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Old 03-30-2015, 03:30 PM   #1
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Water Heater

My wife and I are new to RVing. We tested our hot water tank that runs on propane. After the unit lights are you suppose to shut off the switch inside for pilot or leave it on? Might be dumb question but after turning off the heater continued to run but just not as strong on the gas blowing.
Thanks.
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:27 PM   #2
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Hi,

On my coach, the inside switch controls whether the water heater is on or off. We leave it on when we anticipate using hot water. When off, the pilot will go out and water does not heat. Do you have any manuals with your RV? Based on your coach, your water heater my be propane, and/or 110v, and in some cases, heated by engine coolant. Your manual or manufacturers web site are the best source of your specific info.

Welcom to RVing.

Bob
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:23 PM   #3
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All modern water heaters are now electronic ignition, no more pilot light. With that said, turn the switch on and it is automatic.

Once it gets to temperature, it will stop heating. If for some reason it does not light, a little red led should come on to alert you that it is not heating.

Leave the switch on until you break camp.

If it has an electric element, then there will be another switch on the inside panel and/or inside the outside access panel.

As was said above, look in the outside panel for the make and model number and download the manual.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:01 PM   #4
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Thanks guys I think you answered it. The water heater is propane and it does light up when the switched on. So leave it on and it should kick off when heat is complete. The manual I have did not get that in depth about it, or I was in the wrong place.

Thanks
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Old 04-07-2015, 08:26 PM   #5
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I've noticed that a lot of the manuals for older RVs are primarily a tool for installing the item. Not using it. So, don't feel bad.

According to my water heater manual, the LED light should only come on if the heater has been switched on by a remote switch, such as the one that may or may not exist in the outside bay of your heater. Of course, I could have misread/misunderstood or the other poster might have a different model than mine. At any rate, you leave the switch on and it will either use propane or electricity to heat the water to a preset temperature, then turn off. If you use hot water or it cools in the holding tank, the heater will again cycle on. If you don't need hot water for a period of time, you can save propane, battery/shorepower by turning the switch off until an hour or so before your next intended use.


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Originally Posted by Wall58 View Post
Thanks guys I think you answered it. The water heater is propane and it does light up when the switched on. So leave it on and it should kick off when heat is complete. The manual I have did not get that in depth about it, or I was in the wrong place.

Thanks
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Old 04-07-2015, 09:10 PM   #6
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You can cut your propane usage a great deal by turning the water heater off until you need hot water; it generally only takes 15 minutes or so to heat up enough for a shower or a sink of dishes, and if you do a little insulating around the tank, will keep water decently hot for many hours after you turn it off.
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Old 04-08-2015, 02:19 PM   #7
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Thanks for the info. We are slowly learning about our RV as we go. We also found a switch under the bathroom sink after turning it on and checking for what is operates I found out it is for the water heater. So I guess I have propane and electric.
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Old 04-08-2015, 02:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wall58 View Post
Thanks for the info. We are slowly learning about our RV as we go. We also found a switch under the bathroom sink after turning it on and checking for what is operates I found out it is for the water heater. So I guess I have propane and electric.
You will know if there is hot water with the propane switch off. In our case the propane burner is an electronic ignition and we do have an electric element also. There are on/off switches for both. We leave the LP off anytime we are plugged into 50amp service but if only 30 is available use the LP so other things have enough juice.

Interestingly enough the other day we had the "pilot out" lamp come on. I found that odd since it is not really a pilot light. All that was wrong was the plug on the ignitor was corroded. Cleaned it off and the red light went out.
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Old 04-08-2015, 05:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wall58 View Post
Thanks for the info. We are slowly learning about our RV as we go. We also found a switch under the bathroom sink after turning it on and checking for what is operates I found out it is for the water heater. So I guess I have propane and electric.
Are you sure its the water heater? Its very common in older rigs to have a switch for the water pump in the bathroom as well as a switch and a light for the pump in the power center (over your stove or wherever all the other switches and gauges are).
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Old 04-09-2015, 08:35 AM   #10
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Yes you are right there is a switch located in bath room for water pump it's located next to the toilet on outside of sink cabinet. But this switch is under sink behind the door. I turned it on and the hot water heated up without the propane on.
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