Abbey Spectrum 2000's model water system questions

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Jun 18, 2020
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Thanks Prof, I read about that on Truma's website, my van has the same vent but doesn't even have a cover (I guess previous owners misplaced or discarded it).
 

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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If the cover has been missing for any length of time then most likely there is either spiders webs or other obstructions in the burner area, in which case it is advisable to get an engineer to service the unit as it may need removing to get access to the burner.
 
Jun 18, 2020
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Thanks Damian.

I will remove it myself, try to fix it, if I get it sorted I'll get a caravan engineer to check it.

I may have another problem now... The LED indicators on the gas heater control switch (one green, one red) no longer light up. They were lighting until I tried switching the system on/off a few times in quick succession. I intend on checking the slowblow fuse on the heater's pcb.

Simon
 
Jun 18, 2020
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I tried turning the hot water heater on/off several times leaving a minute between attempts. After a few attempts I adjusted the temperature dial and tried again, the red and green LEDs stopped working.

I removed the water heater, blew cobwebs etc out of it, fixed a dry solder joint. In the process I broke the fitting that connects to the top of the water heater (hot water outlet). The supplier didn't have an identical fitting, the replacement fitting I bought has a plastic pipetail fitting instead of the clip on / push on type fitting of the original fitting. To make a new section of 12mm hot water pipe fit over the pipetail fitting I had to heat the new pipe in boiling water but I seemed to manage to make it all water/pressure tight. Though I do wonder that when the pipe is warmed by hot water from the water heater if it will leak again... Should I put a jubilee type clip around the pipe on the pipe-tail?

The water heater now works well on gas! The red and green LED still don't work but the water heater's flame-out gas shut off works and it seems to shut off at the required/set dial temperature. Before I get someone to check it, do we think the LEDs not working point to any other problem? I can live without the LEDs working.

I checked the electric heating element with a multimeter, there's around 130 Ohms across it so it seems the electric element is good (the resistance reading agrees with the elements supposed wattage at 230V). How do I switch the electric element on/off... I forgot to check if there's a switch on the van's electric switch panel - but my question here is does the 'Ultrastore' control affect electric water heating?

Water flow to the bathroom - sink and shower - seems much better than water flow to the kitchen sink. All water outlets have a gauzed outlet but I don't see a way to remove the kitchen sink's gauzed outlet (in case the outlet in the kitchen is full of debris)?

The internal tank water pump was broken so I bought a new 'high flow' (16L per minute) pump for it which looks exactly the same unit as the new external pump I bought (less the blue piping to the unit of course). The internal pump seems to deliver better water flow than the external pump - Is this just because the internal tank is in a higher position than the external tank, or could the external water connection point one way valve be restrictive/sticking?

The fridge works on 240v, never tried it on 12v, the ignition light flashes constantly on gas mode. It looks difficult to access the fridge burner, or is there a cheat / easy way of accessing the fridge burner (to remove cobwebs etc)?

Slowly getting there and feeling more confident of being self contained in the van when on holiday in a few weeks time! I did find a couple of minor leaks on T push fit fittings pictured in my first pics (post #1) around the water heater, I found the ends of pipes had become compressed/worn inside the T so cut the ends short and pushed back into the fittings. A couple of pipes would have been a bit short for this but rather than replace full long sections of pipe I managed to make them long enough by moving some of the clips that secured pipe to the floor.

Simon
 
Last edited:

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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Should I put a jubilee type clip around the pipe on the pipe-tail?
Maye as a short term idea, but better to get the correct item:

https://www.leisureshopdirect.com/electric/caravan-gas-water-heater/truma-combi-4-6-l.p.-gas-and-electric-heater-spare-parts/truma-boat-boiler-bm10-and-bm14-and-spare-parts/elbow-fitting-for-hot-water-outlet-truma-boilers

but my question here is does the 'Ultrastore' control affect electric water heating?
Yes it controls the mains power to the heater.

As far as the fridge is concerned you may be able to get to the burner via the lower vent on the outside of the van, if not then the fridge needs to come out which then requires to be refitted correctly with the right sealing around it to prevent Carbon Monoxide entering the van when used on gas.
It would be much more sensible to get an engineer to give the fridge a service as its failure to light may not be the burner at all but one of several other reasons which can only be found with the fridge out.
 
