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Old 11-06-2009, 11:45 AM   #1
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Leaking hot water heater??

Just bought a 1984 T2261. I noticed wetness in the carpet. Under the bed, I saw a little water but then noticed that the hot water heater covering was soaked, completely.

I was messing around with it yesterday and parts of the cover are just falling off due to the wetness, so I removed the whole thing. It was dripping, sopping wet.

I don't have a clue if it has a hole and needs replaced or what is going on. I am unable to take it somewhere and am looking into replacing it (if needed) and possibly hiring someone to come out and do it.

Any suggestions on what it could be, if we might be right about the heater leaking?

We initially thought it was the roof and are in the process of resealing that but have a tarp over it for the time being. The water just kept coming. I believe the tank is empty now and we've dried out the floor with a fan.
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Old 11-06-2009, 02:39 PM   #2
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Could you either post some pictures or try to be a bit more specific as to location? Thanks
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Old 11-06-2009, 03:15 PM   #3
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It would also be helpful to know what state you are in. If you're up north and have not winterized the trailer yet and the water system is/was full of water, then you may well have split a pipe. It is also possible that if the hot water tank was full and it froze, it would probably cause a catastrophic rupture. All that damage happens because water expands as it freezes.

Probably the only way to test it is to make sure everything is nice and dry, and refill and pressurize the system with a city water hookup. Have someone watching the heater and the plumbing around it. If there's a leak, it should be fairly easy to spot the source.

Pipes are easier to repair/replace, but the hot water heater on an '84 is not very difficult to remove and replace either. There's only a propane line and two water connections. Remove the screws around the perimeter of the heater on the outside of the trailer and then gently break the bond of the caulking material. Heat it with a hair dryer or heat gun, and pry very carefully so as not to damage the siding of the trailer. Once it starts to come free, it will be easier.

Installation is just as easy, but you'll need new butyl putty tape which is available at any RV shops parts counter.

Replacing a hot water heater is one of the easier DIY jobs on a travel trailer.
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Old 11-06-2009, 08:40 PM   #4
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I will get pictures and post. We're not sure where exactly the water is coming from, but the area directly around the water heater, under the bed, was completely drenched. The tank is now empty.

We haven't had any freezing weather as of yet (at least to my knowledge). We are in NE Maryland. Up until today, the weather has been extremely mild.

I'll definitely get pictures.
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Old 11-06-2009, 09:44 PM   #5
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Hi matislia

For a dryer way to test for leaks, if you have access to an air compressor you can charge the systm with 40 psi and just listen and feel for a air spot.

And one you charge it, if you dissconnect the air supply, if the pressure bleads out fast, then you have a good sized leak.

Heads up if you do this method a faily good qty of water can still be in the water lines. The air will blow that out any leaks as well. So even a air check can casue some water to get into the camper, but you can dump the pressure quick once you see the leak and the water will stop a lot faster.

While doing this air check at home is best, if you do not own a compressor, a rental is an option, any small compressor can do it, just makle sure the pressure is adjustable down to 40 psi. Or take the TT on a road trip to a near by gas station that has a big yard.

You get a blow out plug, like this one http://www.campingworld.com/shopping...-out-plug/4410 and you screw it into the city water connection. Then it fills like a tire fill valve.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 11-07-2009, 05:48 PM   #6
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Hi matsilia:

If you would decide this is more than you want to tackle and want someone to look at it call:

WE COME 2U RV REPAIR

Patrick V. Drum

443-938-2787 (cell)

Pat is based in Pasadena,MD but works all over Central MD. As his name says he will come to your rig and make repairs. I've used him several times and have been very satisfied with his work and fees.

He used to be a service manager at a Balt. Sunline dealer and went out on his own.
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Old 11-10-2009, 09:11 AM   #7
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I really appreciate all the help and suggestions.

Mack - Thanks so much. Exactly what I need, a mobile person. I'm definitely going to give them a call. Thanks for the information.
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Old 11-29-2009, 01:36 PM   #8
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Hi, Before we bought our 1999 Solaris earlier this year, we had a 1978 Aristocrat (our first TT) where the water heater tank actually rusted out and leaked. When it finally gave out, it flooded the entire trailer within about twenty minutes while we were out walking the dog. It was a gas only water heater, not gas and electric, and we replaced it with a new water heater for about $300. New one worked great after that. Ronny
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