Removing the Glycol Overflow Reservoir - need help

Hey folks, I researched the site but could not find exactly how to access the bottom of the tank where I have leak. To access the bottom of the tank I see I need to remove the shelf/storage box that spans the back but the slant angle of the tab won't let me pull it up and out.

If I remove the screws holding the tank is there enough hose underneath to allow me to lift it up and repair the connection? But I don't think so. Any help appreciated.
2018 Tab outback 320s.
Tab 320s Boondock
TV: Toyota 4Runner

Comments

  • BrianZBrianZ Member Posts: 1,493
    edited November 2
    Here's my description of how I removed our rear storage box..
    https://tab-rv.vanillacommunity.com/discussion/comment/167199/#Comment_167199
    Note, I had to remove 7 screws.  Also, it may sound odd, but the easiest way I found to pull it out was by laying on my back.  You can't get any leverage to lift it out while on your knees leaning forward & it stresses your back; but laying on your back lets you use your entire body for leverage, while letting your arms do the lifting.
    You can see my photos of what it reveals, once removed.  And no, there's no excess hose to lift the tank out, so don't even try, as you may break the tank connection ports.
    -Brian in Chester, Virginia
    TV: 2005 Toyota Sienna LE (3.3L V6)
    RV: 2018 [email protected] 320S, >90 mods 
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    @Sneakle, I think the short answer is "no", not enough flex in the hoses and a couple are too short to let you lift the reservoir up enough to get to the hose clamps on the bottom of the tank.  I have a 2015 so the pics I have might not help much.  I'm guessing your leak is a crack in the tank where the hose(s) connect to it.  I had to take the bench seat back and bottoms out in order to find enough room to get my hose clamp pliers to the clamps holding the hoses to the bottom of the tank.  Once you've gotten the clamps out of your way you can "carefully" work the hoses off the 2 connections.  You're first going to have to remove enough glycol from the system so the level is below the point at which you are working.  If you don't you'll find that the glycol will "self level" all over the bottom of your [email protected]  :open_mouth:  I'd suggest picking up 3 rubber stoppers that are 1" at the large end and 3/4" at the small end.  They will be very helpful in plugging the ends of the disconnected hoses while you are working on the tank.
    There is a thread somewhere where an owner was repairing his cracked reservoir hose connections, I'll see if I can find it and post it to you.
    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Thanks so much. I had been adding fluid when I discovered the leak. I couldn't figure how to suck the fluid back out so I pulled the plug underneath the tab and drained it all into a container.

    I've discovered that rv dealers are not very reliable for after-sale repairs so I'm determined to learn how to do it myself. 

    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    @Sneakle, I like your attitude!  I think good rv dealers are few and far between.  The more you know about how things work the better.  You'll find a lot of good info in that link @BrianZ posted above.  Have a couple of microwave meals and a bag lunch or two handy when you sit down to read through that one!  =)  BrianZ's link will take you directly to the spot where he is discussing removing the rear storage box, always great info and pics from Brian!  When I rebuilt the back cabs in my 2015 I went with that basic design. 
    Don't hesitate to reach out if I can help!
    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • Dutch061Dutch061 Member Posts: 486
    Echoing in on what @fstop32 said, good RV Technicians are like good Automotive Technicians. It is not easy to find someone who genuinely cares enough to go above and beyond the minimum. 

    NOTE: I am not saying you can't find people who care, I am saying that "most will do what is necessary and nothing more".

    The attitude typically taken is "it's not mine" when they should approach every thing they do like it belongs to their mother. Part of this attitude is driven from the aspect of how they are compensated which is by the "flat rate hour". Which simply means the more work they get done in a shorter period of time becomes more money in their pocket but also the Dealership or Repair Facility. It has been my experience that people will pay above "flat rate" for a job that is well done with an emphasis on personal care. I spent many years as a Master Technician earlier in my career and proved this time and time again to my co-workers at that time.

    Today the problem is further amplified by the shortage of qualified people entering into the skilled labor areas. 4 year college degrees have been pushed so hard that people think the only way to succeed is to have a degree, a Master's Degree, or a PHD. It's a shame, because that is why the majority of Engineers are coming from other countries. The USA has mostly abandoned encouraging skilled labor in pursuit of the 4 year degree dream. Kid's today don't want to physically work or get their hands dirty. 

    Okay, enough of the rant, everyone get's my point.  

