Gone Outdoors

How to Install a Water Pump on an RV

by Amy Kingston

The fresh water tank in an RV is designed to provide clean water no matter during your travels. A water pump delivers the water to the plumbing system; if the water pump stops working, the fresh water tank is essentially useless until the pump is replaced. Most water pump failures are the result of improper winterization or being stored for extended periods of time.

Drain the fresh water tank completely by connecting a water hose to the bottom drain. Disconnect the water lines that run from the fresh water tank to the water pump (a small amount of water may leak from the lines).

Disconnect the RV's battery.

Remove the red and black electrical wires from the water pump, using a screwdriver. Disconnect the outlet and inlet hoses, which are held in place by clamps.

Unbolt the RV water pump to remove it from its mounting. Set it aside for disposal.

Bolt the new water pump onto the mountings. Install the inlet hose before installing the outlet hose. Properly tighten the clamps around the hose connections. The ports may be labeled "in" and "out". Apply thread seal tape to the pipe threads.

Reconnect the water lines to the freshwater tank. Replace the electrical wiring and reconnect the RV battery.

Test the system to make sure the water pump is working. You should hear a humming sound. If the pump does not appear to be working, check the electrical wiring and ensure that the RV's battery is connected.

Inspect the area around the pump and the outlet and inlet hoses for water. Make sure the area is dry.

Partially fill the fresh water tank, turn on the fresh water pump and inspect the hoses for leaks.

Items you will need
  • Screwdriver
  • Thread seal tape


  • Before deciding the fresh water pump needs to be replaced, always check for simple solutions that might be easily overlooked. If the drain valve is open, the pump will not work. Check to make sure the water lines are properly connected to the tank and pump. Inspect the fuse and check the shut off valves.