To troubleshoot and repair an Atwood water heater, first identify the particular problems. Common issues with Atwood water heaters include pilot outages, insufficient hot water, electrode problems and gas burner ignition issues. Before doing any troubleshooting or repairs, turn off the ignition switch, and shut off the water supply to the water heater.
If an Atwood water heater does not light, the igniter might be defective.To determine if the igniter is faulty, first check to see if it is getting enough voltage. If the igniter is getting voltage but does not glow, it is faulty and should be replaced. Clean dirty electrodes, and remove any obstruction in the main burner or burner orifice. Check whether the spark electrode is producing sparks, and replace it if defective.
If the water heater does not heat, the pilot or gas valve might be defective. The pilot ignites the gas burner while the gas valve allows gas to enter the burner. Replace any of these parts if defective. Test the thermostat for continuity, and replace it if it is defective. If the pilot and gas valve are working properly but the unit does not heat, replace the igniter.
If the RV water heater has an erratic burner flame, check whether the main burner, U-tube or exhaust grilles are blocked, and clean them appropriately. Adjust the main burner alignment, valve and air shutter. Check to be sure that the unit is receiving the recommended gas supply. If any of these repair methods do not fix the issue, contact an Atwood professional for assistance.