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Post Info TOPIC: Suburban brand water heater working sporadically on propane.


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Suburban brand water heater working sporadically on propane.


We have a 2008 5th wheel. About 3 weeks ago, the hot water heater showed a red reset light. I went outside, fiddled with everything I could fine, and all looked good. I don't have an electronic meter to measure current.

After fiddling with it, nothing worked. 2 days later, I decided to turn the switch inside back to "on", the water heater then tried to ignite, and it worked! This lasted for 1 week or so. Now it's off again. 

I thought it could relate to the cold weather, but it's 67 today and it's still not working. 

I have narrowed it down to propane not coming out, but there is plenty of propane in the system. If the propane isn't coming out of the little pin hole, how can I clean that out or diagnose the cause of no propane reaching the spark?



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Go to http://bryantrv.com/docs.html, scroll down to "Miscellaneous Documents" and you will find a link for "Suburban RV Series water heaters" manuals.



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Bill Joyce,
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I'm trying that site, but still can't get it to load. I think it's on my end.

Any other general tips for troubleshooting the propane flow of the water heater?

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From the manual you are having trouble downloading:
) Main burner will not ignite:
1) Main burner orifice could be blocked - remove and clean with alcohol or compressed air. Do not
enlarge orifice hole.
2) Improper air shutter adjustment - with the right fuel/air mixture, the main burner flame should be blue
or orange blue. Adjust air shutter to this color; do not allow it to burn yellow as sooting can occur.
3) Lint or dirt in burner tube - clean burner tube.
4) Gas control valve defective - no gas flow through valve. Remove and replace


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Bill Joyce,
40' 2004 Dutch Star DP towing a 2012 AWD Chevy Equinox
Journal at http://www.sacnoth.com
Full-timing since July 2003



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Wow, that's great Bill, thank you so much for that.

I'll head out there now with rubbing alcohol and compressed air to see what happens once I clean it up a bit.

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That didn't work. I'm going to assume the burner tube is the large opening which is where the actual fire burns. I'll check this for lint and dirt.

Is there a test I can do to see if it's the actual gas valve before I drop $50 on a new one? www.amazon.com/Suburban-161109-Gas-Valve/dp/B003G9FQSS

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I had the same issue last year and it turned out to be one of the two solenoid coils on the valve. See if you can borrow a meter and set it to the ohms scale to see if you have continuity through the solenoid coils. If that's the problem hopefully you can find a replacement even if it's off of a used valve.

Good luck!



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Thanks Steve! I'll have to find a diagram to find where the solenoid coils are, but I'll try to give that a test. I'll probably buy a multimeter online so that I have one.

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I also believe PPL.com has a troubleshooting guide in the Appliances thread in their parts catalog section online! Been a while since I used their sight.

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Your wires go to the solenoid coils on top of the valve. Take a multimeter and put it on the ohms scale. Remove the wires and put the test leads on the coil terminals and see if the needle moves to the far end. If the needle doesn't move the coil is shot. I forgot to mention that you should check all wiring connections as well. A poor ground can cause problems.



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Steve & Dianne Colibaba

Check out our blog: http://steveanddiannesmostexcellentadventure.blogspot.com/

  • 2008 GMC T7500 Medium Duty Custom RV/Toy Hauler
  • 2009 37' Montana 3665RE
  • 2 - 2010 Yamaha Grizzly 550 ATV's

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Thanks everyone! It was the gas valve. Now that I have it replaced and working, I'd like to replace one more piece that got damaged during the installation.

s195.photobucket.com/user/jasmar69/media/DSC08726.jpg.html

In that picture above, you can see the very bottom left, the bendable propane tube that connects the gas valve to the burner tube. I'd like to replace that whole piece, including the brass fittings and pressure ring things that go inside to make an airtight fit.

I can't find this on Amazon, and don't know what to call it online. Is there a version I can get that's not metal, so it's easier to work with and more flexible?

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That's 1/4" aluminum pilot tubing. Any RV store will have this. I'm not aware of flexible gas lines in that size and if it was it would probably be expensive.

Cheers!

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Check out our blog: http://steveanddiannesmostexcellentadventure.blogspot.com/

  • 2008 GMC T7500 Medium Duty Custom RV/Toy Hauler
  • 2009 37' Montana 3665RE
  • 2 - 2010 Yamaha Grizzly 550 ATV's

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Thanks Steve! I appreciate the guidance.

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