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Old 10-15-2013, 07:58 AM   #1
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water heater heating more than just water

while DW and I have been trapped inside enduring the storm at ocean city md. we decided to do a little house cleaning and rearranging. I was surprised to find that the cabinet floor above the water heater was quite toasty warm. not that it`s a bad thing, I kind of feel if that heat were retained around the heater itself it would create a warmer envelope helping to keep cold temps from transferring from outside through the bare metal outer frame of the heater itself. so, I think I`ll add an extra layer of Styrofoam insulation below the cabinet floor which will also keep that cabinet cooler and not dry out anything we store there. (this won`t apply to everyone depending on where your water heater is)....mjf.
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Old 10-15-2013, 11:19 AM   #2
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Mitch, that's where I put all my hard liquor......problem solved.
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Old 10-15-2013, 08:06 PM   #3
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yo tom....beer won't do well there, so I need to insulate more.....mjf.
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Old 10-20-2013, 09:28 PM   #4
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Ok so I just replaced my anode only to find there was never an anode installed. My hot water is not lasting as long as it used to so I'm thinking because there was no anode that the heating element must be corroded. Poked my head in the basement to see if I could locate the heating element on water heater. Is it inside a black box screwed onto the side of the water heater? I read on another forum something about a special tool...no idea what that was talking about. Already have the new element and it seems pretty straight forward to install.
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Old 10-21-2013, 06:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TEAMTJ View Post
Ok so I just replaced my anode only to find there was never an anode installed. My hot water is not lasting as long as it used to so I'm thinking because there was no anode that the heating element must be corroded. Poked my head in the basement to see if I could locate the heating element on water heater. Is it inside a black box screwed onto the side of the water heater? I read on another forum something about a special tool...no idea what that was talking about. Already have the new element and it seems pretty straight forward to install.
Tim,

An anode is only used in a Suburban water heater. PI uses Atwood water heaters. An anode has nothing to do with the amount of hot water it produces. I won't get into that here.

For all practical purposes, the heating element either works or it doesn't work. I doubt that the heating element is your concern. Unless you ran your tank dry and have your heating element on and you burn it out, the element on Atwoods rarely give a problem, especially at a young age.

Have you been flushing your water heater on a regular basis (every 4 months)? Also you may have a mixing valve problem. Or you may be using more water than you think....just some ideas. rockin'

I've known some folks that use a lot of hot water run both electric and propane ALL the time.
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Old 10-21-2013, 12:34 PM   #6
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Tom,

Sooooo there was a plug where an anode would normally be and the local RV parts store provided a much smaller anode than what I used in my previous 5er hot water heater (suburban). I unscrewed the plug and screwed in the anode. Should I remove the anode then? I will double check mixing valves....only place I know to check is outside shower. I have never flushed the hot water heater. How do I do that? I have never left the element on while disconnected from water.
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Old 10-21-2013, 01:22 PM   #7
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Atwood uses aluminum for it's tanks, Suburban uses steel. Atwood doesn't need an anode, it will do nothing in the tank. Suburban needs an anode, which is designed to 'sacrifice' it's metal before the steel tank does. It's an electro-chemical thing.
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Old 10-21-2013, 05:00 PM   #8
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I remember reading somewhere that you don't want to leave the anode in the Atwood. Just don't remember where and what the content was exactly.

Flushing is no big deal. You need to get a flush wand ($10) at any RV parts store. I would Google up "RV water heater flush" and see what ya get. I know I've seen some you tube clips on it. Anyway, a couple of points to remember. 1. Always allow tank to cool, 2. Remove shore water and release pressure, and 3. Lift lever on popoff valve to allow air to vent in tank while draining. 4. Use the good kind (thick with pipe dope) of Teflon tape to wrap the plastic drain plug. 5. Don't overtighten the nylon drain plug....just slightly more than hand tight. Good luck.

PS Make sure your exterior shower faucet is shut off and a valve was not left open.
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