Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-01-2013, 03:09 PM   #1
Free Range Human
 
Drathaar's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB Flying Cloud
Currently Looking...
Twin Rocks , Oregon
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 709
Images: 4
Switch Guard - Water Heater

The winterized water heater on our first Airstream burned out because either my bride or I turned on the switch when we meant to turn on the bathroom light. The two switch panels are beside one another.

As a minor winter project for our new Airstream, I am making a plexiglass safety plate to go over the water heater switch panel and protect it from inadvertently turning it on. Just a simple box frame to go around the switch plate, with a hinged plexiglass lid for access to the switches (gas and elec). I will mount it to the wall using some of the 3M adhesive strips, so no holes are required, and it can be cleanly removed if desired.

If anyone has a better idea, feel free to send me a note.
__________________

__________________
Drathaar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2013, 03:18 PM   #2
4 Rivet Member
 
2008 16' Safari
Destrehan , Louisiana
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 395
You might want to look at Newark.
R171000AAA - ARCOLECTRIC SWITCHES - GUARD, 3900 SERIES METAL LEVER | Newark
__________________

__________________
dlb435 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2013, 03:23 PM   #3
Rivet Master
 
Alumaholic's Avatar

 
1966 24' Tradewind
Albuquerque , New Mexico
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,751
Images: 33
I Share Your Pain

I/we have the same challenge.
Let's see pictures when you have finished your fabrication.
Thanks!
__________________
Ken L
1966 Tradewind 24
2007Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax/Allison
Four Corners Unit WBCCI #8654
Alumaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2013, 03:27 PM   #4
Free Range Human
 
Drathaar's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB Flying Cloud
Currently Looking...
Twin Rocks , Oregon
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 709
Images: 4
Ken, it won't be anything really fancy. Just a hardwood box to go around the switch plate, a hinged plexiglass cover to get to the switches. If you beat me to building one, post yours.

Steve
__________________
Drathaar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2013, 10:43 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
Silver Goose's Avatar
 
2008 27' Classic FB
Burkburnett , Texas
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 955
If you have an Atwood gas or gas/electric water heater, the only source of power to the board is the 12v line that feeds the switch(es). If you pull the fuse for that circuit the water heater won't start. Tape the fuse to a bypass valve and that will remind you to put it back when you fill the WH come Spring. The trick is identifying which fuse feeds the WH.
__________________
AIR 47751
Air Safe Hitch, Reese Dual Cam 800#, Centramatics
Silver Goose is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2013, 02:16 PM   #6
Free Range Human
 
Drathaar's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB Flying Cloud
Currently Looking...
Twin Rocks , Oregon
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 709
Images: 4
Thanks Silver Goose. I may do that instead.
__________________
Drathaar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2013, 07:09 AM   #7
Figment of My Imagination
 
Protagonist's Avatar
 
2012 Interstate Coach
From All Over , More Than Anywhere Else
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 10,311
A simple solution might be this: Get a piece of stiff, heavy-gauge wire (a piece of cheap wire coat hanger will work, I think). Bend it to shape so that it will go over the switch, with just enough room to reach your finger under it to flip the switch. Secure it top and bottom, aligned dead center over the switch you want to protect.

That way, when fumbling for the light switch, your hand will hit the wire and not the protected switch, but when you want to turn the water heater on or off, you can.
__________________
WBCCI #1105
TAC LA-4

My Google-Fu is strong today.
Protagonist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 06:20 PM   #8
Free Range Human
 
Drathaar's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB Flying Cloud
Currently Looking...
Twin Rocks , Oregon
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 709
Images: 4
OK, I just figured out how to post a photo in a thread. Now, if I can just figure out how to create a public album.

Here's a shot of my switch guard. It's just a plexiglass box, hinged to a strip of alder wood. I used the 3m photo hangers to attach it to the wall. Nothing fancy, but hopefully... never again will there be a burned out water heater due to the switch being thrown on a winterized unit, while trying to turn on the bathroom light.


__________________
Drathaar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 07:27 PM   #9
Rivet Master
 
Wingeezer's Avatar
 
2005 30' Classic
Burlington , Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,709
Excellent idea - I might do something similar.

Although, you might want to check the specs on heater elements in the newer trailers.

Reason i say this is that I, like you made the mistake of inadvertently switching on the heater element with no water in the tank. It was on for hours before I discovered it.

