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Old 07-30-2013, 01:30 PM   #1
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Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Saw one post with this issue but no details on the process. We don't use the heater, it's taking valuable space and carrying 40 lbs of inaccessible water, so it's gotta go. Has anyone removed theirs or does anyone have any tips on the process for someone who knows Phillips for slot screwdrivers but not much more. What about the gas line, for example.

We plan on putting a new door on the opening so we have access from the outside. THoughts on that project are appreciated, too.
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Old 07-31-2013, 07:35 AM   #2
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

If it works I would think somebody might want to buy it.
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Old 07-31-2013, 12:41 PM   #3
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

I've never done it but should be do-able. For the propane, just shut off the main valve at the tank and make really sure it stays shut until the pipe is capped. Follow the propane pipe from the water heater back to wherever it is tee'd into the main pipe (probably under the van). Remove the heater propane pipe and install a pipe cap or plug in tee where it connected. The cap or plug should be available at Home Depot. I recommend not leaving the pipe open and unattended for any length of time, for safety. Or just cap off the pipe right at the water heater location. then the heater could be re-installed for the next owner.

If you're not sure what kind of cap or tee to purchase, just take a picture of the tee and post it here.

After installing the cap, turn the propane valve back on and spray a soapy water solution on the joint. Look for bubble to form if there is a leak.

It may be difficult to find a solid access door that fits the water heater opening.
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Old 07-31-2013, 07:10 PM   #4
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Rionapo, if you want to take short trip south I have all the tools you'll need and can help you uninstall it. I have not specifically taken one of those out but it can't be too difficult. The only hiccup I can imagine is if the large parts were installed before being 'built in' with cabinets or whatever. As long as you can see the bits and see how to get them out it shouldn't be a problem. Removing the gas is no issue. A local Ace will have whatever you might need to button it all up safely.

Alex
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Old 08-01-2013, 08:34 PM   #5
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Quote:
Originally Posted by witoke
Rionapo, if you want to take short trip south I have all the tools you'll need and can help you uninstall it. I have not specifically taken one of those out but it can't be too difficult. The only hiccup I can imagine is if the large parts were installed before being 'built in' with cabinets or whatever. As long as you can see the bits and see how to get them out it shouldn't be a problem. Removing the gas is no issue. A local Ace will have whatever you might need to button it all up safely.

Alex
Very generous, Alex. I'll PM you.
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Old 11-10-2014, 01:14 PM   #6
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Hi all - I'm in the same boat as OP. I've never used the water heater, don't plan to and really would like the extra storage space. Is there a write up somewhere on the process or anyone in the Utah area that could lend a hand? I'm willing to sell the unit once it comes out.

Cheers,

Mike
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Old 11-10-2014, 01:58 PM   #7
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb
If it works I would think somebody might want to buy it.
Someone like me.
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Old 11-10-2014, 02:12 PM   #8
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

I did this in the opposite direction, I installed one, I had to move the propane heater in the process. This is one of the times you will be happy that Sportsmobile uses all those L brackets for their cabinets. As that was one of the hard parts of the job. I assume you already have a idea what you are going to do with big hole in the side of the van.

Also, I have attached the installation instructions, that may give you some ideas.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Suburban_SW6_Water_Heater_Install_Oper_Manual.pdf (2.23 MB, 12 views)
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Old 11-10-2014, 05:46 PM   #9
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Ill buy one of them; if avail PM me
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Old 11-11-2014, 08:36 AM   #10
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Re: Removing the SMB-installed propane H2O heater

Don, looks like you've got help with the uninstall. I was thinking about your door storage idea a little more. If I recall correctly the door and the HWH on RVs are separate, as in purchased separate. Your door is already color matched so I would think you could just keep it and maybe cut and glue some Reflectix to the inside. This won't be watertight though, just a way to insulate it a bit, and if you are meaning a storage area you could access from the outside OR inside it might get a little more involved.
Can you post a pic of the door open and shut, and maybe the cabinet inside? It is possible that with a little weatherstripping around the inside lip of the door the cabinet inside might not need bothering with at all.

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