Author Topic: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater  (Read 1862 times)

Offline moonlitcoyote

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Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« on: February 17, 2018, 07:05 PM »
SO as the title states, I am going to replace my hot water heater. I seem to be having a problem with the circuit board which I know I can replace for about $200 cheaper but the outside behind the access door is rusty and getting holes in it. I figure if I replace it now then I will only put money into it this one time.


I will try to post pictures of the current and replacement when I get to that point, but for now I am looking for any information on replacements. Mine is a G6A-4E which is not sold anymore. I have searched everything I could find all day today and I cannot find the dimensions of mine to get an exact replacement. What I did find is this..


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atwood-RV-Camper-Motorhome-DSI-Electronic-6-Gallon-Water-Heater-New-G6A-8E-New/362232143436?epid=1311821732&hash=item5456b7de4c:g:3~UAAOSwSzdXBzpM&vxp=mtr


I was hoping to get one ordered and received before taking mine out since mine does still work, it just needs some coaxing to get it to start. If anyone knows if this will fit or if they know of a better one I am all ears. If not then I plan on ordering this one and posting pics here of the removal and installation.

Offline joanfenn

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2018, 07:47 PM »
From what I remember a quick fix would be to measure the access door outside.  These are replaced through the outside and if it fits through the door it should work for you.   i??

Offline TerryH

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2018, 09:16 PM »
From what I remember a quick fix would be to measure the access door outside.  These are replaced through the outside and if it fits through the door it should work for you.   i??

Joan, is it possible you are thinking of a furnace? With a water heater. generally, the water lines connect at the inboard side of the unit. 2 or 4 depending on whether you have a rear engine heater and pre heater for the tank. In my case it is mounted under the pull out couch which would have had to be removed for adequate access to the water heater.
Two wrongs don’t make a right, but they make a good excuse.
-Thomas Szasz  1973   (1920 - 2012)

Offline joanfenn

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2018, 09:28 PM »
No when we replaced the water heater we slid it out from the outside and it flush mounted to the outside wall.  Then we connected the lines inside. Any furnace I have seen just has the vent and intake holes to the outside and the furnace is mounted on the inside.

Offline Froggy1936

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2018, 10:01 PM »
Hi ML  Nice to have you back  The water heaters are all the same size for the Atwood 6 Gal You will have no problem with fit . I use a Hot Rod electric heater on mine (does not use propane runs on 110 V when plugged in ) I always have enough hot water & it will still be warm enough to wash up after being disconnected all night Reheats in about 15 min when plugged back in . (Hot rod available @ camping world ) These new ones have auto matic lighting for propane ! Good Luck  Frank
The Journey is the REWARD !

Offline DaveVA78Chieftain

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2018, 12:59 AM »
As Frank said, all Atwood 6 gal Water Heaters (DSI and pilot) are the same size.  There are different options as described on pdf page 5 of their sales brochure.

Descriptions of the different models over the years is shown in the Service Manual.

Myself, I prefer the Gas/Electric DSI model (GC6AA-10E) with the Gas/Electric switch mounted on the wall.  Not hard to hook up (Hook up shown on page 22 of the Service Manual).  That way, you do not have to use the Hot Rod option which can void the Atwood warranty.  The "10E" portion just represents a revision number.  As explained in the Service Manual, a "10E" is just a revision number.  A "8E" model is just as good.

I purchased my Gas/Electric DSI version off EBAY used from a wrecked newer trailer for 1/2 the price of the one you linked to above.

Offline moonlitcoyote

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2018, 11:32 AM »
Thanks for the information, I had looked at 2 6 gal heaters and one said it was 18.5 deep and the other said it was 16 3/4 deep. Mine is under my kitchen sink so I dont want the depth anymore than what I have as it will take up even more of my shelf space under the sink.

Dave, I searched and searched and that is the cheapest one I could find. I will do a little more searching but I really want to get one ordered. It is a pain in the butt to have to go outside and mess with it when I want a shower. I miss the days I hit the button and it started right up. :)

Joan, you are correct, I did measure the outside dimensions and it looked like that part was no problem, now if I could be sure of the depth I would be a happy camper. :) I am always so worried that I am going to pay good money for the wrong thing.

Offline moonlitcoyote

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2018, 11:19 AM »
 I ordered that water heater from e bay.  It was a bit frustrating as they only accepted PayPal.  It should be here by the 28th. I was seriously considering the gas/ electric model but then I would have to move my switch and figure out how to wire it.

