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Old 09-19-2014, 05:55 AM   #1
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Talking Oh so new and green

Hello everyone! My husband, Bob, and I just purchased our first motor home. What a scary yet exciting experience! Mistake or not, we jumped feet first into the deepest water. After having researched the various models online and visiting a few coaches at dealers, we decided upon a 2014 Winnebago Forza 34T that we brought home on September 15, 2014.

We have so much to learn. For instance, where is the electric switch to activate the water heater? Two technicians at the dealer could not locate it and said likely we can only heat water using propane. Really? Anyone who can shed light on that, please do so.

My husband retires in nine months and he hopes to travel extensively. Until then, we plan to make short trips of both miles and duration to familiarize ourselves with our new baby.

I'm new to this website and look forward to reading about others' experiences so I can gain insight into the RV lifestyle.

Thel
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Old 09-19-2014, 06:08 AM   #2
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Welcome folks, some entry level motorhomes only have propane water heaters with no electric element. Don't worry, we were all new once, just go slow and learn as you go. Enjoy
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:09 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forum and the Winnebago family! Sorry I can't help with your question, just wanted to say hi! Jacksonville is our "go to" place for quick retreats...actually Mayport Famcamp...love it!!
Enjoy your new toy and safe travels and fun journeys.
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:54 AM   #4
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Welcome....
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:17 AM   #5
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Our first MH had only a propane water heater which isn't really a bad thing. Our switch was on the "control center" panel. There was a toggle switch that turned it on and a red light next to it that indicated it was being ignited. After it was lit, the red light went out. Our hot water heater was located under the sink and we could here it fire up. It vented out the passenger side wall.

Do you have gas burners? If so, you may need to turn one on to get the air out of the line to make it easier to get the gas to the water heater.

Congrats on your coach! We'd love to see pics.

PS... I hate Hate HATE that "entry level" description of coaches... it makes it sound like it's inferior and "entry level" is somewhat relative anyway.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:27 AM   #6
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:welcome:

Glad to have you here with us.

I would first look at your 110v breaker panel and see if there is a breaker for the hot water heater. That would tell you whether or not you have an elec side to it. Call Winnebago, and their customer service should be able to tell you where the switch is. Maybe someone else will know.

Best of luck and Happy Trails!!!
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:37 AM   #7
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Here is a quote from my High School electronic, chemistry, physics teacher.

If it doesn't work, read the book.

If it still doesn't work, follow it.

So much truth in his quote. As an Electronic Tech I have found clues buried in one sentence in two hundred page manuals. My recommendation is for you to read the operators manual very slowly and do not skim. Take notes as if you are going to have a test. Go ahead and write in it. It is your book. If you find a really important page fold it in half towards the middle and it will open there easily,. I do this on my automotive manuals in the fuse panel sections.

After reading the book, put it aside for a week and then read it again. Read the manual again after a few months. You will be amazed at the small references and tips you will pick up.

No service tech or salesman is going to know every item in a new rv without doing the same. Techs don't get paid to sit down and read new manuals. That said, I indeed paid techs to do just that. The payoff was excellent.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:38 AM   #8
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Welcome to the Forum and sorry but that maybe a question to ask in the Winnebago area of the Owners section of this Forum, although someone maybe able to help you here. Enjoy your new RV and best of luck.

Happy RV'ing
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:54 AM   #9
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Hi Thel & Bob! Welcome to the forum! We're sure glad you joined us!

Sorry I can't help with your questions. Maybe one of the Moderators will move your post over to the Winnebago area of the forum for better results.

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:11 AM   #10
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:welcome:

Bob and Thel, Glad you're aboard. Congrats on the new rig. Enjoy your adventures and be safe.
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Old 09-19-2014, 12:51 PM   #11
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Welcome and glad to meet you!
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:40 PM   #12
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:welcome:
Good luck with the outcome. It took me almost three years before I found out I had a electric water heater, I thought you you were supposed to turn the switch with the flame on then flip the switch with the lightning bolt to ignite the gas

So much for reading the instructions first

Oh well as you will find out all is well that ends well.
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Old 09-19-2014, 10:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TGarrett View Post
Hello everyone! My husband, Bob, and I just purchased our first motor home. What a scary yet exciting experience! Mistake or not, we jumped feet first into the deepest water. After having researched the various models online and visiting a few coaches at dealers, we decided upon a 2014 Winnebago Forza 34T that we brought home on September 15, 2014.

