Introduction to Mobile Home Plumbing

Manufactured home plumbing

Plumbing is responsible for a huge percentage of mobile home repair problems. Plumbing repair for mobile homes is made even more difficult because it is sometimes, but not always, different from plumbing for site built homes.

Plumbing parts and supplies are constantly being improved. Advice that is optimal on day may be out of date the next. Fortunately, the new products are usually easier to use, especially for people with little repair experience. They tend to cost more, but when you look at the cost of hiring a plumber versus doing it yourself, you can pay a lot more for parts if they let you do the work yourself.
The parts stock in home supply stores is extensive and extremely confusing. There are all sorts of specialized terms. I used to complain I spent as much time chasing parts and it took for the actual repair work.

The parts on the shelf of your favorite plumbing supply store are horribly mixed up. Customers looking for parts don’t put things back where they got them. You MUST ALWAYS check to make sure the part you take out of a box is actually what you think it is. It’s really frustrating to have figured out the exact part you need and realize after you get home, you have the wrong one.

The best way to find the plumbing information you are looking for on this site is to put a word or two into the search box or look at the terms shown in the tag cloud on the right and click the word that seems to be the best match. You should find what you need with a few clicks.

{ 63 comments… read them below
Deb Savage
Our mobile home has very low water pressue since our pipes froze and we thawed them. We need to use a pressure reducing valve on our main line. We were thinking that maybe this valve froze also and was damaged inside. would that lead to low water pressure?
Paul
Is the pressure low everywhere? Is it equally low on both the hot and cold sides? Have you looked at the places you thawed to see if there is any visible damage that might reduce the water flow?
I ask the questions to try and narrow down the problem. I assume the pressure reduction valve is in the main water supply line. If it is the problem the pressure should be low everywhere and on both hot and cold lines. If the freezing and unthawing broke loose scale deposits they could have clogged a faucet or two, but it should only effect the hot or the cold side. If you have plastic water lines and used to much heat unthawing them could they have narrowed and be reducing the water flow?

If your pipes froze could something farther back in the main line, before the pressure deduction valve, have been damaged?
Those are what I can think of. I’d be interested in hearing what you eventually find to be the problem.

Curt Smith
Try removing the faucet aerators to see if the pressure is there just the aerators are plugged.
Hugh Butler
I am considering a renovation on my 1994 Oakwood 1500 sq ft home that will require some plumbing changes. (master bath tub/shower, kitchen, water heater) I now have polybutylene (gray pipe) and was wandering if it would be worth the extra expense to re-plumb the whole house with pex?
Paul
That’s one of those judgment things. If it were me I would wait until there were actually problems before starting a re-plumbing job. With some jobs you do so much work opening up and gaining access you save a lot of time and expense doing preventive maintenance while you are there. In this case I don’t think that is the case.

Mark
I just purchased an ’83 Skyline. I have water in first bathroom. None in kitchen sink. Water in second bathroom ( toilet and bathtub), but not sink. We turned on kitchen sink and checked and there is no leak
( turned on faucet, checked and water main doesn’t move).
Help. Where can I look? I can’t figure out what could be causing this.
Paul
Do you have galvanized pipe and was the house moved to your location? That is the setup most likely to fill water supply lines with chunks of lime/rust.
I would take off the aerators on the faucets and see if you can clear the obstruction that way. If that doesn’t work and you have an air compressor you can try disconnecting the supply lines and blowing out the obstructions. I guess you could even duct tape a garden hose to the faucet end and try to back flush that way (with the water inside turned off and the supply lines disconnected & assuming you can get water to the hose when the house water supply is turned off.)
Good luck.

michele
We have very low cold water pressure throughout our house. The hot water pressure is excellent. We live in south Texas and have hard water. We don’t have a filter, water softener, or pressure valve on the water line. What can I check to fix the problem? Taking showers is getting increasingly difficult. Thanks.
Paul
The hot water supply comes off the main water supply line right as it enters the house. Especially if you have galvanized iron pipe I can imagine the pipe gradually filling with lime so the water flow gets slower and slower. If that is the case you are probably looking at replacing the plumbing. You might also try disconnecting the supply lines and seeing if you can flush out any chunks of lime that may have broken loose and be clogging the end of the supply lines. Sometimes simply unscrewing the aerator on a faucet will help.

