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Old 05-11-2015, 08:28 AM   #1
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Help me understand the water heater switch.

We were looking at a 23LB over the weekend. Trying to decide to go used (2014) or new. The H2O heater operated the same on both. There is a switch inside that says “water heater”. There is also a switch on the heater itself. The saleslady said that with both switches on that it runs on both gas & electric simultaneously. I questioned this thinking that it would be either or, not both. My current camper has a switch that you flip between gas or electric. My understanding with the set up on Forest River is that the switch on the outside on the heater itself is what turns on electric. The switch inside turns it on gas. My question, once the switch on the heater itself is turned on, does it run on electric only? Or is she correct and it runs on both at the same time?

Also, the on the used unit, where the black & gray water drain pipes attached to the tanks, there was a white “sealant” that was caked on HEAVY around the fittings. The scissor jack directly behind the fittings was bent slightly. I am wondering if the camper had drug and pulled the fittings loose? Again, looking at my current camper, the pipes are attached to the tanks with clamps, no sealant visible at all. I never went back to check the fittings on the new one after seeing this on the used one. Any ideas on that?

Thanks
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:48 AM   #2
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Yes you can run both propane and electric on the WH. This is used by some people as it provides faster recovery. For normal use most people use electric if available and turn on propane during high demand times. As for the Black / grey drain issue, I would be suspicious. The plumbing is assembled using PVC cement. Depending on where the fix is, cutting off damaged section and replacing with new valve is not a big deal. Might try to get the dealer to repair that as part of the negotiation. But ask them to do it before you sign anything.
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:54 AM   #3
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As far as the water heater, you have a very good question that does cause a lot of confusion. Many dealers don't spend an adequate (if any) amount of time explaining the operation of to a customer.

This post, we keep in the FAQ section, may help in the understanding/operation of the Suburban brand water heater. It's not as difficult as it may seem.

Suburban's electric switch and much more
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:03 AM   #4
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Thank you!
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Old 05-11-2015, 12:52 PM   #5
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You can use both electric & gas and as Flybob said, it will heat the water faster and have a quicker recovery time. If your unit is 30 AMP, I would not use the electric when you are using the A/C.
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Old 05-11-2015, 01:51 PM   #6
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I have a Rockwood 2306 which is a sister to the one you are looking at. Mine had the white sealant all around the tank fittings as it came new from the factory.
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Old 05-11-2015, 03:36 PM   #7
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White sealant on the outside of the piping screams to me," Josh the piping is still leaking after we glued it together, what do we do about it?" Fred, put tub caucking around it!! we have to get it out of here today!!!!!
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:58 PM   #8
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I read the FAQ post on the hot water tank and it was very informative. I just have 1 question:

Does the switch inside the camper which turns on the propane operation need to be on for the electric operation to work? Or does just the black switch at the heater itself need to be on.

-Corey
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckramps View Post
I read the FAQ post on the hot water tank and it was very informative. I just have 1 question:

Does the switch inside the camper which turns on the propane operation need to be on for the electric operation to work? Or does just the black switch at the heater itself need to be on.

-Corey
Electric is outside switch only.
Propane is inside switch only.

Unless you have 2 switches inside one for propane and one for electric, now if that's the case the out side electric switch must remain on for inside electric switch to work.

Clear as mud? Lol

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Old 05-12-2015, 12:35 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by TURBS View Post
Electric is outside switch only.
Propane is inside switch only.

Unless you have 2 switches inside one for propane and one for electric, now if that's the case the out side electric switch must remain on for inside electric switch to work.

Clear as mud? Lol

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Yup! Thanks
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