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Old 11-17-2016, 04:50 PM   #1
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Water Heater Aux Electric Switch

Has anyone added a Aux Switch for the Electric operation on a Suburban SW10DE inside the RV (similar to a SW10DEL which includes the 2nd switch). I was thinking about adding a switch in series to the switch mounted on the outside of the Water Heater and just leave the one outside on at all times and control it from inside.
Any thoughts.......
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Old 11-17-2016, 05:08 PM   #2
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The second switch would work fine. I would add an indicator light to show the power for the electric element is on. Also, verify the amperage rating of the outside switch and related wiring. Without looking I would want to make sure it is not switching the 115V line to the heater element. You may have to do a lot of disassembling to tap into that circuit.

Just my thoughts, Good Luck and let us know if you try it.
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Old 11-17-2016, 05:13 PM   #3
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Several have done a similar mod. What many have done is make the electrical outlet the water heater is plugged into, switchable.

Here are some previous threads to give you some ideas:

Water Heater Switch with Power-on Light

Electric Hot Water heater question

A lot of campers just open up the RV's electrical distribution panel inside the RV, then simply use the circuit breaker to the outlet the water heater may be on...to turn the electric heating element on/off and they leave the outside switch in the on position. This works if there is nothing else in the RV on that circuit...which there usually isn't.

Turning off the electrical breaker to the 120 volt electric heating element has no effect on the propane/dsi side of the water heater...which will continue to operate if you want to use it.



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Old 11-17-2016, 05:38 PM   #4
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X2. This what we have done on all of the trailer that we have had. Very easy to use and no mods or cost is involved. This is on our check off list for setting up and breaking camp, turn on/ turn off the water heater at the circuit breaker.
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Old 11-17-2016, 07:13 PM   #5
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On my last RV I went behind the breaker box and spliced into the 110 volt wire to the water heater. I inserted a switch with a red light on indicator light. I installed switch box under counter top. Not the best location but at least it was inside.
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Old 11-18-2016, 07:04 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyCowboy View Post
On my last RV I went behind the breaker box and spliced into the 110 volt wire to the water heater. I inserted a switch with a red light on indicator light. I installed switch box under counter top. Not the best location but at least it was inside.
Same here.........and just left the switch outside for the water heater on all the time......lighted switch and some wire about 15 bucks and took about 30 minutes to install.
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Old 11-18-2016, 07:32 AM   #7
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All great ideas. Thank you very much. I think I'm going use a little bit of everyone's ideas and put a 12v lighted switch on my control panel and use a relay to "Break" to 120v power. I'll try that this weekend and post how it goes.
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Old 11-18-2016, 07:45 AM   #8
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OK, I just gotta ask- why not just install a lighted 120v switch.
Why the extra relay??
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Old 11-18-2016, 12:11 PM   #9
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I was gonna try to match the rest of the switches on the control panel and I could only find a 12v rated illuminated switch.
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Old 11-18-2016, 04:23 PM   #10
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What happens when someone inside hits the switch and the tank is empty?????
A new heater element!!!!!!!!!!!!!
You forget to turn it off when draining the tank...same
When I disconnect the water I turn off heater from outside....you are right there!!!!
Same when I drain the tank.....I make sure switch is off......
I leave the switch "on" 99% of the time 24-7 when camping!
Only use propane if you want quick recovery=multi showers in succession
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Old 11-18-2016, 09:49 PM   #11
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Aux Hot Water Switch

My Flaggstaff 27RLWS came with a Suburban Hot Water Heater and I didn't care to go outside to the opposite side of the TT and use the switch on the unit when I wanted to use "Electric".
Due to logistics I ended up installing a lighted 110 Volt switch by my panel and switching the load side of the hot water heater breaker using the same grade and type romex cable the TT was built with. In addition I used a Brother P-Touch label Maker to label the same.
Fortunately my family is accustomed to shut off or close "water,windows and heaters" when leaving for any extended period of time however, I do shut off the switch at the heater when I winterize.... just in case.....
Anyways, it works for us.....
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Old 11-18-2016, 10:04 PM   #12
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Here's the switch I installed, and a wiring diagram for you. If your switch in near the water (in the bathroom, for example), you might want to replace the circuit breaker with a GFCI breaker (they're a bit pricey at about $45).
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