After taking our FG trailer to Campingworld for a leak test, we discovered that one of the 20 or so spots where we have leaks
is around our water heater. So this weekend, we pulled the Atwood water heater put on new butyl tape and remounted it. Shortly thereafter it rained (this is Oregon) and I found water inside, under the water heater.
I put a bead of food coloring along the top of the water heater, as a "tracer" and sure enough, the water is leaking in - not through the flange though, but rainwater runs over the newly sealed top flange, and into the water heater enclosure along one side (closest to the heater vent), then the trickle seeps through rivet holes and slots in the upper and lower corners of the enclosure.
Since we bought the camper last fall
, I've only fired up the water heater to test it, so I have no idea how hot the enclosure gets. Will the enclosure get so hot that silicone, etc. will not work to seal the rivet holes? Any suggestions on what to use to seal the rivet holes and slots if the surrounding metal does get too hot? - I'll need to practice if it involves soldering. Alternately, has anyone used a rain gutter over the water heater to solve this problem?
Best yet, if anyone else has had this problem, how have they solved it?