Atwood tankless water heater, has anyone oredered one? I did....... - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-26-2013, 07:56 PM   #1
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Atwood tankless water heater, has anyone oredered one? I did.......

I just had the worst expirence ordering something online. I placed an order with American RV Company 2 weeks ago. I ordered a fantastic fan, a progressive dynamics PD4045KV converter, and, since I worked hard and saved money on other items, I decided to splurge and treat my wife and I to the luxury of an almost $800 tankless water heater.
I received the order in a huge box in a timely manner, no signs of damage to the box. I opened the large box, and after digging through so much shredded cardboard packing, I got all items out of the large box. Each individual box looked great and no signs of damage. I opened each item to inspect it, and everything was good till I got to the Atwood tankless water heater. I had difficulty in removing it from the box, because it was put in the box upside down. As I found out later, I realized there were handles in which to remove the item from the box, had it been put in the box right side up. The reason it was upside down in the box, was, I am sure, because it was full of water. When I set it down and turned it right side up, water poured out all over my kitchen floor! Besides that, there were scratches all over the the exterior of the metal housing. Inspecting further, the unit had been smashed. The burner at some point had been smashed into the copper heat exchanger, screws are loose copper inlet and outlet tubes bent, etc.
I immediately called American RV, and spoke with a women named Gina. She told me "It is normal for this model to be smashed up like that, as they don't ship in perfect condition" I instantly knew this was going to be a big problem from that statement. She did say, however, "It shouldn't have water in it though". So she had me take pictures and send them, so she could relay them to Atwood. I waited all day for some kind of follow up, and at the end of the day, with no response, I called and spoke with someone else, who apologized and said Gina had left for the day. The next day, same thing, but when I called at the end of the day, I did get Gina on the phone, and she told me she hadn't heard from Atwood, and she didn't know what else she could do
Today, she called to tell me she sent an email forwarded from Atwood. It basically said it was damaged in shipment, and the bent copper tubes would be fine and it would work fine. It said they test them before they ship them, which is why it had water in it. It didn't, however, explain the scratches all over the housing how it got smashed on the inside with no, and I mean NO damage on or inside the box.
I believe this was a demo unit that Atwood repackaged. It would explain why it was in the box upside down, so as to not leak water, when the packaging was clearly meant for it to be in the box right side up, meaning it should have either: had no water in it, or the inlet and outlet tubes should have been capped off. The scratches all over the unit, could be explained by it being a free standing demo unit, sliding around here and there, as well as the unit having been smashed in from the side.
I was wondering if anyone has ordered this Atwood OD-50 tankless water heater and noticed if it had water in it, and if it was packaged upside down, scratches etc? I am guessing not, but I could be wrong.
I am afraid to install this, and have to worry about if it is safe, there are lots of LPG tubes, fittings, and components in there, that have been jostled around.
If what Gina said is true, meaning Atwood has poor quality control, I am very sad I ordered this, and don't think I could order another Atwood product.
I am also very disgusted in my order from American RV, poor customer service, uncaring and ungrateful of there customers.
They did offer for me to pay to ship it back to them and then on to atwood, and wait to see what if anything can be done. I decided to cut my loses, take this into someone who can test it, so I can have piece of mind it works.
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Old 04-26-2013, 08:13 PM   #2
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Sounds like a used unit to me. I would send it back and demand a refund.
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Old 04-26-2013, 08:39 PM   #3
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No question about it... Send it back, it arrived in unsatisfactory condition.

I just opened a new 4 gallon Surburban water heater to install in our Lil' Bigfoot. There was some evidence that it had been pressure tested and fired up for a test, but nothing more.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:33 PM   #4
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If you used a credit card file a complaint with the card carrier if the seller gives you no satisfaction.

Several years ago American Express got my money back on a damaged item.
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:13 PM   #5
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Is the tankless water heater smaller than the factory hot water heater? I just bought a 2001 16' Scamp and the bottom of the sink cabinet needs to be replaced. I thought since I had to do that, I might get a one and the be able to to get a little bigger sink.
Any advice on replacing the cabinet bottom or hot water heater or depper sink??
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Old 04-29-2013, 05:25 PM   #6
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I worked for Wards for 30 years and I never saw a water heater come in with water in it and I unloaded 3 to 4 semi loads per week. The only appliance that had water in it from the factory were clothes washers (testing) Scratches and dents never came standard from the factory.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:14 PM   #7
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The Suburban 4 gallon LP water heater is again available in the pilot model from most RV dealers. We bought one last week and just finished installing it in our Lil' Bigfoot. It fits under the rear dinette seats with room to spare.

