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Old 04-18-2010, 03:22 PM   #1
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Can't get water heater to light.

I know that I am probably missing something simple, but I just purchased a 2000 Bounder motorhome and cannot get the hot water tank to light. I made sure that the main gas valve is on, lit the stovetop burner, lit the fridge, but cannot get the hot water tank going. When I turn the switch on which is located on the stove fan, the water heater "on" switch lights up but the "pilot light out" light comes on immediately and stays on also. There is water in the hot water tank. I do not have a hot water tank manual, so I am not sure if I need to light a pilot light somewhere or if the tank is supposed to light itself. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 04-18-2010, 03:34 PM   #2
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Hi Stump Jumper,
What is the make and model of your hot water heater?
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Old 04-18-2010, 06:21 PM   #3
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It is a Dometic 6 gallon.
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Old 04-18-2010, 06:51 PM   #4
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Are you sure it's Dometic? Most are either Atwood or Suburban. Go outside and remove the cover and have someone turn it on and see if you can see or hear it spark.
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Old 04-18-2010, 06:58 PM   #5
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Hi Stump Jumper,
Sorry to ask another question, but do you light the pilot light manually or is it done automatically? Looking at the HWH from the outside (cover removed) of the coach, is there a knob (sometimes red) you can turn for off, on and pilot positions? If so, the pilot light needs to be manually lit by the RVer.

If there is no knob to turn the pilot should be lit automatically. While looking at the HWH from the outside of the coach (cover removed), have someone turn on the interior switch telling the HWH to begin operation. Does anything happen (sight or sound) in the burner of the HWH?

Lastly, look for an additional switch (on/off). It could be on the outside of the HWH and visible after the exterior cover is removed.

Please post here what you find.
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Old 04-18-2010, 07:20 PM   #6
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Would a 2000 have a DSI water heater? I would blow out the flue for the water heater. Stand back, because if it has not been done in awhile you'll get blasted with soot. I use a flexible hose from an old sink sprayer with a small rag duck taped to the end. I push it in from the top opening and run it down to I see it near the igniter. Or maybe there is another gas valve on the heater itself. Also check the fuse box to see if the breaker was shut down be the previous owner if it is a duel power heater.
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Old 04-18-2010, 07:30 PM   #7
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If it's in a Bounder, it's an Atwood...
Go out and open the panel to the water heater... There is a blade connector going to the board.. pull it off and on several times... the connections get a fine corrosion and don't make good contact... if that doesn't do it.. do the same with the other single wire connections... Try it again. There is a tube that has the igniter on the end.. one screw will remove it... take it out and run a brush or rag through it... put it back on and try again. All of this is on the Atwood site on the web.
Here is the link (shortened) http://tinyurl.com/y26xc64
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Old 04-18-2010, 07:45 PM   #8
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Sorry, it IS an Atwood. I checked and it is model # G6A-8E. It does not have the knob, so I assume that it is an electronic pilot and electronic light. The only switch that I can find in on the stove hood. When you turn the switch on, nothing happens. No clicking or anything like the fridge when you first turn it on. I will check the Atwood website. Thanks for the help so far!
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Old 04-19-2010, 03:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stump Jumper View Post
Sorry, it IS an Atwood. I checked and it is model # G6A-8E. It does not have the knob, so I assume that it is an electronic pilot and electronic light. The only switch that I can find in on the stove hood. When you turn the switch on, nothing happens. No clicking or anything like the fridge when you first turn it on. I will check the Atwood website. Thanks for the help so far!
for the atwood g6... model wh check this svc. manual:

http://www.bryantrv.com/docs2/docs/o...ng/atwood1.pdf
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Old 04-19-2010, 03:58 PM   #10
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Tried polishing up the wire connections, still no luck... I will try cleaning the igniter, etc. tonight.
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Old 04-20-2010, 11:32 AM   #11
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Sometimes spiders or other critters make their home in the tube were the gas mixes with air before going to the burner. Try cleaning this first.
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Old 04-20-2010, 07:47 PM   #12
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Sometimes, if you have been using it for a spell, the air builds up and won't let it start, cause it thinks it is full and hot. Try popping the safety valve then start it again. this worked for me this Winter.
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Old 04-20-2010, 07:50 PM   #13
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Also; check the two thermo switches, one for low temp and other for high temp. Jump a wire across to switch from the lead coming from inside "on" switch and it may light. If it does, using this test, it might be the Motherboard.
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Old 04-20-2010, 08:16 PM   #14
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Iv'e found that there needs to be a certain gap between the electronic ignitor points. As a rule of thumb the gap should be the thickness of a dime. To wide = no spark or very weak spark. To close together= no spark.

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