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Old 12-31-2015, 12:44 PM   #1
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Upgrading Water Heater from 6 Gal to 10 Gal

Has anyone changed their 6 gallon water heater to a 10 gallon water heater? What was involved and how much did it cost? Also, has anyone upgraded a 6 gallon water heater to a more effective (faster heating for example) 6 gallon heater?
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:10 PM   #2
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Depending on the structure; of the wall where the heater is mounted and the interior cabinets , your coach may not have room for an upgrade, due to the 10 Gal. water heaters larger size.
When I had a 5er with a 6 Gal. heater , I would use both propane and electric at the same time and that took care of the slow recovery issue ; for our use.
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:24 PM   #3
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Download the brochure for your RV and see if it had a 10 gal WH as an option. You could also go to your WH's manufacturers website and compare the dimensions of both units.
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbleiweiss View Post
Has anyone changed their 6 gallon water heater to a 10 gallon water heater? What was involved and how much did it cost? Also, has anyone upgraded a 6 gallon water heater to a more effective (faster heating for example) 6 gallon heater?
I am in the process of replacing my Suburban ten gallon with a new 12 gal, gas/electric model. The opening size for the Suburban heaters are all the same from 6-12 gal sizes. The difference is in the length. If you have a Surban heater, check to see how much more length you can accommodate and go from there.

I have no information on the Atwood heater.
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Old 12-31-2015, 03:21 PM   #5
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There is also another "upgrade" one can order in a 10 gal. They have avaiable a 10 gal that acts like a 30 gal.They do this by storing water at about 180F and then have a mixing valve on the outlet to mix H & C to temper it down to about 135F. You're hard pressed to run out of hot water with this one.
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Old 01-01-2016, 08:30 PM   #6
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My 6 gallon Atwood has the electric element add on and we have no problems with having hot water.
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:08 AM   #7
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My 6 gallon Atwood has the electric element add on and we have no problems with having hot water.
Ours has the option of electric, LP or both. Is that what you mean by the electric element add on? If not, what do you mean? Our 6 gallon hasn't been bad for hot water, but it can run out in a longer shower or if DW has done some dishes shortly before a shower. We haven't tried running both electric and LP at the same time yet.
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Old 01-03-2016, 02:50 PM   #8
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We have a 10 gal. When we need more hot water fast I run the propane and the electric at the same time and never run out of hot water. Use to do that on my Winne with only 6gals.
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Old 01-03-2016, 08:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbleiweiss View Post
Ours has the option of electric, LP or both. Is that what you mean by the electric element add on? If not, what do you mean? Our 6 gallon hasn't been bad for hot water, but it can run out in a longer shower or if DW has done some dishes shortly before a shower. We haven't tried running both electric and LP at the same time yet.
Try it you just might find that you won't need anything else. Our recovery time is less than 20 minutes from cold to hot water.
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Old 01-04-2016, 09:58 AM   #10
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The 10 gallon size is physically larger, including the wall opening size. You have to cut the sidewall to make it fit.

A better option to get more hot water (not hotter - just more of it) is to install the Atwood XT in the 6 gallon size. This gives the equivalent of 9 gallons of hot water in the same physical size as a standard 6 gallon heater. It achieves this by making the water much hotter and then blending it with cool water at the outlet to lower it to normal use temperature. Since you use a blend of cool and super-hot water, the actual hot supply lasts longer, supposedly as long as if it was really a 9 gallon heater.

Atwood GE9-EXT Gas and Electric XT 6 Gallon DSI Water Heater 90071 Camper Trailer RV
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:10 PM   #11
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Is there a way to adjust the temp of the water heater? This would be the same as having a mixing valve mentioned in other posts, except you 'mix' at the faucet like normal people.

(I just removed the mixing valve from my house system. It was worthless to me and forced me to have the HW heater higher than we wanted just to have good hot water at the faucets. It also forced us to use more gas to keep the water that hot, which rendered our solar HW preheater less worthwhile.)
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:25 PM   #12
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Our mixing valve calciumed up and caused a serious decrease in water pressure. We did not have another mixing valve handy so we just removed it. You just do the 'mixing' at the faucet. Basically the same thing. As long as you are aware of it.😛


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Old 01-05-2016, 10:53 AM   #13
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The RV heaters use a fixed thermostat, 140 in recent models and 120 in older ones (back in the 90's and maybe early 2000's). Atwood has some alternate thermostats available and even an adjustable model that fits many of their heaters, but I don't think any of them go very high. Even 140 degree water can scald and these days the companies are scared of liability. It only takes one child to turn on a faucet or shower full hot to produce a lawsuit that can bankrupt the company.

140 degree water is very hot, but if your tank is well away from the faucets, it can cool down a lot on the way. If you can get at the lines, add some pipe insulation where ever you can.
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