Why Is My Caravan Water Pump Constantly Running?

So you’re gearing up for your next trip across the countryside with your caravan, but as you double and triple-check all your equipment, you notice a glaring issue with your caravan’s water pump.

Your caravan water pump may be running constantly due to the height of the water pump inlet or a water pressure issue within your system. A leak or kinked water line can cause the pump to run constantly as it’s sensing the low water pressure elsewhere in the system and attempting to compensate.

In this article, I will explain the various reasons why your water pump might constantly be running plus their fixes. Read on. 

Why Your Caravan Water Pump Is Constantly Running

Caravan water pumps are designed to shut off once they reach a certain pressure. If there is a significant leak anywhere in the system, it will cause the pressure to drop and force your water pump to keep constantly running because it is sensing the low pressure from the leak or other fault in the system.

Water leaks aren’t the only thing that can cause a pump to run constantly; clogged-up screens or filters can also affect the water pressure causing the pump to run without stopping because it is sensing the lower pressure caused by the clogs.

Faulty or ill-adjusted pressure switches can also cause the pump to keep running. Many newer caravan water pumps have water pressure switches that shut off the pump once a certain pressure has been attained.

Water pumps also have water seals, which can accumulate wear and tear over time. A failing internal seal can allow for leaks and cause the pump to think the pressure is low, causing the pump to keep running. 

Inspecting the entire water system of your caravan may seem like a daunting task. Still, suppose you start at the most simple problems and work towards the more complicated issues. This way, you can efficiently solve your issue before dismantling the entire water system of your caravan.

Common Factors That Can Affect Your Caravan Water Pump

A litany of factors can cause your caravan’s water pump to not function properly thus run constantly. The downside is that you will need to inspect your entire water system for faults to find the true cause of your water pump that won’t shut off. The upside is that most of these are simple fixes. 

Diagnosing where the issue lies is the true problem here. For instance, one of the simplest things that can cause a fault in a caravan’s water system is a pipe or water line that has become tangled, kinked, crushed, or bent. Other possible factors include:

A Faulty Pressure Switch

A faulty pressure switch is another small thing that can affect the integrity and usefulness of your water pump. The pressure switch may not even be broken. Instead, it may just be adjusted to a setting that is too high, which would cause it to keep running.

Leaks in The System

Leaks in the system are also a common culprit here. A leak means that the system is losing water at some point during the water pumping process. Consequently, the pump overcompensates for this water loss by constantly running, trying to get the water pressure up to no avail.

Loose Pipe Connections or Defective Valve Seals

Loose pipe connections or valve seals that have become defective over time also cause issues with water pumps. These faults work the same way a leak does, but a loose pipe fitting or damaged valve can also allow air into the system. This can become a much larger issue and further erode the integrity of your caravan’s water system.

Incorrect Winterization

One issue many caravan owners don’t even consider is that if you recently had your caravan’s water system winterized, and it wasn’t performed properly, it can affect your water pump negatively. It could cause it to freeze, requiring you to replace the water pump entirely, which can be very costly.

How To Fix a Caravan Water Pump That Is Constantly Running

As stated above, most repairs to the actual water system are fairly simple and take under an hour to complete. 

Here are a few ways to fix different faults in the water system if you’ve managed to diagnose your caravan’s water pump issue and are ready to repair it yourself.

Before starting any repairs to your water system, the first and most important step is to make sure that you have shut off the water and electricity in your caravan. Shutting off electricity should be as simple as disconnecting a heater, while shutting off the water can mean a few turns of a knob in the main water supply line.

Make sure to refer to your caravan’s manufacturer’s manual to find the exact ways to properly disconnect the electricity and turn off the water in your caravan. Remember, this repair process involves water and electricity, so skipping this step could be fatal. Do not, under any circumstances, skip this step. It is vital.

1. Look for Obvious Leaks in the Water Line and Repair Them or Replace the Entire Line 

  • Take time to follow each line from the water pump to each fixture in your caravan that uses water. Look for leaks in each line. 
  • Leaks will be obvious because of dripping or pooled water near the faulty line.
  • If you find a leak, it’s important to figure out whether a faulty water line or the fixture itself is the problem. 
  • Repairing a fixture that’s causing the problem could entail installing a washer or two or tightening down some bolts. However, replacing a leaking water line with a professional can get quite expensive.
  • You can replace broken lines by finding the correct fitment for your specific caravan and attaching the line to the water pump and the fixture. Still, it’s better to have these repairs done professionally. 

2. Check Your Entire Caravan’s Water System for Any Clogged Filters or Screens

  • This fix for a constantly running water pump in a caravan may seem like something that would do you no good. However, it’s a good starting point if you have a water pump that’s constantly running and you’re attempting to find and fix the issue.
  • A screen or filter in your water system that is doing its job well should trap all kinds of sediment and bacterial material you don’t want in your caravan’s water.
  • After a while of trapping all these unwanted deposits in your caravan’s water system, the filters and screens themselves can become clogged.
  • The clog created in the pipe by the buildup of sediment or whatever the case may be will cause your caravan’s water pressure to seem lower to the water pump, causing it to constantly run to compensate for what it thinks is low water pressure. This is a fairly inexpensive and easy fix that you can perform quickly.
  • You can purchase replacement in-line filters easily on Amazon, and they are also incredibly easy to install. Fette Filter RV & Marine in-line filters from Amazon come with a flexible hose that attaches to the filter and then to the water line itself. They are an excellent choice because they can more easily be attached to fixtures or the water pump itself. They also come in a pack of two, so you can replace all the potentially clogged filters in your water system cost-effectively.

3. Adjust or Replace the Pressure Switch On Your Caravan’s Water Pump

  • Nearly all caravan water pumps have something called a pressure switch that tells the water pump to shut off once a certain water pressure has been met.
  • If your pressure switch is faulty or just ill-adjusted, this is one of the reasons why your caravan water pump would constantly be running.
  • If the pressure setting is set at a very high level, the pump will never meet that level of pressure, causing it to constantly run to meet the level of pressure being asked of it by the pressure switch.
  • Luckily pressure switches on water pumps are adjustable. Some may require simple hand tools like a screwdriver or pliers for adjustment, but for others, you can use your hand to turn it.
  • Figure out which direction turns the pressure up and which turns it down. Start by turning the pressure down, then use a water fixture in your caravan and see if the water pump turns off after you turn the fixture off.
  • If the water pump turns off shortly after turning off the water on whatever fixture you used, congratulations! You’ve solved your constantly running water pump issue in the simplest way possible.    
  • However, if the water pump keeps perpetually running after you’ve turned off the fixture, you may need to have the pressure switch on your water pump replaced.
  • Whale WU7207 Pressure Switch is a pressure switch available on amazon that can be used with both in-line and submersible water pumps. It also has space for a filter for added cleanliness of your caravan’s water.
  • A new pressure switch is something that you should have installed by a professional to ensure that it is installed correctly and functions as it should.
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