No gas to RV water heater?

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Old 05-27-20, 08:29 AM
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No gas to RV water heater?

My daughter just purchased an old (1984!) Prowler 31 travel trailer.
It has a few problems...
This one is the hot water heater.
I cannot get the pilot to light and there is no indication that gas is reaching the unit.
Ideas on how to troubleshoot?
It's the original heater, based on its looks - probably Atwood? - and completely manual.
 
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Old 05-27-20, 12:18 PM
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There should be a nut on the heater side of the service valve. Turn the valve off and crack the nut open. Turn the propane back on and see if you smell/hear it.

If you can't find the model number.... can you post a picture of the unit from the outside.
How-to-insert-pictures.
 
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Old 05-27-20, 01:08 PM
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Photos attached.

I brushed some dirt away and found out it's an Attwood model G6A-3.
I hope this helps...
 
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Old 05-27-20, 02:50 PM
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Yes, loosen that fitting and see if you can hear or smell propane escaping. That will narrow down if you have a problem upstream or downstream of that point.
 
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Old 05-27-20, 04:32 PM
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I loosened the fitting and gas was present, under pressure.
 
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Old 05-27-20, 05:21 PM
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There is supposed to be a service valve in the propane line. It was omitted there.

That looks like the W/R old style valve..
Put the valve to pilot and hold in. Light pilot and hold button in for a minute.
After letting go of of button.... pilot should remain lit. Turn valve to on.

If it won't light...... hold the button in for 3-5 minutes and try lighting every minute.
It can take a while to purge the pilot gas line.
If it still won't light..... more than likely the pilot orifice is clogged.... typically with a spider nest.... and will need to be removed and cleaned.

Easy to download manual...... Atwood service manual.
 
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Old 05-29-20, 09:27 AM
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Hi: Still wouldn't light after following your suggestion.
I've removed the pilot.
The tube in photo 2 is clear - can easily blow through it.
Photo 1 shows ? Air cannot get through (just blowing with mouth). Tube marked with X.
No obstructions seen at either end. Pipe cleaner comes out clean - both sides.
Is there supposed to be a hole at the end of the top tube? Appears to be solid?
 
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Old 05-29-20, 09:31 AM
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The "solid" is the the thermocouple. That generates a small voltage when in the flame to hold the pilot valve open. The X is the pilot light. There should be a tiny hole where the line connects or just above that. That hole should be too small to get a pipe cleaned thru.
 
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Old 05-29-20, 10:05 AM
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I can't see the hole you're referring to - would it show in this photo?
Does the thermocouple need serious cleaning in order to function properly?
I'd replace the pilot assembly if I could get one, but where I live I'd have to order it or drive 80 miles...
 
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Old 05-29-20, 10:39 AM
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You can see the orifice hole in your photo. It's that tiny little speck in the middle where the gas line connects to the pilot. With the pilot removed from it's gas line do you get gas out of the pilot gas line?

Do not use a drill bit to clean out the pilot orifice. It's a very small precision hole to meter the gas flow. If it's clogged I'd replace the assembly. It's probably due for a new thermocouple anyhow.
 
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Old 05-29-20, 04:44 PM
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I think I've found a source for a new assembly relatively close by so it looks like I'll go that route.
I appreciate all the help and advice.
I've learned a lot that I may have to put to use on my own trailer some day!
 
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Old 05-29-20, 04:58 PM
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If you have to clean it..... a bristle from a steel bristle brush works well.

For others following along..... the red arrow is pointing to the orifice hole.

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Old 05-31-20, 05:22 PM
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Back in operation.

New assembly installed , and system working fine.
Thanks for all the help in understanding these systems.
Now on to the fridge...
 
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Old 05-31-20, 07:34 PM
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Good job. Thanks for letting us know how you made out.
 
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