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Old 08-04-2015, 07:28 AM   #1
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Default Stilll not quite sure how to operate the Hot Water Heater!

We were able to get our hot water heater to heat with electric and LP gas. Now my question is, if we turn on the LP gas while we are driving to keep the refrigerator cold, the electric would be turned off. I think this means that the hot water tank and the refrigerator will turn on with LP gas. The refrigerator is what I want to turn on but I don't think I want that pilot light lit on the hot water tank while we are driving. Is there suppose to be some way to turn the hot water tank totally off? Am I missing something inside the RV to turn off the hot water tank? The only switch we found was outside in the back of the RV. Can someone guide us to the correct way to handle this?

Thanks so much!!!! We would be lost without you!!! Dave and Cindy
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:53 AM   #2
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Your water heater should be DSI which means direct spark ingition. There is no pilot light. Turning it off at the switch inside the trailer will prevent it from coming on.
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:55 AM   #3
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Well this could be the problem. Where is the switch inside the RV? We have looked everywhere and cannot find it?
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Old 08-04-2015, 08:11 AM   #4
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Not sure on your model. On mine the switch is on the same panel as the tank level indicators next to the switch for the water pump. It lights up when the water is heater is turned on.
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Old 08-04-2015, 08:23 AM   #5
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On our 2015 214 WSD the switch for the water heater to run on propane is on the main switch panel in the cabin (see below)



The switch for 110 volt is accessed from the outside after removing the square panel at the water heater location. The switch is on the lower left corner of the unit. This switch should never be turned ON unless the tank is full of water. If this switch is ON, it will heat the tank whenever the shore power cord is connected. If the propane switch is on (and propane tank open) the tank will heat with propane. We never run the water heater on propane because we don't need hot water typically while traveling especially since the water will remain hot or warm for quite a while after unplugging the shore power cord. We do run the fridge on propane while traveling.



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Old 08-04-2015, 05:22 PM   #6
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Oh thank you so much! The picture was great! When I looked at my buttons all I would see was the LP Gas, never noticed the Hot Water Tank written on the bottom!!! I think I have it in my head now. I switch on the LP GAS/Water Heater button to run the water heater with LP gas. I thought I had to switch on the LP-Gas Button to run LP Gas to the refrigerator and the Hot water heater.

Now I am assuming that to run the refrigerator with LP Gas, I just turn on the LP-GAS tanks outside and push the gas button on the refrigerator to turn on the refrigerator. There will not be a light indicator because the electric will be off. I just have to assume that the refrigerator is then running on LP-Gas. Is this correct? I am so sorry to be such a newbie!!
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:38 PM   #7
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Cynsew, first off -- don't apologize for being a newbie! We all were, and we enjoy saving others from making our rookie mistakes.

A couple of hints about the fridge on propane -- first, it helps to light the stove after turning on the propane tank -- it purges any air in the line. When the stove lights, turn it off.

Next, if you run the fridge on propane, and if the controls are like my fridge, you push the Gas button to take it off Auto. Then it ignites -- in a quiet place, you can hear it click and ignite. If it can't ignite (out of gas, or a clogged burner, or very high altitude), a Check light comes on.

If you have pushed the ON button, and there are NO lights on, then yes, it is working!

Kind of confusing, but you will get used to it.
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:57 PM   #8
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ok, now if you are saying that if it did not light with LP Gas the check light will come on, I assume I have to leave the battery on even though I am running on LP Gas? Won't that switch it back over to run on electric?
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:52 PM   #9
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Yes, you need the battery to run the fridge on propane -- the battery powers the control panel, while the propane does the cooling. But the fridge will not draw much power from the battery. If you are out of propane, you can't run the fridge on battery -- it will only run without propane if you are plugged into shore power, like an RV park.

The Fun Finder fridges used to run on battery, but they did not work well and drained the battery very quickly. So now the fridge works only on regular electricity or propane.
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:18 AM   #10
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Thank you so much! Now I think I understand it all! That means a trip in the RV this weekend!
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Old 08-05-2015, 08:05 AM   #11
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Great!! Where are you going? Let me make a suggestion -- since you are newbies, don't get too ambitious too soon. (Don't ask me how I know this.) Use the first trip or two as "shakedown" trips.

Have fun!! And be patient with yourselves -- there is a learning curve. It gets easier and easier.
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Old 08-05-2015, 09:06 AM   #12
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I'd recommend getting the manual for your fridge if you don't have it already. I have a folder with the manuals for everything: fridge, oven, power center, awning, water heater, etc. that I keep in the trailer just in case. The one I've used the most is for the TV & entertainment center. I can never remember how to work that. Most manuals are available online.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:38 AM   #13
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Cynsew2
While you are learning more about your refrigerator, perhaps you may be interested in my experience with spiders blocking the firing tubes. See my September 28, 2013 post. Before each camping trip, while checking inflation on tires, I now use my air compressor to blow out the tube. And I carry an extra electrode with me as a "belt and suspenders" approach.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:44 AM   #14
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It is a good idea to blow out both the water heater orifice and the fridge orifice. Those chores are on my "pre-trip prep" list.

I am not sure, though, if I could install a new electrode! If the electrical components were to fail, I would have to cut the trip short, I'm afraid.
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Old 09-04-2015, 12:35 PM   #15
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Default refrigerator

Hi, another newbie here.
We've been having trouble getting the fridge to work while we are driving.
How does the battery disconnect switch interact with the tow vehicle battery? Should the trailer battery be connected even though the trailer is plugged in to the tow vehicle?
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Old 09-04-2015, 12:55 PM   #16
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The battery disconnect switch should be pulled out in order for shore power or the tow vehicle to provide charge to the camper battery. It also must be pulled out to provide 12 volt power to the camper including the frig so the frig will cool when traveling.

I never push in the battery disconnect switch unless the camper is to be stored w/o shore power for an extended period of time.
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Old 09-04-2015, 01:37 PM   #17
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While driving down the road, I believe that the fridge still needs the onboard battery 12 volts to operate the self ignitor to keep it running on propane. Also, if the battery is disconnected using the disconnect switch on the panel, it will also not charge from the tow vehicle going down the road. The main use for the disconnect switch is to keep parasitic drain from draining the battery while the unit is in storage or long periods of non use.

Edited for accuracy



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Old 09-04-2015, 03:28 PM   #18
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I have never even thought about running the water heater while traveling. Once set-up on site, it only takes maybe 10 minutes to get hot water.
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Old 09-04-2015, 04:30 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travels with Yoly
While driving down the road, I believe that the water heater still needs the onboard battery 12 volts to operate the self ignitor to keep it running on propane. Also, if the battery is disconnected using the disconnect switch on the panel, it will also not charge from the tow vehicle going down the road. The main use for the disconnect switch is to keep parasitic drain from draining the battery while the unit is in storage or long periods of non use.
Sorry, I meant fridge



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Old 09-04-2015, 10:39 PM   #20
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Jerry, don't disconnect the battery while driving. The battery gets charged while driving. And when you are at an RV park, don't disconnect -- the shore power tops off the battery.

But whenever you want to remove the battery from the storage compartment, be sure to disconnect it before touching the terminals. Otherwise, you might get a shock.
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