Updated: Oct 8, 2021
On contract in Fort Defiance Arizona (staying in Gallup, NM)
CAIRN TRAVELER VLOG | EP 22
I’ve been debating on this for the last six months or more but I finally pulled the trigger. The main debate was whether to go with the external or internal Clearsource RV filter. Because we’ve just finished up with freezing conditions here in Gallup, that was my main concern with going with an external filter as this would have required some sort of heated housing in addition to my heated water hose. At the end of the day, while it’s a much bigger and labor-intensive project to install this internally, it makes RV setup and takedown more simple (and with one less step) in the long run as the filter is now integrated. I am a little bummed at the loss of closet storage with this and it should be said that the 2 stage filter would have fit better and could be mounted flat against the back wall of the closet but my philosophy on spending on high dollar items is that you should get what you really want and not settle because you don’t want any regrets after spending that much money.
My original intent was to use flexible tubing to make the connections but it turns out this tubing was for none-potable fluid uses (in addition it did not quite match with the PEX fittings) so I ended up having to use PEX for the entire install. I also started out by trying to get all the plumbing through an access hole in the back panel - the problem with this was that with this panel in place, there was no room to crimp the PEX cinch rings - I tried to use 1/2” pipe clamps but these quickly stripped and leaked. I ended up just making a wall-side cut out for the piping and then was able to side the panel in once all the connections were finished. Another complication was that I originally started off with SharkBite PEX elbow connectors (I’ve used these before successfully and really like the simplicity of it) - maybe it was the small space and I couldn’t get the leverage to get the pipe all the way into the adapters but for whatever reason they ended up leaking and I had to give up on this and use brass elbow connectors with the PEX cinch rings. All in all this ended up being a very frustrating project - mostly due to the very small (and warm) space I had to squeeze into and then make so many small adjustments - but it’s finally done and I’m happy with the result!
Have now checked twice after towing both to and from the Grand Canyon and found no leaks so I’m satisfied my work is secure.
With full time use, Clearsource recommends changing the filters quarterly and the 3 pack is easily available from Amazon. I am a little concerned about the possibility of water leakage while changing these filters but there is enough room to place a catch pan under the filter assembly while doing this procedure.
Expose Airstream Plumbing for Access
Cut, Attach, and Cinch PEX fittings to Clearsource Assembly
Shut Off Water Supply and Drain (Place a Catchment Container Under the Area to be Cut)
Cut Main Water Supply Line and Attach Elbow Connectors
Mount Clearsource Assembly
Connect Clearsource Lines with Main Water Supply Elbow Connectors and Cinch All PEX Fittings
Turn On Water Supply and Check for Leaks
Reinstall Plumbing Access Panels (Use Hole Saw for Cut Out for New Plumbing Lines)
Tools and Equipment Used
Materials and Cost
(From Home Depot)
1/2 in. x 5 ft. White PEX Pipe (2 x $2.24)
1/2 in. PEX Barb Stainless Steel Clamp (10-Pack) (2 x $5.48)
1/2 in. Brass PEX Barb 90 Elbow (10-Pack) (2 x $17.64)
Editing: Adobe Premier Pro (Creative Cloud)
Music: Epidemic Sound, MUSICBED, Soundstripe, YouTube Music Library
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