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An RV water pump is a crucial piece to having a consistent supply of water in your recreational vehicle. It will ensure that you’ll have water access at all times of your RV adventures. While most recreational vehicles come with their own water pump, there are still instances when you need to replace it or upgrade it. And if you plan on getting a new water pump, you want to make a smart buying decision and select the right product among the vast amount of options available on the market. So, what is the best RV water pump in 2021? You can find the answer to this question below. We’ve prepared RV water pump reviews of the top rated products in 2021 and to further help you make the right choice we’ve created a comparison table and buying guide.
Top 10 RV Water Pumps
RV Water Pumps Reviewed
The top rated RV water pump in 2021 is the Shurflo 2088-554-144. It comes from one of the best names when it comes to RV water pumps. And this compact, yet powerful unit also delivers on performance.
The superior performance of this water pump is provided by 3.5 GPM and 45 PSI ratings. The high flow rate is enough to supply an adequate amount of water for the onboard RV faucets, toilets, and showers.
It’s a self priming, motor driven pump with a 3 chamber diaphragm. The system senses when there’s a drop in pressure (for example, when you turn on a faucet) and starts pumping. And at 45 PSI, it shuts off. You can also make minor adjustments to the shutoff PSI by adjusting the screw on the pressure shutoff switch.
This pump is intended for potable water transfer in an RV. This means that you can safely use it with drinking water.
The pump is fairly quiet, though it might not be the quietest RV water pump. However, you can mount it with rubber isolators or some other type of soundproofing to further quiet the operational noise.
It needs a 12 volt DC system to operate. As for the current draw, it’s a maximum of 5 amps. However, the average amperage draw will depend on your specific scenario.
There are also a couple of safety features included in this pump. First of all, it includes a check valve, which makes sure that the water flows only in one direction, preventing reverse flow. And secondly, there’s also thermal protection for the motor.
This RV water pump is also very easy to install. All you have to do is two simple plumbing connections and a 12 volt wire hookup. There’s no need for any extra adapters or other components. Although, you can add an intake filter to reduce the internal wear of the pump. Other than that, the pump comes ready for installation. And the entire process won’t take more than half an hour.
Another great product from the Shurflo brand is the 4008-101-A65 RV water pump. It features an innovative design with a 1-piece diaphragm and an internal bypass, delivering on the performance and durability.
The pump is also designed for high flow demand, delivering a flow rate of 3 GPM. It’s not as high as the previous model but it’s still adequate for most RV applications.
It also puts out 55 PSI, which equals about 127 feet head output pressure. This PSI rating makes sure that the pressure never becomes too much for your plumbing system to handle.
This is a 12V DC water pump and it draws about 7.5 amps. It’s a rather small amperage draw, delivering superior efficient performance. And as for electrical connections, the unit comes with two lead wires that you can connect to the source with wire nuts.
As for the safety features, there’s a built-in check valve and thermal protection. The latter shuts off the pump when it reaches a certain temperature. For example, if you’ve been running it continuously when taking a long shower.
This is also the best quiet RV water pump. Its operation is basically silent, so you won’t have to worry about any disturbing noise as you relax in your RV.
One more benefit of this pump is the convenience of use. It’s a compact, lightweight unit that you can mount in any position you want, either vertically or horizontally. This gives more flexibility in setting it up.
On top of all these benefits, this water pump is also fairly priced. So, it’s a great choice for those who are looking for a high quality RV water pump that is capable of delivering great features but at the same, won’t make a big hole in your pocket.
Another popular manufacturer of RV water pumps is Seaflo and one of their products that stands out is the 42-Series water pump. What sets this RV water pump apart from others is also the innovative variable flow technology. It works to reduce pump cycling, eliminating the need for an accumulator.
This is a diaphragm pump that self primes, so you can install it higher than your water tank, and that can be run dry without any harm. It’s a compact system with a 3 gallons per minute water flow. It can be used for delivering water to sinks, showers, or toilets. This is sufficient water flow to supply water to multiple water fixtures in an RV. So you could use it for most of your RV’s water system, including shower and kitchen sink.