Jun 18, 2020
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Thanks Damian.

I bought the elbow fitting from your link.

If the same control knob controls both gas and water temperature, since the minimum temp setting is (iirc) 20/30C and there's no 'off' position, how do you turn off the electric water heater element?

I will fix the fridge when I have gained access, just need to know how to gain access.

As said, when I've done all this I will get some qualified fella to check things over... not that I think he'd be any more CO etc aware than me, have as much gear for checking for CO as me, or stand as much chance of fixing anything that was broken as me ;-) But I don't intend on giving anyone who's less likely to be able to fix something than me the chance of mis-advising me, if anything I'd just want them to give me a second opinion (after my own) in terms of a safety check. I'm used to designing systems that deal with liquid gas at high pressure at one end and very precise fine control of lower pressure gas in vapour form at the other end all from scratch - removing, servicing and replacing far more simple components on an already designed and existing system is far easier and simpler and I'm very sure I can do it without failing to properly reconnect/seal simple flues or having yellow flames or suffering failed protective gas shut off mechanisms/electronics. I write a lot of informative posts on LPGForum (same LPGC name). I really don't prescribe to generalised guy does a college course and is now an expert on gas safety and fixing gas stuff type scenarios, guy might be a numpty nevertheless! I don't hold 'standards' in much esteem either. In my own profession (converting vehicles to run on gas), DVSA ask my advice, not a (the) trade body's advice, I advise DVSA on e.g. how the MOT should relate to LPG converted vehicles. I have never wanted to be a member of this gas related trade body, most of their members are numpties who don't know their jobs properly and couldn't hold a candle.
 
Last edited:
Nov 11, 2009
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Thanks Damian.

I bought the elbow fitting from your link.

If the same control knob controls both gas and water temperature, since the minimum temp setting is (iirc) 20/30C and there's no 'off' position, how do you turn off the electric water heater element?

I will fix the fridge when I have gained access, just need to know how to gain access.

As said, when I've done all this I will get some qualified fella to check things over... not that I think he'd be any more CO etc aware than me, have as much gear for checking for CO as me, or stand as much chance of fixing anything that was broken as me ;-) But I don't intend on giving anyone who's less likely to be able to fix something than me the chance of mis-advising me, if anything I'd just want them to give me a second opinion (after my own) in terms of a safety check. I'm used to designing systems that deal with liquid gas at high pressure at one end and very precise fine control of lower pressure gas in vapour form at the other end all from scratch - removing, servicing and replacing far more simple components on an already designed and existing system is far easier and simpler and I'm very sure I can do it without failing to properly reconnect/seal simple flues or having yellow flames or suffering failed protective gas shut off mechanisms/electronics. I write a lot of informative posts on LPGForum (same LPGC name). I really don't prescribe to generalised guy does a college course and is now an expert on gas safety and fixing gas stuff type scenarios, guy might be a numpty nevertheless! I don't hold 'standards' in much esteem either. In my own profession (converting vehicles to run on gas), DVSA ask my advice, not a (the) trade body's advice, I advise DVSA on e.g. how the MOT should relate to LPG converted vehicles. I have never wanted to be a member of this gas related trade body, most of their members are numpties who don't know their jobs properly and couldn't hold a candle.

Surely a competent Caravan engineer who is familiar with fridges would be able to diagnose and correct the problem more quickly than someone who is totally unfamiliar with the kit. And also ensure that it is safe to then operate on gas, 12v and 240v.
 
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Mar 14, 2005
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... I don't hold 'standards' in much esteem either. In my own profession (converting vehicles to run on gas), DVSA ask my advice, not a (the) trade body's advice, I advise DVSA on e.g. how the MOT should relate to LPG converted vehicles. I have never wanted to be a member of this gas related trade body, most of their members are numpties who don't know their jobs properly and couldn't hold a candle.
I do find your comment incredible disingenuous. I am sure most accredited fitters do know their jobs very well, and have earned their tickets. If you cannot trust "professionals" whom you employ or meet in person, why are are you trusting anonymous people on a forum whom you have no means whatsoever of verifying their credentials or competence?
 

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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Wow LPGC, thats some posting which , having digested the content I will now say that I will not be posting any more information in regard to your questions.

