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Author Topic: Water Heater not working  (Read 2273 times)

fred1845

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Water Heater not working
« on: November 02, 2016, 09:59:44 PM »
Hi all you experts.I have a Thor motor home(in  case it makes a difference)and cant get water heater to work.I have tried the electric 'button' and the gas 'button' and neither makes hot water .I have water pump on,light is on .Gas is turned on.The battery switch is in 'use ' position .I wait a while to give it a chance to heat water,I know its not instant hot water .Right now its parked in yard,and I put water in tank thinking it needs water in there.But it didn't work .
Anyone have any idea's why it isn't working?Or how to get it to work?I know you know what I need to do and appreciate your answers/suggestions . Thanks .
« Last Edit: November 13, 2016, 07:19:20 PM by scottydl »

lynnmor

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2016, 11:19:27 PM »
You should post the brand and model number of the water heater.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2016, 06:07:48 AM »
Also, have you checked the tank itself to see if it gets warm? Or just turned the water faucet on?  It may be the heater has been bypassed, e.g. for winter storage, and the hot water in the tank simply isn't getting delivered to the faucets.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2016, 08:31:26 AM »
Hi.It is a new home 2017 only a few weeks old.Have taken it out for a few short trips.It is a Atwood (I think) .Have turned on facet and let it run.I haven't done anything to tank/home as its still new maybe 1200 miles on it

Alfa38User

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2016, 08:54:09 AM »
The first thing to check would be that there is water in the water heater tank. (ie FULL). If not, turning on the electric will fry the element very quickly. When you tried to put water into "the tank", (which tank, fresh water or water heater itself. ??? ) and what happened?? This sounds like the winterizing valve(s) may be in the wrong position and not permitting you to fill the water heater tank.

Did the gas light or not??  Do you understand how to light the gas burner?? Describing your gas lighting process will help here. (Not a problem, we can help if needed.)

Model number of the "Atwood" might help here. You can usually find it on a sticker outside and behind the cover for the WH.
Stu
Montréal, Canada 🍁
Snowbird, Naples Florida
Alfa Gold 38 (2000) 5ver (parked!)

"Of course I talk to myself, sometimes I need expert advise!!!"

scottydl

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2016, 04:33:07 PM »
Have you been able to successfully light (and get heat from) other gas appliances?  i.e. stove burners, oven, furnace, fridge (if not plugged into shore power)?  That will tell us if the gas is flowing properly, for the LP heating option.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2016, 04:42:57 PM »
I put water in the fresh water holding tank .While we were 'camped' water hose was connected to 'city water' connection.Stove and oven work.So does furnace .We use 'lectric' for fridge when were plugged in .We dont need winterizing since we are in Florida.Thanks again .

grashley

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2016, 04:56:05 PM »
This is beginning to sound like a warranty issue.  By your responses, you have good gas flow - stove works, a good battery - fridge and furnace work, and water in the tank.  It could be a faulty circuit board??  Has the heater EVER worked, and recently quit?
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS 
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
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scottydl

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2016, 05:47:25 AM »
As Gary mentioned, make sure the water heater is not in "bypass" mode for storage, which may be how some units are kept on the sales lot.

There should be a few valves on the inside of the water heater tank (often accessible under the kitchen sink or through another cabinet), that allow or block water from entering/leaving the tank.  See what position yours are in.  In the wintertime (for those of us in cold climates) when not using that system, it is bypassed when the rest of the plumbing lines are emptied/winterized with compressed air or RV antifreeze solution.

What I just described should have been fully explained to you buy the dealer who sold you the unit, but... some are better (worse) than others.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

John From Detroit

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2016, 06:37:58 AM »
Where in Florida are you? I"m only 50 miles north of FL. sitting here in a Damon Intruder that's not going anywhere soon. but you could come to me.

It makes a difference if the Water heater is Suburan or Atwood, Mine is Atwood.

Also, does the water heater FAULT light come on,  do the control switches light up?

