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Old 03-31-2009, 03:54 AM   #1
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Hot Water Heater Problems

Hello Everyone,
I have an 06 Seabreeze #1321 with a Atwood 10 gallon Hot Water Heater that I am having trouble with. Recently I turned the switch on and the red toggle switch lit up, however I did not see the little red light under the switch that says dsi light up like it usually does. I guess this is the Direct Spark Ign that starts the pilot. After I flip the switch I got this bad odor that was around the shower area and could not figure what it was until I got in the shower and had cold water. Does anyone have any ideas on what it could be? Maybe the circuit board or something else don't know much about them!

Thanks,
John
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Old 03-31-2009, 11:30 AM   #2
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Go to atwoodmobile.com and select troubleshooting guides under support center. Maybe that will help.
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Old 04-01-2009, 03:29 AM   #3
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Check the connections of the water heater, especially the 120 vac connections and relay on the backside of the water heater. I have found many loose connections in this area and burnt wiring, relays and covers as a result. Most likely you will find the same.
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Old 04-01-2009, 08:53 AM   #4
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I have recently had to replace my board three different times on that same atwood water heater. First it would not stay lit. Than when replaced it would not heat on electric. Than we replaced the board again and after a short time the board again went out on the gas side. We have both working right for about two months now. And believe me they dont warranty after the second board goes out.
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Old 04-01-2009, 10:08 AM   #5
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Thank you for your replies! When your board went out what happen? I turned the switch on and it started to put off this bad smell and I could not figure out were it was coming from until I tried to take a shower and the water was cold.

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John
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Old 04-01-2009, 11:39 AM   #6
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Can you describe the bad smell? Was it like a burning smell or more like the rotten egg smell of raw propane?
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Old 04-02-2009, 02:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MtManLee View Post
I have recently had to replace my board three different times on that same atwood water heater. First it would not stay lit. Than when replaced it would not heat on electric. Than we replaced the board again and after a short time the board again went out on the gas side. We have both working right for about two months now. And believe me they dont warranty after the second board goes out.
Replacing the boards is not repairing the problem. What is causing the boards to fail? I have always trained my guys, not to just treat the symptoms, but to find the problem and cure it. I would check into the possible issue of dirty DC out of the charging system. Let us know what you find.
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Old 04-02-2009, 03:43 AM   #8
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I figured it out! It blew the Thermal Cutoff fusible link! I ordered a new one and should be back working soon. Thank you for all of your help!

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Old 04-02-2009, 10:13 AM   #9
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My boards went out because of parks with squirrely power poles and I have learned many have that problem. I now have a autoformer to keep my power withing limits thus I hope never knocking out another board.
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Old 04-07-2009, 09:23 AM   #10
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Trouble Shooting Attwood

Their manual is awful for trouble shooting. Also their customer service does not give you logical steps for trouble shooting. After spring commissioning last Friday, the water heater would only run 2 minutes on gas and then shut down. I did this about 5 times, with a duration of about 20 minutes between tries.

Attwood told me to replace the ignitor, which is dumb, because it lit, the ignitor should be good, but I spent the $45 and almost a 2 hour round trip to get the part.. . . . the flame would not have lit at all if the igntor was bad.

Their next guess was the fuse link in the clear tubing. Cheap enough, only $13 to give a try. No luck. Now they said the board. Lucky for me, the RV store did not have a board in stock.

Sat. morning, the boss said did I know if there was water in the tank. Dumb question, as my main tank was full. Oh but, had I remembered to open the by-pass up after winterizing last fall. No, but that should not matter. Wrong.

Water heater works just fine - moral, they do not heat air fairly well. Back in business.
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Old 04-07-2009, 10:46 AM   #11
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Do not feel bad some of us have done the same thing. The only problem now if you were useing the 120v heater element it may be burnt out.
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Old 04-07-2009, 11:22 AM   #12
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BlueRibbon --- glad you discovered the problem before investing in a lot of unneeded parts!!! A couple of points for others that may have DSI ignition problems....

the Atwood ignites when the circuit board receives 12Volts DC from the water heater switch you mention. This switch may have a "light", or should cause a light to illuminate and when turned on should cause a second light (pilot failed) to momentarily illuminate. Some rigs may have green lights others may have amber or another color that indicates "heater on" or something similar. The second light most likely should be "red" in color and should indicate "pilot failed" or "ignition failed" or something similar. Once ignition occurs, which should only take about one second the red "pilot failed" light should extinguish.

WHen the gas heater switch is turned on 12 volts DC is applied thru a series circuit consisting of the thermo fuse, the ECO (emergency cut off) and the Tstat. The 12VDC is then to the circuit board and the board appies appropriate voltage to the propane gas valve causing it to open. Milliseconds later the board applies spark voltage to the igniter which hopefully causes ignition. Once the flame ignites the circuit board detects, or senses, the flame and the red "pilot failed" light is extinguished. Flame sensing, or detection, is done via the igniter. When flame touches the igniter and heats it red-hot a very, very, very, small micro-current is produced which the circuit board detects, or senses. This small micro-current then causes the board to turn off the "pilot failed" light. If the board fails to detect the micro-current, then the board will turn off the voltage to the propane valve stopping the gas flow and circuit board goes into fault mode and the red "pilot failed" light remains lit. Fault mode is reset by cycling the power switch (heater switch) off and on. Finally, when the water reaches temp, the Tstat opens and removes the 12VDC from the board and hence the gas valve closes and the flame extinguishes. When the temp drops, the tstat closes and the cycle repeats.

So, if the thermo fuse, the ECO, or the Tstat are open, or defective, then the circuit board will not open the propane gas valve and hence the Atwood will not ignite. Therefore, as you discovered, the Atwood directions to replace the Thermo fuse was basically worthless...since your atwood did ignite.

The atwood advise to replace the igniter was not that far off....as a bad igniter could produce ignition but a bad igniter could fail to detect, or sense, the resultant flame. In this situation cleaning the igniter could possibly remedy this. However, as you stated your Atwood stayed lit for two minutes.... and I'm betting the "pilot failed" light was extinguised and hence, the igniter did its job and detected the flame.

The Attwood rep should have asked if the "pilot failed" light was extinguised... which would most likely indicate the igniter was detecting flame.. and hence the problem most likely was elsewhere. Even so, 2 minutes after ignition the igniter could still have been the problem, failing to detect flame...but the "pilot failed" light still should have come on.
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