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Old 06-30-2015, 05:33 PM   #1
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Angry Gerard water heater in 2015 Berkshire XL

Our new 2015 Berkshire XL has a Girard constant hot water heater. It only works sporadically and I have to rap on the control box and turn the on/off switch on and off just to get it working. Any suggestions on what is going on? Or is it just a piece of junk?
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Old 06-30-2015, 05:38 PM   #2
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Check your paper work to find the phone number for Gerard tech support. They are very good and walking you through trouble shooting. I will look when I get a chance to see if I have the number.



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Old 06-30-2015, 05:41 PM   #3
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By the way congrats on the new rig. Our 2011 has been very good for us. If you get a spare second introduce yourself.



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Old 06-30-2015, 05:45 PM   #4
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Thanks. I will give them a call. We are Bill and Stephanie Thiess from Oldsmar, Florida.
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Old 06-30-2015, 10:49 PM   #5
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We're giving similar issues with the Girard in our 2015 Legacy. They were supposed to replace the flow switch last time I gas it in but I have my doubts as it never worked right. Have another appointment tomorrow morning to hopefully get it fixed. The folks at Girard really helped he understand how the unit is supposed to work, so I'm armed with knowledge for tomorrow. Let me know if you need any explanations, test procedures, manuals, etc. Good luck!
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Old 07-01-2015, 05:59 AM   #6
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Congrats on the Berk. We LOVE ours.

(except for the Girard water heater). While it's a good idea, and the folks at Girard are helpful, I don't think it is ready for prime time.

It would be nice if it operated like a normal hot water heater. Turn the faucet on, and get hot water (ok, for most. I realize someone is going to jump in and say "mine works fine").

But if you search the threads, there are lots of folks that have problems getting them to work right. I just don't think that you should have to wrap yourself in tin foil, change your frequency and hop in a circle on one foot while rubbing your belly just to make something work correctly.

If it was an easy change out, I would get rid of mine and put in a conventional heater.
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Old 07-01-2015, 07:34 AM   #7
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My 2015 Berk came with a Gerard tankless with all the bells and whistle updates from manufacture. Calls to tech support IMO was a waste of time individual kept blaming me on air in lines etc but could not explain why the upper limit was tripping every time it was used. Don't try this at home but maiden voyage out I had to jumper out that limit in order to take a hot shower as opposed to a cold one. On return dealer swapped out Gerard with an Atwood model. So far so good but true test will be camping trip the 4th.
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Old 07-01-2015, 07:50 AM   #8
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My 2015 Berk came with a Gerard tankless with all the bells and whistle updates from manufacture. Calls to tech support IMO was a waste of time individual kept blaming me on air in lines etc but could not explain why the upper limit was tripping every time it was used. Don't try this at home but maiden voyage out I had to jumper out that limit in order to take a hot shower as opposed to a cold one. On return dealer swapped out Gerard with an Atwood model. So far so good but true test will be camping trip the 4th.

When we were at FR plant I asked Dave Carpenter about swapping the Girard for an Atwood, he said it would fit but I'd have to change the cover. Did you have to change your cover and re-paint?
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Old 07-01-2015, 08:33 AM   #9
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I'm sitting at Lazy Days RV in Tampa right now, waiting on their second attempt to get the Girard fixed. When you said you talked to tech support, did you mean FR or Girard? I spoke with Kyle Johnston at Girard and he was incredibly helpful. Had I known how to get behind the water heater, he said he would overnight the repair parts directly to me to save time. The Girard is a great idea, but it takes some major habit changes to make it work for you (when it works correctly). If they can make it work the way it should, I'll force myself to get used to the different procedure to use it.
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Old 07-01-2015, 10:51 AM   #10
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I'm sitting at Lazy Days RV in Tampa right now, waiting on their second attempt to get the Girard fixed. When you said you talked to tech support, did you mean FR or Girard? I spoke with Kyle Johnston at Girard and he was incredibly helpful. Had I known how to get behind the water heater, he said he would overnight the repair parts directly to me to save time. The Girard is a great idea, but it takes some major habit changes to make it work for you (when it works correctly). If they can make it work the way it should, I'll force myself to get used to the different procedure to use it.

What procedure are you talking about?
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Old 07-01-2015, 11:22 AM   #11
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OK - here's how to use the tankless heater.

1. Somewhere in the RV (ours is in the upper cabinet in the front bathroom), there's a small knob. You turn this knob to determine how much temperature rise you want in the water between the incoming temperature from the source and the water temperature at the shower, etc. In summer months, this knob is set to low as the incoming water us warmer. In colder weather, adjust the temperature rise higher. Remember, this is the Delta T, or increase in temperature, if the water, not the actual water temperature.

2. When showering, etc., DO NOT turn on the cold water like you normally would. This will cause the flow rate (GPM) to the Girard to fall and can cause it to shut off. Just turn on the hot water only FULL FORCE.

