Water Heater (not pilot) won't stay lit - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-14-2015, 10:01 PM   #1
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Name: Peter
Trailer: Scamp
Iowa
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Water Heater (not pilot) won't stay lit

Hi all,

I have run into a problem with my manual (non-electric) hot water heater on my 2010 19 footer.

When I go to fire up the water heater, everything seems to work perfectly... Pilot light fires right up and stays lit for 30 seconds (or longer). Then I turn the control dial to "On" and the burner fires right up with a nice, strong blue flame and the pilot remains lit.

Problem is, the burner will only stay lit for about 5 minutes (at most) and I'm getting water which is barely warm. I have moved the temperature dial all the way to hot (I started out about mid-way between "warm" and "hot") and this has not helped.

I repeat the process and the same thing happens.

It seems the thermocouple is good as the burner fires up as it should. I have blown compressed air on the pilot, thermocouple and burner tube and have seen no improvement.

I suppose I could continually repeat this process and eventually get hot water after about three or four cycles of re-lighting the heater, but I'm sure hoping there may be a simpler fix.

Has anyone had this problem or is there anyone who may be able to point me in another direction to solve this issue??

Thanks for all your help!
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Old 08-14-2015, 10:14 PM   #2
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Name: Eddie
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Atwood Water Heater Troubleshooting
Sounds like your 140 deg thermostat or control could be bad.
Eddie
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Old 08-14-2015, 10:22 PM   #3
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It is possible that the pilot light is not hitting the thermocouple directly.
Look to see if the pilot flame completely engulfs the tip of the thermocouple.
Is the pilot light flame large enough?
If not there could be a spider nest in the pilot tube. you may need to remove the pilot tube to clean it
Not likely... but you could drain and rinse the tank to be certain there is no sediment in the bottom.
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Old 08-14-2015, 10:39 PM   #4
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2nd vote to replace the thermostat here.
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Old 08-15-2015, 07:22 AM   #5
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Name: Peter
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Thanks guys.

I think I will try a more thorough cleaning of the pilot as Floyd has suggested. The pilot flame, while seemingly fine, does not "fully engulf" the tip of the thermocouple as Floyd pointed out. Perhaps that may solve the issue. Since the pilot was firing right up and the burner lit with no issues, I guess I thought the pilot was fine. Here's hoping it's matter of a more thorough cleaning.

I'd like to think (well, at least hope) that replacing the thermostat would be a last resort.

Still hoping that someone who has had this very same issue will chime in!!
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Old 05-04-2018, 09:29 PM   #6
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Name: Jenny
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I know this is an old post but I'm hoping the OP can help me out. I just bought a used 2010 Scamp 16 and the water heater is ding exactly as you describe - lighting just fine but the pilot doesn't stay lit. How did you resolve your problem?

Thanks!
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Old 05-05-2018, 03:36 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by ScamperGirl View Post
I know this is an old post but I'm hoping the OP can help me out. I just bought a used 2010 Scamp 16 and the water heater is ding exactly as you describe - lighting just fine but the pilot doesn't stay lit. How did you resolve your problem?

Thanks!
As it lights, it's not spiders ect, change out the thermocouple, they don't last forever .
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Old 05-05-2018, 07:21 PM   #8
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Thanks! I'll have to look that up.
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Old 05-06-2018, 07:17 AM   #9
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As I recall, I thoroughly cleaned the tubes and thermocouple and that solved the issue. Since that time, I have had no problems with the water heater.
Hope this helps!

Peter
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Old 05-13-2018, 05:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Peter S. in Iowa View Post
Scamper Girl
As I recall, I thoroughly cleaned the tubes and thermocouple and that solved the issue. Since that time, I have had no problems with the water heater.
Hope this helps!

Peter
Thanks Peter, that is exactly what I did, and now the pilot light stays lit. Thanks very much!
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