1994 Southwind Propane Problem

Discussion in 'Beginning RVing' started by 37ford, May 16, 2006.

  1. 37ford

    37ford New Member

    New to motorhome but I just purchased a 1994 Southwind 34' Ford chassis. I have been trying to learn how everything works but I have a problem with anything to do with propane. It show of the gauge on the tank 3/4 and inside 3/4 but the stove and the hot water tank will not light. I have the tank turn on and I did open the little vent screw and I can smell propane out of tank. When I turn the stove on I do not hear or smell propane just like it is emty. Is there any other solnoids or valves I need to turn on. I look for a carbon monoxide alarm but I do not see one. And maybe this is stupid question but I am sure it will not be the last one from me. Any suggestions?? Thanks
     
  2. ARCHER

    ARCHER Senior Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    37ford, welcome to the forum. If you have an LP leak detector, it must be in the on position in order for LP to go through the regulator to the various uses, like stove, furnace or hot water tank. When you turn it on the leak detector may make a beeping sound until it is set (automatically) for detect and the little green light blinks (if it has one). Also, after the system is accepting LP, it sometimes takes a little longer for them to light because of the possibility of air in the lines, but should be ok, once the lines are purged of the air.
     
  3. 37ford

    37ford New Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    Thanks for the reply but I do not see a LP leak detector inside the motorhome. Do they hide these detectors?? I have looked inside the cup boards,around the stove,around the floor boards. I was hoping some one here would have the same model and year and would tell me if they had one. Thanks Brad
     
  4. ARCHER

    ARCHER Senior Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    NO, they do not hide them. LP is heavier than air, so they are normally located somewhere near the floor On my 89 Winnebago, it is located near the floor just under the refrigerator. Have you tried to Contact manufacturer or looked in owner's manual (if you have one)?a
     
  5. 37ford

    37ford New Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    OK I found the LP detector in the bathroom on the floor. I was just looking around the kitchen. Yes it works and I have propane to the stove and the frig but the hot water heater will not light. When I hit the switch inside I can hear the clicking but there is no smell of propane. Would there be a valve proplem that is common or poss. circuit board. Thanks
     
  6. ARCHER

    ARCHER Senior Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    Good for you. Glad you found the LP leak detector...they are critical and a real safety plus. Sometimes the hot water tank will take a couple tries for it to light due to air in the line. Normally, I never smelled any lp when my Hot water tank tried to light. Might be some air in the lines, so try it a few times. If that doesn't work, it might be the ECO that is bad. There are wires running (I have an Atwood, so my guidance is based on it) to an ECO and THERMOSTAT mounted normally just to the left of the BOARD. They are small, about the size of a quarter each and round. You can purchase replacement kit (both ECO and Thermostat) from RV dealer. Easy to install and costs about 15-18 Dollars. Make sure you keep track of which wire goes to which item. They have a small spring that holds them in place (the thermostat actually touches the side of the hot water tank), and all you have to do is turn the ECO or Therm a little to get it to fit inside the hole. Look at the ones that are there now and it should be easy to reverse the installation. Make sure you use the sticky insulation that comes in the kit. If that doesn't work, it might be the Solenoid valve is bad or stuck (might try to just tap it gently). As with any LP work, if your not sure what you are doing, seek professional help from someone who knows. My comments are not perfect but I've replaced the ECO/THERM, solenoid valve, and the spark mechanism. I wasn't sure about replacing the solenoid valve, but it was stuck in the open position slightly and was a fire hazard so I didn't have much of a choice as to getting it fixed and I could not afford the mobile service to have them fix it. It has been working for three years now, so I must have done something right. Good luck and PLEASE be careful with LP.
     
  7. 37ford

    37ford New Member

    1994 Southwind Propane Problem

    Archer Thank you for all your advise
     

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