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 > Your search for posts made by 'OBX-GL' found 13 matches.

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RE: Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

Conclusion, for anyone this little experiment may benefit. End of day five, fridge and lights still going on my one little battery. Realizing battery was low enough to not support any larger loads, i put the shore power back on. We will be using the pump minimally camping, will be interesting its 4-5amp impact. May report back on that. Basically I would do solar upgrades should we continue using non serviced sites, however thats not currently our plans. The experiment and your help gave peace of mind till we get on our typical site. Father inlaw will loan me a battery, and so will my mechanic. Three batteries should get us through 6 days, i hope. Thx again all !
OBX-GL 08/04/21 04:00am Travel Trailers
RE: Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

Further update Fridge still going, into day five. New LED lights now very bright. Note. Tried the water pump, it worked, but sounded laboured. Battery showing its lowish to larger draw ? Anybody know the draw/current of the pump, so i can calculate impact on a charged battery ? Thx !
OBX-GL 08/03/21 08:04am Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

While igniting, there is an override that allows propane to flow even without a flame. Once ignited, there is a thermocouple that must heat up or the water heater assumes the flame went out and shuts off the propane. (eventually, it tries to ignite again repeating the process) 1) Is the thermocouple in the flame? If it got bent to the side, it may not be heating up. 2) Is the thermocouple gone bad? 3) Is the circuit board failed, so even though the thermocouple says there is flame, it still shuts off the propane once the ignition cycle is complete. DSI or Pilot free water heaters do not have or use a Thermocouple. Only units with standing pilots that you have to manually light use a Thermocouple for flame detection. HERE is a link to Suburban DSI water heaters. Here is electrical diagram of DSI water heater.. DSI water heaters use a different flame detection, typically via a detection rod or in this case the same rod used for the ignition spark and is dual purpose. Flame detection via a flame sensing rod is also called flame rectification rod. Has to do with ionization that happens in the flame it's self. See more HERE From link above.. "Flame sensing rods, also known as flame rectifier rods or flame rectification rods, are commonplace in modern hot surface and ISI (intermittent spark ignition) gas-fired appliances. Flame sensing rods stick out into the flame and connect back to the furnace board. Once the board sends a call to the gas valve to open, it monitors the current flow on the flame sensing rod. It generates a potential (voltage) at the flame sensing terminal; this terminal is connected to the sensor with a conductor. When no flame is present, there will be potential at the rod and no current. When a flame is present, a small microamp (µA) direct current (DC) will be present as a path is made between the rod and the ions in the flame. This small DC current signals the board that flame exists and all is well with the world. If it does not sense this microamp (µA) DC current within a few seconds, it will shut off the gas valve and try again. The board outputs this potential (voltage) on the flame sensing terminal right at the beginning of the sequence to confirm that the path is “open” with no flame. This step ensures against false positives (sensing flame/current when there should be none), and once it goes from 0 current to the rated microamp (µA) current, the board “knows” that flame is present. These flame sensing rods are “dumb” devices. They do not generate potential (volts) or current (amps); their predecessor, the thermocouple (seen in standing pilot systems), does generate a potential itself, which is often the source of the confusion. A flame sensing rod is a piece of metal with a ceramic insulator that keeps it from grounding out. That is all. However, because it is conducting in the millionths of an amp (microamp), a lot can go wrong with it that a normal electrical component wouldn't have any issue with. Tolerances are tight, so small factors make a big difference. Flame sensors fail when: They short out due to a cracked insulator. They fail open because they are broken. They don't conduct because they are not properly placed in the flame. They become coated in silica (glass) or carbon. Before I go any further, I want to address a common question. Do flame sensors have a special coating that can be rubbed off with improper cleaning? Well, if we are talking about a thermocouple or a thermopile, then yes, absolutely, but we aren't discussing standing pilot systems here. I have seen many flame-sensing rods, and I have done a good deal of research; I have found no evidence that typical flame-sensing rods have a special coating on them that can be rubbed off. Now, if you have real, quantifiable proof from a manufacturer that says otherwise, PLEASE provide it to me so I can retract this statement. I think it's more likely that issues techs see from cleaning are due to cleaning with sand cloth (Emory cloth) and leaving behind grit that can lead to a coating and poor conductance once heated. I chalk the other part up to confusing a thermocouple with a flame rod and bit to superstition." Most failures with RV DSI will be between clogged/plugged orifice (meters out the propane from the valve), control board failure or gas valve failure.. Since it sounds like the OP hasn't used the DSI water heater much, I would try removing and cleaning the orifice and the burner tube.. Spiders tend to love to build nests in and around burners and the orifice. You are gold !
OBX-GL 08/03/21 07:16am Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

Further thought. What is the life expectancy of a water heater? Mine doesn't get a lot of use, sometimes worst scenario ? Circuitboard is $120 Dinosaur or OEM online. Tank is $600, order time of both is the same. Just thinking there are other parts to fail on my tank so while im at it ... ? Thoughts ?
OBX-GL 08/03/21 07:15am Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

Thx all, you have been helpful. Very late last night i got inside the cabinets and found (a bundle of wires connected to a pink clear-ish case) the circuit board floating on the floor. I did finally find the product sticker. It says Suburban, SW6 DE I feel my next step is to swap out the board.
OBX-GL 08/03/21 06:46am Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

