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Old 11-23-2015, 07:07 PM   #1
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Hot Water Heater Fire

Last week I went to winterize my FR3 30DS...
When I opened the water heater compartment to remove the diode out of the tank, I noticed black stuff in the compartment bottom. I looked it over and immediately seen a burned wire and melted plastic....

The water heater was working the last time we camped (3 weeks ago) and we haven't used the coach since.

I have a shut down list we go through every time we drive the thing. My wife and I both go over each item and we check off that it has been completed before we move. ie awning rolled up, fridge turned off, hot water off, pump off, steps up, slide-outs in.... you get the picture...

This is what my hot water heater looks like right now. Any ideas of what caused this or why it happened?....
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:33 PM   #2
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Your Emergency Cut Off (ECO) hi-limit/thermostats are behind that rubber cover. You will have two or these, one for the 120 volt AC electric heating element, and the other for the 12 volt DSI/propane.

It looks like the 12 volt side may have burned behind the rubber cover. Can you remove it to check. It will look similar to this. We want to look at the Eco/thermostats to see if the wiring or other has caught fire.

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Old 11-23-2015, 07:46 PM   #3
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Your Emergency Cut Off (ECO) hi-limit/thermostats are behind that rubber cover. You will have two or these, one for the 120 volt AC electric heating element, and the other for the 12 volt DSI/propane.

It looks like the 12 volt side may have burned behind the rubber cover. Can you remove it to check. It will look similar to this. We want to look at the Eco/thermostats to see if the wiring or other has caught fire.

I would agree but you still might have had some roll out if it was on propane, if not then I would say your limit isn't working...
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:52 PM   #4
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Are you sure the electric switch was in the off positlon ? Without water pressure it would over heat and shortout.
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:53 PM   #5
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Wait a sec, I can now see what you are referring to with a burned wire. Disregard my previous post. You have a brown wire in the back that goes to your propane valve that has caught fire, and burned the bottom outside portion of the Hi-limit/thermostat cover.

Hold on a sec and let me pull a schematic
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:59 PM   #6
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Wait a sec, I can now see what you are referring to with a burned wire. Disregard my previous post. You have a brown wire in the back that goes to your propane valve that has caught fire, and burned the bottom outside portion of the Hi-limit/thermostat cover.

Hold on a sec and let me pull a schematic
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Old 11-23-2015, 07:59 PM   #7
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It does not look like the switch was the problem. Look at the wire below the switch and the plug below that. Both are scorched and the switch cover is curled up from the bottom. It appears that you had a gas flow problem through the tube and the flame came out of the air mixture port. My guess is that you have an eight legged hitch hiker.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:06 PM   #8
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Is there a part missing in the burner tube. It looks like the screen and the adjuster is missing. Look at the damage beginning just above it.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:10 PM   #9
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It does not look like the switch was the problem. Look at the wire below the switch and the plug below that. Both are scorched and the switch cover is curled up from the bottom. It appears that you had a gas flow problem through the tube and the flame came out of the air mixture port. My guess is that you have an eight legged hitch hiker.
I agree. Flame backed up into mixture tube and scorched what you see in the photo.
Either a spider or a HUGE gust of wind.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:34 PM   #10
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Would low propane pressure cause this? I'm not to familiar with propane systems, but thats my guess. It sure looks like the flame came out of the tube, inboard, and caught the cover, wiring, and the CB cover on fire. I know on our 30DS (which this isn't model specific heater really), there is no cover over that intake. Ours looks just like yours.
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