Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 12-03-2016, 12:45 PM   #1
Winnebago Owner
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Westerville, Ohio
Posts: 91
Hot rod

We have a 2014 Winnebago no electric hot water element we are using a hot rod to heat the water how many of you are using the hot rod and have you ever experience a failure by using the hot Rod there is a hot debate on A Nother form about the hot Rod causing damage to the hot water tank if so can you give a description of the problems you have had by using this device
Forzatm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2016, 02:07 PM   #2
Winnebago Master
 
Jim_HiTek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Full time RV'er
Posts: 724
I installed the Hot Rod in my RV in 2005, and it was still working fine in 2016 when I sold the rig. Never had any problems with it but I did do yearly tank maintenance and flush it out.

I lurk around 3 RV forums, have since 2003, and don't recall seeing an excess of issues with the brand, or the other, more expensive brand. I'd be interested in seeing a link to that other thread.
__________________
'02 Winnebago Journey DL, DSDP, 36' of fun.

Visit my RV Travel & Repair Blog at : http://chaos.goblinbox.com
Jim_HiTek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2016, 02:54 PM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 55
Hott Rod and Lightning Rod have been around for many years

Both Suburban and Atwood have disclaimers about using them because they have no control over the design/safety features/installation or owners maintenance.
Don't blame them....it isn't OEM so why should they be 'liable'

Suburban also has the issue of anode rod requirement.

Hott Rod & Lightning Rod brands do come with a reducer with anode rod for the Suburban but that rod is less then half of the OEM anode rod....IF that long

Both have normal/High temp set of t-stats and on/off switches

Other then the anode rod issue both use existing drain holes for installation.
There-in lies another concern for WH MFG.
Folks have a tendency to NOT drain/flush WH Tank routinely due to having to disconnect wiring and remove the heater rod in order to drain and then flush tank
Human nature...IF it is a PITA then it doesn't get done as often as it should be

Other than the above I have NOT heard of issues USING either brand.
They are much smaller heating elements (325/450/625W vs 1400W OEM) so they are much slower to heat/recover.
IF set of t-stats are properly attached to tank wall they shouldn't cause overheating issues
And IF the AC power is properly supplied ie: properly wired AC outlet then Circuit Breaker would provided protection

But that is a lot of IFs
Old-Biscuit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2016, 05:48 PM   #4
Winnebago Master
 
FIRE UP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Out there, somewhere
Posts: 1,579
Well Gang,
First off, I've never, ever heard of a "Hot Rod". So, may I ask, what is it? And, what's it supposed to do?
Scott
__________________
2004 ITASCA HORIZON 36GD, 2011 GMC Sierra 1500 4x4 Toad '08 GL 1800 Gold Wing
Retired-29.5 yrs, SDFD, Ham - KI6OND
Me, Karla and the Sophie character, (mini Schnauzer)
FIRE UP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2016, 07:59 PM   #5
Winnebago Master
 
Jim_HiTek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Full time RV'er
Posts: 724
Quote:
Originally Posted by FIRE UP View Post
Well Gang,
First off, I've never, ever heard of a "Hot Rod". So, may I ask, what is it? And, what's it supposed to do?
Scott
It's a little electrical heating element for your RV water heater. You remove the drain plug for your heater, and insert the Hot Rod. It has a thermostat that is attached to the overheat safety valve that all heaters are required to have and than plugs into 120Vac to heat up your water.

My old '94 Bounder had a convenient 120Vac outlet outside under the awning area that was where I'd plug it in when I parked at a park.

Did a fine job maintaining hot water but sometimes, when I'd need a shower after just arriving at a RV park, I'd light off the propane to speed up the process. Five minutes is all it took, than the Hot Rod did the work from than on.

Here's my blog post about the water heater and you can see the wiring and thermostat in the write up: Water Heater...
__________________
'02 Winnebago Journey DL, DSDP, 36' of fun.

Visit my RV Travel & Repair Blog at : http://chaos.goblinbox.com
Jim_HiTek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2016, 05:30 PM   #6
Winnebago Camper
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 38
I installed one on our 6 gallon Suburban back in 03. Was an easy install, mainly because i had easy access to the tank where i placed the thermostat. It works great, think i've fired up the propane maybe a couple of times since it was installed. Knocking on wood but so far it has been trouble free.