Depending on model, the ignitor acts as the flame sensor. If no flame is present, the circuit board shuts off the propane. Ok, so if the flame is strong but ends with the termination of the ignition cycle ? im guessing my circuit board is the culprit. Circuit board must be buried on the tank inside the trailer, which is an impossible place under my kitchen cabinets. i'll have a look, thx.
OBX-GL 08/02/21 07:57pm Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

Is everything else working on battery power? If not, then it may be your converter. Is it a combination heater - has an electric heating element - or just an electric ignition? If the former, check the thermocoupler and propane lines for leaks. AC and DC/propane heater. Solid very strong blue flame when running. Im guessing its a Suburban style heater.
OBX-GL 08/02/21 06:15pm Travel Trailers
RE: Need help, hot water tank fail.

Make and model of water heater would help. Check the flame sensor to insure it is in the center of the flame and adjusted correctly. Your circuit board could be bad! I will wait for make and model! Propane would run off batteries when not connected to shore power. Checking images, i believe it is a Suburban heater. My theory - heater doesn't seem to recognize the flame is going. Will it stop the gas in conjunction with the completion of the ignition cycle ? If so, how is it sensed ? I don't see anything in the burner path to identify the flame is burning.
OBX-GL 08/02/21 06:11pm Travel Trailers
RE: Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

replace the stock wfco battery charger with one that works properly! Not following you. The battery charges fine ...
OBX-GL 08/02/21 04:51pm Travel Trailers
Need help, hot water tank fail.

Ok, so DW wants hot water while off grid. Unreasonable right ? :) Hot water tank works on shore power, but only kinda on DC. Basically it cycles ignitor/clicks normally. It fires fully on very very first ignition click, full flame stays on as long as ignition clicking keeps it going. Issue is, it goes out with the end of ignition cycle. Again back on first click for remaining two cycles till system times out. I'll turn off/on the switch and the same symptom persists again for that cycle. Not sure of the brand of unit. I have vacuumed out what i can, no change. Seems to be very little to adjust, or clean, or take apart. I don't even see an adjustment on the tube to alter fuel/air mixture. I'm the original owner. It did work when last i used the propane option, that was many years ago however. Please add your thoughts ! - Greg
OBX-GL 08/02/21 04:00pm Travel Trailers
RE: Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

Ok. Some updates. i have implemented many of the suggestions given here. Thank you all ! Firstly. i did start an experiment in the driveway. So far my (charged in the fall fully, and winterd disconnected in the house) battery has run the fridge and very very minimal use incandescent lights only, for just over 96hrs/4days and is still going. My gut tells me we are nearing the end, but i'll update on that. Yes, it would have been best to know the battery was fully topped up when the test began, victim of some fluid decision making. An additional draw would be extensive firing of my hot water tank igniter. I've been trying to get it going to no avail. i'm starting another help thread on that. Father inlaw is lending me an extra battery and so is my mechanic. I'm hoping three batteries will cover me for six days while i wait to get on my serviced site. Just finished swapping out lights to LED, should help i hope. Yes no radios and generator allowed in campground. Im taking the generator anyway, encase i can get away with it. I was eager to jump on the solar option, kinda wanted to learn that game. Everyones contribution got me this far in my decisions. i still have two weeks till i leave to change my mind. Thanks again for all your thoughts, everyone.
OBX-GL 08/02/21 03:40pm Travel Trailers
RE: Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

Thx everyone, lots of useful info. - awning and jacks at two set ups/tear downs i will now consider - no fans, tv's,etc will be used. Only propane fridge electronics, minimal water pump, few led lights. - i have disconnected all unnecessary parasitic power loads - realized house has robust battery backup system, sump pump. Dry year, gamble and steal it for two weeks ? - seriously considering buying bigger battery, also 400w panel kit. Site has thick tree canopy :( - will give jumper idea from truck more thought, interesting. - site rules say no noise, radios, generators. How strict will i find that ? - I have a Honda 2000 :( - could go for drive with gen charging in my truck long ? - gen eco mode idle... plugged into trailer for charging is the best method ? - is there a trick to know when the charge is done ? couple hours ? - do i go for a drive with the generator charging in the bed of the truck, how long would that take ? thx again for all your thoughts !
OBX-GL 07/29/21 10:20pm Travel Trailers
Off grid for first time, need some guidance !

Wow. Haven't posted in a while. I have missed tapping into all the available wisdom here. With Covid and boarders closed, site availably has sucked around me. We managed two sites consecutively at a great campground. Problem is one of them has no hook up. DW says she only needs the propane fridge/ its DC power circuit. i'm converting to LED bulbs throughout, likely only a bulb two for a few hours each day. i guess there will be the DC holding tank pump draw for a few seconds now and then. Am i missing any other loads ? Question - i have currently only one new deep cell group 24 marine battery, (1000 crank amps 130 reserve capacity) no other useful info on the label. How far will this thing last with my minimal loads ? I am willing to buy solar, and/or more bigger batteries. However, will likely never use them again. Milwaukee tool offers an expensive power station that i could justify for use at work. However, it only provides 750whr before it also needs charging. If me. what would y'all do for a weeks time till hook up is available ? Thx in advance ! Greg
OBX-GL 07/29/21 05:55pm Travel Trailers
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