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Old 04-10-2011, 07:36 PM   #1
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Still have water heater problems

So I pulled out the old Atwood straight propane, G-6 and replaced it with a new one. By the way Seville T3200 owners, the hot water heater water connections are easily reached from the access cabinet door under the sink. Here's the problem, I still have the same problem...pilot light lights, burner won't light. Before I took the old Atwood w/h out, the stove burner pilots would light and then burn. Now only the pilots burn, but won't light. So it was not the furnace that was bad...more the fool me. It was something else...I have no idea what, but I'm thinkin' the regulator is the next target to replace. After that I'm at a loss if that doesn't fix the problem. Couple of other things...I didn't know that there was a great deal of water pressure in that water tank...even when the water is not hot. I had to pull the new heater back out before I had fully installed it in the trailer because of a leaking elbow connection on the tank, and when I unscrewed the last thread of the drain plug, I thought the spume of water under pressure from that little hole would wash me down the hill!!! That's just a safety tip to those who have never done this job before!

Sure would appreciate some advice out there. I have no idea if the regulator ( it is the original from 198 is at fault, but I don't know what else it could be.
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Old 04-10-2011, 07:57 PM   #2
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I'd hate to see you buy something, when it's not needed, but I believe you are needing a new regulator. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that a 1988 model would only have a single stage regulator. It would probably be in your best interest, to invest in a two-stage regulator.

If it would help, I have a spare that I could send you... That way, you would be able to rule the regulator out.
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:10 PM   #3
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Drake

There could be a few things not right.

Does the furnace light and run? The furnace takes the most LP of any appliance.

If the stove top will not even light....

I'll ask the simple questions first.

Is the tank valve all the way open?

Are you sure there is LP in the tank? Did you lift the tank to make sure it did not leak out?

If you are past the , yeh I have LP... Not being smart just I know it happens...Ask me how I know...

Any chance of a picture of your regulator and tank setup? Do you know if you have a 2 stage regulator and the plastic ACME nuts on the pigtails?

Reason for asking is I do not think those are 1988 tanks as if they are, how did you ever get anyone to fill them and not force a conversion to the new style OPD valve.

Reason I'm going here is in the ACME nut there is a flow restrictor. When you turn on the tank, the fast rushing LP slugs the restrictor and it shuts down the flow until the down stream pressure allows it to open. If that nut is bad for some reason you will not get enough LP to run much more then a pilot...

Next is the regulator. Need to test the lockup pressure if it is where it is suppose to be and that it is passing the right pressure at volume.

A LP repair guy can do this for you, or if you want to make or buy a manometer you can if you feel you can do these tests. See this post Annual Propane System Checks

There is also the chance of rust in the main LP line. If moisture ever got in there the black iron pipe may rust. It may be blocking the copper feeder pipes off the black iron main trunk line. While a remote possibility, it is not impossible.

The LP pressure drop test, the regulator setpoint and lock up test if you have never had them done, should happen anyway to check out all systems for leaks and the correct pressures. You can pin point what is and what is not working from those 3 tests.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 04-10-2011, 10:47 PM   #4
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John, It's a two stage regulator, no plastic nuts anywhere- all brass from tank to main trailer pipe. If it's not the original regulator it sure looks like it...will try to dig up a pic if I have one.

No,
the tanks are just the same as your run of the mill lp grill tanks... I bought new ones when I bought the trailer, and I just hooked them up with the new hoses I put on the regulator this week All other things you've mentioned are possible as it is an '88, but the trailer is permanantly located so I'm pretty much stuck with solving the problem myself (with a little help from my friends,) I guess. Since regulators aren't THAT expensive, I'm thinking I'll get one and give it a whirl when I go back to the trailer next week.. You know the strange thing was that the furnace fired off one time when I fiddled with the regulator one time, but then it went off after it heated the first tank, I guess and never came back on. I don't know the particulars as I thought it was working correctly when the burner kicked on and worked for a little bit. Do the symptoms SOUND like a bad regulator?
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Old 04-10-2011, 10:48 PM   #5
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EMD, Thanks for the offer, I'll just go ahead and get a regulator to keep as a spare if the old one is still good.
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Old 04-11-2011, 10:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drake View Post
John, It's a two stage regulator, no plastic nuts anywhere- all brass from tank to main trailer pipe. If it's not the original regulator it sure looks like it...will try to dig up a pic if I have one.