You have totally rubbished off anything that has been said and called my Gas Safe certification into question, which I find abhorrent.

You "obviously" have a very high opinion of yourself, so you shouldnt need any more help or advice from us mere mortals.
 
Jun 18, 2020
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I didn't mean to offend anyone and my comments were not aimed at or intended to be critical of anyone on this thread.

UKLPG (Liquid Gas) is a trade body for suppliers such as Calor, it is they who run a farcical scheme for Autogas installs and they who I have gripes with because their supposed safety scheme is anything but safe. The Gas Safe register is different and their scheme does not extend to vehicles running on gas. Like you, I wouldn't want Jack the lad fitting gas systems on anything from a car / caravan to a house.

Still I would stand by my implication that some caravan engineers will be far better than others and I wouldn't expect much disagreement with that (but I'll ask if there is disagreement?). Some could fix a problem properly, safely and inexpensively while others would replace at further expense. It isn't like anyone 'gets a ticket' and suddenly has the knowledge and experience of some of their peers or even some of their customers.

I have mentioned that I work with gas and gas safety / control systems every day and fit systems from scratch, I also mentioned that I have quite a thorough knowledge of electronics. What issue does anyone have with me removing my caravan's water heater, blowing cobwebs out of it and fixing a dry soldered joint on it's control board then refitting it? Would a caravan engineer have fixed the control board or would they have charged me for a new one (board or complete water heater) that would hopefully arrive and be fitted in time for my planned holiday? I didn't have to design the water heater, or even the way it was fitted, or it's flue system, I only had to remove it and refit it the way it was previously fitted but in all honesty if I was fitting it from scratch I'd have followed the same instructions that come with the water heater that a caravan engineer would follow and I'd make sure it was safe before getting somebody 'ticketed' around to do a second check.

I expect lots of users of this forum won't have any mechanical 'tickets' but feel perfectly confident and happy working on safety aspects of their vehicles such as changing brake pads without taking their car to a garage for someone 'ticketed' (could be a 17 year old who has just past NVQ3 in motor vehicle mechanics - a subject I used to teach/deliver btw) to check their work. They might appreciate tips on the particular job from a garage but wouldn't expect a garage to keep reminding them that really they should get a ticketed mechanic to check things over, especially if they were an engineer in a very closely related field such as designing brake systems for lorries from scratch.

When people seek my advice on other forums I look for indicators of their skills and safety implications awareness and if I'm happy they can do the job I'll advise them how to fix their problem, otherwise I'll tell them to seek hands on help from a professional such as myself. There is no need to interject 'get it checked by a pro' between nearly every bit of advise or between nearly every mention of gas, especially when the person obviously has closely relevant skills and has said they are going to get things checked.

I now intend on fixing my fridge and putting it back exactly how it was fitted. If anyone has any safety concerns they think I probably haven't thought about please let me know.

Everything below is copied and and pasted from another forum:
sleepyfolk

  • sleepyfolk
  • Approved Member

  • 1,856 posts
Posted February 25, 2019
Be careful with these so called caravan engineers, in the last 12 months I’ve had

1. supposedly trained and well regarded idiots telling me I needed a replacement fridge - north of £1200, another said a new heat exchanger £600, neither of them took anything apart. I decided it was a control circuit issue and started with the temperature sensor in the fridge which cost me £29.95, fridge works fine now, temperature is controllable and it doesn’t ice up.

2. Truma ultraheat failed to light on gas, caravan idiot says whole new gas valve and safety cut out required - £180 plus fitting, I took it apart - soldered the igniter wire back on, called out my newly found caravan Dave the godsend retired service engineer to fit the flue seal and do a drop test - £20!

Just saying, you could always guage their opinions - you are after all paying the call out fee, make your own mind up or if they suck their teeth and say you’ll need a new PCB mate - just buy one and fit it yourself.
 
Last edited:
Mar 14, 2005
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I didn't mean to offend anyone and my comments were not aimed at or intended to be critical of anyone on this thread.
To late.
Perhaps you should check what you post before posting, and bear in mind this is an open forum and can be read even by non members.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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I didn't mean to offend anyone and my comments were not aimed at or intended to be critical of anyone on this thread.

