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Old 06-15-2015, 04:54 PM   #1
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Stinky hot water

Well, I'm going through final preparations for our one lap of America, and testing water functions, water from the hot side is stinky and cloudy (this is before heating). Cold water fresh tank is clear and fresh smelling. I'm not going to taste them so don't worry.

Any ideas about what would cause this and what I should do about it?

Thanks
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Old 06-15-2015, 05:22 PM   #2
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Need more info. Is this a new Interstate that you have never used before? Or is it a used unit new to you. If not did you have any problems the last time you used the water heater. Was it winterized this year?

I think your first step would be to drain the water heater from the plug on outside of van under the water heater cover.


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Old 06-15-2015, 05:36 PM   #3
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Definitely the hot water heater. Probably full of water and left that way but turned off for an extended period. The good news is all you have to do is flush it a few times and the stinky water should be gone.
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Old 06-15-2015, 06:13 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by gmillerok1 View Post
Definitely the hot water heater. Probably full of water and left that way but turned off for an extended period. The good news is all you have to do is flush it a few times and the stinky water should be gone.
It is new, was winterized before I picked up. Did the appropriate steps to de-winterize, but yes did leave water in it. Should I not do that if I'm not going to use it for a while? Just leave it drained all the time except for when I'm moving and using it regularly?

whats the best way to flush the tank? just fill and drain it?
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Old 06-15-2015, 08:33 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by scarletbison View Post
It is new, was winterized before I picked up. Did the appropriate steps to de-winterize, but yes did leave water in it. Should I not do that if I'm not going to use it for a while? Just leave it drained all the time except for when I'm moving and using it regularly?

What's the best way to flush the tank? Just fill and drain it?
I'd fill it and then w/ the pump off, remove the drain plug and drain. Reinstall the plug and fill and drain again. Maybe a third time just to be sure.

Probably wouldn't hurt to sanitize the fresh water system completely when finished.
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Old 06-15-2015, 09:40 PM   #6
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Potable water sanitation was one of my many hats....From an aircraft carrier to a Interstate, the remedy is the same. Nothing will ruin a trip faster than gastroenteritis. Stagnant water grows bacteria and other very bad things.

I would add directly to the water tank 1 (one) ounce of unscented bleach (Sodium Hypochlorite or Calcium Hypochlorite) which is sold in stores at 5-6% strength, for every 15 gallons of tank capacity. Fill the water heater with the pump and allow to run through ALL the faucets until you can smell it. Turn off the water and allow to stand overnight. Drain the system manually or run it to waste the next day. Refill with fresh water, and the smell problem and it's potential health hazards will be eliminated.
Hope this helps.
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Old 06-16-2015, 02:06 PM   #7
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Grant,

Common problem. Navy is right. Do what he says or go to Walmart and obtain a bottle of water system freshener in their RV/Car section.Flush system once or twice a year to keep it smelling and tasting clean.

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Old 06-17-2015, 01:57 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by NavyCorpsman View Post
Potable water sanitation was one of my many hats....From an aircraft carrier to a Interstate, the remedy is the same. Nothing will ruin a trip faster than gastroenteritis. Stagnant water grows bacteria and other very bad things.

I would add directly to the water tank 1 (one) ounce of unscented bleach (Sodium Hypochlorite or Calcium Hypochlorite) which is sold in stores at 5-6% strength, for every 15 gallons of tank capacity. Fill the water heater with the pump and allow to run through ALL the faucets until you can smell it. Turn off the water and allow to stand overnight. Drain the system manually or run it to waste the next day. Refill with fresh water, and the smell problem and it's potential health hazards will be eliminated.
Hope this helps.
Clayton
This.

An overnight contact time might not be strictly necessary (I would use 15 minutes). Exact contact time is a function of free chlorine, pH, and temperature, all of which have to be measured.
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Old 06-17-2015, 05:56 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone. Since I had the time I'm leaving it over night and draining and refilling in the morning. I'm leaving on Monday for our inaugural lap of America
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Old 06-17-2015, 08:26 PM   #10
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if it smells of rotten eggs, its an anaerobic bacteria that thrives in the pipes or system. I've had it a few times after leaving the trailer more than three or so weeks between excursions. It's essentially harmless at those levels to humans and will clear after the first day of general flushing of the lines from use. If you worry more than that, you can sanitize your lines via the bleach methods.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:20 PM   #11
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Thanks everyone. Since I had the time I'm leaving it over night and draining and refilling in the morning. I'm leaving on Monday for our inaugural lap of America
Plan on filling and draining about three or four times to ensure you get it flushed of odor.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:42 PM   #12
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Thanks everyone. Since I had the time I'm leaving it over night and draining and refilling in the morning. I'm leaving on Monday for our inaugural lap of America
I hope you have a safe and fun trip.
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