hot water heater diode

#1
On a recent trip the gas (only) hot water heater on my 98 Bounder quit working. I checked voltages on the wires in the hot water heater panel. What I found was a jumper diode, that seems as if it was an add on or recall type installation. I removed it and the hot water heater works fine. What I'm wondering is, if some of you full timers or smart persons know about this diode and if its necessary. I'm assuming it is if somone put it there. I checked it with a ohm meter and its open both ways. I'm wondering if a diode at radio shack will work????
 

Gary B

Senior Member
#3
hot water heater diode

Hi B.A. its a thermal cut-off, about half the atwood water heaters have them and half don't, most any rv service center will have them, they cost less the $10.00, or you can do as you are. Maybe more than half don't have the as many folks just jumper around them when they go. Correction the price is about $17.00
:) :laugh: :cool: :bleh: ;) :approve:
 
#4
hot water heater diode

If it is a thermal cutout as Gary suggests, DO NOT use the heater without it. The proper name for such a device is Energy Cut Off (ECO for short) and while some of them do fail, they are there to protect you from the results of a failed thermostat, ie. near boiling hot water, relief valve discharge of the same, or catastrophic failure of the water heater tank. I have worked on enough different water heaters to know you don't want to mess with the safety devices...that's how people get hurt! If you are unsure, have someone who is knowledgable about gas appliances take a look at it. Even if it costs a few $, it is cheap peace of mind.
 

Gary B

Senior Member
#5
hot water heater diode

Hi Ed, NO IT IS NOT the ECO, I would never suggest going around the ECO, what B.A. posted is that it looks like a diode the ECO does not look like a diode sorry but I used the wrong name its a thermal cut-off the part # is AT93866 and I was off on the price seems they have gone up considerablly now they are about $16.40 I have to agree with Ed if you are not sure what your doing then its best to have a tech. work on it. :) :laugh: :cool: :bleh: ;) :approve:
 

Kirk

Senior Member
#6
hot water heater diode

As Gary suggests, it is a device that works exactly like a fuse, except that it opens on temperature if working properly, or from old age if not. We used a lot of them in business machines that had heaters in them, as safety devices. But more of them fail from old age than from over temperature, which is the reason that most equipment no longer uses them. My previous Atwood water heater had one, my present, newer one does not.
 
#7
hot water heater diode

Thanks for the info, guys. As I indicated, I used the hot water heater the rest of the trip, which was 4 more days and nights. I fully intend to replace it, as I believe that its there for a purpose. It's good to know so many RV'rs out there are willing to share.
 
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