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Old 01-01-2008, 10:46 AM   #1
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You know, that slim silver box attached to the side of the motor housing - the one that clicks an awful lot when you turn the switch. Well, all those clicks are relays (forgot solid state when it comes to this unit), and sometimes as we know relays stick - open or closed, whatever. Well, my motor circuit relay quit working Sunday afternoon - just before this week's large cold air mass entered the Hill Country. Luckily, John at Hydro Hot was working Monday and we did all the diagnosis to isolate the unit as the culprit. And the parts lady was very kind to relieve of $415 plus overnight freight for a new unit (well, 2 night as FedEx isn't working today). SO the new unit will be here tomorrow. Last night it only got down to the low 30s so the 3 electric fans I have did their work. Tonight it's supposed to be down to the high teens.
More for your future reference: someone said well, they're relays, why not just slap the thing and see if the stuck relay does it's thing. So I do, and it does!! So, right now it's working just fine. What will happen tonight I don't know. It's stopped twice today already, so head outside and slap the little box and it starts up. Now, do I want to head out in the middle of the night and slap it??? Only time will tell.

And a very Happy New Year to y'all.

David
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Old 01-01-2008, 10:46 AM   #2
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You know, that slim silver box attached to the side of the motor housing - the one that clicks an awful lot when you turn the switch. Well, all those clicks are relays (forgot solid state when it comes to this unit), and sometimes as we know relays stick - open or closed, whatever. Well, my motor circuit relay quit working Sunday afternoon - just before this week's large cold air mass entered the Hill Country. Luckily, John at Hydro Hot was working Monday and we did all the diagnosis to isolate the unit as the culprit. And the parts lady was very kind to relieve of $415 plus overnight freight for a new unit (well, 2 night as FedEx isn't working today). SO the new unit will be here tomorrow. Last night it only got down to the low 30s so the 3 electric fans I have did their work. Tonight it's supposed to be down to the high teens.
More for your future reference: someone said well, they're relays, why not just slap the thing and see if the stuck relay does it's thing. So I do, and it does!! So, right now it's working just fine. What will happen tonight I don't know. It's stopped twice today already, so head outside and slap the little box and it starts up. Now, do I want to head out in the middle of the night and slap it??? Only time will tell.

And a very Happy New Year to y'all.

David
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Old 01-01-2008, 08:48 PM   #3
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We don't have Hydro Hot. We just have the propane furnace and the air conditioning/heat pump units. Don't you have the heat pumps along with the Hydro Hot? Can't you use them instead of Hydro Hot if you have to?

Just curious, since we have the alternative and don't know a lot about your system.
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Old 01-02-2008, 04:08 AM   #4
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The heat pumps become useless below 40 degrees. Heat pumps relate to the outside air temperature.
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Old 01-02-2008, 04:44 AM   #5
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Actually, I had the heat pumps working Sunday down to about 37. When the temps went up to 50 yesterday, I put both pumps on - rear worked fine, front only cold air. So, another problem. When it rains, it pours......
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Old 01-02-2008, 05:46 AM   #6
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Dshogman,

I had a similar problem last year. It may seem silly but I put the heat pump on cool for a few minutes and then switched to heat pump. It has worked fine since then. I assume the valve that controls weather it heats or cools was stuck.
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Old 01-02-2008, 11:09 AM   #7
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Even though I don't have a hydro hot system, I read the postings. In all probability I would consider the unit in my next coach. It appears, however, that there are many problems keeping them running properly. Considering the cost, when new, I wonder if they are really worth the price. Is the unit engineered properly or is the installation in the Alpine a problem? Upper end coaches and buses have used them for years. You would think they would be pretty much bullet proof by now.
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Old 01-02-2008, 11:56 AM   #8
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Well, thank you Wayne and Kathy - your "silly" fix for the heat pump seems to have worked. It's now pumping warm air.
As to the Hydro Hot - the new Unit Controller did not fix the thing. After more time talking with HH person, we concluded that this phone stuff wasn't going to get it fixed and that it needed a hands-on experienced tech to look at it and get it fixed. So tomorrow AM, I'm off to IronHorse RV in San Antonio (recommended by HH guy). Will post the solution to the puzzle when it's complete.
BTW, Lundy, as with all things mechanical, it is a PITA when something goes wrong. But I'll tell you - the heat and hot water are sure nice with HH - relatively quiet, soft heat (no blower screaming) and enough hot water to burn your skin off.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:24 PM   #9
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Lundy, I think I'll stay with the noise for know. As far as hot water, with the electric and the propane turned on the two of us would have to be pretty wasteful to run out of hot water. All for a lot less money and apperently a lot more reliability.

Ted Ulmer
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:29 AM   #10
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Dshogman,

Glad to hear the heat pump started working for you. If you ever here the compressor running and the fan not blowing. Shut the AC down and remove the cover up top and spin the squirrel cage by hand. It may also just have gotten stuck from lack of use.

Back to the Hydro Hot, I had a very similar problem and it turned out the gap between the fuel nozzle and the electrode had changed. I probably did not secure the electrode properly when I installed a new nozzle. I removed the motor cleaned the nozzle and reset the gap with the tool attached to the side of the unit. The unit has been working flawless ever since. I now have a spare electronic module. Slapping the side of the module maybe temporarily getting the electrodes close enough to work. Did you recently have a yearly service done on the HH

PS: Are you at Buckhorn Resort in Kerrville? If you are say Hi to Larry and Marie Hunting for me, they are in a 45 foot Zephyr in the premium area.
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:55 AM   #11
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There was a recent article in the FMCA magazine on the HH and how to do your own service complete with photos. Sounds easy enough as long as you do as Wayne said, use the tool on the side to reset the gap. According to the article the combustion chamber needs to be serviced about once a year (depending of course on how much you use your HH)

Sorry, dont remember what issue of FMCA it was but it was a fairly recent article
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Old 01-09-2008, 05:26 AM   #12
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I hate to even talk about this. But at least here, I may get some sympathy... It has gotten much worse.
OK, the circuit board and new motor were installed and all seemed to be working - until I went outside and saw all the fluid dumped on the ground. Now, admittedly, over the past 6 months or so, I had noticed some very small drips on the ground - thought it was normal overflow. Also, noticed a strange odor inside near the bath area that I can now associate with the fluid.
Thought it might be the stir pump, so dried and cleaned the area and started the unit up. And the fluid was coming out from under the vertical insulation pad at the right rear side of the tray, not from the stir pump hoses.
So this is bad, how bad, I'll know more after I talk with HH and the whole unit gets pulled tomorrow at Iron Horse RV down in San Antonio.

Oh, and my extended warranty?? Have none where I thought I had one. I'll post about it when I calm down a little bit more.
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Old 01-10-2008, 10:04 AM   #13
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You do indeed have my sympathy. Something similar happened with our previous motorhome. We had to have a new unit installed.
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Old 01-10-2008, 12:52 PM   #14
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FINIS!!!! I hope - the drain valve extension plastic was cracked where it attached to the brass fitting. From the looks of the stains on it, it has been cracked for quite some time. This explains the odor I could not identify in the galley area. The valve is now a high quality brass one attached to the brass fitting on the tank.
Check yours out.....

Thanks for everyone's commiserations.
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