    Brad
    2020 400 BDL aka "Boonie"
    2021 F-250 Tremor with PSD aka "Azul"
    Concord, NC 
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Yes, competent repair people and craftsmen in any field are hard too find. And I'm willing to pay well for good work. A good plumber can make 6 figures but that doesn't seem to attract young folks to the occupation. 
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    BrianZ, you were right about how to pull that shelf unit out, lying on my back and pulling up over my head. Stroke of genius. Looking at the clamps on the hoses, are these released the same way as most clamps where you squeeze them together with pliers? The look different than car hose clamps. Maybe I need to squeeze harder with vice grips adjusted just right. 


    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    @Sneakle, yep, you just squeeze the ears together.  A pair of channel locks with some teeth usually do the trick if you don't happen to have a pair of actual hose pliers.  You'll have to do a bit of gentle wiggling to get the clamp to slide off.  It seems to work best to move the clamp toward the center of the hose instead of trying to move it off the end.
    In the case of that one hose that has a union just a few inches away from the reservoir you could separate it at the union and then remove the stubby hose after you get the reservoir out.
    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • db_cooperdb_cooper Member Posts: 682
    @Sneakle
    Be careful as our tank (2015) became brittle and the tank broke at the hose connections when I tried to reinstall.  the factory had installed with a lot of pressure on the connection because the hose was too long.   I tried various products to weld it back together, but in the end had to buy a new tank.  

    You may want to shorten the hose when you reinstall if it is pushing hard on the connection.
    2015 Max S Outback | 2010 Xterra



  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Thank you dbcooper. I can see how the tank bottom nozzle could break if it is brittle. I haven't determined if the leak is around the connection or if there is a crack in the bottom the tank. Given how fast it was leaking after I tried to fill it I'm suspecting I'll need to call Nucamp about a new tank, plus that short piece of hose just to be sure.  

    And to fstop32 (field camera depth of field!), that's a good idea to remove the hose segment further away from the tank and work with pulling off the short hose after removing the tank. I'll attack it tomorrow.

    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    @Sneakle, yep, avocational photographer!  
    When you put that back together you might be able to get your hands on a 90 degree elbow which can relieve the pressure put on the tank hose neck going forward.  I had to totally rebuild my system and I was fortunate to get some parts that don't come standard on a [email protected]  If I can find what I did with my leftover parts I'll see if I happen to have a spare one.  The pic below is what it looks like.  This is from an Alde European catalog so the part number might not be helpful but at least you'll have the description and specs if you choose to pursue it.  If you happen to be vacationing in Elkhart IN anytime soon you can drop into the Truma/Alde facility and they will sell it to walk-in customers  =) .  Possibly NuCamp can get their hands on them as well.  I used them in several locations in my rebuild anywhere a hot rubber hose might want to collapse or to relieve pressure of the bend of the hose.
    Oh, and take a couple of pain killers before you dive into that confined space!!! ;)


    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Hey thanks for that info. I got to the thing today and released hose clamps to reveal broken plastic tank bottom. Called the rv dealer who said he would call NuCamp and then call me back. Of course he didn't. I'm going to call NuCamp tomorrow and see if I can get the part #s for the tank and the short hose piece; and then call the dealer with that info so he can then call Nucamp and place the order. What a silly go round. Should be an exploded view online so we could order things direct. 





    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • db_cooperdb_cooper Member Posts: 682
    I had pretty good luck ordering the tank through Missouri Teardrop Trailers, and having it shipped to Washington State.  ~$90 with shipping.
    2015 Max S Outback | 2010 Xterra



  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Removed the tank today. As I stated on another thread: It was not too hard to loosen the hose clamps with small channel lock pliers, squeezing all the way in and the clamps slide down easily. Then I was able twist back and both with the pliers on the hoses to pull them loose. This allowed me to pull the tank down and out instead of up and out on my 2018 320s Tab.


    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Just a heads up to top off my thread, I emailed Alde inquiring about a new expansion tank (the glycol reservoir) and they called me back today and took the order. I was called by a rep. from TRUMA in Indiana which I'm told now owns Alde; or maybe just N. American distribution? I'll paste info here from the Alde website:

    >>>

    Alde and Truma join forces in North America

    Since Fall 2019 Truma Corp. in Elkhart is representing Alde Systems in North America. Alde began business in 2012 in North America and is a sister company to Truma Gerätetechnik GmbH & Co. KG which established its North America headquarters in Elkhart, IN in 2013.

    Truma has integrated Alde into their new headquarters opening in Elkhart, IN in Fall 2019. They combine forces sharing a mutual service network, logistics and warehousing, and sales team to support both OEM and retail customers throughout North America. Being in Elkhart will allow Alde to be closer to their OEM customers where they will continue pre-assembly of their systems and distribution.

    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    well, after reading their release again, it seems Alde has been a part of Truma for a while. 
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • ScottGScottG Administrator Posts: 4,802
    @Sneakle, good to hear that you got a prompt response from Alde, and that they were willing to ship you the needed part.