But this thread does remind me, i haven't pulled the rod out in probably 5 years. Got me a project to do on the next nice day that comes along...
__________________
03 Itasca Sunova, 8.1 Workhorse on a P32 chassis
Mudfrog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2016, 07:16 PM   #7
Winnebago Master
 
FIRE UP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Out there, somewhere
Posts: 1,579
You know,
Based on the term "Hot Rod", and the subject at hand, I kind-a assumed it was some form of heating water. But, you know how assumptions can go So, I'd rather be properly informed as to its true pupose so that I'm not just thinking of what it is, thanks for the answer. It sounds kind-a like a diesel block heater, only maybe just a tad different.
Scott
__________________
2004 ITASCA HORIZON 36GD, 2011 GMC Sierra 1500 4x4 Toad '08 GL 1800 Gold Wing
Retired-29.5 yrs, SDFD, Ham - KI6OND
Me, Karla and the Sophie character, (mini Schnauzer)
FIRE UP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2016, 07:52 PM   #8
Winnebago Watcher
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 2
Agree that the drain plug hot rod type heaters are simple to install, trouble free, and worth adding to your HW heater. I extended the wires to the temperature sending module so I could secure it to the side of the HW tank about 2/3rds of the way up, tightly surrounded by the tank's Styrofoam casing. I covered the sending unit with additional insulation, so it reads the water temp in the tank quite well. The electric element cycles on and off, not excessively, and keeps our water hot enough for two adult showers. If you have a teenager though, all bets are off. I remove the heating rod at the end of each season and clean off any hard water scaling as part of winterization and cleaning of the HW tank. I don't know why electric HW elements are not standard features on all RV HW heaters. We had one in our first 30 amp coach and never had to worry about the electric load as we monitored our amp draw and just shut it down for the short times we were using the microwave or other big amp draws. The power management system would shed the A/C units if necessary on hot days, so the whole HW heating system was trouble-free. You may have to add a supplemental circuit breaker box to your electric service if you don't have room for another breaker, or if you don't have an available "low draw" circuit to tap into for the HW heater. All in all, it's worth the effort, if only to avoid hearing the noise of the gas heater firing up. Good luck with your decision!
Notayurt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2016, 08:39 AM   #9
Winnebago Owner
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Westerville, Ohio
Posts: 91
This person claims that the Hott Rod damaged their hot water tank. He shows a photograph of his water tank out of the coach and a guy welding up a pinhole with a mig welder. He is claiming that the Hott Rod caused this and others are claiming that it has some sort of electrolysis going on that's causing damage to the inside of the hot water tank and warning people not to use the Hott Rod. I for one am not buying this, the Hott Rods been around for years. I have never heard of any such thing. Is it possible that he got a hold of a bad tank from the factory? ANother person is claiming that the inside of his hot water tank is damaged by the Hott Rod and some sort of blue Goo material came out when He cleaned it out and shows a picture of it, even the dealer according to him cannot tell him what it was, it looked like a blue glob.
Forzatm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2016, 01:43 PM   #10
Winnebago Camper
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forzatm View Post
This person claims that the Hott Rod damaged their hot water tank. He shows a photograph of his water tank out of the coach and a guy welding up a pinhole with a mig welder. He is claiming that the Hott Rod caused this and others are claiming that it has some sort of electrolysis going on that's causing damage to the inside of the hot water tank and warning people not to use the Hott Rod. I for one am not buying this, the Hott Rods been around for years. I have never heard of any such thing. Is it possible that he got a hold of a bad tank from the factory? ANother person is claiming that the inside of his hot water tank is damaged by the Hott Rod and some sort of blue Goo material came out when He cleaned it out and shows a picture of it, even the dealer according to him cannot tell him what it was, it looked like a blue glob.
We can help extend the longevity of our tanks by doing regular maintenance, such as draining and flushing. But no matter how much we do, tanks will eventually fail. Some people get only a few years and some get 20. There are lots of variables such as water quality and usage that make predicting failure impossible. A Hott Rod could cause a problem i suppose. For instance, if one was installed in place of the factory anode rod. For the most part though,, the blue glob and pin hole probably weren't caused by the Rod.
__________________
03 Itasca Sunova, 8.1 Workhorse on a P32 chassis
Mudfrog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2016, 03:08 PM   #11
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forzatm View Post
This person claims that the Hott Rod damaged their hot water tank. He shows a photograph of his water tank out of the coach and a guy welding up a pinhole with a mig welder. He is claiming that the Hott Rod caused this and others are claiming that it has some sort of electrolysis going on that's causing damage to the inside of the hot water tank and warning people not to use the Hott Rod. I for one am not buying this, the Hott Rods been around for years. I have never heard of any such thing. Is it possible that he got a hold of a bad tank from the factory? ANother person is claiming that the inside of his hot water tank is damaged by the Hott Rod and some sort of blue Goo material came out when He cleaned it out and shows a picture of it, even the dealer according to him cannot tell him what it was, it looked like a blue glob.