We have so much to learn. For instance, where is the electric switch to activate the water heater? Two technicians at the dealer could not locate it and said likely we can only heat water using propane. Really? Anyone who can shed light on that, please do so.

My husband retires in nine months and he hopes to travel extensively. Until then, we plan to make short trips of both miles and duration to familiarize ourselves with our new baby.

I'm new to this website and look forward to reading about others' experiences so I can gain insight into the RV lifestyle.

Thel
I took a look at the brochure for your unit that is found on the gowinnebago.com website. Standard for your unit is "6-gallon LP water heater w/electric ignition". There was no mention of an optional electric/LP water heater being available.

Winnebago Motorhomes - Brochure Archive
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Old 09-20-2014, 10:00 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TGarrett View Post
Hello everyone! My husband, Bob, and I just purchased our first motor home. What a scary yet exciting experience! Mistake or not, we jumped feet first into the deepest water. After having researched the various models online and visiting a few coaches at dealers, we decided upon a 2014 Winnebago Forza 34T that we brought home on September 15, 2014.

We have so much to learn. For instance, where is the electric switch to activate the water heater? Two technicians at the dealer could not locate it and said likely we can only heat water using propane. Really? Anyone who can shed light on that, please do so.

My husband retires in nine months and he hopes to travel extensively. Until then, we plan to make short trips of both miles and duration to familiarize ourselves with our new baby.

I'm new to this website and look forward to reading about others' experiences so I can gain insight into the RV lifestyle.

Thel
:welcome:

I have not read the other posts yet. But WELCOME and CONGRATULATIONS is the first place of business. Well, pleasure that is.

I am not directly familiar with your coach but, from my experience with Winne products, I would look on the One Place control panel (if you have one). Before you think you are confused read the documentation that comes with your coach. Once that is done you probably will be confused. But this is directed confusion and we can help with your questions in a better manner.

Before you get too far from the dealer do some shakedown cruses. This can be done in your yard if it is level enough. Set up the coach and camp out for a few days, testing everything. Once you are happy with the functioning of the living quarters take a road trip and see how well the chassis is working. Keep a good list of problems and questions. Don't simply trust what the dealer gives you for an answer. Check in here. Many dealers don't have a clue as to what is causing a problem and will simply blow smoke and flash mirrors at you to get you to go away. This is a sad fact and we, with a few years and miles under our wheels know this way too well and have learned to do many fixes our selves or go to Forest City, IA to the factory for the correct fix.

Join the WIT club and plan a trip the the Grand National Rally. We have not made it yet but are planing to do so one of these years. Folks who have attended rave about what they learn and how much fun it is.

I hope you have many happy trails and adventures over many years of RVing. Look forward to seeing you here on the forum.

Rick Y
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Old 09-20-2014, 12:36 PM   #15
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According to your manual, you have three water heater options: Propane Only, Propane Electric and Propane Tankless. If the first and the latter are in your coach, the on-off switch is located in the One place, if the second, the switch for the electric element is near the One Place (as someone else wrote). Good luck and enjoy!

Scott
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Old 09-20-2014, 01:24 PM   #16
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Congrats on your new purchase, each persons MH becomes their little baby to treasure and play with. Getting it and setting it up how you want is half the fun. As mentioned earlier always keep your manuals with you and read them, they come in handy when you think something is wrong, read the directions, and get it working again.

You may not have an electric water heater feature, but no big deal as the gas one works just as well. Your propane tank will last along time between refills. I also hate that "entry level" remark, people buy whichever MH they chose for a variety of reasons and they are all special to them and something to be proud of. I have seen some "high end" MH's that I wouldn't want because the floorplan or style didn't fit my needs. The most important thing is to get out and use it, and ahve fun with it.
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Old 09-20-2014, 02:13 PM   #17
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Old 09-21-2014, 07:07 AM   #18
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Oh so new and green -- still.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TGarrett View Post
Hello everyone! My husband, Bob, and I just purchased our first motor home. What a scary yet exciting experience! Mistake or not, we jumped feet first into the deepest water. After having researched the various models online and visiting a few coaches at dealers, we decided upon a 2014 Winnebago Forza 34T that we brought home on September 15, 2014.

