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Old 03-26-2013, 10:03 PM   #1
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Hot water heater light

Just a few questions about the hot water heater
-does the light come on intermittently?

We have a dual heater electric & propane, I have the propane turned off, and I turn the switch off and only turn it on just before we need it- is this a good idea?
Then when we turn the switch back on, sometimes the red light shows up.

Can someone out there explain how it works, I didn't see much info in the manual provided by Escape, nor in the paperwork for the heater.

Any info would be great,
Thanks
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Old 03-26-2013, 11:32 PM   #2
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When we used the heater in electric mode we left it on all the time.

Our default position was and will be to leave it in gas mode, by leaving the electric switch on the tank in the "off" position. Regardless, one always has to remember to not turn on the water heater unless the tank has water in it. My train of thought is too make a conscious decision to turn the water heater on.

When picking up the trailer last week we had a discussion during the orientation about not worrying about the heater coming on when plugged in as usually there is both water and power if there is either at a campsite.
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:09 AM   #3
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When I'm in a 30 amp electric site I leave my water heater on all the time (in the electric mode, of course). If the site is only 15/20 amps, I only run it if I don't need the AC.

As to gas, When you first turn on the switch, the light comes on, stays on until the heater fires, then goes out. I only run the water heater when I need it if I don't have an electric site. In fact, I added an additional lamp to the switch that indicated when the heater is on in the gas mode. That way I remember to shut it off!
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:19 AM   #4
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I do as Jon does, and use it on propane only when required, it usually comes on first thing in the day, off after breakfast, back on at supper, then back off again. In the 19 it is under the bed, and not pleasant when it turns on when sleeping. When hooked up to power, it is usually on electric full time.

I too added an LED to indicate when the gas was on, it is a great reminder. Here is a thread describing the process, as well as adding an interior switch for the electric element in the water heater. A very easy mod to do. LINK
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:10 PM   #5
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As to gas, When you first turn on the switch, the light comes on, stays on until the heater fires, then goes out.
That red light can be confusing. As Vermilye says above, that's the way it works for normal operation. However, the light has one other function. If the heater fails to fire, that red light comes back on to indicate a failure. That occasionally happens to us in wet weather. I turn the switch off, wait a few seconds for the gas to dissipate and try it on again.
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:57 PM   #6
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If I understand correctly, the switch and light (as per the factory) is Only for propane, and not relevant for AC. Once you turn the switch out in the hot water panel, the water is on AC.

THanks
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Old 03-28-2013, 10:03 PM   #7
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Actually, it is more correct to say that once the switch is off, the water is no longer heated with gas. If you go outside and turn on that hard-to-reach switch inside the water heater, then you are heating with AC.
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Old 03-28-2013, 10:24 PM   #8
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If I understand correctly, the switch and light (as per the factory) is Only for propane, and not relevant for AC. Once you turn the switch out in the hot water panel, the water is on AC.

THanks
Yes, that switch is only for propane, the AC switch like Marvin said, is in an awkward, hard to reach spot on the heater itself. This is why I added another switch inside, and just leave the one on the heater on all the time. Some us the breaker as a switch, but this will put undo wear on them, as they are not designed for this repetitive task.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:09 AM   #9
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Just a reminder - If you are in a hurry for hot water and have AC, both sources of heat can be run at the same time.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:15 PM   #10
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. This is why I added another switch inside, and just leave the one on the heater on all the time. Some us the breaker as a switch, but this will put undo wear on them, as they are not designed for this repetitive task.
Jim, could you post a photo of your switch? We just returned from a month in the South West. But our first night camping was in Kansas and it was very cold. So I hooked everything up outside, then came inside to flush out the antifreeze, start the furnace, etc. which would have been ok if I hadn't left. The water heater AC switch in the 'on' position last fall when I winterized it. The RV guy said that you burn the element out in 30 seconds if there isn't any water in the tank. So I need to do this mod before I burn it out again.

Thanks.

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Old 03-30-2013, 01:21 AM   #11
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I take it that every time the fresh water level goes below one-third of a tank, we have to worry about burning out the element. We turn the outside switch to "off" when the water is getting low. I wonder if the hot water tank can go below the six gallons at all before burning out the element.

We were lucky not to burn it out because we didn't know for quite a while that the inside light was for propane only. We were probably told but forgot. In any case, we always happened to have water in the tank and finally knew to turn off the electric on the exterior. We have it "off" in winter storage.

We won't be turning it on until we get water up through the faucets with no air. I was thinking of getting a spare element to carry for when we goof it up, which I am sure we are going to do some time.
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Old 03-30-2013, 02:17 AM   #12
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To ensure that your hot water tank is full, while connected to city water, open the pressure relief valve. It is just above the anode in the outside hatch.

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Old 03-30-2013, 02:00 PM   #13
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Yes! See relief valve in photo.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg P1040954 hot water heater.jpg (63.3 KB, 33 views)
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:55 PM   #14
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Where is the location of the anode that is removed with the 1 1/6" socket ?
The pressure relief valve is in the upper left corner of the pic with the lever ?
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Old 03-30-2013, 04:36 PM   #15
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Jubal, you are correct on the pressure relief value location. The anode is hidden by the instruction plate. The rod is on the bottom, just below the gold color pipe and to the right of the black round disk (that's the electric heating element).
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Old 03-30-2013, 06:23 PM   #16
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Had to de-winterize anyway, so I shot pix.

First is anode at the bottom right of centre, with the relief valve at the top, left of centre.
Second shows the relief valve open.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg anode relief valve.jpg (178.6 KB, 34 views)
File Type: jpg anode relief valve open.jpg (172.0 KB, 31 views)
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:00 PM   #17
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Ours is not the same. We have that black piece that is at lower left of the instructions. Glenn, you don't have that. They have changed the whole contraption somewhat.
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:37 PM   #18
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The main thing is both show the pressure relief valve.
Is your heater AC and gas? Mine is only propane.
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:23 AM   #19
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That explains it.
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Old 03-31-2013, 10:16 PM   #20
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Jim, could you post a photo of your switch?
Here is the thread I made about doing the heater switches. LINK
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