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Old 04-12-2021, 08:38 PM   #1
Winnebago Owner
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Ellijay Ga/New Smyrna Beach, Fl
Posts: 57
Hot water heater issue

Hi all,
We have a 2017 winnebago vista 29ve. I winterized the unit this past winter by just blowing out lines and putting RV antifreeze in traps and drains. Drained hot water heater. On our first trip since flushing out drains. Turned by pass valve on water heater line back to correct position. We're getting water out of faucet when turning on hot water faucet but no hot water. I push hot water heater switch to on, on panel, the heater had flame and you can hear it running but no hot water.
Anyone out there have any suggestions? Thank you.
monytaker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2021, 09:33 PM   #2
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 1,336
It take time for your hot water to rise to the top of the hot water tank. You need to give it 30 minutes. Did you?

Also, your WH will shut off the gas if there is not thermal transfer. I.e., without water in the tank, the tank will heat up fast and the thermostat will open, shutting off the gas.

Does your sink have 1 handle or a separate hot and cold?

What is your water heater type? We have different coaches, but your water heater is like mine I'm pretty sure.

Did you open your purge valve to let some water escape from the top? This will let you confirm you have hot water in the tank. If you have hot water in the tank and you are not getting any hot water out the sinks, with one handle faucets, what is happening is your cold water is back flowing through the hot water side.


Answer: Those stupid, stupid check valves are stuck closed, and this is blocking the flow of hot water out of the tank! Also the stuck valve is the hard to reach one up top.

This happened to me on the road. And after 3 days of not being able to get any RV shop or Camping World to help a traveler, I decided to research it... and I saved $350 by doing the work myself... and in the end it only cost me $5.

Here's what you do:

* Pick up 2 water donuts at the closest RV store. Amazon sell them for, but for some reason they are expensive. I think I picked mine up for just a few bucks at Camping World and now I travel with 2 extras, just in case those white plastic Flair-it parts crack.

* Remove your 2 check valves protruding out the back of your HW tank. The top check valve is probably your problem valve, but it could also be the bottom check valve. ...Time to get rid of both I say!

Note: Chances are channel locks will NOT give the leverage you need to loosen these check valves, and you may not have enough room. So you need to get a 1-1/8" long wrench at HD or Lowes. And you should also get the 1-1/16" wrench too in case I got the size wrong, and which ever one you don't need you can return it later. TIP: Use a crescent wrench to confirm the wrench size.

* Drill out the guts of those check valves; and now you have a pipe nipple, because you can see straight though it.

* Use teflon tape and put the nipple back in the WH.

* Now replace the old rubber donut inside the plastic Flair-it fitting and tighten, but not too tight. You don't want to crack the plastic!!!

That's it. You will now have hot water again!

Job over... unless you want to do this as an upgrade:

The best place for a check valve is next to your bathroom sink. This is where the Hot Water line goes first... then it branches out to the shower and then to the kitchen faucet.

So if you can get to the hot water line before the hot water gets distributed, under your bath sink, you just add one 1/2" Sharkbite Check Valve to the hot water line-in. And now your how water will appear in the shower faster vs. the 5-7 seconds it took before. So this saves hot water on every shower you take.

Note: You don't need those check valves! They should never have installed them and they cause everyone lots of trouble. I took mine out 3 years ago and I am so glad I did! You will be too!
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imnprsd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2021, 06:56 AM   #3
Winnebago Owner
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Ellijay Ga/New Smyrna Beach, Fl
Posts: 57
Hot water heater

Holy smokes! Ty so much fir your response. Heading out this morning. When I get to our new location will try your suggestions. You were very thorough. Thank you.
monytaker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2021, 08:44 PM   #4
Winnebago Owner
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Ellijay Ga/New Smyrna Beach, Fl
Posts: 57
I am getting a good flow of water from the hot water side of both sinks, kitchen and bathroom. I have separate faucet for hit and cold. Left hot water on.on panel for over a half hour. Fire showing outside in hot water heater the whole time. No hot water
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heat, heater, water, water heater

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