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Old 01-12-2016, 01:10 AM   #1
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Installing instant hot water system

Hi. Hope I can find some information here. We recently purchased a pre-owned 2014 Phaeton QBH, replacing our '12 Itasca Meridian. The previous owners had their instant hot water system removed and replaced with a traditional tank system. (Not sure if it was an Aqua-hot or some other, or why they took it out.) I sure wish that system were still in place. Any idea how much it'd cost to switch back or install Aqua-hot??
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Old 01-12-2016, 01:39 AM   #2
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AquaHot would be extremely expensive to retrofit. Figure $15,000 total to purchase and labor to install. It might even run more than that as I've seen $7,000 for it as a factory option.
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Old 01-12-2016, 01:45 AM   #3
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Installing instant hot water system

Probably had a tankless water heater, not aqua hot. I like the tankless in our Phaeton.

Check the build sheet to see what came from the factory.
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Old 01-13-2016, 01:50 PM   #4
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Thanks...you're probably right. I sure can't figure out why the original owners took out that tankless system. I'm wondering how much it'd be to put it back in...
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:26 PM   #5
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You could call Custom RV in Red Bay AL as I know Brannon has installed them. Phaetons's had the tankless not Aquahot that model year. Several people had issues with the tankless to the point they replaced with the old style water heaters. Part of the reason seemed to be those who travelled in hard water areas and didn't use a water softener. Minerals would clog it.
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Old 01-13-2016, 03:31 PM   #6
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Friends of ours bought a new 14 Phaeton from North Trail with the tankless system. They had nothing but trouble with it. They ran into Bob Tiffin at the Tampa RV show. He made arrangements to have them go to Red Bay to have it replaced with a conventional 10 gal lpg - electric unit. Tiffin paid for the conversion. Apparently, Tiffin had many issues with the tankless unit.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:39 PM   #7
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Wow. Doesn't sound like putting in a tankless system would be any good unless it was an Aquahot, and that sounds cost-prohibitive. We have friends with '13 Phaetons and they LOVE their tankless systems. Loving those long showers and never-ending hot water for dishes. Bummer the one in our coach was such a problem.
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Old 01-14-2016, 11:19 PM   #8
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Man, glad I stuck my head in here, I'd been contemplating a tankless system for a while now. I guess I'll stick with the regular water heater.
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Old 01-16-2016, 12:34 PM   #9
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Tankless (on demand - not Aquahot) for RV's is a rather new thing. They are wonderful while working.

The problem is what to do if/when there is an issue. Being rather new, there is a lack of options with few experienced service places.

But an Atwood or similar traditional tank water heater is SO familiar that repair options and parts availability are almost everywhere.

We have tankless in the studs and stucco house...it provides 70% savings on the gas bill! But for the RV, we're keeping the tank style...at least while the tankless systems mature.

Safe travels
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Old 01-16-2016, 12:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSC View Post
Loving those long showers and never-ending hot water for dishes.
AquaHot will give you that too.
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Old 01-16-2016, 12:54 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarab0088 View Post
Tankless (on demand - not Aquahot) for RV's is a rather new thing. They are wonderful while working.
My parents had a tankless water heater installed as a special order in their 1958 KenCraft TT when it was built. So they are nothing new in RV's, just that they are now being built for RV's now. There's was a European household unit and was installed in a cabinet in the kitchen area so they lost storage space.
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Old 01-16-2016, 06:25 PM   #12
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More than likely it was a Precision Temp RV 500 or RV 550. We have the RV 500 in our 2011 Phaeton. I would say it's a love/hate thing with it. The pros - lots of hot water and long showers, low propane use. Cons - finicky in the rain and strong winds, no electric element, no real warm water. For the cons, if the components get wet during a rain, the water heater will not stay lit, so no hot water. To get around this we have found that if you run it through a few cycles of turning the water on, let it run a few, then off, and repeat, this will usually get it putting out hot water. The other option would be to open the cover and dry things out. There is no electric element to it, so if you run out of propane, you are out of hot water. For ours, we have hot water and we have cold water, not real in between. I need to run the auto-cal procedure on it to see if that fixes it. You are not supposed to have it on running down the road, so no hot water while you are moving. You also need to drain it if traveling in freezing weather. If you are parked in freezing weather, it will cycle to keep things from freezing up.

With the various cons, we wouldn't trade it for a conventional tank water heater. We've learned to live with the quirks. The company is very good at providing support if you have any questions or need to order replacement thermistors. I would recommend carrying spare thermistors, because if they go out, no hot water until they are replace.

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Old 01-17-2016, 12:03 AM   #13
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Wow. Although the allure of never-ending hot water is great, it looks like our measly 10-gal hot water tank will have to suffice. Maybe we'll get Aquahot on our NEXT RV. LOL.
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Old 01-17-2016, 12:39 AM   #14
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If you do a search you will find many threads about problems with tankless systems. In short it takes a lot of engineered in variability to handle the wide range of flows and input temperatures while keeping the output more or less constant. You can translate that to cost and complexity and it still might not work.
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