leaks be so easy to fix (and locate).

  16. Hi,
    I am new to your blog. I have been hunting around trying to find information on fellow moterhome travelers who have traveled up the New England states up to Maine. We are looking for advice as we have never gone there before and we're wondering about the pros and cons. Have you traveled there or do you know of other bloggers who have made that trip??
    Thank you,