No,
the tanks are just the same as your run of the mill lp grill tanks... I bought new ones when I bought the trailer, and I just hooked them up with the new hoses I put on the regulator this week All other things you've mentioned are possible as it is an '88, but the trailer is permanantly located so I'm pretty much stuck with solving the problem myself (with a little help from my friends,) I guess. Since regulators aren't THAT expensive, I'm thinking I'll get one and give it a whirl when I go back to the trailer next week.. You know the strange thing was that the furnace fired off one time when I fiddled with the regulator one time, but then it went off after it heated the first tank, I guess and never came back on. I don't know the particulars as I thought it was working correctly when the burner kicked on and worked for a little bit. Do the symptoms SOUND like a bad regulator?
Hi Drake, need some help figuring out what it is you have. Sorry but there are pieces that do not fit from your wording, or at least that I understand right now...LOL.

You said new tanks and new hoses and you said like the BBQ grill tanks.... Need to ask,

Does yours have a plastic nut on the end of the new hose you put on that screws to the tank? Look like this?

See the "green" plastic knob (nut) screwed on the tank that looks like a BBQ grill plastic nut


And if it is the plastic nut, what color is it? Green or Black?

If you are buying a new regulator, get a 2 stage auto change over version. It is a nice upgrade for not a lot of money if you do not have that feature.

Pending the answers you come back with on the plastic nut and what color it is there may be another issue on top of the regulator.

You said no plastic, then you said new hoses and new tanks. Yes the OLD all brass left hand thread LP nose fitting with male threads on the nose piece will fit in a new tank that has right hand ACME outside threads on it. While hard to find now a days, they still may sell them

I'm missing something in your wording.

Thanks

John
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Old 04-12-2011, 01:16 AM   #7
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What's the difference between black and green nut ends? Can't say I've seen an RV pigtail with black ones, but I have seen a BBQ one with it and honestly I didn't think anything of it.
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Old 04-12-2011, 10:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
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What's the difference between black and green nut ends? Can't say I've seen an RV pigtail with black ones, but I have seen a BBQ one with it and honestly I didn't think anything of it.
Jon, the color tells how much gas that fitting will pass. Black is something like 70,000 btu and green around 200,000 btu.


Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnB
You said no plastic, then you said new hoses and new tanks. Yes the OLD all brass left hand thread LP nose fitting with male threads on the nose piece will fit in a new tank that has right hand ACME outside threads on it. While hard to find now a days, they still may sell them
John, they do still sell the old style POL pigtails. Local dealer has them hanging on the wall. I just checked his catalog to see if they were old stock hanging around, but they are in the catalog as well, Marshall Brass is producing them.

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Old 04-12-2011, 10:38 AM   #9
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I have all brass fittings from the tank back to the main connection pipe. There are no plastic fittings anywhere in the hook-up. The new regulator I just bought looks exactly like the one you've pictured in the example picture.
When I went to my RV dealer to buy new hoses, I didn't see any hoses that had plastic connectors to the tank. Sorry about the confusing wording...hope this helps clarify. Does the problem of lit pilot but no lit burner sound like a regulator problem?
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Old 04-12-2011, 09:51 PM   #10
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OK I think we have confirmed what you have and it sounds like the older POL setup. It works it just does not have the newer limiting safety feature of the new ACME plastic gas valve nuts.

Now to the question, can a regulator cause a lack of gas and only allow a pilot to run? Yes it can. The regulator has to open correctly under load to maintain the pressure at the volume the appliance is using. And when one appliance is up and running and you turn on another one, it needs to open again more and still keep the same pressure.

So yes a regulator can do this. I'm not saying it foe sure is your issue but it can cause the problem. The manometer test will prove that is the problem but changing parts and testing can too.

Odd your dealer did not have the more common ACME thread safety ends. Here is just one hit on the web for the nut. RV LP Cylinder Gas Valve Adapter

They come on pigtails of various lengths too.

Good luck and let us know how you make out

John
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Old 04-12-2011, 09:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Jon, the color tells how much gas that fitting will pass. Black is something like 70,000 btu and green around 200,000 btu.


- Frank
Jon, yes Frank is correct on the color. They also make a blue one that is mega BTU's. I have seen them in the Marshall catalog but never seen then in application. I'm sure there is one as they make them.

