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Truma Water Heater Leaking


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We just hooked up to the City Line in our OEII at a camp site and have water pouring out of the side of the round black tank in our Truma water heater. 

I did not do any winterization other than draining the fresh water tank and disconnecting water to the trailer.  Could water have been in the round black tank, froze and busted it?

I also did not have a pressure regulator on the end of my drinking hose...so I don't know if the camp site water pressure caused it.

I did pull the yellow handle down and the 2 o rings are there and look good.  Will post a photo.

Thanks in advance!

 

Harlan & Margie

2017 Oliver Elite II Hull#235, 2006 F250 Tow Vehicle

 

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Is your truma original?

Where was your camper this winter? 

If the truma is like our Girard, you should drain the tiny tank, when you winterize. Also, with truma, I believe you are supposed to remove the filter.

I'll leave it to the truma owners to give more info.

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35 minutes ago, SeaDawg said:

Is your truma original?

Where was your camper this winter? 

If the truma is like our Girard, you should drain the tiny tank, when you winterize. Also, woth teuma, I believe you are supposed to remove the filter.

I'll leave it to the truma owners to give more info.

Yes...Truma is original. Trailer was outside,not in a heated storage...we hadn't used the trailer since Thanksgiving...so been exposed to several freeze cycles.

 

Harlan & Margie

2017 Oliver Elite II Hull#235, 2006 F250 Tow Vehicle

 

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When we pickup up Oliver in 2023, they made a big deal about draining the hot water heater and leaving the water filter out while the trailer was winterized. They stressed that even if the water heater was drained, there could still be enough water in the system to freeze and crack the filter housing if the filter was left in place. 
May be time to turn bypass valve on the heater pending a more professional opinion than mine.  Good luck and sorry about a tough start to your trip.

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The Truma has a small plastic water tank that circulates the heated water.  When winterizing, you have to shut the water supply valve to the water heater off.  This is located under the street side bed.  On the outside, there is a big yellow lever you have to pull down on the Truma after releasing the pressure.  You drop it down as far as it will go and then remove the filter.  There is a convenient sized hole to the right of the water heater to put that in.  The water will then drain out completely.  

If, however, you don't do that and it freezes, the tank will crack.  That is what you are seeing in the video.  As far as I know, only a Truma authorized dealer can fix that for you.

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12 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

I did not do any winterization other than draining the fresh water tank and disconnecting water to the trailer. 

 

11 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

been exposed to several freeze cycles.

If your trailer will be exposed to freezing temperatures while in storage it's very important to do the full winterization procedure. It's not just the Trauma that can freeze and crack. Water lines and plastic fittings throughout the trailer are susceptible to cracking or splitting because of water expansion when it freezes.

After bypassing the Truma (or getting it repaired) reconnect to city water (with a pressure regulator on your hose) and check for other water leaks. Look underneath the trailer and see if you have water coming out of any the scupper (drain) holes on the bottom of the trailer. Another way to check for leaks is to disconnect city water, fill your fresh water tank, and turn the water pump on. If the pump runs for more then a few seconds, with no faucets open, you are losing pressure somewhere.

Good luck.

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OUCH!

I know that we all learn from our mistakes - but - this could be a fairly expensive mistake.

Sorry to hear it.😭

Bill

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12 hours ago, Jason Foster said:

As far as I know, only a Truma authorized dealer can fix that for you.

Please report what is ultimately done to repair your Truma water heater, by whom, and what it cost.  That will be good intel for others (like me) who own Truma water heaters.

Good luck!

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19 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

Could water have been in the round black tank, froze and busted it?

I hope this new owner mistake is not a costly one for you.  

This is a good example of the my concern with the increasing complexity of our trailers over the years.  The Suburban hot water heater has a shut off valve and an anode at the bottom of the tank.  To winterize just turn the valve off and remove the anode when the water is not hot.  Done.  Can't say the same for the Truma system.  As you now painfully know. 