JOHN SALINAS
I have a 95 oakwood ,and the pipes are bad in some areas.The smell is coming back into the 2nd bathroom. I,ve heard of something call a breather is this the best way to stop the smell.
Paul
I’m not sure what you mean by the “pipes are bad”. I think the correct term is vent cap. “Pro Vent” is one brand. They are a cause of smell problems. A dead animal under the home is the other.

Dusty
Last winter the pipe froze and busted in my Master shower. It is a one piece shower that looks like you could just unscrew it and pull it out to work behind it. Problem is that that doesn’t work.How do I get the shower pulled out then put back in. There doesn’t seem to be any access to the pipes any other way????
Paul
You will probably have to come in from the back side by removing or cutting into the paneling.

jay
i have an older manufactured home. a singlewide. the cold water works everywhere in the house. including in the bathroom at the sink, but does not work in the shower. what would cause this? would it be an easy fix or would it be more prudent to pay a plumber to do the work?
Paul
Do you have galvanized steel water lines? The first thing I would do is unscrew the shower head looking for chunks of lime that might be blocking it. If that doesn’t do it I would back up the water line to the next place it might be blocked by lime.

janet sherman
singlewide clayton home; faucet in bathtub will not stop runnig cold water. replaced phoenix diverter in shower handle; this slowed down the water. replaced washer on the cold water faucet stem and bonnet; not the actual stem; this slowed the flow down even more. What are we missing here? the water flowing out is costing us money. We also checked in te access panel and no water is leaking anywhere.
Paul
Replace the entire faucet including stem? I’m afraid mobile home faucets often set world records for cheap.

Willard Whiteman
I have 1998 double wide.I have a problem with my kitchen sink cold water line.The gray line pops out of a fitting that screws tight to hold it in. Is there too much water pressure? Should I have a plumber change it so it is more secure? I have town water.
Paul
I doubt that city water pressure would pop a properly fitted connector. You might try one of these before calling the plumber.

carrie colyar
There is very low cold water pressure throughout the house. The toilet tank in the second b-room will not fill up. The pressure from the hose that fills the tank is a trickle
Paul
Do you have the old galvanized pipe? It will tend to scale and corrode over time. If pieces of the scale break loose they can cause this. If there is pressure on the hot side, the problem must be where the hot and cold lines split.

art
I have a 79 mobile home with polybutylene piping. hot water runs good, cold water has calcium like sediment that is plugging all the faucets and toilet fill valves. I have a filter on the incoming line where it comes out if the ground. This filter has no evidence of deposits. My washing machine fill hose was completely blocked with calcium so I cleaned it out and put an inline filter in the middle of it. Out of this filter I have dumped a quart of sediment. The line is now blocked again. A mobile home service said the poly pipe is the fault.
Paul
I don’t see how poly pipe could be responsible for sediment. It had some problems with fitting cracking, but that’s a whole different problem. How hard is your water? If you have really hard water coming in to the home I can imagine some of the lime might crystallize out and create sediment after it passes the filter. The volume you are describing seems high for that. On the hot side the sediment would build up in your hot water heater.

