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Old 09-11-2019, 03:55 PM   #1
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Odor from SDS2 cooktop

I have a 2018 Escape 19 with the Suburban SDS2 flush-mount 2-burner stove. All was fine until about 6 months ago when one of the burners began emitting a foul stench whenever it was lit. Can't tell if it's propane or something but the odor lingers for a long time in the trailer. No alarm from the propane detector. Odor also seems to be inside the cabinets beneath the stove.

So, since I am full-time and don't have the luxury of leaving the trailer somewhere, I just used the other burner which was fine. Now, however, the second burner is emitting the same foul odor when lit. I did contact ETI and they said to call Suburban. I did and they said to take to a servicing dealer of which there are very few it seems. But, I will do that when I get back to New England for a few weeks this fall.

So, has anyone else experienced anything like this? I will be using a propane detector first to see if it's propane. If it is, then I will request replacement or repair. If not propane, then I have no idea what it might be?

Thanks!

Carl
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:45 AM   #2
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So, I had a little spare time so decided to take the bottom cover off the cooktop and look up underneath. I found that the compression fitting onto the left hand burner was totally unscrewed! Only friction was holding the tube into the burner. So I tighten that up and now have no odor from that burner. The right side burner, however, still emits a propane odor but the compression fittings seem to be tight. Guess I will need to pull the cooktop when I get back to New England and look at it more carefully. Apparently, that compression fitting was never tightened at the suburban factory.
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:51 AM   #3
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That's scary. Good on you for taking the initiative and finding it. I wonder if it would be prudent for that type of fitting to have a drop or two of Loctite?
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:04 AM   #4
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Is it possible that there could be some water in the propane line to the stove?
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:20 AM   #5
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Also are you familiar with the smell of mercaptans (used to "odor up" propane gas)? Is that what you are smelling?
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:38 AM   #6
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That's scary. Good on you for taking the initiative and finding it. I wonder if it would be prudent for that type of fitting to have a drop or two of Loctite?
That probably wouldn't hurt. My experience with compression fittings is that, once they're secured properly, they really don't loosen. So, not sure what happened here.
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:39 AM   #7
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Is it possible that there could be some water in the propane line to the stove?
I suspect not as the flame was the proper color blue.
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Old 09-13-2019, 11:40 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Randy in Maine View Post
Also are you familiar with the smell of mercaptans (used to "odor up" propane gas)? Is that what you are smelling?
yes, I am familiar with the propane additives odor. What I smelled inside the trailer seem to be a little bit different. However, as noted above, once I secure the loose compression fitting, the odor ceased. So, yeah, it was propane!
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Old 09-21-2019, 12:54 PM   #9
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Hi Carl - we had the same problem on our recent trip. Our propane stove was leaking propane while in use. Fortunately I have a sharp sense of smell, backed up by the propane alarm in the trailer. At this point we were in Dawson City. We had a plumber check it out. He confirmed that there was a leak but he did not have the correct parts. He did install a shut-off valve so that we could still use the propane for other appliances without endangering our lives. Super lucky- we did not blow up the trailer or die in our sleep!!!

We got a plumber to check the stove. He confirmed the leak and told us that the aluminum tubes that feed the propane into the elements were a very loose friction fit - so loose that they did not stay in place. They should have a crimp collar fitting to secure them. Super lucky- we did not blow up the trailer or die in our sleep!!!

He installed a shut off valve under the stove so that we did not have to worry about further leaks. The trailer is now at ETI being repaired.
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Old 09-21-2019, 01:27 PM   #10
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We have the same issue with our cooktop, on our recent trips we kept smelling gas when using the left burner, on one occasion the propain alarm went off. Yesterday I found that the left aluminum tube feeding gas to the left burner is loose on one end, the compression ring on this end is missing.
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Old 09-22-2019, 09:50 AM   #11
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Update

So, being stationary for a while, I used my propane sniffer to check out the cooktop. Even after snugging the loose compression fitting on the left burner, it still leaks propane. Right burner leaks propane where the orifice holder tube goes into the valve. Took the tubes off and find that the compression collars are not in good condition so that is likely why they are leaking.

Seems that others are having similar problems suggesting a lack of quality control and use of poor quality connections on the orifice holder tubes.

Bottom line... if you have this stove, be very careful about propane leaks!

Not convenient for me to take trailer to ETI so will either have a Suburban service place repair or may just order the tubes and replace them myself as repair centers are few and far between.