As an ole brown shoe Mechanical Engineer, I prefer not to have combo systems due to complexity.  Granted the integrated Inverter/Converters are super nice, cool and somewhat space efficient.  They are also by far more energy efficient than the 2018 version we have.  That said, they are also single point failure systems of great complexity. Should we lose one of the features (Inversion/Conversion/Solar/120 Shore Power/Battery Power/Solar Power, with independent systems we can survive just fine.  But with a single point failure, you CAN HAVE no refrigeration, lighting, heat or AC.     Then when there is a failure, trouble shooting the computer systems in the field can be a real PITA too.  So there is something to be said for simplicity of systems.  

 In the mean time, it is wise for all of us to occasionally revisit the Oliver University Videos.  All of them.    

GJ

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19 hours ago, Jason Foster said:

The Truma has a small plastic water tank that circulates the heated water.  When winterizing, you have to shut the water supply valve to the water heater off.  This is located under the street side bed.  On the outside, there is a big yellow lever you have to pull down on the Truma after releasing the pressure.  You drop it down as far as it will go and then remove the filter.  There is a convenient sized hole to the right of the water heater to put that in.  The water will then drain out completely.  

If, however, you don't do that and it freezes, the tank will crack.  That is what you are seeing in the video.  As far as I know, only a Truma authorized dealer can fix that for you.

Thanks Jason.  We bought the trailer used and didn't realize I had to do anything to the water heater...lesson learned!!!

We've had 2 stick built trailers in the past that had the 6 gallon water heaters and never flushed those.

Harlan & Margie

2017 Oliver Elite II Hull#235, 2006 F250 Tow Vehicle

 

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3 hours ago, Geronimo John said:

I hope this new owner mistake is not a costly one for you.  

This is a good example of the my concern with the increasing complexity of our trailers over the years.  The Suburban hot water heater has a shut off valve and an anode at the bottom of the tank.  To winterize just turn the valve off and remove the anode when the water is not hot.  Done.  Can't say the same for the Truma system.  As you now painfully know. 

As an ole brown shoe Mechanical Engineer, I prefer not to have combo systems due to complexity.  Granted the integrated Inverter/Converters are super nice, cool and somewhat space efficient.  They are also by far more energy efficient than the 2018 version we have.  That said, they are also single point failure systems of great complexity. Should we lose one of the features (Inversion/Conversion/Solar/120 Shore Power/Battery Power/Solar Power, with independent systems we can survive just fine.  But with a single point failure, you CAN HAVE no refrigeration, lighting, heat or AC.     Then when there is a failure, trouble shooting the computer systems in the field can be a real PITA too.  So there is something to be said for simplicity of systems.  

 In the mean time, it is wise for all of us to occasionally revisit the Oliver University Videos.  All of them.    

GJ

Good points GJ.  I will check out the videos!

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Harlan & Margie

2017 Oliver Elite II Hull#235, 2006 F250 Tow Vehicle

 

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11 hours ago, Steph and Dud B said:

 

<snip>

If the pump runs for more then a few seconds, with no faucets open, you are losing pressure somewhere.

Good luck.

Assuming there are no leaks, an air bubble can cause the pump to run.  Opening and closing the sink faucet can allow the air to escape.

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7 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

Thanks Jason.  We bought the trailer used and didn't realize I had to do anything to the water heater...lesson learned!!!

We've had 2 stick built trailers in the past that had the 6 gallon water heaters and never flushed those.

Those 6-gallon water heaters will burst in freezing temperatures as well.  However, they will take longer to freeze.  If you live in a moderate climate where it gets below freezing at night but warms during the day with a few cold spells that can dip into the 20s, Texas for example, then the only concern is for smaller reservoirs.  However, I would still winterize everything.  Why take a chance with your Oliver and bank account?  I live in Texas, one of my trailers is winterized, but I leave the heat on in the Oliver.  It winters fine here like that.

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6 hours ago, Jason Foster said:

I live in Texas, one of my trailers is winterized, but I leave the heat on in the Oliver.  It winters fine here like that.

Same here, if the temps dip below freezing I turn on the hot water tank and the heater.  

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3 hours ago, Mike and Carol said:

Same here, if the temps dip below freezing I turn on the hot water tank and the heater.  

