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Old 05-30-2011, 07:46 PM   #1
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Very hot water

We were sitting out enjoying the campfire.. and heard a slow drip of water. Water dripping from the "pressure valve" from the water heater.. hmm what is going on .. any idea ?!?!
We have a 2004 sunline 1950. Never had a problem... wonder if we didn't winterize correctly?> or did we forget to do something...

any suggestions would be appreciated ! also.. water seems very hot.. guess there are worse things to worry about .. right ? guess I would rather a hot shower than cold...

thank you.. in advance..
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:05 PM   #2
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Try turning the thermostat on the water heater back a little. It's in the water heater access hatch. It has a dial on it that allows you to adjust it. it's probably set on "hot"...turn it in the other direction from the "hot" setting and give it a try.
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:08 PM   #3
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Thank you !! will search for that !???? .. also wondering why water dripping from the pressure valve... just too hot !?
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:21 PM   #4
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They'll do that sometimes and it may be that your temp is too high, thus causing undue pressure "steam" to build up in the tank. As long as the pressure valve doesn't blow you're okay.
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Old 05-30-2011, 09:35 PM   #5
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Not all the RV water heaters have temp controls. They are deliberately set to about 140F which is quite a bit hotter than you'd run your heater for your home. The reason is that it is only a 6 (or 10) gallon heater so the hot water mixed with cold for a shower or whatever will last longer without using up all the hot water. If you have small children, they need to be carefully instructed about this.

The pressure/temp relief valves are set to open up around 165F or a bit higher. The problem with them is that they can get caked up with minerals so once they open up even a tiny bit, they just keep on dripping. There are two fixes. First, run out some of the hot water so that you're dealing with cooler water. Then lift the handle on the valve and work up and down. There is a rubber washer in there that fits in a conical seat so by working it in and out, you should rub away the mineral buildup. This does have to be done when the system is pressurized either by the on-board pump or city water.

The second fix is to replace the entire pressure relief valve if the mineral buildup has gone too far. These are standard valves just like the ones on home hot water heaters. Just get an exact replacement.

The cause behind all this is the varying water quality from camp ground to camp ground. Some folks can tolerate the difference to an extent, and others can not. There are fancy filters and even RV water softeners available for those that might need them. The heat of the water heater causes the minerals to precipitate out of the water faster.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:50 PM   #6
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FWIW, When I dewinterized I tested my water heater on LP and when it came up to full temperature the water at the bathroom faucet was 146.3 on my instant read meat thermometer.
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Old 05-31-2011, 08:12 PM   #7
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sarahcamping,
There's nothing wrong with your water heater. What has happened is it lost it's air gap. To fix it just shut off the water supply or the pump and open a hot water faucet, then go outside and open the pressure relief valve until the water stops dripping. This will let air back into the top of the tank. The air space is needed for expansion as the water is heated. Over time the air is lost and just needs to be refilled. This should be done a few times a season.
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Old 06-01-2011, 08:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 264SRinPA View Post
sarahcamping,
There's nothing wrong with your water heater. What has happened is it lost it's air gap. To fix it just shut off the water supply or the pump and open a hot water faucet, then go outside and open the pressure relief valve until the water stops dripping. This will let air back into the top of the tank. The air space is needed for expansion as the water is heated. Over time the air is lost and just needs to be refilled. This should be done a few times a season.

Yes I agree this can be the problem. I myself had it this past weekend. The air pocket dissolves and then the heater is filled solid with water. When it heats the heat expansion will trip the combo heat/pressure safety relief on pressure and yes that is 150 psi.

Like Mike stated, shut off pump or city water, dump all pressure by opening the hot water faucet, leave it open, then burp the safety and be care full. That little bit that comes out will create the air pocket for the water to expand in.

If it drips all the time even when not heating then like Steve said minerals may have built up and a burb will dislodge it. Just heads up do not lift that safety handle under full pressure. It will fly out that hole like a fire hose.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 06-02-2011, 07:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnB View Post
Like Mike stated, shut off pump or city water, dump all pressure by opening the hot water faucet, leave it open, then burp the safety and be care full. That little bit that comes out will create the air pocket for the water to expand in.
Just to be safe, make sure that both propane and electric for the WH are turned off first.
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Old 06-03-2011, 06:41 AM   #10
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Just to be safe, make sure that both propane and electric for the WH are turned off first.

Yes for sure. Thanks for adding Gary.

The main point is the HW heater is totally off and all pressure bleed off the water system before lifting the pressure relief lever.
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Old 06-06-2011, 10:43 PM   #11
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That is why we do not leave the water heater on all the time. We just turn it on a little while before we need it, and off when we are done. The water will stay warm for awhile espeacially on a hot day.
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