Offline moonlitcoyote

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2018, 03:15 PM »

Here are a few pics, sorry about the size, I tried a new image sharing website and dont think I am liking it. After dealing with the new water heater for the last month I am so glad we got it. I never realized that the water heater is supposed to restart itself when the water cools down. It has been great being able to have hot water anytime without thinking about it.



Here is the old water heater.








The new water heater before install







Had to dry the floor after unhooking the old one.





All ready for the new one to go in





And finally the new one all installed



Offline Rickf1985

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2018, 07:19 PM »
Yup, Hot water is real nice. I turn mine off during the day because I hear it cycle on several times during the day when nobody is using hot water. I just turn it off till it is needed. Yours may be better insulated being new. Now, If I can convince my wife that 55 gallons of water really is enough for two days!!!!

Offline Froggy1936

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2018, 02:23 PM »
Since i installed the Hot Rod (110V electric heater) i have not used propane for hot water , once heated and disconnected will still have warm water the next day , Fireing up the generator to make coffee And the water will be hot in 20 min !  I also added a jumper water connection from the bathroom sink hot water line thru a hand valve back to the main water storage tank , opening the valve for 5 sec then closeing it i have hot water at the bathroom sink immeadiatly with none added to waste water tank ! Frank
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Offline Jupp318

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2018, 02:33 PM »
Hi Guys, I have a '85 Cheiftain 27, I'm not sure what water heater it has as it is really rusty where the pressure relief valve has been leaking a little. This last weekend it has stopped working, although I can hear the sparker trying to light it, it doesn't!. I'm not sure if it's the controller or the gas valve thats not working. Either part is quite expensive, so I'm thinking the heater is probably the original and it may be wise just to replace it. For a long time I've had to turn it off and back on to get it to light and actually heat the water. Any tips on how to test the individual parts would be greatly appreciated as well as any information on what would be the best unit to buy.
Cheers Ian...

Offline Rickf1985

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #12 on: August 20, 2018, 04:36 PM »
If the heater is not leaking water then I would investigate why it is not running. Start with checking to see if there is a clog or rust in the burner. There could also be critters nesting in the burner tubes. If you have access to an air compressor try to blow out the burner tubes where the flame goes in. Careful because anything in there is going to blow back out in your face up and left behind the grill. Try blowing both ways. Then take the orifice tube off and blow it out also.

Offline Jupp318

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2018, 03:42 PM »
Hi Rick,
I've done as you said but to no avail. Whilst I had the burner tube off to blow it out I switched the water heater on and held a flame by the gas jet, nothing! (When the DSI was sparking) so I now know it's either the valve or the controller,  back to square 1!. Getting closer to biting the bullet. Moonlitcoyote, I only noticed after posting last night that we have exactly the same model Winnebago. Did the heater you fitted (as per the link you posted) fit without any issues?. Also when doing the swap is there a valve to shut the gas off?

Offline Rickf1985

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2018, 04:31 PM »
Are you sure you are getting gas to the unit? Those lines can get gunked up and clog.

Offline yellowrecve

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2018, 10:16 PM »
The jet may be plugged. The line to the valve may not be passing fuel. The valve may not be opening (bad ground or no power to the valve)
RV repairman and builder of custom luxury motor homes, retired, well, almost, after 40 years.

Offline Jupp318

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #16 on: August 24, 2018, 02:11 PM »
I know there is plenty of gas on board, I'm not sure if the valve needs constant 12V to open or just a short pulse to open the valve which may then latch open?. I checked the jet when I cleaned the rest of it out as per Rick's post. What would be the best way to check I have gas at the heater?

Offline Rickf1985

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #17 on: August 24, 2018, 07:17 PM »
Make sure all ignition sources are turned off, spray the gas connection to the heater with soapy water and then slightly loosen the nut with a wrench. If you get a lot of bubbles then you have good gas. If you only get one bubble open it a bit more and see if the flow increases. If it does then tighten it up and check for leaks. If it does not increase and the gas valve on the tank is all the way open then you have a clog. Let everything air out for an hour or so and see what kind of flame you have on the stove. If you have a good high flame then the problem is near the heater, if not then probably the regulator or the line close to the tank.
And before everyone panics and screams he will doe in an earth shattering explosion, you have to have a certain gas/air mix for ignition. That mix is very specific. Too little, no bang and too much no bang. He is outside and the amount of gas he is releasing from that line is so little it will never collect in the amount needed. It will smell like it is but that is the idea behind the rotten egg oder they add to the propane. Too get your attention fast even with a small leak.  Do NOT do this inside the RV!!!

Offline Jupp318

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Re: Replacing G6A-4E Water heater
« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2018, 05:49 AM »

 

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