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Old 06-17-2017, 07:40 AM   #1
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Help - hot water smell

We are new to rving and not sure what to do. We notice a rotten egg smell when we turn on the hot water. We just arrived at a campground but there is no smell when using the cold water so I'm not sure it has to do with the campground water. We just bought this 2017 thor hurricane a few months ago. Any info would be much appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 06-17-2017, 08:13 AM   #2
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The rotten egg smell is from the magnesium rod in your hot water heater reacting with sulfer. If you have not used your hot water hearted for a while it will be worse. The options that I know of are. You willcan run your hot water for a while to get fresh water into the tank. This should help some. You can remove the magnesium rod but it will shorten the life of the hot wat heater and void any warranty. Turn the hot water heater off anytime you are not using it. This will shorten the reaction time and reduce the odor. Hope that helps
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Old 06-17-2017, 09:53 AM   #3
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The smell comes from microbes in the water heater tank, but the anode rod has nothing to do with it. Atwood heaters without anodes get it too. The microbes aren't harmful to humans but they thrive in dark warm water and release that characteristic smell. They may have come from the current campsite water supply, but its just as likely they were in the RV plumbing when you arrived there. It's not real unusual.

You need to sanitize the entire water system in the RV to get rid of it. Here are some tips on doing that:
https://www.rvtrader.com/research/ne...v-water-system
https://www.sanidumps.com/sanitizerv...atersystem.php

Your water heater owner manual probably has instructions as well. I know the Atwood heater manual has a section on smelly hot water.
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Old 06-17-2017, 02:23 PM   #4
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Solving rotten-egg odor in water heaters with aluminum/zinc, powered anodes
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Old 06-17-2017, 02:30 PM   #5
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Just drain/flush water heater and fill with new water.
Heat it and check if odor still exists ....if it does THEN you can take more involved methods.
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Old 06-17-2017, 02:58 PM   #6
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I had the same problem last outing, just make sure you turn it off and turn off water. Remove drain plug you will need to relieve water pressure open a faucet. After removing plug and it drains turn on water and let it flush out.
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Old 06-17-2017, 02:59 PM   #7
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Thanks for your replies. We ran the hot water until it was cold so we knew all the old water was out of it. Since then there is no smell. Do you think we still need to sanitize the hot water heater?
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Old 06-17-2017, 03:10 PM   #8
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No sanitation required, Just flush until the smell is gone.
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Old 06-17-2017, 09:09 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by NewToRVinNJ View Post
Thanks for your replies. We ran the hot water until it was cold so we knew all the old water was out of it. Since then there is no smell. Do you think we still need to sanitize the hot water heater?
No smell then no need......
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Old 06-21-2017, 09:22 PM   #10
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The water heater that was in my class A was aluminum and the hot water smelled bad I drained and put in 8 gal of vinegar and two gal of water then heated it up and shut it off and let it sit over nite then flushed with water the smell was gone for good and all the mineral build up drained out with the vinegar it came out white. NOTE dont drain where you want to keep grass because it kills it.
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