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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > 110 volt switch on hot water heater.

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Jay Pat

Round Rock, TX

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Posted: 11/28/18 10:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I turned on the 110v element of the hot water heater. The one mounted outside on the hot water heater.
It has the anode rod.

Yesterday, I tried to turn the switch off and it will not move. It is stuck in the on position.
I have pressed a lot harder than normal. It won't move from the on position.

Is this easy to replace?
Pop, the switch out?
Thoughts?
Pat

I used the breaker to turn the hot water heater off.


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2oldman

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Posted: 11/28/18 10:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Those water heater switches sometimes need wd-40. I gave up on mine and use the breaker. My WH is hardly ever used on 120 due to the air con usually being on, which puts a heck of a strain (and heat) on my connections.

* This post was edited 11/28/18 10:38am by 2oldman *

Dick_B

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Posted: 11/28/18 10:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It wasn't easy to replace mine which had fused due to the high current draw of the water and the cheap construction of the switch. I replaced it and now leave it on all the time.
We have another on-off switch on the kitchen wall which we use and leave the heater switch in the on position. Lately we have been using just the propane to save wear and tear on the switch which would normally be turned on/off several times each day.


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donn0128

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Posted: 11/28/18 11:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Those switches are notorious for failing. I learned early on to turn the breaker off and leave that cheap crappy switch alone.





BB_TX

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Posted: 11/28/18 11:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes, they just pop out.

water heater switch

SoundGuy

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Posted: 11/28/18 11:31am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our K-Z Spree had a Suburban SW6DE water heater and because the electric heating element switch was located on the unit itself we rarely used that function. Finally I got tired of the silliness of having to go outside to turn the switch on/off, simply left it on, and wired this paddle switch in line with the 120 vac feeding the WH element. It has a light to indicate when power is on and is mounted in a convenient to reach location. In the OP's situation, assuming the WH switch is still passing power, I'd just leave it as is and install a switch inside the camper, just as I did in my Spree.

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bob213

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Posted: 11/28/18 12:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I like SoundGuy's solution. A circuit breaker is not intended to be an on/off switch unless designated as such. I would suggest this reroute, replace the cheap toggle switch or carry an extra circuit breaker if you are going to use it as an on/off switch.


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bpounds

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Posted: 11/28/18 02:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just an unlikely possibility here, but my switch has a little wire clip that locks it into position. Are you sure that clip isn't in place?

Come to think on it more, I think it can only be clipped in the off position. I assume to prevent it being turned on while the WH is empty.

Oh well, just a thought. We don't use ours on electric, ever, so it stays clipped off at all times.


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dons2346

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Posted: 11/28/18 04:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Been there done that.

You can open up the box it is in and cut the wires to the switch and splice them together. Then use the breaker on the 110 volt panel to turn it off and on. It is cheap switch to begin with





DutchmenSport

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Posted: 11/28/18 05:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Interesting topic. Three travel trailers and now my first 5er, all had gas-electric water heaters. Never had any problems with the switch on the tank. But, 90% of the time, we use gas too, that save power draw on only 30 amp availability.

Actually, I've never, ever thought about flipping the breaker switch. All mine have had the double switch; one on the tank the other inside the camper on the wall. And only 1, our first one, the Dutchmen Sport had the cotter pin in the switch on the tank. All the others have had solid switches with no hole for a cotter pin. I liked the cotter pin. It was a comfort knowing the switch was in the off position and secured down.

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