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Old 02-24-2008, 03:57 PM   #1
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New water heater in '88 Excella

I am just about done installing a new Atwood 6 gal elect / gas water heater in my 1988 Excella. Since the original heater was gas only, I am using the orignial "on" switch in the bathroom as the 12VDC power switch to the new dual switch that I mounted near the end of the twin bed wall. I also wired up the old light to turn on when I power up the old switch. This will be my "temporary" solution until I do a "full Monte" some day in the future and move the dual switch to the bathroom. I don't think this setup will cause any problems but I thought I would ask the experts out there.

For the 110V electrical connections to the water heater, I installed a small breaker box next to the junction box ... this allowed me to tie into 110V without ripping into the wall panels. Again, in the future I will move this breaker into the main breaker box and run the wiring in the walls.

I was able to clean up the original perforated guard and mount it to the exhaust side of the heater and reuse the original door rather than the painted door that came with the new unit.

Now I need to wait for April before I can hook up the water and see if everything works ok... come on SPRING !
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:59 AM   #2
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SC,

Did you get the GCH6A-10E? I am looking at doing the same swap (gas only to gas-electric) and was wondering how much grief it'd be vs. a direct swap to a G6A-8E.

I have a G6A-4E now that won't stay lit...

Any advice and guidance would be appreciated.

thanks,
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Old 04-18-2008, 12:16 PM   #3
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Old 04-19-2008, 07:04 PM   #4
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Gc6aa-10e

I ordered the GC6AA-10E and it fit right in, no big problems. I bought mine from Palomino RV in Colon, MI. The GCH6A-10E is the Engine Heat Exchange model (that's what the "H" stands for). Wasn't sure if that is the model you need. The biggest time was spent on prep time in cleaning up all the old sealant around the opening and getting the fuse box installed. I did have to notch into the back side of the storage area under the bed, next to the heater, since the new heater came with a longer inlet port for the cold water side. Evidently all the new heaters now have this longer inlet. The 110V connection worked out great, again no problems. I am about a week away from pulling the A/S out of the garage and hooking up the water to try it all out.... it hasn't leaked yet ! Jim and Alansd, let me know if there is any other information or pictures I can pass on.
Doug
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Old 04-19-2008, 10:15 PM   #5
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Don't know if the install manual contains this tip, but you don't need to use sealant around the outer edge of the flange. The only thing you need to do is run a continuous layer of butyl tape on the inside edge of the mounting flange, then just screw it into place.

It performs all of the sealing that you need and still lets you easily remove the unit for servicing if necessary.
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Old 04-19-2008, 11:21 PM   #6
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Hey Doug,

I ordered the GCH6A-10E from Palomino yesterday (thanks to Lewster's tips on them from awhile back....got me a new SeaLand ceramic toilet from them at half price last year as well...) so I hope I'm on the right track. Jevin's price he quoted me was just over half what everybody else wanted...although he called me and said to call him...so I'm hoping all is well with the order. They were closed when I called back so I'll have to call him Monday.

But I want to do the exact swap you're doing. I'm putting it into my '87 Avion actually (don't throw rocks...she's a SILVER SISTER ), and I like the idea of having hot water all the time when I'm at a full hook up place. Although, I'd be happy just to have a gas one that worked

I may very well be asking you for help. I see that my breaker panel is full, so I'm going to have to come off the bus and mount a sub panel somewhere and run that to the water heater. My dad's a licensed electrician though so I figure we can work it out.

But thanks for the wisdom. I may definitely be calling you for help


On a side note, how come this thread didn't appear in my php thingy? i've been noticing that of late on this forum that I'm not getting notified of updates to threads I'm in on. I just happened across this in the portal....please help !!!!



thanks,
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Old 04-20-2008, 07:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimGolden
Hey Doug,

I ordered the GCH6A-10E from Palomino yesterday (thanks to Lewster's tips on them from awhile back....got me a new SeaLand ceramic toilet from them at half price last year as well...) so I hope I'm on the right track. Jevin's price he quoted me was just over half what everybody else wanted...although he called me and said to call him...so I'm hoping all is well with the order. They were closed when I called back so I'll have to call him Monday.

But I want to do the exact swap you're doing. I'm putting it into my '87 Avion actually (don't throw rocks...she's a SILVER SISTER ), and I like the idea of having hot water all the time when I'm at a full hook up place. Although, I'd be happy just to have a gas one that worked

I may very well be asking you for help. I see that my breaker panel is full, so I'm going to have to come off the bus and mount a sub panel somewhere and run that to the water heater. My dad's a licensed electrician though so I figure we can work it out.

But thanks for the wisdom. I may definitely be calling you for help


On a side note, how come this thread didn't appear in my php thingy? i've been noticing that of late on this forum that I'm not getting notified of updates to threads I'm in on. I just happened across this in the portal....please help !!!!



thanks,
Jim,

If you're after 'endless hot water', then you should look at the Precision Temp RV-500: Welcome to PrecisionTemp.com You'll never run out with this puppy!!
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Old 04-20-2008, 08:01 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimGolden
SC,

Did you get the GCH6A-10E? I am looking at doing the same swap (gas only to gas-electric) and was wondering how much grief it'd be vs. a direct swap to a G6A-8E.

I have a G6A-4E now that won't stay lit...

Any advice and guidance would be appreciated.

thanks,

Clean the burner tube
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Old 04-20-2008, 06:12 PM   #9
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More info

Lew, you're right about using the Butyl tape... that's what I did. Either the factory or the PO had also put huge amounts of Vulkem (?) on the inside of the outer skin wall against the heater. This is what took me so long to prep it.

Jim, no problem about the Avion. Where I live (Benton Harbor, MI) is the former home of the Avion factory. I have met some of the people that used to work there and we swapped stories about our trailers. One guy (son of one of the original owners) talked about how they used "exploding rivets" ... used heat to set off the small charge on the tip of the rivet. I've never seen these. Good luck on your project.
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Old 04-20-2008, 08:41 PM   #10
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Well, here's what my old one does:

It will light off, then burn OK for a couple minutes, then go out. I have to wait awhile, relight, and it does the same thing.

If I crack the door open about an inch at the top, it'll stay burning. Almost like it builds up too much heat with the door shut and it craps out.

I have already cleaned and adjusted the burner tube and I've got the perfect looking flame. I think there's something wrong with the control unit. A new one is like $110 or so. I can get a whole new heater for about double that, so I'm thinking new instead of pouring big money into the 21 year old one.

Anyway, I'll keep you guys posted.

I don't know much about the exploding rivets other than I hope they don't explode when I'm around

I'm still not getting notified that this thead got updated....

gonna have to email a mod....
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Old 04-21-2008, 11:34 AM   #11
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The gas line runs thru a hole in the base of the heater to connect under the trailer. It has a shut off valve there.
Whats the best way to get the line off...if I take it off underneath there'll be a large piece hanging, which may be ok, if I take it off in the heater the line does not look like it would go back thru the hole.
Maybe it will make more sense when i actually try to pull the heater out.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:17 PM   #12
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Pictures?

AlanSD, I was able to disconnect at the heater and just slipped the gas line out the hole as I pulled out the heater. If you can post some pictures, that might help show us what you're up against.
Doug
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Old 04-23-2008, 06:29 AM   #13
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Thanks, I might be anticipating the problem. I hope to get to pull the old one this weekend. Hopefully the leak we had last trip will be more obvious when I see the tank.
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Old 04-23-2008, 07:19 AM   #14
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AlanSD, the water heater should be accessible from inside as well. The access may be in a closet, or under a bed. You may have to remove a panel or so to gain access.
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