Propane Water Heater

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Dan_Frisbie

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 2, 2022
Posts
336
Location
Pensacola, FL
I have the dual (gas/electric) water heater on my 2017 Georgetown.
Last year, the propane side of the heater was inop. No spark, no gas (I presume). The electric works, but it is not as hot.
When we returned home, it began working. I touched everything that I could and found no problems.
This spring, we went to Texas, no propane hot water. Back home, I again went searching...cleaned the igniters, made sure that the propane path was clear, found no issues and BAM, it began to work.
Here we are in Tennessee and we have electrically heated water only.

I'm out of ideas.
 
It might help to know what make/model water heater you have but I'll do a little bit of guessing that may help. By far the most common item to cause a water heater to fail to light is the ignition probe. When you turn on the water heater, does it have a red light in the switch that turns on and it will try to light a few times, then stop and leave the light on? And when it works properly does that light come on, and the go out after a few seconds? If this is the case then most likely it is the ignition probe. Make sure that you get the right one as there are more than one version.

Those probes not only supply the spark to light the propane but they also sense the heat when it is burning and send a signal back to the control circuit board so it knows that it has lit and so turns off that red light. If it doesn't get that signal it will leave the red light on, turn off the propane and stop supplying a spark. Replacement probes are available from most any RV supply store or from Amazon and typically cost $10 - $15.
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@Kirk , it's a Suburban SW6D. You may be on to something with the ignitor.
I do seem to remember that if we left the gas water heater "on", it would never re-light after the initial start.
I don't have a lit switch as mine is controlled by the Lippert One Control that controls the slides, awning, exterior lights, water heater, etc.
I will try an ignitor and see if that changes anything.
Thanks!
 
Mine did similar my 1st trip out this year. Warm at first, then cold. Got the book out. Had to press the reset button that’s outside by the tank. I have 2, one for electric and one for gas. I tried both separate and then together but same results until I pressed the reset buttons. Worked the rest of the trip. Will find out Friday when we head again if this happens again.
 
Is the electric element turned on as well? If the electric element keeps the water hot enough the propane will not come on.
 
What make & model is the water heater? Was the red light at the switch on?
This model does not have the toggle switch to turn on the water heater. My control panel inside the RV lets me select gas or electric. But the 2 button I had to push are by where the rocker switch used to be. My RV is listed in my signature. I’ll go out later and see what brand and model number.
 
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