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Old 10-25-2014, 05:48 PM   #15
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I was waiting for that statement!
People don't realize just how hot these water heaters get!
180 is just hot enough to poach a child's skin right off their hand!
I would suggest never defeating a built in safety design, even if it means $200, just not worth it!

Just my opinion!
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Old 10-25-2014, 07:32 PM   #16
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I really appreciate your comments and you have raised some important considerations. On the fence as what to do. Without the valve does it affect the amount of hot water being used?
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Old 10-25-2014, 08:15 PM   #17
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Depends on how much you use....
From then on its not mixed, it's simply straight hot out of the tank, not tempered with cold.
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Old 10-25-2014, 09:02 PM   #18
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In your late model FC you have a combination propane/electric water heater capable of heating the water very hot and will be right there at your hot water faucets soon after you turn them on. Sounds dangerous to me.
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Old 10-25-2014, 09:37 PM   #19
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Very low water pressure for hot water from pump

I have my heater at home cranked up pretty high, well over 130, but fact is, my shower head at home and in my Airstream is protected with a mixing valve of its own.

I don't know one way or the other, but I suspect that newer Airstreams have one of these shower valves also.

This imho will make it safe enough.

These mixing valves in my home shower have lasted for years and years without plugging...

Perhaps if a person wants to keep the mixing valve it might be possible to relocate it to a more serviceable position.
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Old 10-26-2014, 08:07 PM   #20
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[QUOTE=lewster;1529962]IIRC, an annual cleaning is required with vinegar. It's almost 100% ignored!! You can find the small print in the Atwood owner manual.


Lew,
I went through the Atwood XT owners manual, and the only mention of vinegar cleaning was to get rid of Hydrogen Sulfide smell. Is there another place I should look?
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Old 10-26-2014, 08:57 PM   #21
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[QUOTE=daveswenson;1530585]
Quote:
Originally Posted by lewster View Post
IIRC, an annual cleaning is required with vinegar. It's almost 100% ignored!! You can find the small print in the Atwood owner manual.


Lew,
I went through the Atwood XT owners manual, and the only mention of vinegar cleaning was to get rid of Hydrogen Sulfide smell. Is there another place I should look?
dave,

It's very possible that Atwood's legal department, in their infinite wisdom, deleted that section. The last time I saw that was a bunch of years ago when the XT water heaters first went into use and I first encountered the hot water flow problem in an SOB 5th wheel. Customer couldn't believe that the tempering valve was the problem, and I looked over his owners manual and found the clause, which is obviously now AWOL. It also explained how the tempering valve operates and why keeping it calcium and corrosion free was important.

I am intimately familiar with the use of tempering valves that are used in a similar situation. Aqua-Hot hyrdonic heating systems, which are diesel-fired hydronic heaters with an integrated tankless water heating system, use these type of tempering valves, although they are made by Honeywell and not some unmarked off-brand like the Atwood units and are of much higher quality, but not more expensive!

Depending on the water quality flowing thru these Honeywell tempering valves, they last almost indefinitely, as I have replaced only about a half dozen valves after servicing over 2000 Aqua Hot units. They temper the 190F water coming from the Aqua Hot units to a safe recommended setting of 120-125F. These valves are also adjustable so you can crank up the water temps if desired, to a maximum of 140-145F. The biggest difference here is the tankless operation of the Aqua Hot with virtually unlimited available hot water, where the Atwood XT is trying to give you more hot water capacity (8-9 gallons from a rated 6 gallon unit) by super heating the water.

One of the great things about DIY is the fact that you are free to do as you please with any appliance that you have in your RV, whether it is de-listing it by unauthorized modification or simply deleting factory engineered safety equipment. I won't and can't make suggestions to that end due to professional liability, but as always....YMMV!
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Old 10-27-2014, 08:41 AM   #22
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Spending $200 on an new valve can be avoided

Quote:
Originally Posted by barrettjl View Post
The part was about $200 and labor was about $200. It took a couple of days because they had to order the part.
Airstreams use standard 1/2" plumbing fixtures. Thermostatic mixing valves are a very common plumbing part that can be bought for about $25 on eBay or about $85 at Home Depot.

It is a simple DIY job to replace it or any plumber could do it in 30 minutes.

Adding one to a trailer without, should also be straight forward given easy access to the bypass setup in Airstreams.

Adding one with union fittings like below would allow change-out in a matter of minutes.









Quote:
Originally Posted by barrettjl View Post
As to prevention, the owner's manual does say to flush out the water heater when it is drained.
Any gas water heater needs to be drained or flushed because sludge builds up in the bottom. Draining the tank every year for weatherization is sufficient to keep it clean.

Benefits of a mixing valve:

  • Helps prevent bacteria growth by helping you to set your water heater at 140 deg+
  • Helps prevent scalding by reducing the temperature at the faucet
  • Helps extend the capacity of your existing hot water heater by bumping it to 140 degrees or 180 deg
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