Atwood RV Water Heater – 7 Things You Need To Know

Water heater

Enjoying a hot shower on the road is a simple pleasure we take for granted until stepping into an RV. But the technology exists to make life in a camper as luxurious as a trip to the spa. Of course, to enjoy that steamy rinse, you’re going to need a water heater. And why not go with the brand trusted by RV enthusiasts for years? We’ll tell you everything you need to know about purchasing an Atwood RV water heater and how to use it. 

1) Water tanks

Should you or shouldn’t you have a water tank? Believe it or not that’s the main question when it comes to a water heater for your RV. Luckily Atwood RV hot water heaters come in either the tank or tankless design. The main difference is that a hot water tank is kept warm either with the warmth from the engine or through a separate heating component. The problem is once you run out of hot water, you have to wait some time for the tank to refill. Tankless heaters use heat to warm the water as it’s used, meaning you won’t have a limited supply. 

2) Propane tanks

Heating hot water typically requires propane. And that means carrying and storing fuel. It’s important to safely store your propane tanks in light-colored containers with proper ventilation to avoid combustion. Additionally, always store your tanks outside and always shut the valves off when not in use. Never smoke around propane tanks or expose them to open flames. 

3) Sulfur smell

If you smell something like sulfur emanating from your water or the tank, it’s likely that your tank needs cleaning. To clean your tank, drain it completely first. There are sprays and cleaners that will get the tank back in good shape. Water and vinegar also works to remove odors. Rinsing the tank after draining it will remove any sediment that has built up and lingered. 

4) Seasonal use

If you aren’t going to use your Atwood RV water heater in the winter, and even if you are, it’s important not to keep water in the tank when it’s not in use. This water can freeze in cold temperatures and break the tank or the lines. Make sure to always drain the tank after a trip and when putting the RV in storage. 

5) Troubleshooting your heater

Of course, nothing is without its problems. Fortunately, troubleshooting Atwood RV hot water problems is simple with the internet. Most of your basic problems can be narrowed down to a water problem or an electrical problem, as the two components usually don’t mix well. Sometimes a fix is as simple as refilling your propane tank or lighting the flame that burns fuel to heat the water. Other times, your tank has sprung a leak. Luckily many fixes are easily done at home with help from the internet. 

6) Tank corrosion

Tank corrosion is a common problem for your Atwood RV water heater. But the fix is as simple as installing a $20 part. Anode rods will ensure that the rode bears the brunt of corrosion instead of the tank. That means a longer lifespan for your Atwood RV water heater, and a better shower for you!

7) Tank or tankless

Tank sizes will vary when shopping for your Atwood RV hot water heater, you have the choice of tank or tankless. But if you go with a tank, you’ll want to compare the sizes. A larger tank means a longer shower or a couple of showers. The smaller the tank, the smaller your readily available supply of warm water. Something to keep in mind before you buy.