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Old 06-16-2015, 12:25 AM   #1
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After effects of "bad" water

We camped in the Texas oil country in early May and without even thinking I hooked up to the campground water supply. Unfortuneately, there was a large amount of sulfur compounds in the water. It was safe to drink and wash in, but, oh the smell. We have been using the camper every day for the last 40 days and we can still smell the sulfur when we run the hot water even now.

Does any one have any ideas on why this is still occuring and more importantly how to get rid of the smell?
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:41 AM   #2
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I would try draining all water out of your system and then sanitize it.
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Old 06-16-2015, 12:46 AM   #3
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For Suburban Water Heaters, the following is a quote from the Suburban Manual. Page 5 from following pdf link"

http://hometips.me/Mar/Suburban_Wate...ice_Manual.pdf

“Sulphur water can be caused by a chemical action or by bacteria. The solution to eliminate is chlorination of the water system. Add about six (6) ounces of chlorinated common household liquid bleach to each 10 gallons in the water tank. Then run the chlorinated water throughout the system, opening each faucet one at a time until you smell the chlorine. Let the RV sit for a few days and the chlorine should take care of the problem. Then you will need to take care of the chlorine. Remove the chlorine by flushing the system with fresh water. This may take several attempts. You may consider adding a filtering system that removes chlorine and prevents sulphur water. If the sulphur or rotten egg smell continues, flush the system once again as described above and replace anode rod as necessary.”

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For Atwood Water Heaters, the following is a quote from the Atwood Manual. Page 27 of the following link:

http://manuals.adventurerv.net/Atwoo...er-Service.pdf


FLUSHING YOUR WATER HEATER TO REMOVE THE ROTTEN EGG ODOR

1. Turn off your main water supply. Drain you water heater tank. Reinstall drain plug. Remove the pressure-temperature relief valve. With a funnel use 4 parts white vinegar to two parts water. (In a 6 gallon tank that would be 4 gallons vinegar to 2 gallons water).

2. Cycle the water heater, letting it run under normal operation 4-5 times. At no time do you remove the vinegar from the tank Once this has been completed, remove the drain plug and drain the water heater.

3. After thoroughly draining the tank, to remove the sediment, flush the water heater. If you elect to use air pressure, it may be applied either through the inlet or outlet on the rear of the tank or applied through the pressure-temperature relief valve. Remove the pressure-temperature relief valve and insert your air pressure through the pressure-temperature relief valve coupling. In either case, with the drain valve open, the air pressure will force the remaining water out of the unit.

If air pressure is unavailable, your unit can be flushed with fresh water. Fresh water should be pumped into the tank either with the onboard pump or external water pressure. External pressure may be hosed into the unit either through the inlet or outlet found on the rear of the tank or the pressure-temperature relief valve coupling located on the front of the unit.

Continue this flushing process for approximately five minutes allowing ample time for the fresh water to agitate the stagnant water on the bottom of the tank and forcing the deposits through the drain opening.

4. Upon completion of the steps above, replace the drain plug and the pressure-temperature relief valve.

5. Refill tank with fresh water that contains no sulphur
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Old 06-16-2015, 08:56 PM   #4
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I am surprised! We have been full timing in the rig since May2 of this year which is when we got the wonderful sulfur water in the tank. I would have thought that dishwashing and showers would have flushed the system by now. Guess I need to get some bleach and go to work!
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:17 AM   #5
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I think wmtire has it right. We have camped at places with really bad smelling water and I got into the habit of 1) draining the water heater 2) filling fresh water tank with water and adding a chlorine solution to it 3) run it through the lines 4) enjoy the smell of chlorine vs. Sulfur for a shorter period of time........BTW, just did the same steps tonight as my camper has sat in our seasonal for 3 weeks with water in the water heater and it wasn't pleasant. All good now. Replace filter if necessary as well.
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:19 AM   #6
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I also will drop the anode rod in a bucket of chlorinated water as well.
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:31 AM   #7
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Sometimes it's just unavoidable to have to make use of less than desirable water. I always try to scout out a decent water supply on my way to anywhere, but for those times when you just can't get away from stinky/funky water I have 2 bladders that I use. 1 I only use in situations like that rather than filling my fresh water tank.

It's much easier to sanitize a bladder than it is a whole water supply system... and worst case.. I just toss it and get another.

That type of water though I strictly use only for flushing, outdoor cleanup and such.
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