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Old 03-09-2014, 01:42 AM   #15
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The normal load of the heater should never cause the relay to burn up.

Look for a problem with excessive loading, arcing in the relay due to wear or corrosion, or the relay jumping in and out rapidly causing overheating via arcing.

As I think about this more, I am thinking that the relay bight have simply worn out and started an arc that burned it.

I might be inciting paranoia causing you to change parts that don't need changing.

Change the relay and proceed with cation might be better advise than I firsts gave unless the parts are cheap enough that the labor getting to the parts is worth more than the parts them self.
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Old 03-09-2014, 07:00 AM   #16
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I experienced the same thing, and attribute the cause to undersize wire that was used to feed the relay/water heater. The previous owners had the water heater repaired, I assumed from turning it on without water in the tank, and the relay was replaced and small gauge wire was spliced to make the connection. I also discovered that the wrong relay was used, which also might have been my problem. I think that I actually ordered a new relay from Atwood. No more issues so far
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Old 03-09-2014, 07:05 AM   #17
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from what i've read they used to use a higher wattage element 1500 watts and now use a 1300 watt element to reduce the load on the wiring.
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:01 AM   #18
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Thank you guys for all the insight. We will be towing Lucy home (320 miles) today.

The new relays should be at the house on Tuesday.

I will start trouble shooting this issue as soon as I get home.

Lucy is a 2012 and it doesn't appear that the water heater was ever worked on.

Any additional insight would be most appreciated.

Brian

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Old 03-21-2014, 08:47 AM   #19
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When we got back home with Lucy week before last, the two new Atwood water heater relays were there waiting for us. It was a week or so before I got around to installing the new relay.

I cut the burned parts off of the old wires, stripped them, and crimped on new blade connectors. I installed one of the new relays and gave the water heater a test run on the electric side. The water heater worked fine with no heating up of the relay wiring or the relay itself.

What I am not sure about is whether the water heater is cycling off when the water is fully heated. I don't know how to determine if it has cycled off when running on electricity.

I tested the unit on the LP gas side. It lights fine and heats the water, but does NOT cycle off. It appears that the burned relay was not the core problem.

I am thinking that the sensors are the next likely culprits.

I would greatly appreciate feedback from the group.

It's not a thing that renders Lucy unusable as we can still heat water for showers, etc. We just need to remember to shut it off when we're done. I do want to get it working properly.

Brian
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Old 03-21-2014, 03:54 PM   #20
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I just ordered an At wood Thermostat Kit (#91547) and an Atwood Thermal Cut-off Kit (93866). I'm hoping that between replacing these two additional components, i will be able to get Lucy's Water heater working properly.

I will report on the outcome. Meanwhile, if anyone has any other ideas, i would like to hear them.

New Lucy is starting to get me a little discouraged. I have had more issues with her in three months than I had with old Lucy in eight years.

Brian
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Old 03-21-2014, 04:59 PM   #21
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The little aluminum thermostats (about the size of your thumb, with a spring like coil around it, under black plastic cover, the size of a playing card) should be inspected to see that they are touching the tank. They also can be tested on your stove top in a pan of water. The ECO (high temp shut-off) will open at 180 degrees, the regular thermostat, at I believe 140 degrees. You can check them with a continuity meter. I actually can hear them click open if I listen as the water temperature rises in the pan.
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Old 03-21-2014, 06:00 PM   #22
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The new thermostats are about all that is left on the control side, those almost have to do the trick.

Good luck !!!
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Old 03-22-2014, 09:57 AM   #23
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We use only propane to heat our water. In fact, we put a propane only heater in Little Girl. We turn it off when we're done with hot water for awhile to conserve propane (I'm becoming my mother) since the heater heats the water up in just about 10 minutes anyway and it stays hot for hours. We never used electric when we had the option....

Kay
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Old 03-22-2014, 10:11 AM   #24
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Quote:
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We use only propane to heat our water. In fact, we put a propane only heater in Little Girl. We turn it off when we're done with hot water for awhile to conserve propane (I'm becoming my mother) since the heater heats the water up in just about 10 minutes anyway and it stays hot for hours. We never used electric when we had the option....

Kay
Old Lucy (our 2005 25FB) had the LP only heater. We used it the same way as you described to conserve propane.

New Lucy (our 2012 23FB) came with the combo electric/gas water heater. We have been using both to heat water since we got the trailer. The recent problems don't render Lucy unusable, but I want to get the system working properly.

Brian
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Old 03-22-2014, 02:54 PM   #25
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I understand and would do the same thing in your situation. If one thing is not working correctly, and it leads to something else going, you're stuck. If propane gets low, then you may still have electric if you have hookups.

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Old 03-22-2014, 06:01 PM   #26
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Checking Element for Duty Cycle

Quote:
Originally Posted by moosetags View Post
...
What I am not sure about is whether the water heater is cycling off when the water is fully heated. I don't know how to determine if it has cycled off when running on electricity...

Brian
You can use a clip-on amp meter on the 120 VAC line to read the current draw on that line, if there is room to get the clip around the wire.
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Old 03-22-2014, 06:36 PM   #27
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We are looking at the Atwood od-50. Hope to order it soon along with the fantastic vent
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Old 05-14-2014, 09:24 AM   #28
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Update on Lucy's Water Heater

I guess that it's time to report the results of Lucy's water heater repair. In my classic repair method of throwing parts at the problem, I seem to have corrected the situation.

Neither the gas or electric water heater function was cycling off when the water was fully heated. This had caused the relay to burn up. I replaced the relay, and it still was not cycling off. I then replaced the thermal cut-off and installed a new Atwood Thermostat Kit.

I have continued to keep a close eye on the system, and so far, so good.

Brian
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