Suburan's have some manual reset buttons on some models
On Atwood the instructions for winterizing say to remove a wire from the ECO (Emergency Cut Out) and if you do not restor it it goes into fault mode.

Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2016, 08:26:28 AM »
Regardless of your Florida location, somebody may have set the "winterize" bypass valves to route water around the heater rather than through it. There will be a valve (or possible a set of 3 valves) near the heater where the water lines enter and exit. If you don't know where they are, ask your dealer to show you. He should have done that anyway as part of your new owner introduction & walkthrough.   And please tell us what Thor model you have, and the heater brand.

I doubt if anything is actually broken, but it's conceivable.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2016, 10:10:53 PM »
Its a Freedom Elite 2017.Do I have to access the water heater from outside panel?Dont have a clue what brand it is.

scottydl

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2016, 03:45:01 AM »
A new unit should have a manual for the water heater.  Yes there is an outside panel for access to the hot water tank drain & some other electronics, but the other (interior) side will have the bypass valves.  Check in the cabinet under the kitchen sink as I mentioned, that's where the valves have been in both of my RVs.
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2016, 08:01:20 AM »
I looked under sink and valve seemed in open position,even with tubing.Would it make a difference if generator was on?I have it off now parked in yard.I plugged it in to extension cord with yellow "thingy" that connects to cord to motor home .Thanks for trying to help me.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2016, 10:03:50 AM »
Generator doesn't help if you are plugged to shore power. Also not relevant if you are using the gas mode instead of electric.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

schoolsout2

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #15 on: November 05, 2016, 10:48:05 AM »
Your manual should tell you how the water heater bypass valves work and how they should be turned.  Have you EVER had hot water?  If you have then valves would be OK.  With the pump off, open the water heater access door, then open the pressure relief valve ( silver thing on what looks like a hose connection).  Turn pump on and water should come out.  If not, your bypass valves are closed.

Be sure the outside shower valves are turned off, Not just the spray head, I do not know why but this does effect the hot water
Dave and Sue Fullerman
2014 Winnebago Tour
2012 Honda CRV
FMCA F7777D
from Ohio now full time

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #16 on: November 05, 2016, 11:03:19 AM »
Quote
With the pump off, open the water heater access door, then open the pressure relief valve ( silver thing on what looks like a hose connection).  Turn pump on and water should come out.

And be careful - that water may be at 140 degrees! First ,touch the relief valve to see if it is warm. That will tell you if it is heating but water is not being delivered (tank is bypassed or a check valve stuck).
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2016, 12:00:41 AM »
Been a while so here's the update.A wire harness wasn't plugged in to circuit board in water heater outside access.Of course service guy said he tested it and it worked,but WE know he lied .Got hot water Ty .

scottydl

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2016, 07:20:08 PM »
Thanks for the update!  How did you end up finding that "unplugged" plug?
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

fred1845

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #19 on: November 14, 2016, 07:04:15 AM »
Dealer 'tech guy' was flipping switches inside(like we did) then went outside to heater access panel and guess what he saw ?Works good now .

scottydl

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #20 on: November 14, 2016, 08:08:26 AM »
A little mouse must have crawled in there and unplugged it after your initial purchase... since the dealership assured you everything was tested and working before.  ;)
Scott, wife, 3 boys... and the dog
- 2008 Forest River Wildwood 32BHDS
- 1995 Chevrolet Suburban C2500 tow vehicle
- 1994 Thor Residency motorhome... owned 2007-2012

elliott-maine

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Re: Water Heater not working
« Reply #21 on: November 19, 2016, 10:05:13 AM »
If it is a Suburbun, there is an on-off switch in the outside compartment for the water heater switch.  make sure this is on.
Elliott & Vicky and copilot Hanna, the GSD

2014 Redwood 36RE, Gen, king bed, other goodies
2013 RAM 3500 drw, 4wd, Aisin tranny
From the great state of Maine

 

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