I've notified Suburban of the issue and am awaiting a response.
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Old 10-01-2019, 08:10 PM   #12
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Another Update

I dropped the stove off at the nearest Suburban service facility. They confirmed that both orifice holder tubes were leaking at the compression fittings and that the tubes were deformed at the ends. Suburban has sent them a new replacement stove that I will pick up tomorrow. So, keep an eye and nose out for potential leaks if you have this cooktop. The good news is they apparently stand behind their product!
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Old 10-03-2019, 03:15 PM   #13
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Now that’s what I call customer support

The Suburban cooktop in our new e19 had a broken gas tube from day one. After having bad smell every time we used it I took a close look and found the issue. Suburban customer support referred me to local dealers (40 miles away) that didn’t seem eager to help, very busy and can look at my issue in a month or more. Called Escape and after verifying our cooktop model Dustin promptly arranged for a new one to be shipped to us. From browsing the forum for a while I knew Escape is not your average RV manufacture\dealer but it’s nice when you experience it first hand.
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Old 11-04-2020, 11:52 PM   #14
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Both gas tubes found broken

I too had an ongoing gas leak that set off my alarm on rare occasions. Thinking I may have a defective gas detector I decided to verify I didn't have an actual leak before replacing the detector. After an exhaustive search I came to realize the stove had a small leak that only occurred when I used the burners. I assumed the leak was coming from the regulator as this has been a source of problems in past rigs. Upon disassembling the gas lines it became apparent my gas lines coming out of my valves were loose. After removing the connections both lines were found snapped off. The double crimped ends were still lodged in the gas valves. Unfortunately nether Escape or suburban would honor a replacement since the trailer was a few moths out of warranty. I'm very disappointed with the refusal to honor an obviously defective stove or installation. The best I can tell, the double valve was either installed loose or possibly included a loosened installation for a fix for sticky valves on a defective stove. The lines most likely snapped due to fatigue as the valves bounced continuously over the two years of use. Anyone with this two burner flush mount should be aware! If anyone knows how I can get these lines recrimped or replaced, please let me know. Suburban wants to sell me new burners with new lines costing almost $200.
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Old 12-01-2020, 09:46 PM   #15
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Sds2 3031ast

Same problem with 1 tube broken. Called Suburban and they said the only parts that can be replaced on this model are the grates and knobs. Broken tube requires stove replacement. Working with a service center to get it looked at and start the warranty process. Catch is it takes a month to get a new one and we're traveling. Fortunately we'll be in AZ for 6 weeks. Major pain when one is on the road.
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fun Pig View Post
Same problem with 1 tube broken. Called Suburban and they said the only parts that can be replaced on this model are the grates and knobs. Broken tube requires stove replacement. Working with a service center to get it looked at and start the warranty process. Catch is it takes a month to get a new one and we're traveling. Fortunately we'll be in AZ for 6 weeks. Major pain when one is on the road.
I know you probably want to handle this under warranty but just throwing it out there that these stoves are available and could possibly be installed by yourself or a mobile RV repairman. Call Escape - let them know you are traveling and the standard warranty procedures won’t work. They might surprise you - maybe they could ship you a stove they have in stock or agree to compensate you at retail for one you buy.
https://pantherrvproducts.com/suburb...SABEgJ5jfD_BwE
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:58 PM   #17
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Dang..we seldom use our stove and if I had know this I would have checked it while I had it out redoing the counter and on warranty.
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Old 12-01-2020, 11:06 PM   #18
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If you can get a free replacement, than go with it. If it will cost you to replace that look at options. I am very disappointed that both Escape Trailers an Suburban could not remedying this for me even though I was only a few months out of warranty and this happens to be a reoccurring problem. I opted to go with an upgraded stove for much less. Dometic D21, PN 50216 drop in cooktop - similar dimensions and better grill and BTUs. Still need to install.
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Old 12-02-2020, 12:46 AM   #19
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Sorry to hear about that Suburban. Before you install the Dometic you may want to consider this review on their website:

Won’t work above 4500’ elevation
We have this unit in our new Motorhome the unit would not light on our last camping trip.
Dometic customer service said the cooktop is only rated to work at 4500 feet and below
Which in my opinion is ridiculous it’s an RV we camp at altitude all the time.
https://www.dometic.com/en-us/us/pro...oktop-_-138690
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Old 12-02-2020, 11:25 AM   #20
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This is making me very happy that my '18 has the "old" cooktop. No problems at all, and it gets frequent use when I am camping without hookup. And at home when there's a power outage!
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