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Old 06-18-2018, 09:38 PM   #1
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Need help with water heater plumbing

I'm in the process of buying a 2009 Discovery 40x. The current owner had the water heater replaced in March, but it was never tested as the unit was still winterized.

Today, the owner was adding water to the coach to test everything for my 3rd party inspector tomorrow and found the water heater leaking. She located the back side of the water heater under the master bedroom closet floor and it was plumbed by a hack. The hot water output wasn't connected to anything and water was pouring out of it. It looked like whoever did the work replaced a few fittings, and the parts that were there would never work as originally intended.

Can anyone share a photo of how their motorhome water heater is plumbed? If you have a similar year Fleetwood coach, that would be even more helpful.

I'm not sure if this coach has a water heater bypass system like my current travel trailer, or something else. There is a bypass valve in the under coach storage bin (with all the other water connections), but I have no idea what that does. That valve is nowhere close to the water heater (it's the opposite side of the coach).
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Old 06-18-2018, 11:09 PM   #2
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Bypass lever in that compartment is for water heater


To bypass WH Tank...turn lever vertical




As for actual valving on backside of water heater
Bottom fitting is for COLD IN
Top fitting is for HOT OUT


Bypass line would connect cold to hot
Internal check valve is probably used in Hot Out fitting to prevent backflow into tank when using bypass


Shutoff valve for Cold IN
Could be shutoff valve for Hot OUT (if check valve not used)
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Old 06-18-2018, 11:18 PM   #3
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The bottom connection is the inlet (cold) and the top outlet is the hot out. It's not unusual to have the water heater bypass far from the heater itself, mine is on the opposite side in the compartment with the water manifold. If you only have the one bypass valve, then you need additional valves or check valves installed to prevent the water from backflowing into the tank when the bypass is opened. Usually at least one of the connections to the tank will have a check valve installed to prevent water flow back from the tank to the cold water return when pressures get uneven in the system.
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Old 06-19-2018, 04:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BFlinn181 View Post
The bottom connection is the inlet (cold) and the top outlet is the hot out. It's not unusual to have the water heater bypass far from the heater itself, mine is on the opposite side in the compartment with the water manifold. If you only have the one bypass valve, then you need additional valves or check valves installed to prevent the water from backflowing into the tank when the bypass is opened. Usually at least one of the connections to the tank will have a check valve installed to prevent water flow back from the tank to the cold water return when pressures get uneven in the system.
This is what Iím used to seeing. The coach had a different setup that aim guessing was put in by an installer who had no clue what they were doing.
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Old 06-19-2018, 04:58 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
Bypass lever in that compartment is for water heater


To bypass WH Tank...turn lever vertical




As for actual valving on backside of water heater
Bottom fitting is for COLD IN
Top fitting is for HOT OUT


Bypass line would connect cold to hot
Internal check valve is probably used in Hot Out fitting to prevent backflow into tank when using bypass


Shutoff valve for Cold IN
Could be shutoff valve for Hot OUT (if check valve not used)
So the bypass valve in the outside compartment (with all the water controls) shuts off the water supply to the water heater?

It sounds like there is still a normal bypass setup with 2 or 3 valves behind the actual water heater...is that correct?
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Old 06-19-2018, 07:27 AM   #6
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Ok, the seller called me this morning after figuring out what had been done by her crappy mechanic.

The water heater has a mixing valve installed on the hot water outlet that leads back to the cold water inlet. The mechanic lost a part to the mixing valve and just hid his mistake.

The setup should look like this. Unfortunately, the mixing valve was missing one of itsí connections.

Thanks for all the help.
Attached Images
  
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Old 06-19-2018, 07:30 AM   #7
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Some units have a mixing valve on the hot side to mix cold water with the hot before it gets to the system.
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Old 06-19-2018, 07:37 AM   #8
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Sorry you beet me to it. You can bypass thi mixing valve but the water out of the heater is 140 degrees. Most rv;s don't have this mixing valve.
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Old 06-19-2018, 12:16 PM   #9
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That is an Atwood 'XT' model...ie:GE9-EXT or GE10-EXT

Uses a higher temp T-stat (160*F) and then hot out goes directly into the Mixing valve.
Cold water comes in and mixes with the very hot water to temper the hot out to a 130*F

That way a 6 gal WH Tank puts out the 'equivalent' of a 9 gallon tank (10 gal=16 gal)
Exothermal technology.










'Standard' Atwood models use a 140*F T-stat and end user tempers water AT the faucet/shower
T-stats are NOT interchangeable W/O some wire connecting modifications
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