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Old 06-08-2008, 10:24 PM   #1
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How to bench test hot water heater

What is the best way to bench test my hot water heater while I have it out for floor replacement? I have my fingers crossed that I can let it last one more season before taking the plunge on the tankless option.

I was thinking about these steps:

Set the HWH on a sturdy table beside the trailer, outside where I am working on it.

Fill the tank with water from a simple connection from my garden hose. Does the HWH water lines have to be under pressure from the water pump in the trailer?

Reconnect the gas line from beneath the trailer, , bleed gas through the system to the stove, and then be very patient with the pilot light and thermocouple as gas feeds to the HWH.

Try to light the pilot and heat the thermocouple.

If pilot stays on, allow the HWH to heat the water in the tank.

Check how long it takes for the tank to heat

Am I missing anything? Any other advice?

Thanks,
Anne

Here are some pics of the label. Sorry, the lighting is bad there on the garage floor.
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Old 06-08-2008, 11:52 PM   #2
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here's my 2 cents worth;
Your trailer is a 68 correct?
I doubt you have the original water heater in there, because the labels are there -still.
I see there is a serial and model #.
Me I'ld try to identify what you have by calling the heater mfg. phone em up.
I'm also guessing you just got this rig and you never have seen fire in the tank?
Me , I'ld try what you suggest doing, fill that puppy up with water, hold the pilot doohickey and see if she fires up the burner.
Or have Lewster make a house call.
Good luck.
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Old 06-09-2008, 07:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doorgunner View Post
..........'snip'
..............................................'sni p'
Or have Lewster make a house call.
Good luck.
Someone mentioned my name?

Your 'WATER HEATER' can be easily bench tested, and you're on the right track. I would not only fill the heater, I would go the whole route and add a SeaTech fitting to both the intake and outflow lines with a simple valve. Run your garden hose up to the tank and fill it and be sure that you can control the flow of hot water from the output side of the tank.

You can easily use an external LP tank from a gas grill for your fuel source, just be sure that you have a low pressure regulator (11" water gauge pressure), hook everything up and let 'er rip!

Do you have any electronics on your heater that need a 12VDC connection? If so, just wire up a car battery to the corresponding 12VDC (+) and (-) terminals and you should be good to go!

And if it IS the original water heater........I would save yourself the trouble and get a new one, since 40 Y/O furnaces and water heaters are problems waiting to happen!
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Old 06-09-2008, 08:17 AM   #4
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It's one of those cost of your time dilemmas, Anne. You could do the bench test. First you'd spend $50 and a frustrating couple of trips to the hardware store for all of the required connections (as Lew mentions SeaTech PEX fittings are the easiest, but not cheap). Then you've got the gas connections to cobble together, too.

If your HWH fires, runs, shuts off and you don't see any gas leaks, that's good. But with an older unit, you're just living on borrowed time till something goes. These things live a hard life! They're constantly exposed to the elements on outside, and have constant water exposure on the inside.

I'd say explore your options on replacement and save yourself the hassle and gain piece of mind. You can definitely do better than Camping World on prices. About 1/2 their price if you eBay or order from Palomino.

If you're worried about retaining the original 'look' of the vintage heat shroud, check out some of the posts here. Others have found solutions for that.

Good luck!
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Old 06-09-2008, 08:35 AM   #5
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Thanks!

Thanks, Dallas, Lew, and Doorgunner,

Yes, the peace of mind factor is significant. I'll have to think this over while I work on the pattern for the nyloboard replacement floor. One the one hand, waiting another season might mean a cash flow cushion for the many little surprises coming up just with the rear separation repairs; on the other hand, I could get the replacement now and not have to think about it anymore.

I'm tracking the project here and reaching out for help with specific questions. I'll follow up in the other thread.

Again, thanks for your advice.

Anne
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Old 06-09-2008, 08:46 AM   #6
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Tankless Water Heater?

Quick internet search found these models of tankless water heaters. I like the idea, have seen others install them. How are they doing after some use?

Prices can be out of my league, such as specifically marine applications, or what seem to be more moderate RV applications.

Venting is another concern. Some have electricity-powered vent systems; others without.

Some have pilots, some ignite when the water flow begins.

I assume buying for specific RV use would take into account the abuse of moving down the rough roads, rather than buying for a non-moving house.

I'll search the forums and see what I can find.


Anne
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Old 06-09-2008, 08:46 AM   #7
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It has an ANSI 1990 number, so it isn't really that old. Can you post the model number?
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:44 AM   #8
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Water Heater Model #

Yes, Cam, thanks for asking:

Model # G10-1
Spec. # 120101 (I'm not sure what this number means)
Serial # 94120009123

I emailed Atwood with this info, but may have to call instead.

Anne

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It has an ANSI 1990 number, so it isn't really that old. Can you post the model number?
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:49 AM   #9
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O.K. I'll be the first to guess- lets see birthday Dec 1994 and it has 9122 brothers and sisters.
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Old 06-09-2008, 10:09 AM   #10
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I've attached an installation manual for the newer models (G10-2 and on). It may be applicable to your unit as well.
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