There’s an automatic pressure switch, which automatically starts and stops the pump when you open or close a faucet. This provides a consistent supply of water without having to manually turn the pump on and off each time you need to use it. The pump is set at 55 PSI. However, there’s a pressure switch that you can use to adjust the PSI if needed.
The pump connects to a 12V DC system and has a current draw of a maximum of 7.5 amps, which provides great efficiency. This is also a very quiet water pump. The design features rubber feet, which reduce vibration and provide a near silent operation. To ensure that there’s no vibration noise, just make sure that the unit is fastened down.
For the best 12V water pump for caravan or trailer, we also recommend the Bayite XX328 model. This is a high quality fresh water pump that comes with plenty of features to provide durable and efficient performance.
The first thing to note is the durability of this water pump. It features a sealed body design that prevents any moisture or dirt from entering inside the unit and damaging the functional components. Moreover, the switches are also sealed and the pump is covered with electro coating, which prevents corrosion and rust. Though keep in mind that it’s not waterproof, so if you’ll be leaving it outside, it will still need a cover for protection.
Secondly, it’s the efficient performance of this pump. It delivers only 1.2 GPM but it’s enough for smaller applications in RVs and trailers. It also has a very low current draw.
The default pressure is set to 80 PSI, so the pump will automatically shut off when it reaches this pressure. However, you can adjust it up to a maximum of 100 PSI. The pump delivers amazing water pressure and if you’ll be using it for a camping shower, it will be able to provide an experience close to a home shower.
One more highly recommended RV water pump is this Seaflo 33-Series model. It’s built with high quality components and it offers an extensive list of features and amazing performance.
The three chamber design provides a higher flow of water with a maximum capacity of 3 GPM. And the heavy duty motor used in this pump also provides high pressure with the preset value set at 45 PSI. If your situation requires it, you can also adjust this preset cutoff pressure down to 20 PSI or anything in between. To do that, you just need to locate the Allen screw on the pressure switch.
This is also a self priming pump, so there’s no hassle of having to add water into the pump in order to build pressure and prime it for use. Instead, this feature allows instantly pumping the water and getting a consistent supply in your fixtures.
The mounting brackets on this pump are made of rubber, which provides noise isolation and a quieter performance. This design ensures the smooth and silent operation of the pump.
Other benefits of this RV water pump include an extensive 4 year warranty, which is probably the longest in the industry, a reasonable price, and UL and CSA certification.
If you’re looking for the highest flow RV water pump, then we recommend checking out the Shurflo 4048153E75 product. It is more expensive than other models on our reviews list but offers 4 GPM water flow, which will provide a consistent flow to all your sinks and faucets, and will make your showers feel like home.
The pressure switch in the pump head shuts off at around 55 PSI and restarts at a lower PSI. And the pressure sensor is automatic, meaning that it runs on demand. So, when you turn on a faucet, the pump turns on and supplies water.
This pump also uses flow reaction technology, which features a unique one piece diaphragm and a built-in bypass. This technology provides reduced cycling, a smoother flow, and quieter operation.
The pump’s current is rated at 10 amps and it’s designed for RV’s 12 volt system. This amperage draw is higher than most of the other pumps on our list, but it’s the price for getting a higher water flow.
If the pump gets too hot, there’s a thermal shutoff that protects the unit from overheating. A preset switch and a bypass adjustment also prevent any back flow.
Flojet 03526-144A is also a highly rated RV water pump. It’s one of the most reliable water pumps as it offers amazing efficiency, consistent flow, and great durability.
This pump comes with a triplex diaphragm that allows automatic operation, even without an accumulator tank. The last feature is possible due to the design that includes a pulsation eliminator, which provides stable and smooth operation.
What makes this pump great is also the self priming feature. It allows providing a suction lift up to 9 feet, which should satisfy the needs of most RV applications.
