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Old 10-18-2015, 05:46 PM   #1
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Hot Water Not Hot

I have a 2006 22 ft mid bath Airstream Interstate with a 6 gallon LP hot water heater made by Atwood Mobile Products. The hot water is only luke warm after heating for 30 minutes and doesn't seem to get any hotter. I don't see any temperature adjustment on the unit. Can anyone shed a light on this?
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Old 10-18-2015, 08:29 PM   #2
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I have a 2006 22 ft mid bath Airstream Interstate with a 6 gallon LP hot water heater made by Atwood Mobile Products. The hot water is only lukewarm after heating for 30 minutes and doesn't seem to get any hotter. I don't see any temperature adjustment on the unit. Can anyone shed a light on this?
There is no temperature adjustment on the Atwood water heater.

Is your Atwood heater a dual electric/propane model? And if so, are you having the same problem in all three modes (electric only, propane only, and both electric and propane on together)?

Also, does a red light appear on the control panel for the water heater? The red light is a fault code, and when it comes on, it tells you that the water heater shut itself off to protect itself from further damage.
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Old 10-19-2015, 06:29 AM   #3
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Thanks, Protangonist

The water heater is a propane only model and seems to be heating properly. The red light is not on and the propane flame burns for 20 -30 minutes until it turns itself off presumably because the hot water has reached temperature. The problem is that the water is only luke warm.
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Old 10-19-2015, 06:57 AM   #4
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The water heater is a propane only model and seems to be heating properly. The red light is not on and the propane flame burns for 20 -30 minutes until it turns itself off presumably because the hot water has reached temperature. The problem is that the water is only luke warm.
FYI - the red light ought be on only during ignition sequence. If it remains on permanently, it's an indicator something is wrong. As such, since your red light goes out, It would suggest the system is at least lighting up fine; just not heating properly.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:18 AM   #5
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I read the thread title and thought, "I bet this OP has a T1N". Sigh. Sure enough.

This issue bedeviled me to the point of hair-tearing. The owner's manual fails to mention that the valving sequence for the hot water heater is behind a panel that you need a screwdriver to open (this is true at least of the jack-knife couch mid-bath, not sure about rear lounge, not sure which model you have).

This panel appears like a permanent trim piece until an intrepid owner on hands and knees notes that, near the very top, there is a finger-pull hole, suggesting that it is intended to be removed.

Your bypass valves might be in the wrong position - I would check that first if you haven't already, especially given that you are in a northern state where winterizing would necessitate monkeying with those valves.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:44 AM   #6
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ahhhhhh! a half-open bypass allowing cold to intermix the flow leaving the tank?
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:58 AM   #7
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ahhhhhh! a half-open bypass allowing cold to intermix the flow leaving the tank?
Something along those lines was my suspicion upon reading the OP's description. The whole way that the water heating system is set up in this generation of Interstate is just not intuitive. In my case, I had no hot water at all when it seemed like I should have had it.
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:06 AM   #8
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Thanks to All

Needless to say, we are new to all this. InterBlog was exactly right. The Bypass Valve was wide open. Thanks to InterBlog, IanPoulin, and Protangonist for your help. You saved me a trip to the RV shop and untold amounts of money.
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Old 10-19-2015, 10:29 AM   #9
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Awesome!

One final caveat - watch your hot water heater closely for signs of malfunction from this point forward.

As I was messing with ours trying to make it work, my husband worried that I might have accidentally damaged its heat exchanger for lack of proper water feed due to the unknown misaligned valves as my experiments were in process.

I don't think I did that, but I haven't yet put it through its full paces to prove that it is still all OK. We live in southeast Texas and so we don't need hot water most of the year!! We are just now coming to the point where I have to put it back in service.
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Old 10-19-2015, 11:34 AM   #10
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One final caveat - watch your hot water heater closely for signs of malfunction from this point forward.
Good point! If your bypass valve was open, you may have been heating an empty heater, which couldn't have been good for it.
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Old 10-19-2015, 02:35 PM   #11
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I don't think we were heating an empty tank because the water was warm. I believe that the hot water was mixing with cold because of the open by-pass valve. All seems to be working well now. But thanks for your opinions.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:48 PM   #12
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FWIW, the water heater overheats the water and mixes w/ cold giving it a higher equivalent capacity.
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:01 PM   #13
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Hot = Good

There actually should be a burner adjustment outside. It's just a slotted tube that you can loosen a set screw, move it to where the flame is optimum, and retighten. You want a nice blue flame. But usually, you set those correctly and don't touch them for years and years. I figured it was something like the bypass...glad you got it sorted out.

I don't like cold showers
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