Folks are always 'looking' for an excuse as long as it doesn't point at them

Pinhole leak......
1) Could be due to lack of routine flushing/cleaning because aftermarket heating element is in the drain hole
2) Could be due to aftermarket heating element being used WITHOUT an anode rod or the short rod not being replaced when gone
1& 2 ----owners issue

3) MFG. production defect........hard to prove


Blue glob......
Water quality plain and simple.
It is Aluminum Hydroxide. Shows up in residential water heaters.
It is not harmful, it is a reaction to minerals in the water, it varies from clear gel like to blue to green goo

More frequent draining/flushing removes it and doesn't give it time to react.

Funny how folks always look to blame anything but there own actions
Old-Biscuit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2016, 03:23 PM   #12
Winnebago Master
 
Mr_D's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Vancouver, WA
Posts: 560
Hott Rod is the brand name of one of the units. I've installed two of them, one on my rig and another on a friends some years ago. Both did as expected which was heat the water, but they were slow and you did need to run the propane burner oif doing much other than washing hands. Used a lighted switch on both so you could see when they were on.
__________________
2009 45' Magna 630 w/Cummins ISX 650 HP/1950 Lbs Ft
Charter Lifetime GS Member, SKP, FMCA,
RV'ing since 1957, NRA Benefactor Life, towing '14 CR-V
Mr_D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 11:14 AM   #13
Winnie-Wise
 
Stevegd007's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: San Diego County, CA
Posts: 303
Both my RV's came with an electric option to heat the water as standard. On my first one I drained the water heater one winter of water. Come spring I had forgot there was no water in it an I was checking my RV for the road, I clicked on my electric heat for my water heater AND oops, minutes later I had burned out the element cause no water was in the tank!
My second RV is going on 10 years and the electric heat element in the water heater is going strong!
__________________
Steve & Leslie
Winnebago 2007 Adventurer 38T
Honda 2010 CR-V "Toad"
Stevegd007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 12:39 PM   #14
Winnebago Camper
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: TEJAS
Posts: 8
My question about the Hot Rod is this, I removed mine to drain the tank for winterizing in the driveway. It looked like this!



In less than a year and occasional use. Normal?
spyderRV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 12:46 PM   #15
Winnebago Camper
 
lanerd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Home in warm Sou Calif for the winter.
Posts: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by FIRE UP View Post
You know,
Based on the term "Hot Rod", and the subject at hand, I kind-a assumed it was some form of heating water. But, you know how assumptions can go So, I'd rather be properly informed as to its true pupose so that I'm not just thinking of what it is, thanks for the answer. It sounds kind-a like a diesel block heater, only maybe just a tad different.
Scott

My first reaction was that someone was going to tell us all about their Hot Rod....like my 64 Fairlane with a 351c bored and stroked 4-bolt main engine, a Borg & Warner HD T-10 4-speed close ratio trans and a 9" 350 post-traction rear end...

but no...
__________________
Ron, Sandie and Lilly
2013 Tiffin Phaeton 42LH 400 ISL | 2011 GMC Terrain SLT-2
Roadmaster All Terrain | US Gear Unified Brake System | Pressure Pro
lanerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 10:15 PM   #16
Winnebago Master
 
Jim_HiTek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Full time RV'er
Posts: 724
Quote:
Originally Posted by spyderRV View Post
My question about the Hot Rod is this, I removed mine to drain the tank for winterizing in the driveway. It looked like this!



In less than a year and occasional use. Normal?
Looks to me as though the water you've had in the tank is hard water, and then that you need one of those sacrificial electrolysis sleeves.

Also, just clean it off and stuff it back in the tank. That white stuff is harmless. Mine got some on it but not that thick and not that fast. But I full time RV'ed over in the NW mostly where the water is pretty good.
__________________
'02 Winnebago Journey DL, DSDP, 36' of fun.

Visit my RV Travel & Repair Blog at : http://chaos.goblinbox.com
Jim_HiTek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2016, 11:42 PM   #17
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by spyderRV View Post
My question about the Hot Rod is this, I removed mine to drain the tank for winterizing in the driveway. It looked like this!



In less than a year and occasional use. Normal?
Very normal.
If you pulled an OEM electric element you would see same kind of scaling going on
Just wire brush it off--------clean up threads, retape and back in.

Size of threads looks like it is in an Atwood (aluminum tank) so no anode rod needed.
Old-Biscuit is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
anode rod on hot water heater? homeless Plumbing | Systems and Fixtures 10 08-02-2015 06:19 PM
Windshield Wiper connecting Rod Alignment kehardman General Maintenance and Repair 6 08-06-2009 07:04 PM
White rod in closet sightseers General Maintenance and Repair 14 04-11-2009 12:32 PM
Curtain Rod behind driving seats FireStarter General Maintenance and Repair 12 04-15-2007 12:59 PM
New Use for Awning Pull Down Rod AdrianLee General Maintenance and Repair 31 04-03-2006 01:07 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Winnebago Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:30 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×