Frank, odd Drake's dealer did not have the new style unless they where out of them.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:07 PM   #12
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Thank you so much for your valuable input. Due to weather conditions and job committments, it looks like I won't be able to get back to the trailer for a couple of weeks....more's the pity. You can be sure I will post the results of my trials (and errors) and fix to the problem if I can find one. Hopefully the regulator is the culprit! Thanks also to all the other Sunny fans who also contributed to this thread.... by the way...any comment on the pressure in that water tank...unheated... when I pulled it back out to tighten the fittings on the tank? Is there supposed to be that much pressure in that tank?
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Old 04-13-2011, 03:36 PM   #13
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Yes, there will be pressure in the tank even when cold. When the tank fills there should be a pocket of air trapped at the top of the tank that will be pressurized from whatever the filling water pressure was. The best thing to do is open a hot water faucet, and maybe a cold too, to lower the pressure, if you open the relief valve when it is full you will get water out of the relief valve.
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Old 04-13-2011, 05:06 PM   #14
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Thanks Gene. Somewhere that info should be posted for novices like me who don't know that kind of thing...I would have suspected it when it is hot, and would have released the pressure via the relief valve, but didn't think it would be a problem when it is cold. Info on the heater door says nothing about pressure even when the tank is cold. Scared the devil out of me, and if my foot had been in the way, that plastic plug coulda put quite a knot on it!
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Old 04-13-2011, 08:15 PM   #15
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Yes there is a lot of cold or hot pressure in there. If you are using the fresh water tank and pump or the city water connection, once the system is charged it can run a good 20 to maybe 30 seconds to bleed down thru the sink faucet. That air pocket Gene was talking about turns the 6 gallon HW heater into a mini accumulator. Like Gene said, open both hot and cold faucet and with there is no more coming out, then take the drain plug out of the heater. You are still going to have 5 gallons coming out at you but it a lot better then being charged at 40 psi flying out...

Glad you didn't jerk back so fast to trip and fall.

Good luck on the heater, you will get it, we have faith in ya.

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Old 04-13-2011, 09:59 PM   #16
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After you get the water heater running you may want to put in a drain hose and faucet like John has. It eliminates the "flying plug" factor. I just purchased the parts I need and am going to add one similar to John's when I dewinterize ..... which I hope is soon!
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:16 PM   #17
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Okay... thanks for the word on the pressure situation...uh... where is the photo of the drain plug faucet and drain hose Gene was talking about JohnB.

By the by, I'm going to send a photo of the plumbing in the back of the water heater tank when I download it off my wife's phone. I'd be interested in you guys telling me if what you are looking at is a bypass rig and how the thing works.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:33 AM   #18
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So I tried to insert a photo of the water heater hook-up here, but could not make that happen. So, I posted it in a public album instead....didn't know how else to do it...when I followed the directions for writing in the url...I got the big red x instead! Anyway, John B and Gene please take a look at the arrangement in my album in the photo area of SOC and tell me if this is a bypass set up and what do ( which valves do I turn open or closed) I do when I winterize the trailer, if this is indeed a bypass rig.
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:31 PM   #19
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Here is your pic. We will have to work with you on how ot post pics. You need them on a seperate photo hosting site and then link them here. OR upload to your album and then display in a post.



That is a bypass setup. It is a 2 valve one.

To bypass you switch the bottom one to stop filling the heater and direct the water up the bypass pipe. On the top one you siwth the valve to not accept water out of the heater but to accept water from the bypass pipe.

I cannot tell from where which way your turn the knob to direct the flow. Maybe someone reconigies that brand and know. OR you have to do the flip to figure out which way to turn the hanlde to get the water directed right

So you just saved 6 gallons of pink stuff...

I'll hunt for the water drain post. Kitty and Sunline Fan have posted theirs too. Be back later

John
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Old 04-14-2011, 02:40 PM   #20
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I think if you "closed" (handle across the pipe) the valve in the bypass line, the system would NOT be bypassed.

To "Bypass" the system, the top and bottom valves would be turned 90* and the valve in the bypass pipe handle turned inline.

Steve posted this info, this is the same as the "two valve" system, the third valve in the bypass really isn't necessary:
http://www.sunlineclub.com/forums/do...NFORMATION.pdf
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