MPG 184 water heater and cable tv question

Hi, just purchased a 2011 MPG 184. Everything on it works except I cannot get the Suburban SW6DE water heater to work. I have water in the tank, but there are 3 different switches and I can't seem to figure out which ones need to be flipped to work on gas or electric. We boondock a lot so really want the gas working. I have a switch on the water heater, one next to the water pump switch by the door, and one that looks like a light switch between the bathroom door and TV.
What needs to be on for gas? And what needs to be on for electric?

Also, by the cable TV plug inside on the wall by the TV there is a little red button. What is that for?
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Administrator
Staff member
The red button marked heater that is on the holding tank monitor is for the propane heat part of the water heater. It also needs 12 volts DC to operate. Make sure you have propane in your tanks and they are turned on.

The red light switch marked water heater is for the 120 volt operation of the water heater. You must be plugged into shore power or generator. With 120 volt disconnected check all connections at the water heater. There is a small junction box attached to the side of the water heater. Check the connections inside. I've seen more than one with problems there.
Also I suggest replacing the water heater element. It may be burned out. They are not expensive.

And finally the little red button near the TV coax is for the signal booster. It must be on for over air signals and off for cable. You will have to program your TV for signal type and do a channel scan.

Peace
Dave
 
The red button marked heater that is on the holding tank monitor is for the propane heat part of the water heater. It also needs 12 volts DC to operate. Make sure you have propane in your tanks and they are turned on.

The red light switch marked water heater is for the 120 volt operation of the water heater. You must be plugged into shore power or generator. With 120 volt disconnected check all connections at the water heater. There is a small junction box attached to the side of the water heater. Check the connections inside. I've seen more than one with problems there.
Also I suggest replacing the water heater element. It may be burned out. They are not expensive.

And finally the little red button near the TV coax is for the signal booster. It must be on for over air signals and off for cable. You will have to program your TV for signal type and do a channel scan.

Peace
Dave
Thank you. Am I correct in assuming the switch outside on the water heater should be on in both situations?
 

danemayer

Well-known member
Outside switch is in the 120V AC circuit and must be ON for 120V operation. Most people leave it ON.
 
Thank you. So in trying this, neither electric or gas works. So since the gas doesn't even fire up, I have to assume that it is not a problem with the heating element but something else. Not sure how to check the wires with a multi-meter as everything I've tried touching doesn't show any curent passing thru and I don't hear anything clicking when I try the gas.
 
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danemayer

Well-known member
To troubleshoot, use our Water Heater Troubleshooting Guide. It could be as simple as the ECO sensors tripping and needing to be reset. The 120V AC and 12V DC/Propane operations on Suburban units are independent. However, if something caused an overtemp condition, I think both ECOs will open, disabling both operations.

When checking voltages, the common lead on your voltmeter should be connected to a known good ground.
 
Thank you. I did take apart some of the water heater today and cleaned things up a bit. Didn't seem too dirty and all connections looked and measured good with the multimeter. I did unplug the circuit board that is under the bed and that all looked good, but after I put the connections back together, all of a sudden I could hear it clicking and it lit using propane. I did not have any continuity on the heating element so I believe that is bad on the electric side and will replace.
I did find a great video on youtube that was really helpful:
 
Have another question. When putting in the electric heating element and all switches are OFF but hooked up to dhore power, when I touch the white wire going to the heating element to the metal inside the water heater area, it sparks a little. When I put a multimeter on it, it reads .58 volts. Should it? Maybe that's why it burned out?
 
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