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Old 12-06-2009, 10:10 PM   #1
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1975 31' Excella 500
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Wind Blind for Water Heater?

Have any of you ever constructed a wind blind to keep the wind from blowing out the water heater pilot light? Ours is blowing out a couple of times a night lately, and it's a cooooooooooold walk outside to re-light it! Poor Rick had to go out in 20F weather twice last nite (w/brisk breeze...)

Also, have you ever heard of a remote switch setup so that I wouldn't have to go outside to re-light it??? That would be great!
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:20 PM   #2
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Have any of you ever constructed a wind blind to keep the wind from blowing out the water heater pilot light? Ours is blowing out a couple of times a night lately, and it's a cooooooooooold walk outside to re-light it! Poor Rick had to go out in 20F weather twice last nite (w/brisk breeze...)

Also, have you ever heard of a remote switch setup so that I wouldn't have to go outside to re-light it??? That would be great!
You can install a gasket, such as that on the screen door, around the top and both sides of the water heater cover.

You can also, increase the pilot light size, that will help.

If there is no pilot light adjustment, then have the water heater pilot light orifice cleaned, which will increase the pilot light size.

You can also modify the water heater and install a direct spark ignitor, so that a pilot light is not really needed. But, if the water heater is original, then that modification would be near impossible.

Andy
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:47 PM   #3
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Andy, I believe this is the original water heater....dang it! The auto spark ignitor thingee sounds delicious....I'll investigate to make sure...

Thanks.
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2005 Sun Cruiser Fun Finder X139-FK 13'
1978 Hilltopper Popup (really stanky)
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:26 AM   #4
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I had to make a wind deflector for the refrigerator in our 64 Avion. The burner would blow out when going down the road. I just took a piece of aluminum flashing and bent it around the burner on the side that gets the wind, leaving the trailer side open so the burner gets plenty of air. It worked fine all summer. Maybe you could do something similar with your water heater.
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:35 AM   #5
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Poor Rick had to go out in 20F weather twice last nite (w/brisk breeze...)
20F is cold??????????????? That's short shirt sleeve weather!

Couldn't resist....

Chris
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:46 AM   #6
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obxgal,

Your heater being original could very well mean that the air intake vent (behind the grill that's in the top left corner of the lid you open to light it) has rusted out internally.

We had exactly the same problem as you; if the wind came onto the streetside of the TT, we could pretty much count on either going out every while to re-light, or not having hot water until the wind died.

We tried cutting a tin can (from a can of peas) with a notch so it would slide over the section where the pilot is, and that seemed to help a bit, but it wasn't perfect.

We finally wound up replacing the water heater, since it sprung a bad leak and was wetting the carpet in the bathroom. The new one we bought has not had any use, but I did note in looking at it that the door fits much more snugly over the entire face of the heater. And, of course, the air intake louvre is not rusted at all.

We won't know until next year if that fixed the problem or not, but I do suspect it will.

Camping World has the 10 gallon Atwood on at $399 now, and the 6 gallon at $349, if you get tired of re-lighting. That's for the manual one, there are more automated ones for more $$...

If you replace it, don't forget to install a bypass if you don't already have one.
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:02 AM   #7
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a bypass?

Aage and all,
thanks for the replies..

AAge...what kind of bypass are you referring to?
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2005 Sun Cruiser Fun Finder X139-FK 13'
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Old 12-07-2009, 10:13 AM   #8
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A water bypass valve on your heater means that if you winterize, you will not have to put the 6 or 10 gallons of antifreeze into your water heater.

It also means that should your water heater ever fail, you can take it "out of the circuit" and carry on with your water supply turned on. When our leak happened, it meant shutting off all water to the TT, and using buckets to wash and flush with.
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:10 PM   #9
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ahhhhh...good advice! Thanks!
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