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Old 10-25-2018, 04:51 PM   #1
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No hot water

This morning we had no hot water while using the electric heating element. So I switched over to my propane before I left for work. We then had hot water. I switched it back over to electric after work and checked to see if the element had voltage going to it and it does not? Iím thinking that itís an open high limit or the thermostat? Anyone else had a issue like this before? Thank you!
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Old 10-25-2018, 05:33 PM   #2
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Almost always one of the thermostats. Look for burnt
Wire under the covers.

If not,check the orange wire in the bundle on the WH. Sometimes, bundles vibrate and twist-on connectors fall off.
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Old 10-25-2018, 10:54 PM   #3
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Check the electric rocker switch in the lower left corner, outside of, your water heater. Ours was burnt up at the terminals. Less than $10 for a new switch.

Chris & Maria
2012 36RL
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Old 10-26-2018, 10:48 AM   #4
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Check for a tripped breaker in the power panel.
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Old 10-26-2018, 12:34 PM   #5
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don't forget to check the reset on the outside of the heater. There are 2 little rods that are the reset at the top of the unit. If the high limit is reached, 1 of the rods will poke out but you can't tell until you press them as they are under a black rubber boot.
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Old 10-26-2018, 05:16 PM   #6
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Smile black WH rocker switch failure

buy 2 wh switches, 1 for backup for the toolbox,
Suburban 232259 Electrical Element Switch - SW Series

if a switch terminal contact or wire is slightly burnt the element is shorting and burned the switch terminal,sometimes it means that calcium buildup has bridged electric element too causing resistance.

6.79 bucks for a switch, they fail at the worst times, amazon or your local rv store.

Switch is simple plug in, they freeze up and break too

These are a service item:

Turn breaker off first and or any switches too

Turn off water

tank rinser
liquid teflon,pipe dope or teflon tape for element/anode threads

When opening tank plugs tank will drain out completely/ power is off.

Tools needed:
anode, silver cap is aluminum model ,dark black cap is magnesium ,3/4" small pipe plug on bottom, maybe 15/16th socket , 6" extension and ratchet 1/2" drive
to remove,
Element maybe 1 1/8" or 1 1/16th socket to remove element, under black cover, 15 bucks, only 2 wires
SW12/16 DE/DEM; Wattage: 1440 Watts; Voltage Rating: 120 Volts; Mounting Type: Screw-In; With Gasket:

element lenght is important due to tank sizing there is a short and a longer one, your rv guy will know according to make and model
i have a SW 12 gallon tank, Suburban 520900 120V Electric Element

Aluminum Anode is disintegrating as a service item replacement too, 5 bucks

Camco Aluminum Anode Rod- Extends the Life of Water Heaters by Attracting Corrosive Elements, Tank Corrosion Protection (11563) amazon

valterra sells big element socket or amazon has all this

Tank rinser home made or valterra/camco 8 bucks

Flusher did a great job looked like giant chunks of cottage cheese coming from tank opening, used a coat hanger inside to move chunks around a little too,hard water ,limestone chunks of calcium came from hard water and anode disintegration flushed it for 30 minutes till it came clean.

Refill tank with Water FIRST before turning on any power bleed all air from faucets before energizing anything or air in wh tank will short out new element!!
you will be sad cuz it wont work.

All this takes a hour to fix itlll be like new again for a while

I kept my old element and buffed off buildup of calcium and kept it for a back up looks like new for a emergency use too

karl b.
austin tx
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Old 11-03-2018, 09:10 PM   #7
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Went through a similar intermittent issue with the electric side of my water heater last year. Turned out to be that one of the prongs on the female end of the 50 amp connector cable socket went bad. Daw gone thing would work ok for a low amperage draw but when the water heater kicked on it would apparently heat up and break the leg on the water heater side of the circuit. Any way, I finally noticed a slight scorch mark inside the outdoor cable socket and observed that the metal had pitted. Any way a new $15 connector socket fixed everything. Was checking thermostats, switches, etc. never thought to check the plug.

FYI: It's easily possible to have the water heater, microwave, etc. going and go above the 25 Amp rating on one of the legs of the 50 Amp circuit., e.g. 25 Amps per leg is not a lot. The master circuit board does not protect against this. In theory the 50 amp breaker on the campground pedestal is supposed to protect against this type of overage but from my experience it seems that the breakers will allow a lot more draw on one side of circuit or the other if the total amperage draw is under 50 amps. Makes sense that that type of overage will show up in the connector sockets, need to watch that. I keep an eye on it with a Progressive electrical system monitor which shows the amperage draw on each leg.
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Old 11-03-2018, 11:23 PM   #8
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Just a small correction - 50 amp service has 125 volts/50 amps on each leg, not 25 amps. That's one of the reasons going down to 30 amp when you have to is such a hit in power.
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Old 11-04-2018, 04:18 AM   #9
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Correct about the 50A / leg, got that mixed up. Wouldn't it be nice to actually get a clean 125 V most of the time. Most campgrounds are way below that voltage, e.g. further increasing the amperage draw.
2014 31SL, 5.5 Onan, Custom Magnum MS 2812 Inv./Chg.+ bat. mgmt. system, 2 Lifeline Grp. 4 agm bat.(420 ah), MorRyde Basement Slider, 2013 F-350 D. SRW.
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Old 11-04-2018, 04:46 PM   #10
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[;81698]This morning we had no hot water while using the electric heating element. So...

Just had the same problem. Turned out to be the manual switch on the front of the HW heater. Unfortunately the voltage had to be checked from the back of the heater, requiring removing the basement wall panel to access the back of the heater. If all other readings checkout look at this switch. It's fairly easy to replace.
Tom Livingston, Robbinsville, NC
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Old 11-06-2018, 03:47 AM   #11
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A funny story about "no hot water"!
Several years ago a couple that were VERY new to rving pulled in next to us, their 1st stop, after I helped them get unhooked & connected to power/water, they had absolutely no idea of where to begin, they went inside. Next morning we're sitting out with a cup of coffee & he looks around the corner & asked "does this damn park not have any hot water?" to which I said "no, but you should", turns out the dealer, among other things, never opened the bypass to the water heater so right off the bat they've burnt up the electric element & the poor guy had no clue how to switch to gas. After a week of training they were on their way, but unfortunately their dealer did a VERY poor job, actually told them absolutely nothing of any use, of explaining their new adventure.
Danny & Linda
Former '13 FB owner
Currently rvless!
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Old 11-11-2018, 04:34 PM   #12
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That's not that too isolated of an incident. The owner's manuals that come with RVs are next to useless. The dealers offer no help to a newby, at least the ones I have been around. Get the sale, get them out the door, goodbye.
Tim and Patty
2017 Redwood 31SL
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