So to leave the hot water tank on during a freeze, do you have water running to the trailer?  Are you draining the Truma as well?  Would turning the hot water tank on (truma) which has been drained, not damage the water heater?

We are in Central Mississippi, which has some winter days with temps below freezing and then warmup up the next day.  This year we have had one "hard freeze" where temps do not come above freezing the following day.

BTW, this repair can only be done by a Truma authorized dealer (Truma will not sell parts for you to fix yourself).  Just talked to a dealer and it is $1000 to replace the Truma tank.

I asked the Truma dealer what was so special about the truma vs. the traditional 6 gallon heater.  He said they rarely have repairs for things like the boards...which seem to hold up well.  But they do freeze quite frequently and they keep these tanks in stock....And this place in in South Louisiana!!!

MAKE SURE YOU GUYS ARE DRAINING THE HOT WATER HEATERS!!!!

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Harlan & Margie

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49 minutes ago, Going Coastal said:

So to leave the hot water tank on during a freeze, do you have water running to the trailer?  Are you draining the Truma as well?  Would turning the hot water tank on (truma) which has been drained, not damage the water heater?

We don’t have the Truma (not available in 2015) we have the 6 gallon hot water tank, which is what Jason Foster was referring to in the post above.  When I leave the hot water tank on during freezes there is no water running to the trailer, just a full hot water tank.  Mike

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Being way up north, I always drain the Truma Water Heater, then shut of the valve to the Truma and add the RV antifreeze to the system. I use 2 gallons of antifreeze (have a compost toilet so do not add anything to the black tank) and use the procedure that Oliver University teaches us on how to winterize the system.

The winterizing procedure only takes a hour or so and is the best insurance you can buy. 

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4 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

Just talked to a dealer and it is $1000 to replace the Truma tank.

We have the Truma Aquago water heater in our Hull #1291.  I am impressed by its performance so far.

That said, the $1K quote just to replace the plastic tank confirms my concern that Truma repairs are remarkably expensive.  You can't buy parts, as all work must be done by an authorized Truma repair center.

That is why I have determined that, should our Truma Aquago ever develop an issue that requires repair by a Truma service center, I will replace it with a RecPro or a Fogatti. 

Right now, the RecPro is $410:

https://www.recpro.com/rv-tankless-water-heater-on-demand-hot-water-heater/

The Fogatti is $500:

https://www.amazon.com/FOGATTI-Controller-InstaShower-Optimized-Performance/dp/B093Z6HQX4

Even if you need to hire a plumber to install a replacement tankless RV water heater, your total bill may not reach $1K.  And, you will then have a brand new water heater.  Going forward, I believe you can get parts for both the RecPro and the Fogatti, so anyone can do repairs.

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7 hours ago, Going Coastal said:

, this repair can only be done by a Truma authorized dealer (Truma will not sell parts for you to fix yourself).  Just talked to a dealer and it is $1000 to replace the Truma tank.

I think I'd call the Lakeland truma center, and check on price. You could probably have a fun camping trip, and still be less. 

If not, I'd check with a local dealer on price to install a traditional 6 gallon (will require changing out the access door, as vents are different), or a different brand instantaneous,  if you love it. 

I think the whole swap was about that price, when we went from a 6 gallon to the Girard instantaneous,  though it was years ago. 

With most 6 gallons, you can run the heater on "free" campground electricity, if you're plugged in.

I'm really sorry for your experience,  so far. But, I'd encourage you to look into options for service and replacement.  

Every newbie makes mistakes.  Don't be too hard on yourself.  You'll not likely do it again.

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22 hours ago, Rivernerd said:

We have the Truma Aquago water heater in our Hull #1291.  I am impressed by its performance so far.

That said, the $1K quote just to replace the plastic tank confirms my concern that Truma repairs are remarkably expensive.  You can't buy parts, as all work must be done by an authorized Truma repair center.

That is why I have determined that, should our Truma Aquago ever develop an issue that requires repair by a Truma service center, I will replace it with a RecPro or a Fogatti. 

