Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-18-2010, 08:22 AM   #1
Site Team
 
KyDan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 6,716
Hot water heater - breaker vs switch?

In a recent discussion of how to shut off the electric side
of a hot water heater I mentioned that I use my circuit
breaker.
Other folks pointed out that their HWH circuit breaker also
controlled the 120v side of their refrigerator.

That got me to thinking and wondering..... maybe mine
is the same way. After some meditating I don't think
it matters to me anyway!

Here's the scenario. IF I'm shutting off the electric element
in my HWH it means I don't have shore power available.
If I don't have shore power available the fridge is gonna
be running on LP or it's shut off altogether.
My genny is just a little honda 2 KW. If I'm plugged into
the genny it's so we can charge batteries and or use
the microwave. I don't want either the fridge or the HWH
to be sucking watts from the genny so shutting off
the circuit breaker takes care of that for me.
(I still am not sure if my fridge and HWH are on the same
breaker but they might be. I'll check that out the next
time we go camping in a couple weeks.)

Discussion time. If you are on genny power, why not
force your fridge to run on LP?? The difference in
gasoline vs the tiny bit of LP gas the fridge uses is
a non issue in my opinion.
What do you think??
__________________

__________________
Peace!
Dan & Rita D
2004 5.3L Silverado 1500 ext. cab 2WD
1999 Suzuki Intruder Motorcycle
Blue Ox WD hitch, AirLift load levelers

Camping days 2010-53, 2011-47, 2012-41,
2013-41, 2014-31, 2015-40, 2016-44, 2017-63
KyDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 08:34 AM   #2
Site Team - Lou
 
Herk7769's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: South Eastern PA
Posts: 21,158
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
What do you think??

Hmm. My Yamaha runs on Propane or gasoline.

While boondocking in Fla I discovered a horrible truth. Propane is much less efficient than gasoline (you use more for the same output) and it costs more per gallon.

I will never pay off the extra money I spent for the conversion.
Somehow I thought that propane would be cheaper.

Turns out it is tied closely to the cost of gasoline. Unlike Natural Gas, propane is a distilate that results from cracking crude oil.

While my generator will also run on LNG, dragging a 3000 mile long flex pipe around would increase the fuel consumption of my truck.
__________________

__________________

Lou and Laura with Bella - German Short Hair Pointer
2008 GMC Sierra 2500HD Crewcab SB Allison Duramax
2010 Flagstaff 8526RLWS - Superglide 3300
HAM CALLSIGN - KC3FFW
Herk7769 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 08:38 AM   #3
Member
 
frankm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Miami, Florida
Posts: 446
KyDan, you said "If I'm shutting off the electric element in my HWH it means I don't have shore power available" but is that the only situation where you would turn off the WH EE? I've have read a few posts regarding low voltage in CG and the popular recommendation has been to run anything you can run on LP on LP and save the AC for that that can either can only run on AC or runs best on AC. The issue with turning off the electric side of the WH was primarily the hard to reach on/off switch, I just keep a 6" round wooden dowel in the WH for easy reach.
__________________
frankm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 08:55 AM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
 
MtnGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Shenandoah Valley
Posts: 9,274
When I unhook from a campsite that has electric, I try to always remember to flip the hot water heater switch to off. That way it is already set for my next dry camping trip, with possible generator use.

While dry camping, I switch the fridge to "gas only" before I leave the driveway at home.....that way it is set for the trip. If I would happen to end up at an electrical site, then all I have to push is 1 button, and all is well. If I forget to push that button, then all is still well....albeit using a little more propane.

Before using the generator, I will double check the hot water heater and fridge to make sure they are both on propane......just in case my memory failed earlier. If the hot water heater is still on electric, I imagine my generator will let me know immediately.

I mainly run my Yamaha EF2400is for charging the batteries, sometimes in conjunction with the missus using a hair dryer, and occasionally running the AC. My generator powers the AC operation with no problems, but I do let the genny run for a little while before starting the AC, have the fan already running on low speed to keep the draw as low as possible.

It makes sense to flip the breaker on those units that have the hot water heater (actually, it is a cold water heater) and fridge on the same circuit before dry camping.....don't see where that would hurt anything. The fridge interior light and flame spark should both work on the 12 volt side of things.
__________________

Chap , DW Joy, and Fur Baby Sango
2017 F350 Lariat CCSB, SRW, 4x4, 6.7 PS
2017 Grand Design Reflection 337RLS
MtnGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 09:32 AM   #5
Site Team
 
KyDan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 6,716
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
While dry camping, I switch the fridge to "gas only" before I leave the driveway at home.....that way it is set for the trip. If I would happen to end up at an electrical site, then all I have to push is 1 button, and all is well. If I forget to push that button, then all is still well....albeit using a little more propane.
I hear you but if you set your fridge to "automatic" IT
will take care of this for you. IF my HWH circuit breaker also shuts down
my fridge, the fridge will automatically switch to LP.
As I said, if I'm flipping the breaker it's because
I'm gonna be dry camping so the fridge and HWH are
gonna be on LP anyway.

