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Old 05-14-2019, 10:58 AM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 49
Smokin water heater

Last time out I noticed a small amount of black soot on the side of the coach above the water heater.

Could this be an air/fuel mixture issue or somey worse?


2000 Diplomat 38a.

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Old 05-14-2019, 12:31 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 9,032
YES.....it IS a air/fuel mixture issue

Propane pressure is only 0.4 psi (11"WC) so doesn't take much to disrupt/interfere with air/fuel mixture......spider webs/mud dabbers/debris et

You have an Atwood Water Heater
*Remove burner tube....clean it out with small bottle brush. Make sure 'spreader plate' is square & parallel with end of burner tube

*Unscrew orifice from gas valve...soak in alcohol and then using LOW pressure air blow it out (just use your mouth,.....NOT air compressor and no poking anything thru the hole----it would be damaged)
*Remove spark electrode assembly...clean electrode with emery cloth (soot/carbon will affect function)
*Push a wire thru combustion chamber up out exhaust...tie a rag to the wire then pull it back thru---chimney sweep of 'U' tube

Reassemble and and fire it up
Flame should be Strong, BLUE and steady with slight roar

Air shuttle (sleeve with slots) should have roughly 1/4 of slots exposed for air inlet. Make adjustments by loosening screw and sliding sleeve open/close for proper flame

Is it time for YOUR medication or MINE
2007 Dodge 3500 w/Tractor Motor & NUWA 5vr
US NAVY---USS Decatur DDG-31
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:27 PM   #3
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Monaco Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: South Weber, UT
Posts: 46
I almost burnt down our pickup camper a few years ago with a problem like this! A spider made a next in the burner tube and the flame was coming out of the fuel mixture plate. I think the previous owner removed the thermal fuse to protect this from continuing and I almost set the side of the camper on fire.

You can't really see if there is a nest in there unless you tear the think apart like described above. Be sure that you also have the thermal fuse above the burner tube.
2005 Monaco Cayman 36PDQ
Toads: 2018 Equinox, 2008 HHR or 1993 S10 with ATV in bed
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Old 05-14-2019, 09:13 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 16,881
My 2000 Suburban water heater sooted up the side of the MH. It has no air adjustments.

After cleaning the burner tube and nozzle, with no effect, I bought a replacement burner tube/ nozzle.

My thought was that someone poked out the nozzle during a cleaning.

It was around $15.00 and cured the problem.
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heat, heater, water, water heater

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