Oct 242009

It started raining late Thursday evening, and poured all night long, while the wind rocked the motorhome. When we woke up Friday morning there were huge puddles all over Elkhart Campground, and it was still coming down hard.

We then discovered that we didn’t have any hot water. There’s nothing like washing up with cold water to get your blood flowing early in the morning! Miss Terry tells me to take a cold shower quite often, but this time she apparently really meant it!

Our Winnebago motorhome has a ten gallon gas/electric Atwood water heater, and since we bought it a few weeks ago, the electric side has not worked. So we’ve been getting by using it with propane, and that was one of the issues we wanted to have an RV tech take a look at.

Unfortunately, the local RV repair shops we have talked to are all booked solid right now with snowbirds preparing their RVs for their winter travels, and we have not been able to make an appointment. Now, without the propane working either, we needed to figure out something pretty quickly.

I went outside and slogged through the puddle that we were parked in, opened the water heater access door and confirmed that yes, it was still there, and had not fallen prey to a wandering band of water heater thieves. So much for the easy solutions!   

I’m nothing if not resourceful, so I did the next logical thing. I walked over to Greg White’s motorhome and banged on the door. Greg’s a lot smarter than me, and almost as cute, and while I didn’t know if he could fix a water heater, I figured that if I was going to be standing outside ankle deep in cold rainwater, somebody should keep me company! Greg stared at the contraption for a few minutes, scratched his head and a couple of other things, and said “Yep, you’re right. It’s broke.”

Okay, I already knew that, but as it turns out, Greg is a whole lot smarter than I am, though apparently not smart enough to come in out of the rain. He got out his test meter and fiddled around with it for a while, and then we went inside and drug out the case of owner’s manuals that came with our motorhome.

Greg studied the schematic for the water heater, diagnosed the problem as a bad thermal cut-off, and once I tracked down a replacement at an RV parts shop, it was an easy plug in fix. By then I needed that hot water to be able to take a long shower and warm back up!

While I was outside doing all of that, Bad Nick was no fool. He stayed inside and posted a new Bad Nick Blog titled Where Do We Draw the Line?.  Check it out and leave a comment.

Thought For The Day – I’ve always wanted to be somebody, but I guess I should have been more specific.

Register Now For Our Arizona Gypsy Gathering Rally

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  6 Responses to “Lots Of Water, And All Of It Cold”

  1. A little tip, Nick: when you find yourself without hot water, soak a washcloth in cold water, stick it in the microwave, and zap it for 30 seconds.

  2. Next time you need some help, call Charger Enterprises on CR6. They are between CR 11 & 13, I think, north side. Gerald Straw is the owner, graduated from high school with me. One of the “good guys.” I sent several people over there this summer and all have been very pleased. We’ve never had to wait for service. Bob Tiffin recommended them to us and it was after that I realized I knew Gerald. (pronounced with a “hard” G sound.) And he doesn’t write his own reviews on rvservicereviews like another guy in town.


  3. To bad that there wasn’t a book “RVing For Dumbies” that would give the RVer help in repairing some of the most common failures in the RV. I do know that there are some people who should not try to fix anything, but at least give ideas to get around the problem. Just thinking out loud, and that generally gets me into trouble.

  4. We’ve got a problem with the electric side of the water heater in our motorhome that is crying out for service. Worse than that, the cigarette lighter in the dash has stopped working! We don’t smoke, but that’s where the Pressure Pro AND the laptop are plugged in! The laptop holds our DeLorme Street Atlas and tells us where to go. Now we don’t know where to go and we don’t know if we have pressure in our tires. Gosh.

  5. Although there isn’t a yellow “Dummies” guide, there is one of those similar orange books for those of us who are “mentally challenged”: http://tinyurl.com/yjt6s23

  6. Not that we laugh at other peoples misfortune, but we couldn’t help but laugh out loud while reading this update. We can relate to the mechanical problems encountered, which always seem to happen at the most inappropriate time, when the rain or even worse, snow is falling and we have to get out around or under the rv.
    We hope that after the well deserved hot shower, the rest of the day was a little better.

    Pat and Jim

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.