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Old 08-05-2014, 08:08 PM   #1
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Another no hot water.

Hello, seems to be a common problem but i also no hot water. I have a 2004 forest river surveyor 255rs with propane hot water. It's our maiden voyage. We have had weak water pressure at the park all week and now no hot water. I disconnected the water in, drained the tank, we have hot water in the tank but nothing out of any faucet. When I use the bypass at the tank we have pressure but all cold water. Any help?
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:23 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdallas View Post
Hello, seems to be a common problem but i also no hot water. I have a 2004 forest river surveyor 255rs with propane hot water. It's our maiden voyage. We have had weak water pressure at the park all week and now no hot water. I disconnected the water in, drained the tank, we have hot water in the tank but nothing out of any faucet. When I use the bypass at the tank we have pressure but all cold water. Any help?
Howdy sdallas, I see where you stated you had a propane water heater, but if it's also one that has an electric heating element....if you drained the tank with the element switch turned on, then the element is now ruined most likely.

If you truly only have a propane only water heater, then the above doesn't apply....but I would advise checking to make sure you don't have a dual power source (propane and electric) heater.

Do you know if you have a Direct Spark Ignitor (DSI) to light your propane or does your heater have a pilot light?

Here is a FAQ on the Suburban brand water heater (but you may have an Atwood brand). If you only have a propane water heater, you can ignore the part about the electric heating element, but the first part about the gas would still be applicable on how to turn on your DSI switch (if you have a model with one).

Suburban's electric switch and much more
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:29 PM   #3
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It is a pilot light burner, no electric. I turned the burner off before I drained. I do have hot water, just not at the faucets. Plenty hot in the tank
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:31 PM   #4
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Easy fix, as you most likely have your water heater tank bypassed (or the bypass open) with the valves that are located behind the tank. We'll start with that.

Hold on and I will locate you a schematic on what to do.
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:41 PM   #5
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You will need to gain access to the backside of your water heater. You may need to go thru a cabinet, remove a drawer, unscrew a false panel, go under a bed, etc to gain access.

Once there you most likely are going to see three valves. One on your hot water line, one on the cold water line, and a bypass valve which ties the cold water line into the hot water line. You can also have just one or two valves.

People bypass the water heater in winterizing the heater so they don't have to fill the heater up with antifreeze.

If they don't set the valves correct in the spring then you won't get hot water out the tap, or it mixes the hot with the cold. Here is how the valves should be for normal use. Valve handle parallel with pipe is open, handle perpendicular with pipe is closed

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Old 08-05-2014, 09:02 PM   #6
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Wmtire.
I am unable to upload pics but mine does not look like a normal tank. Can you pm me your email address so I can send you the pics?

EDIT by wmtire:

sdallas, had the one valve bypass system according to the pic he sent me. He also had noted that when the bypass valve is how it should be set for normal use, he get's NO water at all from the tank or out of the hot water taps. When he sets the valve for bypass, he is getting cold water out of the hot water taps (as it should be).

This had led us to believe that a backflow preventer (aka check valve) in either the inlet (if equipped) or outlet (most likely) of the water heater isn't functioning properly. Not sure if this was caused by extremely low water pressure not being able to open the check valve..... or a faulty/clogged check valve.
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Old 08-07-2014, 01:19 AM   #7
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Another no hot water.

First thank you wmtire for helping me with my water issue. To anyone else that is new to the site let me tell you about how nice and helpful he was to me. Yesterday during our first trip with our new to us camper we started having hot water issues and after the obligatory "you closed your bypass" suggestions I tried posting a pic of my set up to no avail. I pm'd wmtire and asked for his private email to send him a pic to try to diagnose my problem. He responded and after exchanging messages for a while he led me to the check valve. I was able to get parts from lowes today and fix. He certainly did not need to spend his time helping me but it is very much appreciated. Thank you.

Now on to our other problem. The park we have loved coming to is changing and not improving. We have been here since Friday and wow. Not what we are used to. Kids allowed to run reckless, and I don't mean in the good time camping way. In the bath house all 4 stalls are clogged daily, we started the trip with 2 working showers now all 3 have smashed off heads. Last night a kid got his bike tires slashed and tonight we were walking around after dark and I saw my tackle boxes on a picnic table a hundred yards away ON ANOTHER SITE!!! I thought no way, came back and mine were gone. Recovered with more than half of my stuff missing. The septic had been ripped up, water lines barely flowing water and so full of sand I had to spend hours cleaning out my taps and changing fittings on my inlets. My new filter is full of grit. It takes 5 times as much water ti rinse a plate so gray tank full into shower, asked for a pump out, "maybe tomorrow".
I plan to speak to the manager tomorrow. If no promising news I'll let you all know where to stay away from.
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Old 08-07-2014, 08:40 AM   #8
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Glad you got it solved, sdallas. Hate to hear that about your favorite park though.

Thanks for the kind words.
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Old 08-07-2014, 09:06 AM   #9
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Excellent troubleshooting, wmtire! It is stuff like this that keeps me coming back!
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Old 08-07-2014, 09:07 AM   #10
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Sdallas, are you in the Dallas area?
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