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Old 08-16-2020, 09:59 AM   #1
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on demand water heater shutting off

We on in our 2012 390bh60 and are having problems with atwood on demand water heater.

First trip of year after spending winter in storage.

Set up unit making sure to purge all air from system. Turned switch on heater to on and ran hot water from tap.

As expected, the heater blower turns on as soon as the water flow starts .... however ...it turns off within a few seconds.

Heater burner does not appear to light.

I have also lit the stove and let it run for several minutes ..... this often helps with propane ignition problems in frig.

Any suggestions appreciated
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Old 08-16-2020, 11:27 AM   #2
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As always, could be several things. My Girard on demand acted the same way once. It ended up being the sail switch was bad. So it would not ignite the propane. I called tech support and they walked me through diagnostic steps, determined the sail switch was bad, had me bypass the switch and it worked until they could send me a new one.
Might look at that switch and/or call your Atwood's tech support.
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Old 08-17-2020, 04:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lefaivre View Post
We on in our 2012 390bh60 and are having problems with atwood on demand water heater.

First trip of year after spending winter in storage.

Set up unit making sure to purge all air from system. Turned switch on heater to on and ran hot water from tap.

As expected, the heater blower turns on as soon as the water flow starts .... however ...it turns off within a few seconds.

Heater burner does not appear to light.

I have also lit the stove and let it run for several minutes ..... this often helps with propane ignition problems in frig.

Any suggestions appreciated
On the Atwood check the black tube (breather tube) make sure it is clear of bugs/wasps/mud daubers, etc..... otherwise push the reset button and see if that clears it......
Otherwise.... may I introduce you to the TRUMA website: https://www.truma.net/water-systems lots of Berkshire Owners have dumped their Atwood for the TRUMA...... it works MUCH better!!
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Old 08-17-2020, 04:08 PM   #4
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I installed a Truma, best money ever spent and works fawlessly
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Old 08-17-2020, 06:07 PM   #5
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When we had the Atwood, it was pretty important that the black tube be clean and with no kinks. Make sure when you close the cover door that the tube goes thru the hole and isn’t blocked. It won’t work correctly if it is.
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Old 08-17-2020, 07:37 PM   #6
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I am an idiot ... the water heater is a Girard not an Atwood. You would have thought I would remember that after the turbulent first 3 yrs.
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Old 08-18-2020, 12:30 PM   #7
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Concur w/NMWildcat. I had a sail switch go bad and my heater exhibited the same symptoms you are describing. Blower would start, but without the sail switch being able to confirm air flow, the igniter would not fire. I spoke with Kyle Johnston at Girard and he sent me a replacement via FEDEX for under $20. Contact # 949-259-4000.
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Old 08-18-2020, 01:55 PM   #8
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I have had the experience that after winter storage the gas valve on the heater was stuck. A few light taps with a ball peen hammer freed it up and I haven't had a problem since.
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Old 08-20-2020, 07:16 AM   #9
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Similar issue with sail switch..

Mine was doing the same thing on my 2013. But it was not the sail switch, it was the motor not spinning fast enough to engage the sail switch. Replacement motors are not available, but I was able to disassemble enough to clean up the rotor and oil it so it got up to proper speed. So have someone start the system as you look at the sail switch to see if it engages. If it does not, you probably have my problem rather than a bad switch. (BTW, been 6 months and still working fine.)
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Old 08-21-2020, 10:54 AM   #10
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Update on heater

... RV tech just replaced defective sail switch. It would seem that we have the same issue as KP. Although the proper voltage is going to the blower, it is not putting out enough air to activate sail switch. Now waiting for replacement motor ... or alternate direction from Girard.
Tim
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Old 08-21-2020, 12:20 PM   #11
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final update

Mobile tech contacted Girard who suggested a tweek to the sail switch. The tech came back out to the campground and after making a very slight adjustment to the bracket holding the sail switch .... all is good.

For anyone looking for an outstanding mobile RV service in southern alberta ...
with 13 techs and a large shop in Lethbridge

Back Country Service
403 320 4281

Shop rate is 120per hour 50 less than Calgary

They went above and beyond to repair Bathroom fan , water heater and replace motor on patio awning
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Old 08-22-2020, 10:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lefaivre View Post
Update on heater

... RV tech just replaced defective sail switch. It would seem that we have the same issue as KP. Although the proper voltage is going to the blower, it is not putting out enough air to activate sail switch. Now waiting for replacement motor ... or alternate direction from Girard.
Tim

Good to hear. Was hoping they got you a new motor so I could get the source. I don't expect my fix to last forever!!
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Old 08-22-2020, 11:12 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by lefaivre View Post

Shop rate is 120per hour 50 less than Calgary
I clearly need to rethink my career path, especially if that's the low end of the scale for mobile techs.

Good to know there's good techs out there that charge relatively reasonable rates.
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