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Old 09-30-2019, 08:20 AM   #1
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Another newbie question.

Unfamiliar with rv hot water heater operation. When camping using propane do you leave it on so you have hot water or only turn it on 30 minutes Pryor to needing hot water? I am aware you only use it after purging the air out. Getting ready to take out trailer out for the first time
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:23 AM   #2
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It uses very little propane. You can easily just leave the switch on, as there is a built in thermostat that will turn the propane buner on/off as needed to maintain the water temp.
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:25 AM   #3
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Since the title of your thread mentions newbie, this thread may help on the water heater and other things.

New to RV's helpful hints
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:29 AM   #4
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It is kind of a personal thing.

Some only turn it on when they 'think' they need hot water.

We turn ours on and leave it on just like at home.
Then you have hot water any time you want it.

Water heaters use very little resources throughout the day to keep the water hot.
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:24 AM   #5
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If it is a newer model you may have a dual heating element, propane and electric. We leave our electric on whenever we are plugged in at the campgrounds. During showers we will turn the propane on also for a faster recovery and a few more minutes of hot water.
The electric does the job great and there really isn't a "need" for the propane that way. I think we have used the propane alone three times- when making multi-day trips stopping at Walmarts.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:21 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nova 404 View Post
When camping using propane do you leave it on so you have hot water or only turn it on 30 minutes Pryor to needing hot water?
If we're camping, using propane (no electric hookup available), we turn the hot water heater 'ON' a few minutes before we need it. It doesn't take that long to heat up 6 gallons of water so we save propane and there's no need to keep the water hot when we don't need it.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:29 AM   #7
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We turn it on and leave it on. That way we always have hot water and don't have to think ahead. When boondocking we are on propane, as it doesn't use much, and when we have hookups, we run it on electric.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:42 AM   #8
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I often wonder about those that only turn on the water heater when they 'think' they need it, if they do the same at home?

And what if the dog gets sprayed by a skunk or your kid falls into a mud puddle and needs a quick bath... do you make them wait until the water gets hot? No one thought you'd need hot water for that but things happen.

It takes the SAME energy to get the water hot initially whether you turn it on when you 'think' you need it as it does turning it on to then leave it on.

The small amount of energy consumed to keep it hot, is far less than reheating a cold tank again. The argument of "it will stay warm for hours" doesn't apply because if that is true, (and it is) it will stay warm the same amount of time leaving it on. You will ALWAYS have HOT water and you never have to reheat and bring up to temperature, a cold tank after the initial fire-up.
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:18 PM   #9
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Like others have said. I also leave the Water Heater on Propane and Electric all day when I'm planning on taking a shower. I rarely use the shower (proper to use campground facilities if they are clean). Using both Electric and propane seems to recover hot water temp much quicker then just one of the options. If it's just hot water for sinks, I leave it on electric. Always turn off electric and let your tank cool before emptying your water heater.

NOTE: It's a Water Heater, not a "Hot Water Heater". No need to heat Hot Water Friend of mine in the trade, made fun of me multiple times for calling it a Hot Water Heater.
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Old 09-30-2019, 05:18 PM   #10
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Like others have said. I also leave the Water Heater on Propane and Electric all day when I'm planning on taking a shower. I rarely use the shower (proper to use campground facilities if they are clean). Using both Electric and propane seems to recover hot water temp much quicker then just one of the options. If it's just hot water for sinks, I leave it on electric. Always turn off electric and let your tank cool before emptying your water heater.

NOTE: It's a Water Heater, not a "Hot Water Heater". No need to heat Hot Water Friend of mine in the trade, made fun of me multiple times for calling it a Hot Water Heater.
There was a HUGE thread on this very subject few weeks ago. Hundreds of posts!
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