Alde System in [email protected] 400 No Heat No Hot Water on Propane —Fixed

jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
 Just got back from a one-week trip back east.  Everything was working fine until the very last morning when we had no heat and no hot water while overnight parking at a Walmart.  The day before we had had plenty of heat and hot showers while Boondocking in a Cracker Barrel. The night before, while at the Walmart, we had hot water to wash our dishes.  When we woke up the next morning we had no heat and no hot water.  We had overnighted in Walmarts and Cracker Barrel‘s at least four nights on this trip. The rest of the trip we were on shore power, and every system worked fine. We can’t explain why we had hot water the night before and nothing the next morning. I haven’t checked the Alde fuses yet,  and after reading here I am very suspicious of them.  I will check the fuses tomorrow.  One other thing that occurred, there is a symbol in the upper right hand corner of the Alde  Control panel that had an icon of a thermometer in a bucket of water that kept flashing on and off.   We could not find any reference to this icon in Alde manual.  We appear to have plenty of propane, all the other 12 V lighting and systems along with the control panel seem to be working fine.  Has anybody else had this experience. Thank you. 

Comments

  • NorthIsUpNorthIsUp Posts: 72Member
    edited May 14
    Are you out of propane?  ((Sorry-you already stated that you checked))
    Jean & Arnie  NorCal 
    2019 [email protected] 400 BL aka [email protected]
    03 Sequoia


  • N7SHG_HamN7SHG_Ham Posts: 478Member
    The flashing icon is the boost mode for hot water. If there is propane, I would check fuses 1st and then go from there
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Posts: 4,511Moderator
    It sounds like you have the Alde Flow with your Alde 3020.  Does it require shorepower?   What was your battery voltage?  The boiler will shut off if the battery is too low.  Keep us posted when you find the answer.
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Cleveland Heights, Ohio
       
                                           
  • JEBJEB Posts: 218Member
    edited May 14
    One other thing to check is whether you have the night mode setting set.  If you do, it could be that the Alde is set to turn off the boiler over night to save energy and it just hadn't turned the boiler back on yet when you woke up and tried to use hot water.
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
    2019 Chevy Colorado ZR1 Duramax
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    OK, I checked the Alde fuse. I though there would be two but it appears that my Alde only has one green fuse, and the metal band in the center is solid. I pulled my propane tank and took it down to see if it needed to be filled it took less than a gallon to fill it.  So propane wasn’t the problem.  I don’t remember ever setting the night mode on Alde control panel. By the way Sam we do have the Alde 3020 in our 400.  I am fresh out of ideas do Any of you have any added thoughts....
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Posts: 4,511Moderator
    The flashing icon is for the Alde flow.  I will have to check the Alde 3020 manual.  
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Cleveland Heights, Ohio
       
                                           
  • N7SHG_HamN7SHG_Ham Posts: 478Member
    I think there is a reset under the service menu, if all else fails you could try that.
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    According to N7SHG Ham the flashing icon is for shower heat boost.
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Posts: 4,511Moderator
    @jpi68, have you tried it since on LPG?  Have you been into the display screen to see if the accessories are selected?  Since you have the Alde Flow which preheats water before it hits the boiler and you never saw the flashing icon before, I am suspicious that may be the issue.  The only other thing that I can find that may interrupt the system is a large air lock.  Could you hear anything trying to kick on?  Were any of the pipes even warm?
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Cleveland Heights, Ohio
       
                                           
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    I think I will head over to the storage area tomorrow and try a system reset...
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    I spoke with Creed at NuCamp today and  went over my issues with the Alde system in my [email protected] 400. He was as perplexed as the rest of us. He put me in direct contact with a Product Specialist from Alde. The first thing that the Specialist asked me to do was to go into the "Service Page" of the Alde menu and check the temperature of my glycol and water. If the glycol temperature is not warming then he thinks that I may have to bleed the lines, or that my glycol level is low. I was thinking that my glycol level was ok, however, the specialist says that the glycol can stain the expansion tank and give the false impression that the glycol is at an appropriate level when it is actually low. Also, he ruled out a damaged circuit board since I wasn't getting an error message on my control panel. What a complicated mess. 
  • JEBJEB Posts: 218Member
    A very low tech method for checking the glycol level short of unscrewing the cap and looking is to take up your stabilizer jacks and jump up and down on the floor gently and look for fluid movement in the tank.  That is the fill level.  It also helps to hold a flashlight right up against the tank near the bottom and let the light diffuse.  That's the only way I can get a decent reading on my tank.
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
    2019 Chevy Colorado ZR1 Duramax
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    Thanks JEB, I used the flashlight method and found my glycol level was near the upper level.
  • PamandJohnUpNorth2PamandJohnUpNorth2 Posts: 119Member
    Maybe a problem with the propane regulator? Are you able to light the stove ok?
    Pam and John
    Fargo, North Dakota
    2018 [email protected] White\Silver Trim towed by 2018 Ridgeline White w/Leer Topper
    States Visited Map


