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Old 07-16-2013, 12:17 PM   #1
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Water heater won't ignite

Hi,

We recently purchased a new 2012 model Puma 298-FQU. It has a Suburban water heater that runs on propane only (no electric element) and I can't seem to get it working... When we got the unit from the dealer, they didn't go through the water heater because they hadn't filled it with water.

So when we got it, I filled it with water... I made sure the valves to the hot water tank were all opened and the hot water tank filled up. I made sure the propane was on (my stove and fridge were working). I made sure the battery had charge because all of the lights/radio/water pump/etc worked. However, when I turn the hot water switch on (behind the kitchen sink), outside the ingiter doesn't click and the propane doesn't fire. The switch then stays lit with a red light that never goes off. There is also a small light inbetween the hot water switch and the water pump switch, this never turns on. I can shut it off and turn it back on again, but it always does the same process.

Here is a picture of what my model looks like (I don't have a picture of mine right now, I'm at work)



Any ideas what I can look at, or some things I may be able to test?

Thanks!
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:31 PM   #2
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Should hear a spark if it is a DSI wh. It does take a while to purge the air out of the system. Suggest lighting all the burners on the stove and then try it again.
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:33 PM   #3
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Check the reset buttons right under the pressure relief valve
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:34 PM   #4
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Yea, we definitely tried purging the system, we ran the propane to the stove for a while before trying this... The problem is we don't hear the spark and it is a DSI system.

I'm wondering if there is a power issue to the system outside... I checked the fuse/breaker panel under the oven and didn't see anything wrong. Are there any other inline fuses along the way? Anything I can test from the outside with a multimeter to verify power to the system?
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:36 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by dalford View Post
Check the reset buttons right under the pressure relief valve
I did that as well... Only the one on the right actually has a button under it and it not able to be pressed in (it seems it might pop out when you need to reset it). The other one just has the rubber over an empty hole, possibly for electric if it was added as an option?
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Old 07-16-2013, 12:45 PM   #6
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There is a pdf file of the Suburban water heater manual that has a troubleshooting guide for their heaters. This file is located in the library here in these forums.

Just click the library tab near the top of the page, then go down to the Plumbing, Propane, and Water Systems part......to download these files for the Suburban water heaters.


It may help you in diagnosing the problem.
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wmtire View Post
There is a pdf file of the Suburban water heater manual that has a troubleshooting guide for their heaters. This file is located in the library here in these forums.

Just click the library tab near the top of the page, then go down to the Plumbing, Propane, and Water Systems part......to download these files for the Suburban water heaters.


It may help you in diagnosing the problem.
I actually have that same manual in my trailer... I went through it trying to figure out what was wrong over the weekend while we were camping but no luck.


I'm just trying to make this work myself before having to take it into the dealer for warranty work because that's a pain, but if making this work it involves getting into the control board or something simlilar, it might be best left to the dealer. I was hoping it might be something stupid I'm missing like a fuse or an 'on' switch somewhere.
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:11 PM   #8
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OK, if the DSI Fault light illuminates, you have 12 volt DC.

Turn OFF the propane switch and wait 5 minutes (minimum) to reset the control panel. Turn on your range burners on high while you wait to make sure plenty of propane. Flame tips should be blue and stand tall.

After 5 minutes, turn on propane switch. Wait for light to go out.

If light stays on after 2 minutes, go outside and smell for propane.
If you smell propane you have a bugs nest in your flue. Spray out with high pressure water from your hose or compressed air.

If you don't smell propane, you have a bad thermostat, control board, wiring, DSI Spark unit, or solenoid valve.

IMPORTANT - After 3 tries (about a minute and a half) a properly working control board will STOP TRYING to light the propane to prevent an explosion.

You must reset the control board by turning the water heater off and waiting 5 minutes.
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:20 PM   #9
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I'm pretty sure the light between my water heater switch and the water pump switch is the DSI fault light, but it isn't labelled and never comes on and I don't smell any propane outside during the whole process...

Is there any way I can verify 12v with a multimeter to the outside panel without haivng to take anything apart? If I need to get into the board, thermostat, etc. I will just take it to the dealer, we've only had it for two months.

I just want to make sure I'm not being dumb and missing a valve, fuse, breaker or 'on' switch somewhere, lol
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Old 07-16-2013, 01:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ormrod View Post
I'm pretty sure the light between my water heater switch and the water pump switch is the DSI fault light, but it isn't labelled and never comes on and I don't smell any propane outside during the whole process...

Is there any way I can verify 12v with a multimeter to the outside panel without haivng to take anything apart? If I need to get into the board, thermostat, etc. I will just take it to the dealer, we've only had it for two months.

I just want to make sure I'm not being dumb and missing a valve, fuse, breaker or 'on' switch somewhere, lol
I would first examine the fuse panel to make sure you have not blown the 15 amp water heater FUSE (not the circuit breaker). Use a ohmmeter because the element may be melted close to the attachment point and be hard to see.

Then press the right rubber circle (see photo) to make sure the high limit bellows did not stay open. (Reset switch)

THEN remove the rubber covers and look at the DC thermostat (right one). Check for a broken fusible link. (see photo) or burned wires.

When calling for propane, check for 12 volts at the solenoid valve.
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