The unit is also very quiet. It’s built with soft noise absorbing mounts, which reduces vibration noise and which brings the operational noise level to a minimum. So, you don’t have to deal with the annoying sound every time you open a faucet in your RV.
Users also appreciate the pump’s high water flow rate, which can reach up to 2.9 gallons per minute. Furthermore, the pump features a durable design that is built using corrosion resistant materials.
There’s another Flojet RV water that we’d like to recommend. It’s the 1202.1050 model. It features a simple, yet durable and efficient design. And it comes at a reasonable price.
For the installation, this pump is designed with simple port plugs, which allow you to pop it in and set it up in under a minute. So, in no time you could be enjoying the whisper-quiet water pump operation.
As with other pumps we’ve reviewed here, this one is also self primed, which takes out an extra step when using it. This system also includes a bypass valve and this greatly reduces cycling water and provides a more smooth water flow. As for the output, it’s capable of delivering 1 to 3.2 gallons per minute, which is a decent output for most RV needs.
Moreover, this is also an efficient water pump and at 10 PSI it draws only 3.9 amps. And as for the fuse, it’s rated at 6 amps.
One more Shurflo water pump makes it to our list of the best 12V RV water pumps. It features the Shurflo’s new one-piece diaphragm design and an internal bypass. These features ensure longer life of the pump and its top performance.
This particular pump offers water output that is slightly lower than the other Shurflo models we’ve reviewed. Its output is 2.3 gallons per minute, which might not be a lot but still enough for RV applications.
Moreover, this pump is constructed to withstand the test of time and to provide prolonged performance. To ensure that, it comes with various protection features, such as thermal protection and the ability to run dry without damage. The new technology used in this pump also provides noise reduction and cuts down the chances of excessive pump cycling.
Flow Max 689052
The last RV water pump we’ve picked for our top 10 is the Flow Max 689052. It also comes from a brand that is committed to delivering high quality and this water pump is the best in their line of products.
This is a fresh water pump that is designed to deliver a steady water flow to your RV fixtures. Its performance offers an average of 50 PSI and 3 gallons per minute. This pressure and water flow output are higher than many other competitors can offer.
Another benefit of this pump is the durability of its construction. It’s built using high quality materials and it features a heavy duty, corrosion resistant motor.
The pump is also very easy to install and it comes with everything you’ll need for the process. It includes a screen filter for preventing debris entering the pump and two connectors for connecting flexible hoses to both the outlet and inlet ports.
What Is an RV Water Pump? How Does It Work?
An RV water pump is an essential piece of the RV water plumbing system. Its purpose is to dictate the water flow throughout the entire system and to stabilize any pressure that might have built up.
Most RV water pumps work on demand, meaning that it kicks on only when you turn on a faucet or some other fixture in your RV. It works by pressurizing the pumps to the preset pounds per square inch (PSI) setting. Typically, it’s set to about 30. Although, on many of the pumps you can also adjust it to your preferred level.
When you turn on a faucet, the water pressure drops and this activates the pump. And until you turn off the faucet and the pressure rises again, the pump will continue pumping water.
However, older water pump models don’t have this automatic operation. And you have to manually turn them on every time you need to use water.
Benefits of an RV Water Pump
- Constant water supply. Any RV needs a reliable water supply. You can of course connect to an outside source but that is not always convenient. Instead, most RV owners install a fresh water tank, so that they can have a consistent supply of water, even when they are boondocking and far away from any water source. And in this case, it becomes necessary to install a water pump, which will ensure that your taps always have water.
- Space saving. Unlike other types of water pumps, RV pumps usually come in smaller and lighter designs. This makes it easier to install them without the unit taking up much space for your recreational vehicle.
- Save energy. Most of these water pumps you can connect to your RV’s battery. They connect to a 12V DC system and they offer efficient performance with low amperage draw.
- Easy to install. RV water pumps are also very easy to install that anyone can do without any professional help. With just a few steps you can connect the pump and start getting water to your faucets, showers, or toilets.