  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    Stove works fine...
  • JEBJEB Posts: 218Member
    I doubt that it's a propane issue.  The Alde is very "vocal" when it's set to run on propane, or a combination of electric and propane, and no propane is flowing because you've done something stupid like forget to turn the valve on at the tank.  Trust me.  I know.

    Have you tried bleeding air out of the glycol lines yet?  I know it was mentioned above but I don't remember if you actually did it.  One easy way to bleed the lines is to turn up the thermostat to get the heater going, find the circulating pump near the boiler, and turn it up all the way to 5 and let it run for about half an hour.  Then set it back to normal--approximately 2.  Setting the pump to circulate at full throttle forces the glycol and any trapped air past the automatic bleeder valve.

    One last thing to check is to make sure the valves on the hot water lines leading from the Alde are in the correct position.  There are two and they are yellow--one for the boiler and one for the Alde flow.  In normal operating position, these valves should be down.  If either one it sticking up, you may have drained all the hot water from the system.
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
    2019 Chevy Colorado ZR1 Duramax
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    I forgot where we are in this thread... I followed the advice of the Alde Project Specialist and checked the glycol and water temp on the control panel. I didn't let the test run real long but the glycol went from about 88 to 108 degrees in about five minutes. The water went from 88 to about 104 in the same amount of time. Since both the glycol and water are heating, the specialist doesn't think I have air in my lines. JEB - I had hot water and heat the night before it stopped working so I'm a think'n that my hot water valves are set in the correct position. I'm going to repeat the glycol and water temp test this weekend with a full fresh water tank.
  • JEBJEB Posts: 218Member
    jpi68 said:
    I forgot where we are in this thread... I followed the advice of the Alde Project Specialist and checked the glycol and water temp on the control panel. I didn't let the test run real long but the glycol went from about 88 to 108 degrees in about five minutes. The water went from 88 to about 104 in the same amount of time. Since both the glycol and water are heating, the specialist doesn't think I have air in my lines. JEB - I had hot water and heat the night before it stopped working so I'm a think'n that my hot water valves are set in the correct position. I'm going to repeat the glycol and water temp test this weekend with a full fresh water tank.
    I’d check the valves anyway. The ones I’m thinking of serve dual purposes—drains and safety valves.  If you had an over pressure situation, one might have popped and ejected your water. 
    2019 [email protected] 400 Boondock Lite
    2019 Chevy Colorado ZR1 Duramax
  • jpi68jpi68 Posts: 24Member
    edited May 27
    I repeated the glycol and hot water test  with a full freshwater tank. Glycol heated up to over 135°, and I had hot water up to 120. This was with the camper running on my Honda 2200 generator. A day later I repeated the test running on LP gas  with the similar  results.  I then turned my Alde thermostat up to 85° and let it run.  After about 30 minutes the overflow tank was bubbling. I check the vent in the bathroom and I had heat coming out. Then I followed the instructions in the all Alde manual,  and let about 3 gallons of water run out in the kitchen sink while having the tap handle set to hot water. The 3 gallon run off was done with LP and generator electric off. The run off is used to charge the hot water system. It appears that if your fresh water tank runs dry or near dry this is the process that Alde recommends before restarting hot water. I turned on the generator and waited until the service screen read hot water was up to 115. Turned on the kitchen hot water tap, and I had hot water. Glycol was reading  137°  and I had heat in the bathroom. The problem appears to be solved. I now believe that the hot water problem had to do with water level in fresh water tank falling near the empty level which may have drained the water level in the Alde boiler.  I added 8 gallons of water to the tank that morning, however I don’t believe that the Alde Hot Water tank may have filled properly. The problem with the Heating system may have been just our expectation of how quickly the camper will heat up using the Alde system. Alde is not forced air and takes a bit of time to come up to heat. This was our first trip and our inexperience probably was the cause of the problem. All appears to be right with the world now.  Thank you for all your help on this issue,  and I hope our experience helps others. 
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