art
Note to plumber…most mobile homes have pb pipe not galvanized.
Bonnie
My mobile home is a 1977 Barrington 14 x 60 in reasonably decent shape.
The plumbing lines need to be replace throughout and I’ve purchased PEX. Since the house sits on a slight slope, running the new lines under the house is going to be a pain from one end to about the middle of the house so it’s been suggested that I run them inside the house along either a wall/floor or wall/ceiling junction to protect them from freezing (which is why the plumbing has to be replaced in the first place). Since PEX can’t be exposed to sunlight, I’m assuming it would have to be enclosed in some way.
What are your thoughts on this whole idea? Sounds a big weird to me but if you think it’s reasonable, I’ll try it. Crawling under the house multiple times every winter to replace frozen pvc has lost its charm.
Thank you.
C. Boyle
Letting your water drip overnight or all day helps to prevent frozen pipes
Karl
I have a doublewide on city water, and I am not getting hot or cold water on. Main valve from street to meter on. Main valve to entire house on, I checked it for lime deposits and it is clean. The last time it worked was when I took a shower, then 5 minutes later it was not working, and nobody touched the shut off valves. When this did happen before, I blew out the lines with an air compressor and that worked, but when I did it this time it did not work. How can I check for lime deposits under the house (at which junction points) so that I can find a blockage without cutting up all of the pipe undedr there? Thanks!
Winnie
99 Clayton double-wide. Poly plumbing pipe, push-pull on/ off connections. Hard well water, 2 major problems
Problem #1
Recently replaced pump, no water hot or cold will run in shower. All other faucets run. When shower was first turned on
After pump replace, it sputtered air and spit out black sediment. I
turned it off real quick and now when I turn on faucet, nothing runs from hot or cold. What can I do?
Problem #2
Commode runs water from tank into bowel constantly, so far I have been unable to budge the push pull on/off valve wher water runs up from floor.
Pleas help me.
Thanks
Paul
Does the faucet have an aerator that can be unscrewed? Many do, and if there was a lot of sediment in that first water it may have clogged it.
If you can’t make the shutoff at the toilet work, turn off the water to the house while you replace the flapper in the tank.

ROBERT
I have a Fleetwood 2000 Mobil home and I am getting standing water in the laundry room. I have turned off the water to the washer but I am still getting water in the room by the ac and heating unit right by the wall. What could be causing this?
Paul
If your furnace & A/C are all one unit there may be a problem with the shutoff valve that controls water going to the furnace for humidification.

ashley
My sink is back up with water in both sink what do you think the problem is and how much do you think it will cost to fix iit
Paul
The general rule is that bathroom sinks clog with hair and kitchen sinks with grease. Home Depot or Lowes sell a flexible plastic strip about 18″ long with backward facing barbs that will pull hair out and might break up grease. At a cost of $3 or so it is worth a try. No skill is required; slide it down the drain(s) and pull back out a few times.

Darrick Shields
I have a 79 champion, the main line coming in burst, and the shut off is broke. I think I need to cut the copper pipe coming out of the ground and unhook the main from where it comes into the water heater. I tried just fixing the flexible black pvc pipe like was there originally, but the pipe seemed slightly larger than the original, but they were both 3/4 inch. I used primer and cement and a hose clamp at both spots I cut, and it didn’t seal good because the pipe seems too large now. It was originally just slid over copper connectors and clamped. Any suggestions?
Paul
Copper has a nasty tendency to stretch before it breaks. Hose clamps will not work. They don’t compress the line tightly enough. You might be able to get a seal with Genova or Shark Bite fitting (Search on Amazon) but if the copper has stretch you will have to cut it back until it is OK.

Doc Goss
I have been having problems off and on with my water lines (sink, washer, shower heads, etc for years due to the calcium which in the water here in Wheatland, Wy. This winter pipes under home busted to freezing cold. Would it be feasible to replace all the pipes under the double wide since I have been having the problems with the calcium deposits anyway??
Paul
Probably easier to replace than fix. PEX is also much more resistant to freezing.

