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  1. #1
    Setting Up Camp Norma Miller's Avatar
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    water heater issues

    we are having issues. last season on our final camping trip, we tried using the water heater on gas while boondocking in the mountains, and it clicked several times, then nothing, and i don't remember seeing a dsi indicator. So this season in getting ready for a trip, we opened up heater door, and the thermal cut-off was fried, so we replaced it. then we just now tried turning on the heater with electricity, nothing, tried gas - and btw, the metal door to the heater is open so we can see what is going on - it clicked, pilot light lit, but it was a large flame so we quickly shut it off, thinking that is what fried the thermal cut-off last season. any ideas what is wrong?
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  2. #2
    Long Hauler huntindog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norma Miller View Post
    we are having issues. last season on our final camping trip, we tried using the water heater on gas while boondocking in the mountains, and it clicked several times, then nothing, and i don't remember seeing a dsi indicator. So this season in getting ready for a trip, we opened up heater door, and the thermal cut-off was fried, so we replaced it. then we just now tried turning on the heater with electricity, nothing, tried gas - and btw, the metal door to the heater is open so we can see what is going on - it clicked, pilot light lit, but it was a large flame so we quickly shut it off, thinking that is what fried the thermal cut-off last season. any ideas what is wrong?
    I doubt you have a pilot light. Most everthing has DSI (direct spark ignition) nowadays so the large flame you saw was probably the burner.
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  3. #3
    Setting Up Camp Norma Miller's Avatar
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    correct, sorry.
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    Paid my dues 😁 FT4NOW's Avatar
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    Normally when the water heater is on gas mode, it is a pretty large flame. Almost like a torch or afterburner on a jet engine.

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    Site Team Member traveldawg's Avatar
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    That large flame you saw is normal. Like FT4NOW said - like jet engine. So you should put it on gas, start it and wait to see if it heats water.

    As for electric.... you can measure the electric voltage at the heating element if you remove the cover for it (just be careful). If no power then back track. Maybe check that the switch is on inside as well as the circuit breaker.

    I think there is an on/off switch on the outside of the heater too. Just not sure if that is just for electric or if it is for the gas and electric. Just be sure it's on too.
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  6. #6
    Setting Up Camp Norma Miller's Avatar
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    thank you for the help, We cleaned a few places the dometic installation instructions recommended, and tried lighting on gas again, it lit with a more normal looking flame that stayed in the tube, and stayed lit so i think that is working, we will keep it on long enough to verify it is heating the water in the morning, but the electric side still wont ignite. we are going to check fuses inside the camper in the morning. Also, there is a 2amp fuse on the water heater, with two small bulbs sitting directly below it that flashed red while the heater was operating on gas. i cant find what those lights mean..
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  7. #7
    Setting Up Camp Norma Miller's Avatar
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    long story short - after going through "water heater 101", both in research and practice - the least of which is not to call it a hot water heater - we have determined our problem was (yes, that's right - past tense) - our propane tank was almost empty, which did not allow enough consistent gas or pressure to keep the heater lit. Glad we are back in business with a few more tools and parts, and alot more knowledge...
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    Site Sponsor Petrovsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norma Miller View Post
    we are having issues. last season on our final camping trip, we tried using the water heater on gas while boondocking in the mountains, and it clicked several times, then nothing, and i don't remember seeing a dsi indicator. So this season in getting ready for a trip, we opened up heater door, and the thermal cut-off was fried, so we replaced it. then we just now tried turning on the heater with electricity, nothing, tried gas - and btw, the metal door to the heater is open so we can see what is going on - it clicked, pilot light lit, but it was a large flame so we quickly shut it off, thinking that is what fried the thermal cut-off last season. any ideas what is wrong?
    This post is likely too late but for your thermal fuse to go you had a flame melt it. My take on this is simple. Regularly monitor the flame, it should be blue with little trace of yellow. It should be directional into the heat exchanger and not flipping around.

    Often, spiders make their way into the burner tube and the nest disturbs the air to fuel ratio. Use some compressed gas with a small scrub brush (i.e. test tube cleaner) or pipe cleaner to eliminate the webs.
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