We have so much to learn. For instance, where is the electric switch to activate the water heater? Two technicians at the dealer could not locate it and said likely we can only heat water using propane. Really? Anyone who can shed light on that, please do so.

My husband retires in nine months and he hopes to travel extensively. Until then, we plan to make short trips of both miles and duration to familiarize ourselves with our new baby.

I'm new to this website and look forward to reading about others' experiences so I can gain insight into the RV lifestyle.

Thel
Thanks to everyone who have commented, offered help, and have welcomed us to this forum and RV world. Not only are we new to this RV but I'm also new to this website which makes me "doubly green" so please bear with me. :-)

My husband (not me yet) has read about 75-90% of the manuals, is technically inclined, and can figure out a lot of technical stuff, but still, he is finding things that stump him, e.g. the "electric" water heater. To positively and finally settle that question, I plan to call Winnebago directly to hear what they say.

I'm sure with time and experience, we'll get the hang of this new toy and gain a much higher level of confidence, but for now, I'm totally overwhelmed and wondering why the heck we ever started down this road.

I'm listening to all the sage advice from you experienced RVers. :-)

Thanks again,
Thel (and Bob)
P.S. Finally found the TV control panel well hidden above the passenger's seat above the windshield. :-)
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Old 09-21-2014, 07:35 AM   #19
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Thel and Bob:

We bought the Itasca equivalent to the Forza 34T. The hot water heater was propane only. We had dealer swap out the propane only for a gas/electric combo tank. We told dealer that a propane only hot water heater was a deal breaker, so they offered to go half on parts/labor for the new one. (Lucky for me my DW was observant during the walk-through) We have had other RVs that came with propane/elect and just thought it was the norm.
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Old 09-21-2014, 08:18 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TGarrett View Post
Thanks to everyone who have commented, offered help, and have welcomed us to this forum and RV world. Not only are we new to this RV but I'm also new to this website which makes me "doubly green" so please bear with me. :-)

My husband (not me yet) has read about 75-90% of the manuals, is technically inclined, and can figure out a lot of technical stuff, but still, he is finding things that stump him, e.g. the "electric" water heater. To positively and finally settle that question, I plan to call Winnebago directly to hear what they say.

I'm sure with time and experience, we'll get the hang of this new toy and gain a much higher level of confidence, but for now, I'm totally overwhelmed and wondering why the heck we ever started down this road.

I'm listening to all the sage advice from you experienced RVers. :-)

Thanks again,
Thel (and Bob)
P.S. Finally found the TV control panel well hidden above the passenger's seat above the windshield. :-)
How to find your water heater model.
Excellent that your husband is technically inclined-that will help the whole learning process a lot. Every part that went in to making your specific motorhome is on record on the Winnebago website, including the specific water heater used. Here is how to access that information (this is the same process that Winnebago will use when you call them):

1. go to "gowinnebago.com"
2. click "owners" (top right hand of page)
3. click on "Manuals & Diagrams" on the pull down menu
4. on the new page, click on the red "Parts Catalog" on the left
5. on the popup, click on the blue "I'd just like to download a manual....."
6. click on the red "Service Parts List" on the left
7. pick your year of motorhome on the left
8. below the motorhome years, enter the last 5 digits of your Winnebago SERIAL NUMBER (not the VIN!)
9. The complete record of what went into constructing your motorhome will appear down to the last screw. Your water heater should be listed in the top portion of the page. Also more details will be given in the individual parts listing lower on the page as "water heater....."

Here's my listing:
WATER HEATER-6 GAL-GAS/ELEC/120'-REM IGN-W/HEAT EXC-4E145541-02-000EA1

Also your dealer should have given you a "build sheet". That will list all of the appliances and equipment that went into the MH along with the brand, model number and part number. The model number can then be used to look up the specifications on the manufacturer's website.

Good luck!

This thread contains very good info on your motorhome with some good posts by owner Lanny1763:
http://www.irv2.com/forums/f101/2014...za-190221.html
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