UKLPG (Liquid Gas) is a trade body for suppliers such as Calor, it is they who run a farcical scheme for Autogas installs and they who I have gripes with because their supposed safety scheme is anything but safe. The Gas Safe register is different and their scheme does not extend to vehicles running on gas. Like you, I wouldn't want Jack the lad fitting gas systems on anything from a car / caravan to a house.

Still I would stand by my implication that some caravan engineers will be far better than others and I wouldn't expect much disagreement with that (but I'll ask if there is disagreement?). Some could fix a problem properly, safely and inexpensively while others would replace at further expense. It isn't like anyone 'gets a ticket' and suddenly has the knowledge and experience of some of their peers or even some of their customers.

I have mentioned that I work with gas and gas safety / control systems every day and fit systems from scratch, I also mentioned that I have quite a thorough knowledge of electronics. What issue does anyone have with me removing my caravan's water heater, blowing cobwebs out of it and fixing a dry soldered joint on it's control board then refitting it? Would a caravan engineer have fixed the control board or would they have charged me for a new one (board or complete water heater) that would hopefully arrive and be fitted in time for my planned holiday? I didn't have to design the water heater, or even the way it was fitted, or it's flue system, I only had to remove it and refit it the way it was previously fitted but in all honesty if I was fitting it from scratch I'd have followed the same instructions that come with the water heater that a caravan engineer would follow and I'd make sure it was safe before getting somebody 'ticketed' around to do a second check.

I expect lots of users of this forum won't have any mechanical 'tickets' but feel perfectly confident and happy working on safety aspects of their vehicles such as changing brake pads without taking their car to a garage for someone 'ticketed' (could be a 17 year old who has just past NVQ3 in motor vehicle mechanics - a subject I used to teach/deliver btw) to check their work. They might appreciate tips on the particular job from a garage but wouldn't expect a garage to keep reminding them that really they should get a ticketed mechanic to check things over, especially if they were an engineer in a very closely related field such as designing brake systems for lorries from scratch.

When people seek my advice on other forums I look for indicators of their skills and safety implications awareness and if I'm happy they can do the job I'll advise them how to fix their problem, otherwise I'll tell them to seek hands on help from a professional such as myself. There is no need to interject 'get it checked by a pro' between nearly every bit of advise or between nearly every mention of gas, especially when the person obviously has closely relevant skills and has said they are going to get things checked.

I now intend on fixing my fridge and putting it back exactly how it was fitted. If anyone has any safety concerns they think I probably haven't thought about please let me know.

Everything below is copied and and pasted from another forum:
sleepyfolk

  • sleepyfolk
  • Approved Member

  • 1,856 posts
Posted February 25, 2019
Be careful with these so called caravan engineers, in the last 12 months I’ve had

1. supposedly trained and well regarded idiots telling me I needed a replacement fridge - north of £1200, another said a new heat exchanger £600, neither of them took anything apart. I decided it was a control circuit issue and started with the temperature sensor in the fridge which cost me £29.95, fridge works fine now, temperature is controllable and it doesn’t ice up.

2. Truma ultraheat failed to light on gas, caravan idiot says whole new gas valve and safety cut out required - £180 plus fitting, I took it apart - soldered the igniter wire back on, called out my newly found caravan Dave the godsend retired service engineer to fit the flue seal and do a drop test - £20!

Just saying, you could always guage their opinions - you are after all paying the call out fee, make your own mind up or if they suck their teeth and say you’ll need a new PCB mate - just buy one and fit it yourself.

Long post. Excuse me while I yawn.
 