Clenteria Pearson
My 1985 Mobile home water in the master bedroom has little pressure. the water pressure in the rest of the house has good pressure. it has been -37 below in this area and today it is 10 Our heat tape is working fine. My husband always closes the bathroom register and I don’t think that helps any. but do you think we have a frozen pipe? We have 2 feet of snow and we can’t get under there yet. Should we let the water run even though there is no pressure until we get a plummer or until we are able to get under it. Please help us.
Paul
I am a little confused by “has little pressure” followed by “there is no pressure”. If there is any pressure at all I would assume the line has not frozen hard enough to split and keep running water in an effort to melt away ice that has already formed. I would keep that register open
steven
Bought a 2014 clayton double wide. I hooked a temporary water hose to get water to the trailer. I have pressure to all bathtubs and toilets. I only have a trickle of water from all sinks including the kitchen. Any suggestions?
Paul
I think the slow faucets all have aerators. Could they be plugged with sediment?
Loretta
I have a 1999 fleetwood double-wide running off of a well. I have fantastic water pressure leading up the house (the bladder in the tank shows 50 lb pressure). However, I have extremely low pressure in every toliet, sink, shower, and washing machine. Same for hot and cold water. The filter for the house appears to be in the laundry room and it is clean as a whistle (have pulled it apart several times and cleaned). I have cleaned all screens on facets, showers, and washing machine.
Any suggestions? Oh, the pipes are cpvc. The only metal is what leads into the house from the outside bib and that has been replaced and rechecked for build up.
Stumped. Unless there is a connection or joint under the house causing a problem I cannot see what else. Could there be another filter/screen on one of the intake lines under the house that we don’t know about?
Paul
Oh the joys of plumbing. So simple, but such a pain to figure out sometimes.
Two thoughts.
1. Since both hot and cold side are effected the problem has to be before the point where the supply line splits and a branch goes to the hot water heater. I’m thinking you will have to look under the house.
2. Does the pressure tank refill normally, or very slowly. I can imagine a blockage before the pressure tank that would only allow it to fill slowly but still show normal pressure.
Let me know what you eventually find.
Paul
Loretta
The tank itself seems to be fine. Plenty of pressure from the well to it (we can pull it and lots of water coming out). Also, if we run an outside line for quite some time plenty of pressure there too. I have my brothers-in-law coming over tomorrow (one is plumber). They will check under the house.
I was just wondering if there was another filter/screen. I cannot find any diagrams for the plumbing under the house at all. The only thing I have from an installation manual just talks about the types of fittings and that is it. None show any screens or filters in the diagrams.
Could be just build up of sand and etc since this is a well (it was around 600′ and then extended to 700′ deep after I had a pump go out about 8 years ago).
Pat Cantrell
I have a 2000 sq.ft. double wide. I’m wanting to replace the kitchen sink and not sure if I can go to Lowe’s or if it should be from a mobile home place?
Paul
Mobile home sinks were usually smaller, measured from front to back, than those made for site built homes. Measure the depth of your counter, and the sink you have and see if the ones at Lowes will work. If they do, you will have a LOT more choice. In many cases I would replace the countertops to get the room I needed to install a standard site built sink.
Sheryl
We have a sewage smell in our bathroom.
It has a shower, sink and toilet, under the cabinet is studor vent.
We replaced the studor vent. Still have a smell.
Is there a hidden vent for shower or does it use the sink vent?
I have seen cheap $5 vents and $25 vents, is there a preferred brand?
Ashley
Are you on a sewer system or a septic tank? We have a high water table in my area and we are on a septic system, and when it rains heavily we tend to have a sewage smell.
Cutting back on using bleach and not letting any food particles down the drain has helped to keep from over working the system.
MIGNA
Hello,
I have a 2003 Brekenridge Park Model and i’m told that I have lime in my water lines. What is the best way to do it our selves. Hubby is handy so I figured he can do it unless its a harder job and I should get a plumber. Please help
Tina
Fleetwood 2007 mobile home model 34424 dual shower value broke off can’t find turn off water value for shower only, the whole house water supply value is off, have called different plumbers they don’t know mobile home plans nor brand name for needed repair parts to shower, They don’t have this system I don’t have info. to get the right needed parts… I had one suggestion to replace the whole system with a different system very expensive!!! One value has broken off am willing to replace the whole thing due to location where it broke . NEED! HELP
Paul
