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Old 07-30-2015, 08:44 AM   #1
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Hot water heater questions

Ok, so taking out the 3170ds for the first time this weekend. I have a couple of questions about the hot water heater.

Do you run it all the time?

Secondly I read a ton on tripping breakers, and it seems that I may want to run it on Propane. Please give thoughts on that. Also, how do you do get it to run on propane while plugged in? Turn off a breaker or something?

Just seems like a really complicated thing that I did not consider regarding having hot water all the time or not. If it is all the time on propane, I would think I would use an excessive amount of propane...

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Old 07-30-2015, 08:49 AM   #2
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If you have the Suburban water heater, this FAQ should help explain it all.

Suburban's electric switch and much more

The water heater has thermostats similar to your water heater at home, so it's not heating all the time....but just when the water temp falls below a certain temp (usually 130 degrees).

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Old 07-30-2015, 08:55 AM   #3
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Lots of options. If you have shore power, I would run on electric. You just need to be aware of total power usage as you have a limit 30A or 50A depending on your unit. If you are running AC WH you might need to turn one off to run microwave. We leave our WH on all the time but if you are on propane, and only need hot water once or twice a day, turning it on and off may be an option. No hard and fast rules. Do what works for you,

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Old 07-30-2015, 08:57 AM   #4
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If you are aware of your electrical use and shut down the electric HWH when you have other high electrical demands, you will not trip breakers. This is my first electrical HWH and it sure does save on propane by using the electrical section
Of the HWH as much as possible.
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Old 07-30-2015, 09:02 AM   #5
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I decided a long time ago that the hassle of worrying about it being left on was not worth the propane. I leave it "ON" and on propane all the time. I have gone out and switched the AC on as well when we have guests and know there will be a lot of showers and need faster "recovery time"; then I shut the AC back off.

It does not use near as much as you might think in a week or so of camping. Longer than that and we are boondocking and no shore power anyway.

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Old 07-30-2015, 11:17 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the information everyone! I will go with A/C since that is free. If i start tripping breakers, I will switch to propane. I do think I will be leaving it "On" all the time though.
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Old 07-30-2015, 12:00 PM   #7
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Run mine 30 minutes before I need it on electricity never use lp unless dry camping don't have any problem with breakers never run mw hw and ac at same time it were 50 amps could run everything

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Old 07-30-2015, 01:16 PM   #8
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I leave the "outside" HW electric switch "on" all the time. Use inside breaker box to turn the HW electric on or off. Leave it "on" throughout the day/night except when preparing meals using the microwave. Then cut if off for the duration of the meal. Water is already hot, so do not miss it for the short time it is off. Takes a few times of waking to a cold shave, after that you remember to flip it on when going to bed. Save the propane to use for frig while traveling, and the occasional dry camp HW.
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Old 07-30-2015, 05:35 PM   #9
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I run on elect. if available. Once hot, turn off, turn back on 5 min prior to shower. In summer, it will stay hot almost all day, even when off.
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Old 07-30-2015, 05:37 PM   #10
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and just because it wasn't's a water are not heating hot water

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