Parksy

Moderator
Nov 12, 2009
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.......As said, when I've done all this I will get some qualified fella to check things over... not that I think he'd be any more CO etc aware than me, have as much gear for checking for CO as me, or stand as much chance of fixing anything that was broken as me ;-) But I don't intend on giving anyone who's less likely to be able to fix something than me the chance of mis-advising me, if anything I'd just want them to give me a second opinion (after my own) in terms of a safety check. I'm used to designing systems that deal with liquid gas at high pressure at one end and very precise fine control of lower pressure gas in vapour form at the other end all from scratch - removing, servicing and replacing far more simple components on an already designed and existing system is far easier and simpler and I'm very sure I can do it without failing to properly reconnect/seal simple flues or having yellow flames or suffering failed protective gas shut off mechanisms/electronics. I write a lot of informative posts on LPGForum (same LPGC name). I really don't prescribe to generalised guy does a college course and is now an expert on gas safety and fixing gas stuff type scenarios, guy might be a numpty nevertheless! I don't hold 'standards' in much esteem either. In my own profession (converting vehicles to run on gas), DVSA ask my advice, not a (the) trade body's advice, I advise DVSA on e.g. how the MOT should relate to LPG converted vehicles. I have never wanted to be a member of this gas related trade body, most of their members are numpties who don't know their jobs properly and couldn't hold a candle.
Oh dear. That went well! 🙄
The name of the magazine is Practical Caravan and this forum and website is the online voice of touring caravan owners, experienced and novices alike.
Many of us carry out practical work on our caravans, often after checking out the advice offered here on this forum.
I don't want to add fuel to the fire but like many other members you asked questions about something that you were not sure about.
Experienced caravanners, some of whom have years of experience in all aspects of caravan servicing and with hard won qualifications to back up their experience, replied with helpful advice.
They don't know how qualified or competent you may or may not be.
The trouble with text on a screen is that whatever is written appears as a bald statement, with no nuance to be conveyed by facial expression or tone of voice.
I'm sure that you didn't mean your provocative comment to be taken personally, and of course any trade will have workers with varying levels of competency.
Having said that, in common with the majority of members here, my expertise lies outside the gas safe certification or any professional gas competency, so most of us rely on professionals like Damian to check and to repair the mechanical/ lpg / electric systems that are contained within the metal boxes that we tow behind our vehicles and which we live in for varying lengths of time.
We're trusting these caravan engineers with ours and our families lives, so we're unlikely to continue to engage the services of numpties or a Billy know all who has a college course but little else to justify our trust.
Approved caravan engineers, most especially approved self employed mobile caravan engineers like Damian, and like the approved mobile engineer that I use, take immense professional pride in their work.
Most forum members will agree that their livelihood depends on them having a very good reputation.
The Prof who helped you has probably forgotten more about lpg systems and safety than most of us here will ever know.
You mentioned that you design and work on automotive lpg systems, so as someone in a safety critical industry you'll know that current qualifications are not handed out like Smarties.
I hope that everyone can simply move on now, but it's a brave forum member who asks for help and then to appears to rubbish the overall levels of competency within the trade of those who have been good enough to offer helpful advice. 😉
 
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Jun 18, 2020
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Oh dear. That went well! 🙄
The name of the magazine is Practical Caravan and this forum and website is the online voice of touring caravan owners, experienced and novices alike.
Many of us carry out practical work on our caravans, often after checking out the advice offered here on this forum.
I don't want to add fuel to the fire but like many other members you asked questions about something that you were not sure about.
Experienced caravanners, some of whom have years of experience in all aspects of caravan servicing and with hard won qualifications to back up their experience, replied with helpful advice.
They don't know how qualified or competent you may or may not be.
The trouble with text on a screen is that whatever is written appears as a bald statement, with no nuance to be conveyed by facial expression or tone of voice.
I'm sure that you didn't mean your provocative comment to be taken personally, and of course any trade will have workers with varying levels of competency.
Having said that, in common with the majority of members here, my expertise lies outside the gas safe certification or any professional gas competency, so most of us rely on professionals like Damian to check and to repair the mechanical/ lpg / electric systems that are contained within the metal boxes that we tow behind our vehicles and which we live in for varying lengths of time.
We're trusting these caravan engineers with ours and our families lives, so we're unlikely to continue to engage the services of numpties or a Billy know all who has a college course but little else to justify our trust.
Approved caravan engineers, most especially approved self employed mobile caravan engineers like Damian, and like the approved mobile engineer that I use, take immense professional pride in their work.
Most forum members will agree that their livelihood depends on them having a very good reputation.
The Prof who helped you has probably forgotten more about lpg systems and safety than most of us here will ever know.
You mentioned that you design and work on automotive lpg systems, so as someone in a safety critical industry you'll know that current qualifications are not handed out like Smarties.
I hope that everyone can simply move on now, but it's a brave forum member who asks for help and then to appears to rubbish the overall levels of competency within the trade of those who have been good enough to offer helpful advice. 😉
Agreed. Thanks for that Parksy.
 
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