Types of RV Water Pumps
There are two types of RV water pumps. Ones that connect to a 12V system and those that connect to a 24V system.
- The most common type used in recreational vehicles is a 12V water pump since it’s the electrical system most RVs have. Typically, these 12V pumps come with motors that are specifically designed for use in RVs, trailers, and motorhomes. And in most cases, they are not meant for use in other applications, such as home water supply systems and others.
- A 24V water pump is rarer in RVs and it’s more applicable in buses and trucks. The main advantage of this type of pump is that it’s capable of delivering the high water pressure required for heavy duty tasks.
How to Choose the Best RV Water Pump? – Buying Guide
As with choosing any other product, it’s best to start by learning all the essential factors that contribute to a high quality purchase. And choosing an RV water pump is no different. Especially when there are so many different options available on the market, how do you choose the best one? That’s where our comprehensive buying guide should come in handy. In this guide, we’ll look at all the factors that you should take into account in order to choose the best RV water pump that would also be the most suitable option for your requirements.
As we’ve mentioned above, RV water pumps come in two types: 12V and 24V. And it’s important to understand which one would be more suitable for your rig.
In most cases, it’s better to go with a 12V pump since it’s the standard design for RVs. It will efficiently pump the water without drawing too much power from the electrical system. Moreover, since the 24V models provide higher pressure, it can also cause issues with your pipes.
On the other hand, if higher pressure and more powerful performance are what you’re looking for, a 24V water pump can also be a good option. However, they are more suitable for larger rigs. And if choosing one of these systems, keep in mind that they all have a higher power draw, which can quickly drain your RV’s battery, solar, or generator.
So, if you want to save energy and save money on electrical bills, a 12V system should be adequate in most situations. But it’s up to you to decide which voltage fits your particular application.
Another important factor to take into account before making a purchasing decision is the pump’s pressure. It’s essential that the water pump you choose matches your RV’s needs.
You can consult your RV’s manual to understand what is the recommended psi rating for your particular vehicle. Usually, it’s in the range between 50 to 70 psi. If you have a 2009 or newer RV model, the recommended psi rating would be about 60 psi. If it’s an older model, it should be no more than 50 psi. This is due to the fact that the newer RV models have slightly narrower pipes and so they require higher pressure to run efficiently.
With that being said, do check your manual to see what is the pressure rating for your specific vehicle model.
GPM or gallons per minute should also be a determining factor for choosing a good RV water pump. It refers to the gallons of water per minute that the pump is capable of supplying to your RV’s fixtures. And you can find water pumps on the market that can supply anything between 1 GPM to 4 GPM.
When choosing the right GPM rating, taking into account your water demand and the size of your rig. The higher the demand and the bigger your RV, the higher GPM you should be looking for. Anything lower than 1 GPM will be just a trickle of water that is too weak for anything. And anything higher than 4 GPM will be too powerful for most systems and can also be damaging to your pipes.
However, it’s also important to point out that a pump with a higher GPM will also draw more power and will usually cost more.
Automatic Pressure Switch
A good RV water pump will also include an automatic pressure switch, which most newer models include in their design. It works by automatically starting to pump water once preset pressure values are achieved or more precisely when the pressure goes below a preset value. And it automatically turns off when you turn off the water and the pressure rises to a certain level.
The benefit of this feature is a seamless operation that doesn’t require manually turning the pump on and off each time you need to get a supply of water.
Water pumps can be quite noisy and it’s not something you want to hear when trying to enjoy some peaceful time in your RV. That’s why your goal should be to find the quietest RV water pump that won’t produce too much noise even if you’re running several faucets simultaneously.
One way of finding a quiet pump is by checking its construction design. Manufacturers often use special mounting systems that help to absorb vibration noise and make the pump’s operation quieter.
On top of that, you can also check users’ reviews. If a pump is unbearably noisy, you’ll definitely read about it in the reviews.
