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Old 07-26-2012, 11:02 PM   #15
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Shows how little I know. I was not aware that the WH had an electrical option. I thought it only ran on propane. I will re-read my manual. Thanks everyone.
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:49 PM   #16
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Many rigs come with an electric element, and many it can come as an option, then there are those that only have gas.

Many of us in the latter group have added an after market electric element that screws into the drain hole. Works great, and always have hot water after plugging into shore power for a while. Like others, I only use gas for showers and turn it off afterwards.
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Old 07-30-2012, 12:40 AM   #17
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I don't mean to highjack this thread, but it has reminded me of something I need to fix. If I leave my wh on when we are not using hot water I will start loosing water out of the relief valve. I don't like hot water draining down the outside of the mh so I've got in the habit of shutting the wh down after we're done showering or cooking or whatever.

I'm thinking it is either the thermocouple not regulating the temp and the water is getting to hot or the relief valve is getting old and no longer able to hold normal pressure.

Is there a quick troubleshoot to narrow down the problem?
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Old 07-30-2012, 12:59 AM   #18
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My relief valve leaked the second trip out. Dealer replaced it free. Try snapping the release lever closed.

I've been thinking of adding a Hott Rod to my propane only water heater. I could heat my water when I'm doing my morning or evening battery recharge then turning on the propane on the way to the shower.
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Old 07-30-2012, 03:27 AM   #19
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Since I burned up my electric element the first time I turned on the water heater while connected to 30 amp service, I leave mine off until I need it. Propane heats 6 gallons quickly enough. I eventually found the water heater bypass valves.

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Old 07-31-2012, 12:11 AM   #20
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I don't mean to highjack this thread, but it has reminded me of something I need to fix. If I leave my wh on when we are not using hot water I will start loosing water out of the relief valve. I don't like hot water draining down the outside of the mh so I've got in the habit of shutting the wh down after we're done showering or cooking or whatever.

I'm thinking it is either the thermocouple not regulating the temp and the water is getting to hot or the relief valve is getting old and no longer able to hold normal pressure.

Is there a quick troubleshoot to narrow down the problem?
Many don't realize that there is suppose to be an air pocket at the top of the tank. Since air is compressible, this serves the purpose of allowing the water to expand a little and it works to prevent hammering when you shut off a valve. When the tank is full of water, with no air pocket, and heats up, it can and will leak out of the pressure valve. Other causes are the valve itself is old enough that the ring is not sealing anymore or there is something preventing the seal from making it water tight. Trick is to let the tank cool, open that valve and let the water drain out from the top of the tank. Close the valve and turn on the heaters.
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Old 07-31-2012, 12:43 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim_HiTek View Post
Many rigs come with an electric element, and many it can come as an option, then there are those that only have gas.

Many of us in the latter group have added an after market electric element that screws into the drain hole. Works great, and always have hot water after plugging into shore power for a while. Like others, I only use gas for showers and turn it off afterwards.
The problem with the Hott Rod type of heaters is that installing them voids the warranty on both Suburban and Atwood. Plus they are slower the gas or a built in element.
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Old 07-31-2012, 12:02 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim_HiTek View Post
Many don't realize that there is suppose to be an air pocket at the top of the tank. Since air is compressible, this serves the purpose of allowing the water to expand a little and it works to prevent hammering when you shut off a valve. When the tank is full of water, with no air pocket, and heats up, it can and will leak out of the pressure valve. Other causes are the valve itself is old enough that the ring is not sealing anymore or there is something preventing the seal from making it water tight. Trick is to let the tank cool, open that valve and let the water drain out from the top of the tank. Close the valve and turn on the heaters.
You are 100% correct. Last time I had the rig out I pulled out the original manual that came with the wh and it outlined these very steps to recreate the air pocket. Didn't work. After purging and refilling it still insisted on puking hot water out of the prv.

I'm leaning towards a worn out relief valve, its not that uncommon from what other rv'ers have told me.
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Old 07-31-2012, 12:11 PM   #23
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Did you try snapping it shut?
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Old 07-31-2012, 12:29 PM   #24
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The problem with the Hott Rod type of heaters is that installing them voids the warranty on both Suburban and Atwood. Plus they are slower the gas or a built in element.
I've never heard of that. But they have, what, a 1 year warranty? I could wait if that's the case.
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:04 PM   #25
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When plugged in we leave it on electric when on propane turn it off
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Old 07-31-2012, 04:06 PM   #26
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Plugged in, leave it on. Running propane, turn it off when done. It will stay hot for a long time.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:33 AM   #27
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Did you try snapping it shut?
Yep, a bunch of times. Even applied direct pressure to help it seat.

But on the off chance the temp regulator system is the problem (thus building too much pressure), trying to force a relief valve to stay seated when in fact it is doing exactly what it is designed to do doesn't tell me much.

PRVs are cheap enough, easily changed and a pretty common failure point. I'll change that out first, and if it continues to vent hot water, well... I'll call it a sucessfull ops test on the new valve and start troubleshooting again.
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:04 PM   #28
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I think it will fix your problem. When mine leaked, I snapped it to no avail. Replaced it and never another problem. It was a warranty item as it happened on my 2nd trip with my new 5er.
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