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Old 05-09-2015, 08:04 PM   #1
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Adding electric element to Suburban water heater

I have been looking at conversion to add an electric element to my Gas Suburban. I think I have found one for about $65. Anyone with thoughts or comments on needing electric element, and on conversions?

Edit by site team: These posts have been moved into their own thread to not hijack the previous discussion
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Old 05-09-2015, 08:12 PM   #2
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I have been looking at conversion to add an electric element to my Gas Suburban. I think I have found one for about $65. From the sound of this thread maybe I won't bother. Anyone with thoughts or comments on needing electric element, and on conversions?
When you camp, do you use power hookups?

Why would you want to pay for power and propane to have hot water when all you need do is use the power you have.
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Old 05-09-2015, 09:21 PM   #3
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Mostly, say 2/3s dry camp, but even then, we have three batteries and 200 watts solar with 2000 watt sine wave inverter. We use so little electricity now, the batteries seldom fall off full charge and we are just thinking about economizing on propane.
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Old 05-09-2015, 09:36 PM   #4
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If you can save enough to pay for the conversion kit by using power for 1/3 of your camp time then it would be worth it.

How long would 65 dollars worth of propane last you?
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Old 05-09-2015, 09:52 PM   #5
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You can do a search on these forums for "hott rod" and "lightning rod" and see where other members have done this.

A couple of considerations are where are you going to plug the element into (do you have to run a circuit or install an electrical outlet to plug into at/near the water heater)

Also, the add-on elements can have their unique own anode rod (which steel tank Suburbans need), and are not only smaller, but a lot more expensive to replace...that you need to factor into cost of use.

Just for curiosity sake, are you certain you don't have a propane and electric Suburban? Not knowing your particular RV, it's possible you don't....and it's also possible that some people miss the electric switch on front of the water heater.

Suburban's electric switch and much more
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Old 05-10-2015, 12:43 AM   #6
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thank you

Yes I would break even on cost of propane in about a full season at $65 bucks.

I will search the search words suggested. No I do not have electric it is a Propane only Suburban.

I have electric nearby and can get to it within the compartment without running any new wires very far at all.

Thanks for the points I will go search more

Tom
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Old 05-10-2015, 01:13 PM   #7
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Just my preference, but I would always add the electric option to a propane system.
Regards, Al
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Old 05-10-2015, 01:17 PM   #8
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Suburban water heater gas/electric

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Originally Posted by wmtire View Post
You can do a search on these forums for "hott rod" and "lightning rod" and see where other members have done this.

A couple of considerations are where are you going to plug the element into (do you have to run a circuit or install an electrical outlet to plug into at/near the water heater)

Also, the add-on elements can have their unique own anode rod (which steel tank Suburbans need), and are not only smaller, but a lot more expensive to replace...that you need to factor into cost of use.

Just for curiosity sake, are you certain you don't have a propane and electric Suburban? Not knowing your particular RV, it's possible you don't....and it's also possible that some people miss the electric switch on front of the water heater.

Suburban's electric switch and much more
I too was going to add the Hot Rodd. Took it to CW and when they went to install they found it was already set for electric. Forest River however never connected it to electric! The breaker was there, the switch was there, but no outlet to plug it into. CW took care of it and I was Happy camper! I use it all the time.
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