Not a big deal but I still don't see why folks who responded
earlier and said "they can't use the circuit breaker" because
it also shuts off the AC side of the fridge should care.

That's my point-- if I don't have 120v for the HWH I also
don't have it for the fridge so shutting off the breaker
kills both and keeps them out of the loop when/if I
run the genny for a little while.

I've never run into a CG with low voltage that I know
of. If that happens and I figure out what's going on, I
probably won't care for the reason in the paragraph above.

Just my 2˘ and something to yack about on a slow
morning at home.
__________________
Peace!
Dan & Rita D
2004 5.3L Silverado 1500 ext. cab 2WD
1999 Suzuki Intruder Motorcycle
Blue Ox WD hitch, AirLift load levelers

Camping days 2010-53, 2011-47, 2012-41,
2013-41, 2014-31, 2015-40, 2016-44, 2017-63
KyDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 10:05 AM   #6
Moderator Emeritus
 
MtnGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Shenandoah Valley
Posts: 9,274
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
I hear you but if you set your fridge to "automatic" IT
will take care of this for you. IF my HWH circuit breaker also shuts down
my fridge, the fridge will automatically switch to LP.
As I said, if I'm flipping the breaker it's because
I'm gonna be dry camping so the fridge and HWH are
gonna be on LP anyway.
Agreed. But pushing the eye level button on the fridge to "gas only" is easier than bending over to the floor mounted power center and finding the correct breaker to throw.

If I would leave the fridge on "automatic" without the breaker thrown, then when I start my generator it is going to automatically switch to 120 volts, which I don't want to happen.

Seems like a wash out.....individual switches vs. the breaker(s).
__________________

Chap , DW Joy, and Fur Baby Sango
2017 F350 Lariat CCSB, SRW, 4x4, 6.7 PS
2017 Grand Design Reflection 337RLS
MtnGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 10:09 AM   #7
Member
 
doctort44's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 62
I have an orange clamp that I put on the water hose fitting right where it hooks to the trailer. My rule is that, when we're unhooking to head out, I can't take off the clamp to unscrew the hose unless I first confirm that the electric switch for the water heater is off.
__________________
Terry and Joan and our empty nest
2008 Silverado Crew Cab 5.3liter 3.73
"The Cottage" (2010 Surveyor Sport 189)
doctort44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 10:32 AM   #8
Site Team
 
KyDan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 6,716
OK, when you are going to run your genny you go outside
and open the access door on the HWH and flip the rocker
then shut the access door. Then push the button your your
fridge to LP only.

When I'm gonna run my genny I'll squat down and flip the breaker.
It's a wash as you said.
Upon further thought I "think" my fridge is not on with the HWH
but I'll check it next time out just so I'll know fer sure.
__________________
KyDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 11:46 AM   #9
Moderator Emeritus
 
MtnGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Shenandoah Valley
Posts: 9,274
I just leave the hot water heater rocker switch in the off position all of the time, unless I am hooked to electric at at campsite. I leave the fridge on "propane only" once I pull out of the driveway for a dry camping trip, which I mostly do. No switches to throw when starting the generator. If I have electric hookups, then yes, I do out and throw the rocker switch on the water heater, and put the fridge on automatic once I get hooked up.. That is probably a little more trouble than flipping the breaker. Now ya got me thinkn'.....hmmm ?!?!

I thought I might have the only unit with the fridge and water heater on the same breaker, but reading some other posts recently I realize that others that are wired like that also. But I think they were all Surveyor owners.
__________________

Chap , DW Joy, and Fur Baby Sango
2017 F350 Lariat CCSB, SRW, 4x4, 6.7 PS
2017 Grand Design Reflection 337RLS
MtnGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2010, 11:58 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
tncruiser's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: east tn.
Posts: 415
circuit breaker were not meant for continuos cycling
you shorten its life expectancy and accuracy.i spent 50 years in appliance repair and my evidence is anecdotal not scientific
brianj
__________________

__________________
tncruiser is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
breaker

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




ForestRiverForums.com is not in any way associated with Forest River, Inc. or its associated RV manufacturing divisions.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:24 PM.