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Old 07-01-2009, 07:18 AM   #1
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Fleetwood Discovery Hot Water Heater

We own a 1998 Fleetwood Discovery 36T. It has an aftermarket LP/Electric hotwater heater. The LP heater works perfectly! However, I can't seem to get the electric to work. When I switch the unit on, it doesn't respond. I've checked fuses, but can't find any problems.

can anyone help?


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Old 07-01-2009, 01:27 PM   #2
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On my 1996 Discovery, I replaced my hot water heater a few years ago and found during the R&R process a couple of places where the "hot rod" or electric portion could lose electrical continuity.

First, there's no telling where the installer placed the main fuse for the unit. It could be in line, or they could have come off the panel where the 120-volt breakers are. Sometimes they use a solid connection and sometimes they just use a "slip-on" connector that could come loose.

Depending on the manufacturer of the electrical portion, there could be a fuse on the control box for the unit itself. You should find that sitting directly on top of the water box of the hot water heater. It may or may not be covered with insulation. Mine was glued right to the top of the water tank of the water heater.

At any rate, you should be able to pull out some drawers or open some cabinets to see most of the wiring for the heating element. I'd be willing to bet one of them came loose or a hidden fuse blew on you. Of course, if it is a blown fuse, that could very well be caused by a bad heater element. It would be worth pulling the element out to look it over. I soaked mine in vinegar for a day or two and it cleaned up just fine.

Good luck finding your problem. No doubt others here will have better suggestions for you.

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Old 07-02-2009, 06:00 AM   #3
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Thank you!

Thank you...I didn't even think about that. I'll look and see if i can find a fuse. Appreciate the help.

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Old 07-03-2009, 10:26 AM   #4
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There is no "fuse" for electric operation - it will be a 15A or 20A circuit breaker in the AC load center. Should be labeled "water heater". There is an on/off switch on the backside of many Atwood heater models, but if nobody has been in there messing around it won't have changed position on you.

Could be the thermostat for electric mode though. It is also mounted on the tank, on the back side.
Gary Brinck
2004 American Tradition; 2014 Buick LaCRosse
Homebase in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:53 AM   #5
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I have found 2 units where the swtch burns out - even though it has't been used. As a last resort (after checking everything else) - pop out the switch and short the contacts (with power off) - then turn the power back on and see if it works. I got switches for $1.00 each at the Yuma market and now carry a spare.
2007 Triple E - Empress Elite - Freightliner
WH 22 owner for 7 years
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