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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Suburban LP water heater malfunction, need help.

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Hemi Joel

Minnesota

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Posted: 03/14/19 10:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi, I am on a road trip with my 2018 Eagle Cap 1165, and the water heater has malfunctioned. I hope someone can help me with info to get it running. It is a Suburban SW6D, SN 171504878. LP only, no 110v. Last night I noticed that it lit and shut off about 3 times, then stayed unlit. The fault light next to the switch remains lit when ever the switch is on. This morning, I turned off the switch inside the camper for a while, then when I turned it back on, I could hear the gas valve solenoid open and close 3 times, but no flame. I went outside and opened the cover of the water heater, and pressed the reset button, but could not feel any movement of the button. (under a rubber cover) Then I turned off the switch inside the camper to reset the start up cycle, and when I turned it back on, I ran outside to observe. The gas valve was opening, but no spark to light it. The next time the gas valve opened, I lit it with a lighter, and it fired, but only for a couple seconds and then the gas valve shut. I repeated this process a couple times, with the same results.
The batteries are fully charged, and there is 1-1/4 bottles of propane. The furnace and the stove both operate properly, proving a proper gas supply. I hate having to go to a dealer for repairs, especially on a road trip with a schedule. I have tools, a digital multi meter, and good mechanical/electrical skills. But it would be good to hear from the voice of experience before I go any further.
Thanks,
Joel


2018 Eagle Cap 1163 triple slide on a 93 Dodge D350 Cummins, DTT 89 torgue converter, big turbo, 3 extra main leafs, Rancho 9000s rear, Monroe gas magnums front, upper overloads removed, home made stableloads, bags.


Harvard

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Posted: 03/14/19 10:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Deleted, miss read OP, sorry

Hemi Joel

Minnesota

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Posted: 03/14/19 11:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I just removed the cover from the thermostat and check it with the VOM. 12.6 volts on both terminals, confirming that it is functioning and calling for heat.

enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 03/14/19 12:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gas valve operating would indicate that there is power to the circuit board.
Have helper turn on water heater while you are at the unit. Listen for ignitor to spark.
You could have a helper turn on water heater while you use a long lighter to ignite gas inside burner area. Becareful as it could flash back!
Check the ignitor for proper spacing. Disconnect the ignitor wire, test it for conituity.
Check the porcelain on the ignitor for cracks.
Call Suburban for local repair person or shop. It could be bad circuit board. Could be still under warranty!


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Old-Biscuit

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Posted: 03/14/19 12:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Got good DC otherwise gas valve solenoids would NOT be energized/valve opening

NO Spark........

You have either:
Bad ground
Bad spark electrode
Bad electrode wire connections
Bad circuit board

12V DC Circuit
[image]


Inspect electrode for crack in porcelain, proper gap (1/8”)or carbon build up on tip, ensure that spark is present at electrode tip, inspect burner for debris, inspect electrode wire for short (including against the back side fo the appliance door when in closed position), check electrode wire connections...clean/tight
Replace electrode.....otherwise circuit board is faulty

Electrode part number --- Suburban 232258
Circuit board part number..Suburban 520814


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

enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 03/14/19 12:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you replace circuit board, I would recommend a Dinosaur Electronics version.

wnjj

Cornelius, Oregon

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Posted: 03/14/19 01:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The spark electrode also functions as a flame sensor so even when lit by hand it will not stay if it can't sense the flame.

Hemi Joel

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Posted: 03/14/19 03:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Problem solved! first I tried putting in a new electrode, even though the old one looked pretty good. Because it was a lot cheaper than buying a module. That didn't do it, so I put in a new module, and it fired right up. Thanks for all the help!

enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 03/14/19 05:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the update!

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