Right now, the RecPro is $410:

https://www.recpro.com/rv-tankless-water-heater-on-demand-hot-water-heater/

The Fogatti is $500:

https://www.amazon.com/FOGATTI-Controller-InstaShower-Optimized-Performance/dp/B093Z6HQX4

Even if you need to hire a plumber to install a replacement tankless RV water heater, your total bill may not reach $1K.  And, you will then have a brand new water heater.  Going forward, I believe you can get parts for both the RecPro and the Fogatti, so anyone can do repairs.

I have had regular 6 gallon water heaters.  They work fine but they run out of hot water after a short period.  I have also had the Fogatti.  It was garbage.  Hot then cold.  The only one that works flawlessly, as long as you don't break it, is the Truma.  I love that water heater.  Worth every penny.

 

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On 2/16/2024 at 11:15 AM, Going Coastal said:

So to leave the hot water tank on during a freeze, do you have water running to the trailer?  Are you draining the Truma as well?  Would turning the hot water tank on (truma) which has been drained, not damage the water heater?

We are in Central Mississippi, which has some winter days with temps below freezing and then warmup up the next day.  This year we have had one "hard freeze" where temps do not come above freezing the following day.

BTW, this repair can only be done by a Truma authorized dealer (Truma will not sell parts for you to fix yourself).  Just talked to a dealer and it is $1000 to replace the Truma tank.

I asked the Truma dealer what was so special about the truma vs. the traditional 6 gallon heater.  He said they rarely have repairs for things like the boards...which seem to hold up well.  But they do freeze quite frequently and they keep these tanks in stock....And this place in in South Louisiana!!!

MAKE SURE YOU GUYS ARE DRAINING THE HOT WATER HEATERS!!!!

Let me be clear.  The Truma is AMAZING.  Keep it.  My Truma will supply hot water forever as long as I have a water supply and gas to keep it running.  I've had the others and was not impressed.  There is a reason why Truma costs a lot of money to buy and fix.  They work.  

There are four ways I can winterize my Oliver:

1.  Traditional:  Shut off valve and drain Truma.  Then circulate water system with antifreeze.  (RV specific)

2.  Lazy:  Keep the trailer camp ready:  Water tanks full, Truma on, and Gas heat set to 55.

3.  Lazy 2:  Same as 2, only drain Truma water heater.

4.  Super Lazy:  Put my trailer in a heated shop.

The Truma water heater is the easiest to winterize because it only takes three steps:  Turn power off, turn water supply off, drop yellow drain lever.  Done.

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Just came across this during an internet search:

image.thumb.png.67548e905b52c1bbd2db49c835b04a31.png

This was an old post on another forum, and I'm sure you probably want to use someone local, but it will likely be much cheaper to have it installed if you remove the water heater and take it to a Truma dealer.

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On 2/15/2024 at 3:37 PM, Wandering Sagebrush said:
On 2/15/2024 at 3:46 AM, Steph and Dud B said:

 

<snip>

If the pump runs for more then a few seconds, with no faucets open, you are losing pressure somewhere.

Good luck.

Assuming there are no leaks, an air bubble can cause the pump to run.  Opening and closing the sink faucet can allow the air to escape.

If opening/closing the faucet does not work, then check the strainer by the pump.  OFTEN as in very often, poly shreds from OEM install will plug this strainer.  Plugged or partially plugged strainer can cause low water pressure or in severe instances no water flow.  Worth a check.

GJ

 

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5 hours ago, Jason Foster said:

The only one that works flawlessly, as long as you don't break it, is the Truma.  I love that water heater.  Worth every penny.

Good to know!

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20 hours ago, Jason Foster said:

The Truma water heater is the easiest to winterize because it only takes three steps:  Turn power off, turn water supply off, drop yellow drain lever.  Done.

Insert between steps two and three: "Open a hot water faucet to relieve pressure." Otherwise, you may be sprayed with pressurized scalding water when opening that yellow lever!

For in between situations, we opted for the Truma anti-freeze kit, which keeps the heating vessel warm to avoid freezing. We've used it frequently when it is close to freezing before leaving home or when we're on the road and can't run the trailer heater.

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