    It seems there were some growing pains post merger (probably compounded by Covid) but hopefully this is a sign that things are running a bit more smoothly. 
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Administrator Posts: 7,920
    @Sneakle - how about sharing the contact info for Alde?  Thanks!
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Westlake, Ohio
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Sharon_is_sam, I'm not sure that their calling me did not result from my reach out to the dealer who contacted NuCamp. So let me first email the Truma person and ask if they take direct calls for parts. I did contact the aide site directly with an email early on, but also contacted NuCamp and my dealer at about the same time. I'll let you know what I find out. 
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Hey Sharon_is_Sam, this is reply from Alde/Truma for anyone needing Alde parts:

    "Ask them to email us at [email protected]’or call us at 855 558-7862"
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Administrator Posts: 7,920
    Thanks @Sneakle!  I think that deserves a special place in one of our categories!
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Westlake, Ohio
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Great. Whatever you think.
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    FWIW...I had to totally rebuild my Alde heating system back in January and if it hadn't been for the help I got the Alde folks I would still not have a working heating system.
    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    gee I hope I don't have to rebuild the system! Hoping I can just patch, the leak and fill the system back up. 
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • fstop32fstop32 Member Posts: 199
    @Sneakle, mine had some serious corrosion at every convector connection.  I had no option but to pull it all out.  Fortunately the boiler was fine.  I completed quite a few "unintended" mods while working on the heat system as I would come across things I wanted to do differently  ;)
    Your situation looks pretty benign to me, though a pain to get to it.  I think other attempts at trying to glue the reservoir have met with little success.  I'd definitely go with a new reservoir.
    As for corrosion though I'd suggest once or twice a season to check the rubber hose to aluminum convector connections.  If the rubber hose there looks like it has a bulge in do a search on "corrosion of alde convectors" to get up to speed.  If you catch the problem soon enough it's just a time consuming dismantle, clean & replace project, almost entirely labor.
    DaveR middleTN - 2015 320S  /  TV 2003 Tundra 4x4
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    I received the new reservoir yesterday from Alde so will tackle installing it today or tomorrow. I ordered glycol/antifreeze fluid but not the new variety and will do that upgrade down the road. That back shelf unit was a tight squeeze to remove and hoping it's easier to reinstall. 
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    My heat is working again. To recap my Alde journey (320s, 2018):

    Alde was heating hot water but not heating the tab. Discovered that there was no glycol in the expansion tank. Felt wetness on hoses under the tank. I replaced a cracked tank after draining out the remaining fluid via the drain under the tab. Using a cheap hand pump bought on Amazon, it took about 1 1/2 gallons of Century glycol/antifreeze to bring it to mid way between low and high on the tank measure. Must have been some glycol left in the Alde but I'm ok with topping it up. (Later, after unit came up to temperature, the level came up to the max mark. )

    Before refilling, I removed hose connections where I saw bulges and cleaned up corroded aluminum with dremel tool fitted with wire brush. 

    flurry of misc. things done after reading many threads. No idea which if any were effective or needed:
    - Connected to city water, ran sink faucet for a few gallons.
    - Turned off/on all power to help alde reset
    - determined that my 2018 unit has auto-air bleeder. 
    - Renewed air cushion: opened safety drain valve for 5 seconds or so.

    Notes (thanks forum helpers):
    - Easiest way to remove back storage section after removing screws: lay on your back as if doing a bench press and lift the unit up and out. 
    - Easiest way to squeeze hose clamps: use small channel-lock pliers
    - Have a helper to help manage the hoses when using the hand pump. 

    Tools I used:
    - a small bit - the type used for Tab screws. Electric screwdriver, a short  handdriver for screws in tight spots.
    - small channel lock pliers
    - hand pump
    - dremel tool with brush bit

    Testing:
    Took a while for the heat to come up to temp. but seems to be working now. 

    Conclusions:
    Alde is a pain in the A%$# to understand and to self-service. Lucky campers who don't want to go to mechanic school will have a service dealer nearby! vent over.
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
  • SlackersSlackers Member Posts: 144
    Good job @Sneakle!  I'll probably tackle something similar next Spring for our 2019 CSS.  It's not what I'm looking forward to but thanks to your account and other contributors on this forum I'm growing more confident in my ability to tackle this.
    2019 Tab 320 CSS, 2019 Ranger TV, OH
  • SneakleSneakle Member Posts: 131
    Well it is doable, so I don't want to paint too dark a picture. And plenty of help here!
    Tab 320s Boondock
    TV: Toyota 4Runner
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