You don’t want the water pump to be constantly draining your battery. To avoid that, choose a model that is more efficient with a low amperage draw. Keep in mind also that if you’re choosing a model with a higher GPM rating, it will also mean a higher current draw.
Ease of Installation
It’s also important to consider the ease of installation of your new RV water pump. The process should be quick and it should be simple enough for anyone to do without any professional help.
To ensure that the process won’t be too complicated, make sure that the replacement water pump you’re buying is matching your old one. The mounting hardware, size, and fittings can differ for various models. So, to avoid having to purchase extra parts and to make the installation less complicated, look for the right replacement.
Another factor that contributes to an easier installation process is if the pump comes with all the installation hardware included in the package. This will ensure that the pump is ready for set up and use right out of the box.
RV Water Pump Troubleshooting
RV water pumps often cause plenty of problems along the way of their lifespan. These units might not be very expensive but you don’t need to purchase a new one every time something goes wrong. So, before you decide to throw out your pump and get a new one, here are a few RV water pump troubleshooting tips.
If your RV water pump is not working because of motor failure, there’s a high chance that you might need an entirely new pump. It could be a blown fuse or could be that the motor has died completely.
The water pump runs but no water comes out
First, check if you actually still have water in your fresh water tank. Check your tank’s gauge and if it’s low or even empty that could be your explanation.
If you do have water in your tank, the next step is to check the water lines leading to and from the pump. And start with the one leading to the pump.
Get ready a bucket, so you could catch any water coming out of the lines. Then, slowly loosen the water line from the suction side of the pump. If you see water leaking from the loosened line, this means that you do have water coming to the pump. In this case, retighten the line and move on to the next step.
If, on the other hand, you don’t see any water coming and the loosened connection stays dry, then you know that there’s no water getting to the pump, so the problem is in that water line. There could be a blockage or tube damage.
To re-establish suction in the pipe, refill it with water. Connect it to the pump and turn it on. Check if the water starts running from the faucets. If there’s still no water, then you might need a new motor or a whole new unit.
The Pump/Switch Is Leaking
If you see a trickle of water coming from the pump head or switch, the problem could be in loosened screws. Try to tighten them a bit and see if that helps. If it doesn’t, the pump might have a ruptured or punctured diaphragm.
Loud Vibrating Operation
The most common cause of loud vibration operation of a water pump is in the installation. If a water pump is loose, it will cause more vibrations. To avoid this, make sure that the pump is secure and not loose. Also, consider adding rubber padding under the pump and wrapping all your water pipes with foam pipe insulation. This will considerably help to quiet the operational noise of a water pump.
Pump Won’t Shut Off When Faucet Is Closed
If your RV water pump keeps running even though all the faucets in your recreational vehicle are turned off, start by checking your plumbing system for any leaks. Inspect the output side of the plumbing and check if there are any leaky valves.
Other possible causes can include trapped air in the outlet side, loose drive assembly, or stuck debris that is keeping the pump valves open.
RV Water Pump Tips
- To prolong your plumbing system’s life, you might want to install a water pressure regulator. High pressure can be damaging to water pipes and a pressure regulator will make sure that the pressure stays within safe levels, which will protect the plumbing system.
- It’s advisable to also add a high quality water filter. First of all, it will protect the pump from any debris getting into it. And secondly, it will ensure that your water is clean and safe for drinking.
- Regularly perform checks of your pump. Make sure that there are no leaks and that the pump is not cycling when the faucets are shut off.
Most Popular RV Water Pump Brands
There are many brands that offer a huge variety of water pumps. However, there are a few that really stand out. These are the most trusted RV water pump brands.
- Shurflo. This company has been on the market since 1968. Over the years, they have built a reputation of being a brand that cares about their customers and which delivers high quality products. They provide reliable and efficient RV water pumps that offer many years of use.
- Seaflo. This is another popular brand that offers a variety of RV water pumps. Seaflo is also a known leader in the marine and agriculture parts market. They’ve also been in the industry for a long time and they’ve introduced a number of products that excel in performance, reliability, and durability.
