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Old 12-28-2018, 10:57 PM   #1
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Runaway Rixen Thermostat

My new Rixen thermostat is malfunctioning by continually running away from its set point of 70 degrees Fahrenheit (or whatever I set it to) to 99 degrees Fahrenheit.

Anyone have a solution?

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I recently bought my new (not used) Sportsmobile from Sportsmobile West with a “Rixen Relay Harness” and “Rixen Digital Heating Thermostat” and have had nothing but problems with the Espar Hyrdronic D5 furnace and water heater constantly turning on and running away to 99 degrees Fahrenheit from any temperature I set.

I’ve selected the “internal temperature sensor” (not external; there isn’t one). The “Espar Fault Code Reader” is clean (i.e. no error codes).

I’m currently winter boondocking in the Nevada wild and have to either (re)set the temperature to 70 degrees every 60 seconds by hand, or else turn the furnace off until I get to too cold (40 degrees) and then turn the furnace system on again.

I’m hoping I can fix this issue in the field with guidance. My only other option I can think of is to cut my trek north short and return to SMB West when they reopen January 2.

2018 SMB Ford Transit 350 148" High-Roof Extended-Length
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Old 12-29-2018, 08:14 AM   #2
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That's a bummer. Have you called Rixen?

Currently vanless. Weird.
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Old 12-29-2018, 11:00 AM   #3
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I don't have the Rixen system, so I am kind of flying blind. The thermostat should be a relatively easy hookup, The red wire would have 12 volts, I presume this is provided by your 4 switch system through the "relay" the yellow wire would be the return wire, this I suspect would have 12 volts when the thermostat is closed or below temperature, the black wire is ground.

One could try disconnecting the yellow wire and see if if the thermostat by itself is actually working. You can usually hear it but again could measure if it opens properly. After that it goes into the "relay" and most likely need more info on that unit itself.

I don't know if the thermostat has a manual, but one possibility would be what mode it is set in. It is possible that it can be used for cooling or heating. If it was cooling than one would expect it to close when the temperature was above the thermostat set-point and only open when below. Although from the picture it appears to say it's heating.

Hopefully someone with this system can provide more help.

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Old 12-29-2018, 06:41 PM   #4
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My Honeywell thermostat did the same when I first installed it. Turned out that I wired it wrong and had to move the 12v hot wire to the relay post instead of the always hot post. Not sure which Rixen system you have but this link may help.
"A straight line may be the shortest distance between two points but it is by no means the most interesting". Jon Pertwee as Dr. Who, The Time Warrior.
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Old 01-06-2019, 01:21 PM   #5
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Call Rixens at (800) 925-6260. They are located in Sandy Oregon (just in case you're able to drive by).
SMB West botched the installation of my Rixens heating system so much so that Jim Rixen called them to chew them out.
The folks at Rixens were extremely helpful when I brought my van in (i just happen to live 30 miles away).
Give them a call. They are proud of what they do and don't want anyone who has one of their systems to have trouble.
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Old 11-10-2019, 01:38 PM   #6
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What was the solution for the Rixen thermostat? Mine is doing the same thing. Ron

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