Open Roads Forum

Print  |  Close

Topic: Suburban hot water heater issue

Posted By: jabres on 06/24/18 12:08pm

I am sure this has been posted on before, but I have a 2014 Keystone Travel trailer, with a Suburban hot water heater.
Works perfectly fine when running on propane, but when trying to run on electric, water will not heat up.
Worked a few weeks ago perfectly fine. Checked all fuses and breakers. Electric switch on the main panel lights up as if its working, just wont ever get hot. I replaced the heating element as requested by my local rv shop, and still nothing.. Any suggestions? I appreciate it!

I do remember in the past, when running on electric, I could hear a slight humming type sound when heating up the water. Doesn't make any sound whatsoever anymore.


Posted By: rrupert on 06/24/18 12:39pm

Could be the new element is bad or the thermostat is bad. The electric element has its own thermostat, I think. Did you test the old element to see if it is burned out?

* This post was edited 06/24/18 12:48pm by rrupert *


Rich and Joyce
2018 Jayco Jay Flight 21QB
2012 Ford F150 4X4 Supercrew EcoBoost
Reese Strait-Line Dual Cam Hitch
Amateur Radio K3EXU



Posted By: enblethen on 06/24/18 01:23pm

Locate your exact model number, it is normally located on exterior access frame.
Humming could be coming from relay is equipped.
Some installations have a safety switch in the exterior access. Verif it is on.


Bud
USAF Retired
Pace Arrow

2003 Chev Ice Road Tracker



Posted By: doxiemom11 on 06/24/18 01:53pm

We have had to replace the electric heating element in ours. Sometimes they go out, in our case we were in an area with a lot of calcium in the water so it got so gunked up it wasn't heating efficiently.


Posted By: Old-Biscuit on 06/24/18 02:02pm

OEM Electric On/Off Switch in outside compartment ...lower left corner ON?

Did electric High temp t-stat trip......Push to Reset (left one for electric/right for propane)
Wire that connects High and Normal t-stat burnt into? (remove Push to Reset Cover and check)

120V AC circuit breaker tripped?

Use voltmeter and follow the AC Voltage
Standard wiring....AC for element and DC for propane
[image]


IF model is a 'DEL' then DC Relay is used to trigger AC to element
Wiring for 'DEL' Models
[image]

* This post was edited 06/24/18 02:15pm by Old-Biscuit *


Is it time for your medication or mine?


2007 DODGE 3500 QC SRW 5.9L CTD In-Bed 'quiet gen'
2007 HitchHiker II 32.5 UKTG 2000W Xantex Inverter
On the Road Debt Free April '07
Off the road still Debt Free Jan. '14


Posted By: BB_TX on 06/24/18 02:09pm

Possible problems;
Bad heating element (but you say you already replaced that)
Bad/tripped thermostat/hi temp cutout on front of water heater? (did you try the reset button?)
Switch at lower left front of water heater turned off or bad (make sure switch is on)
120 vac breaker tripped (at circuit breaker panel)
Loose or broken wire connection (multiple reports of loose neutral in junction box on back side of water heater)
Bad interposing relay (inside switch sends 12 vdc to relay on back side of WH that in turn sends 120 vac to heating element)

If you are comfortable troubleshooting live 120 vac use a voltmeter starting at the heating element and working backward until you find where 120 vac is last detected.


Posted By: jabres on 06/24/18 03:49pm

Thanks for all the replies and advice! I checked over all the suggestions, and it ended up being the wire was melted in the junction box where the hot water heaters wires together. The white wire was melted, right at the wire nut. I cut off the bad, re-connected, and bam it all works!
So, why would this happen? To much electricity running all at once? How do I prevent from happening in the future? I appreciate everyone's help!


Posted By: enblethen on 06/24/18 04:06pm

My first guess would be poor workmanship. Wrong size of wire nut.
I would get some electrical de-oxidation compound, the correct size wire nut, (high temperature if possible)
You could also use a crimp connector with the de-oxidation compound.


Posted By: BB_TX on 06/24/18 06:40pm

Poor connection in the wire nut plus high current equals high heat. Likely it was loose or the wires were just not properly stripped and twisted. Wire nut is not a problem if done correctly.


Posted By: beemerphile1 on 06/24/18 06:56pm

jabres wrote:

Thanks for all the replies and advice! I checked over all the suggestions, and it ended up being the wire was melted in the junction box where the hot water heaters wires together. The white wire was melted, right at the wire nut. I cut off the bad, re-connected, and bam it all works!
So, why would this happen? To much electricity running all at once? How do I prevent from happening in the future? I appreciate everyone's help!


Loose connection causes arcing,
arcing causes heat,
heat burns wires.

At least you now have a spare element.


Build a life you don't need a vacation from.

2016 Silverado 3500HD DRW D/A 4x4
2018 Keystone Cougar 26RBS
2006 Weekend Warrior FK1900



Posted By: jabres on 06/24/18 08:42pm

Thanks again guys!


Print  |  Close