3. If the water is too hot, adjust the knob I mentioned in Step 1. If you want the water hotter, just reduce the flow rate by turning down the hot water faucet. As the flow rate drops, the water will move through the heater slower and thus has longer to heat.

4. The flow sensor in the heater only allows the burner to light when hot water is flowing. When the hot water is turned off, the burner should immediately shut down. To be safe, there are two temperature sensors in the ECO (emergency cut off) switch that will shut down the burner if the water gets too hot. If that happens, the lower ECO switch is white with a small reset button you can push.

Hope that explains what I meant by the procedure. Just reply if other questions. Good luck!
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Old 07-01-2015, 11:26 AM   #12
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OK - here's how to use the tankless heater.

1. Somewhere in the RV (ours is in the upper cabinet in the front bathroom), there's a small knob. You turn this knob to determine how much temperature rise you want in the water between the incoming temperature from the source and the water temperature at the shower, etc. In summer months, this knob is set to low as the incoming water us warmer. In colder weather, adjust the temperature rise higher. Remember, this is the Delta T, or increase in temperature, if the water, not the actual water temperature.

2. When showering, etc., DO NOT turn on the cold water like you normally would. This will cause the flow rate (GPM) to the Girard to fall and can cause it to shut off. Just turn on the hot water only FULL FORCE.

3. If the water is too hot, adjust the knob I mentioned in Step 1. If you want the water hotter, just reduce the flow rate by turning down the hot water faucet. As the flow rate drops, the water will move through the heater slower and thus has longer to heat.

4. The flow sensor in the heater only allows the burner to light when hot water is flowing. When the hot water is turned off, the burner should immediately shut down. To be safe, there are two temperature sensors in the ECO (emergency cut off) switch that will shut down the burner if the water gets too hot. If that happens, the lower ECO switch is white with a small reset button you can push.

Hope that explains what I meant by the procedure. Just reply if other questions. Good luck!

Great explanation of how the WH works. It's not rocket science but it's also not your home system either. This issue comes up more often than anything else. It does explain how to in the literature everyone got but who reads right?



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Old 07-01-2015, 01:05 PM   #13
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I must be the oddball out, mine works perfectly. I also use both hot and cold water in the shower to adjust temps. I have the temp dial in my bathroom cabinet just like stated above. The only thing I do differently is use some cold water mixed in with the hot.
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Old 07-01-2015, 01:53 PM   #14
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Camping you can get away with that if you have great water pressure. If you have poor or average the limit switch will cut out as the water gets to hot in the water heater itself.



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Old 07-01-2015, 03:53 PM   #15
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I'm really glad to hear it's working for you, Campin Cajun - gives me some hope that mine will perform properly when they get it fixed. Right now, I had to leave it there today so they could get the parts and try to make sure everything gets fixed. The tech was telling me he's had much better luck if he replaces both the ECO (emergency cut off) switch and the flow switch at the same time, so I think that's what he's planning. They did say they've had at least one customer that they had to replace the Girard with the Atwood model they are using in the 2016's. The Atwood fits in the same opening in the RV, but it has a larger cover, so you have to send the cover over to the body shop to be painted. Hope I don't get to that stage.
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Old 07-01-2015, 03:59 PM   #16
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Our issue is that the entire unit does not fire up. We can hear the flow sensor kick on but the gas never turns on. OR, the blower turns on but the gas never a comes on. I've turned the water off as in the instructions and waited and turned it back on but it still doesn't fire up. Sometimes the only way to get it started is to bang on the black control box and then start over. This works SOMETIMES. Very frustrating.
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Old 07-01-2015, 04:03 PM   #17
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There's another post somewhere on here by someone who had that same problem. It turned out to be the sail switch was stuck. Look in the end of the exhaust screen and you'll see a small triangle of metal hooked on to an arm that attaches to a switch mounted on the side of the exhaust tube. Make sure it is moving back and forth when the blower starts. If it doesn't get blown outward by the exhaust fan, it won't kick the relay that allows gas to flow as it thinks the blower is not exhausting. You can probably move it with your fingers to see if it's the problem.
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Old 07-01-2015, 05:18 PM   #18
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conceptumator,
You are correct. I had forgotten about the sail switch. I should have remembered it and posted about it a while ago. Might have saved someone some agita!!
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Old 07-01-2015, 10:05 PM   #19
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Girade hot water heater

We set our temperature at the lowest setting and turn our shower on with just the hot water on. The lowest temperature setting is scalding hot! We bought an oxigenics shower head and the water is still scalding. We turn on the cold water to make the water tolerable, but the we get hot and cold surges. Is there anyway the temperature on the dial could be off? Could it somehow be readjusted?
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Old 07-01-2015, 10:26 PM   #20
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You might want to talk to the Hirard folks. I didn't get any details, but the service tech I spoke with this morning at the dealership mentioned that there was a new revision of the temp control switch and he was going to swap mine out. Could have misunderstood, but that's what I got out of it. From what I understand, the knob controls the size of the flame on the heater. You should be able to see the difference in the flame at either end of the setting range. Guess it's possible something could be working backwards.
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