When I did, my first reaction was that through my stupidity I had burned the element out. But I got checking the details of the heater - I forget if it was in my manual or on the internet - and I read that the newer design elements were much more forgiving in this respect.

Sure enough, next time we had water in the tank and I switched on the electric element it still worked!

Not something you really want to test though, i still think your idea is good!

Brian.
__________________
Brian & Connie Mitchell

2005 Classic 30'
Hensley Arrow / Centramatics
2008 GMC Sierra SLT 2500HD,4x4,Crew Cab, Diesel, Leer cap.
Wingeezer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 08:25 PM   #10
Wise Elder
 
Jammer's Avatar
 
2010 30' Classic
Vintage Kin Owner
South of the river , Minnesota
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drathaar View Post
If anyone has a better idea, feel free to send me a note.
If I'm staying in a winterized trailer I pull the 120v breaker for the electric side of the water heater, and shut off the manual knob on the gas valve.
__________________
To learn to see below the surface, you must adjust your altitude
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2013, 08:38 PM   #11
Rivet Master
 
MrUKToad's Avatar

 
2011 28' International
Chatham , Ontario
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,372
Images: 17
Blog Entries: 13
When camping, I've switched the water heater off inadvertently before now but as we only have the propane model there's not much harm done. I stand something front of the heater switch and that's usually enough to make sure I hit the correct one. It is annoying, though, so maybe I'll be looking at the home made cover, too.
__________________
Steve; also known as Mr UK Toad

"You can't tow that with that!"

http://toadsoftowedhaul.com
MrUKToad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 02:48 PM   #12
BAB
Rivet Master
 
BAB's Avatar

 
2015 30' Classic
2012 28' International
Greensboro , North Carolina
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 1,574
Thanks for this thread. I don't understand WHY this switch couldn't have been labeled, or why (for a few bucks more), it couldn't LIGHT UP when it was turned on. Then, there's the red light....which supposedly goes on if it is NOT working.
__________________
_________________
"SilverLeaf II" 2015 30' Classic
2014 RAM 2500 Laramie 4x4 CC w/6.7L Cummins
ProPride 3P
AIR# 58452
WBCCI # 3430-Unit 21
BAB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 03:02 PM   #13
Rivet Master
 
goshawks00's Avatar

 
1966 22' Safari
1954 22' Flying Cloud
Saline , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 768
I had this same problem with our new installed Atwood water heater... I ( I think it was my wife but I'll still say I) left the switch on the water evinually bolied out the the wiring shorted from to much heat. I'm now in the process of replacing all the WH wiring along with the foam covering. Thewr must be a way to wire in a wire for when the WH is turned on via electric. I just don't know the correct way to do it...Any ideas?
__________________
goshawks00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2013, 05:34 AM   #14
Rivet Master
 
goshawks00's Avatar

 
1966 22' Safari
1954 22' Flying Cloud
Saline , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 768
Quote:
Originally Posted by goshawks00 View Post
I had this same problem with our new installed Atwood water heater... I ( I think it was my wife but I'll still say I) left the switch on the water evinually boiled out the the wiring shorted from to much heat. I'm now in the process of replacing all the WH wiring along with the foam covering. There must be a way to wire in a wire for when the WHO is turned on via electric. I just don't know the correct way to do it...Any ideas?
Boy see what happens when you don't use the spell check!! It should have said "eventually the water boiled out of the tank, overheated and burnt the wiring to the tank, and the Styrofoam covering of the tank. There must be a way Ianthe 12V. side to wire in a green light for when the water heater is on via electric. I just don't know the correct way to do it. Any electric gurus out there?
__________________

__________________
goshawks00 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bowen water heater anode rod pickerdd Water Heaters, Filters & Pumps 3 02-07-2012 11:54 AM
Where do I put the switch for my Water Dual fuel Heater? robwok Water Heaters, Filters & Pumps 1 01-30-2012 06:30 PM
Water Heater Drain wlanford Water Heaters, Filters & Pumps 14 01-25-2012 09:12 PM
'73 Original water heater - keep or chuck? Jamiep Water Heaters, Filters & Pumps 2 12-16-2011 02:48 PM
Elect/Propane Water Heater Combo dkottum Plumbing - Systems & Fixtures 4 12-11-2011 06:41 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:31 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.