RV Water Pump FAQs
What does an RV water pump d0?
An RV water pump pumps water from your RV’s fresh water tank and delivers water to all the fixtures in your RV, such as faucets, toilet, and shower.
What are on demand pumps?
On-demand pumps are those that deliver water only when needed. The pump works by putting pressure on the plumbing system according to the factory preset psi. And if you open a faucet, the pressure drops and the pump starts pumping. And it will continue pumping as long as you have the faucet open.
What is the psi of a water pump?
The psi rating stands for pound per square inch. And it refers to the water pressure that is created in the plumbing system.
What causes water pump motor failure?
The most common cause of pump motor failure is a blown fuse. In this case, you can take apart the motor and replace the fuse. Another reason could be a worn out battery. In this case, try replacing the battery. And one more reason could be that it has come to the end of its lifespan. And this would require replacing the entire motor.
How to quiet an RV water pump?
There are a few things that you can do to reduce the operational noise of a water pump. First, you could start by choosing the right water pump with the least operational noise output. Secondly, you could add rubber padding under the pump installation. And thirdly, you could build a soundproof box, which would insulate the noise.
But why is your RV water pump so loud? The reason could be the faulty design or manufacturing of the pump. Another reason could be rapid cycling, which would trigger more vibrations. To fix this, try making some adjustments to the cycle settings.
How to prime an RV water pump?
To prime a water pump, start by disconnecting the outlet line from the pump. This is the line that goes out of the pump and into the RV to feed the sinks and showers.
Next, slip the collar off the outlet line towards the end of the rubber hose. Find the outlet that spouts on the pump and connect the rubber hose to it.
Fill a jar with about 12 oz of water. Bring the hose that you have attached to the outlet spout up in the air, so it would be above the level of the pump. And pour the water from the jar into this hose.
Cover the top of the hose with your thumb and turn on the pump. Give it about a minute, so it would build up pressure and when you will feel the water pressing against your thumb, turn the pump off.
Lastly, disconnect the hose and reconnect the water line. Turn on one of the faucets in the RV and after this, turn on the pump. After a few seconds, you should see water coming out of the faucet. Turn off the faucet and pump and the priming is done.
How to repair a leaking water pump?
If you turn off the faucets in your RV but the pump keeps running, there’s a good chance that there’s a leak somewhere. It can be a real nuisance and it should be fixed immediately.
The most common cause of a leaking pump is a broken check valve. This is the valve that tells the pump when to stop pumping water. If there’s a crack, it will make the pump keep pumping. To fix this issue, try the following:
- Turn off the water and remove the old check valve from the hose that connects the pump to the fresh water tank.
- Install a new check valve onto the same hose that connects to the fresh water tank. Make sure that the arrow on the valve is pointing in the direction of the fresh water tank.
- Connect the other end of the new check valve to your water pump. Make sure that it’s securely connected.
- Turn on the water and see if the leak continues.
If replacing the check valve doesn’t solve the problem, the issue could be with cracked water lines. Damaged lines can depressurize the pump and encourage it to keep pumping.
What is included in the water pump?
The answer to this question will vary from model to model. Some brands include everything you’ll need to get the pump set up and ready for use. It can include all the accessories and hardware that you would need for the installation. However, other brands offer parts separately.
How long should an RV water pump run?
Most RV water pumps are on-demand systems, so it will run only when you’re using a faucet, taking a shower, or flushing the toilet. And these systems are designed for intermittent use, so they are not meant for leaving them on for extra long periods of time.
Choosing the best RV water pump is a process that you can make easier by understanding the factors that determine the quality of this product. It doesn’t have to be a frustrating experience. And we hope that these RV water pump reviews and buying guide has been helpful in determining which product would work best for you. Once you’ve found the perfect water pump for your travel trailer or motorhome, you can enjoy the convenience of having a consistent water supply at your demand.