In our last episode we installed the filter housings as well as the water inlet. In this episode, we are going to focus on getting water from the tanks into the water pump.
When we designed our water tanks we had no idea what pump we were going to use. Since the previous install had a "standard" RV water pump and this was more or less an RV type setup, it made sense to install fittings for an RV water pump. Typically RVs run 1/2" tubing to supply the water pump. This being the case, we plumbed the supply outlet for 1/2". It also made sense that we might want to have a way to drain the tank so we plumbed in an additional 1/2" female NPT outlet on the opposite side.
Fast forward to now, we are getting ready to plumb the pump. We opted for a much larger pump with a 1-inch inlet. We are not professional engineers but we thought that a single 1/2" outlet was going to have a bit of trouble providing enough supply for the big pump. As a result, we plumbed in both of the outlets into a tee using 3/4" drinking water safe reinforced plastic tubing then to 1" food grade reinforced vinyl hose.
Our thought with the reinforced plastic tubing was that it might provide some flexibility to the pump and might reduce noise a bit as a result. We also thought it would be easier to work with than a stiffer Pex type tube. After working with it, we are not sure if it was easier or not. The fittings are on extremely tight and we had to use a little heat to get the hose pliable enough to fit over the fittings. We opted not to use a full-blown heat gun as we use for heat-shrink tubing for fear that it might actually melt the vinyl hose (something that has happened before on the air-conditioning condensation hose).
For cutting the tube we used a couple of different cutters. For the smaller tubing, we purchased a pex cutting tool. For the larger tubing, we used a standard PVC ratchet-type cutting tool. To make the connections we used 3/4" barbed PVC fittings as well as 1" barbed PVC fittings and stainless steel hose clamps.
Overall we are happy with the results but if we had to do it again we might just go ahead and use Pex tubing.
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