Give these guys a call after 8AM mountain time and see if they can help.
Please contact us at 505-831-1601 if you do not find what you are looking for online, or if you need any further assistance
Ashley
I have a 1985 single wide (I have forgotten the manufacturer) and it looks like the main water supply has burst somewhere between the ground and my hot water heater. It is on a hill and the clearance to the ground is narrow so I have not been able to crawl close enough to accurately judge the diameter of the pipe. Do you happen to know if there was a standard size for pipe used in mobile homes for that year?
Paul
I’m afraid on a home that age there is no way to know what kind of work has been done on it in the past.
You might want to check and see if the failure is actually the water heater. They frequently let you know they have failed by starting to drip a lot of water.
eric
Im not sure how else to put something on here except to reply but we’ve recently purchased a 95 single wide mobile home. Roughly a month after we moved in we had major plumbing problems which was a cloge in outside piping and was replaced but also we lost 90% of our water pressure in the master bed sink and stand up shower but its crazy the garden tub also in our master bed is fine and so is the rest of the house…SOMEONE PLEASE HELP!!! Its NOT the little screw off piece on the faucet…thank you I appriciate all help.
Paul
Was that clog in the water supply line? Is the pressure loss in both hot and cold sides?
It is not unusual for pipes to accumulate lime and other deposits which sometimes break off and move through the lines into the house. Its pretty easy to imagine some pieces of scale broke loose and ended up in the places where the most water was being used at the time.
If the cold side was blocked you would have decent water flow from turning the hot water, and no flow from the cold side. Since you have little water pressure I have to think the supply is blocked after the hot and cold sides mix in the faucets.
With the water turned on and the aerator removed from the faucets can you thread a stiff piece of wire into the faucet spout and see if you can dislodge/move/change anything? If not you may want to try removing the faucets and checking the flow from both hot and cold sides.
I hope this helps.
Paul
Dusty
I have a single wide 1998 trailer that all of a sudden lost cold water pressure in master bathtub.. hot has amazing pressure throughout home and cold is great also except in bathtub… I’ve lived here for 12 years and water pressure has always been great until this started with this faucet and seems to be only one affected.. ideas??
Paul
Dirt, scale, lime, etc. broke loose in the line and is stuck behind the on/off valve on the cold side.
You might try opening the faucet all the way and sliding a length of stiff wire (electrical wire maybe) inside to see if you can break sit up/open.
Otherwise I think you will have to open up the wall behind the faucet, disconnect the cold water supply line, and see what you find.
Good Luck
Paul
michelle
i have a 1980′s single wide cavco mobile home. In the master bathroom there is a leak between faucet and shower head (can hear in wall). How do i get access to this? the shower head and faucets are interior and cannot be reached from outside wall.
Paul
You will have to remove or cut an opening into the paneling behind the shower.
Paul
Hi Sharon,
Is this a problem with all the faucets in the house, or just the shower?
Does it effect both hot and cold water?
Do any of your neighbors have the same problem?
Is this a sudden, recent problem, or has it been getting worse over time?
You can see where I am going with those questions.
If you and your neighbors all have the problem then the park has a problem.
If it is just the shower I would check to see if there is a plugged filter inside the shower head.
If it is only your house and it is all faucets I would be looking at the supply line where you connect to the park water system. The park should be able to check the delivery pressure to find out if the problem is on their side or your side of the connection.
Good luck with it.
Paul
Daniel Green
My 8 yr old broke our outside water non-freezing spicket which is 40 lbs, connected to the main water supply line from our well house. So i cut off the damaged section, plumbing in a new outside spicket, which fixed the leak and we had water really strong for the first 1-2hrs or so. Now some of my faucets have little to no pressure on the cold side, while one does have great pressure. I do not believe it is the aerators on the faucets because the hot water side is working fine. I have tried to move all the shut-off valves that I know of, and little to no avail. Help me!
Paul
Can you disconnect the supply lines from the problem faucets, make sure the line is clear and also force some water backwards through the faucet to flush out anything that might have gotten inside it?
Sharon Stein
I have a 2008 Magnum by Moduline Mobile home. I am situated in a mobile home park and the water pressure here is very poor….starts out not bad, but then reduces to a tiny stream. The shower is impossible to use there is just no pressure. What should I check and do to fix this? TIA

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