I installed the same water model water heater in a 2004 13' Scamp about a year ago, it was a little tighter, but it fits.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:29 PM   #8
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I contacted Atwood directly today, and they immediately said they will ship me another one. I feel much better now! They said they line test random units, and now are doing that more often. Still, it didn't explain the abuse this unit came with, but I am confident I will be pleased with the replacement. Also, whatever may have happened to my unit may not go overlooked on someone else's. I am now a happy camper! And, it has nothing to do with American Rv Company's slogan stating they make happy campers, lol!
Oh, by the way, this unit fits in the area in which a 6 or 10 gal standard water heater would. My scamp did not have a water heater, but I will be mounting it wher my water tank was, curbside under bench seat. A new, and larger water tank will go on the opposite side, along with an exterior shower.
I am planning to install a small Atwood heater under my sink, but it's much smaller than the tankless water heater.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:32 PM   #9
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Sounds like two companies that need complaints filed to the Better Business Bureau. And contact them and tell both companies that the many forum members here now have their number.

I would send it back and keep small claims court in my back pocket.


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Old 04-30-2013, 12:08 AM   #10
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I am actually pleased with Atwood, they jumped right in and took care of me unannounced. I just contacted them today, and I have a new unit on the way. I was very pleasantly surprised!
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:06 AM   #11
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Yeah!

We had a similar situation. We ordered folding bikes from Uhaul to match our camper. One was the wrong bike. Uhaul has always immediately sent new items in the past when they arrived broken. This time, they referred us to Citizen. I assume that this is what the procedure had to be, but you always worry when the company you order from is not the company that fixes the problematic order. However, Citizen came through within a week and sent us a new unit and the shipping to return the wrong one. That is the way companies need to be.

Glad it worked out.


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Old 04-30-2013, 08:09 AM   #12
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Jeremy, thanks for the report. I'm glad you're finally satisfied, but saddened that I have to add one more supplier to my "do not buy from this company" list. My money is hardearned and like others cannot afford to be ripped off by a bad company. Since Atwood is taking care of the problem, it sounds like laziness and bad customer service from American RV Company.
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:08 PM   #13
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Cindy, what folding bikes do you have? My wife and I just picked up two of them at a garage sale, though they need nearly as much restoration as the scamp, lol.

I have to say, Atwood stepped up, knock on wood, haven't received the replacement yet, but they paid for return shipping, etc. I have cooled down since talking with Gina, the customer service rep with American RV Co. She was rude from the start. She had me send pics to her, no problem. I tried to describe to her what to look at in the pictures, she was not listening, and briefly talked over me. She did not get back to me, I had to call back to reach her several times to see what was going on. After a few days, she told me she finally got ahold of Atwood, (funny, I got ahold of Atwood in less than 4 hours with a reply), and forwarded a message from them to her, and asked me if that satisfied me. I read this email, it included her email to them as well. She sent them the pics I took, and gave a very brief and un-detailed description of each pic to the atwood rep. It was obvious she didn't listen to me from the start. Atwoods response was, this is damage from shipping, water is normal, etc.
I called her after reading this email, and told her, " no, this doesn't satisfy me, it's obvious you didn't listen to me, as there is no way the damage could have happened in shipping. She began talking over me again, and said " well, I don't know what I can do, is there something else I can do to help?" I was starting to get very frustrated now, I said to her "Yes, you could send me another and I can send this back". Before I finished that sentence, she talked over me again, and in a very argumentative tone said " We're not just going to send you an $800 item and trust you will send the other back". Now, that set me off!!! And I am the most easygoing person you would ever know. I didn't expect them to just ship me another unit, and after receiving it send them the other one back. But, she immediately thought that's what I meant and talked over me with that statement. I realized I was going to get nowhere with her, and I mentioned to her, "I will not be buying from you again, I am a member of an RV foru", cut off again. She interrupted " You're not going to say we didn't try to help are you?" I just said, "No, I am going to say HOW you tried to help." So, here I am telling, lol!
They might have great prices, some people have probably had no problems with them. But one thing I noticed, after going back to their website and reading the very few negative reviews, they reply back only to the negative ones. And it is clear as day to me, they are not concerned with the customer, but the view that potential future customers have of them, by giving the false appearance that they want to help.
Thanks for the support Donna, I would defiantly add this company to the "do not buy from" list.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:59 AM   #14
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Jeremy,

They are Citizen folding bikes, marketed by Uhaul and painted as Uhaul. They are really nice. We did (and still do until we do something about them) have Boardwalk bikes, but they don't have speeds. I don't really care about speeds, but the hubby does. I am a glamper, so I wanted the bikes that matched our camper. The Uhaul design draws a lot of looks, let me tell you.

And just so it is known, Citizen DID send us the new bike before the other one was shipped back, so briefly, we had two of their bikes, the new one and the wrong one.


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