It's hard to write stories of our mistakes especially when we are told over and over again by the experts surrounding us. People we admire and respect. People like Mark Polk of RV Education 101, and Jeff Johnston who has written for Trailer Life for over 30 years and is our Associate Producer at Rollin' On TV.
About a month ago, we had a Truma AquaGo water heater installed. The AquaGo is a new generation of water heaters, built with German engineering. This instant water heater "supplies hot water reliably around-the-clock for showering, rinsing, and hand washing in recreational vehicles. AquaGo instant water heater is the most powerful appliance on the market, yet it is characterized by its compact dimensions, straightforward operating procedures like at home, maintenance-friendly internal components, and numerous safety features." Billy DiDonato of Truma, who assisted and advised at the install and is an expert on the AquaGo told us we needed to get a water pressure regulator!
I know when Billy told me, it was my honest intention to go out and get one. And there is a little part of me that says, "We paid enough for the rig it should be able to handle these things until we get them." Then life fast-forwards to the moment when we think our AquaGo water heater has failed because there is a ton of water on the ground!!
And there is the false confidence we had. We've already traveled with Lacey (our Lance 1575) over 10,000 miles since we bought her and Cagney (our Toyota Tacoma) last August, which is crazy when we think about it! When we hook-up one on the things Laurie always has me do is open the faucet to let the air out as she turns on the water at the site. When you do anything that often and you're good to go, you don't really expect a problem. So that water pressure regulator sunk further and further back in our minds.
When we arrived at the Lance Maintenance Center on Sunday night there was a sweet welcoming sign for us to back up to and hook in. They have two such spots for people coming in with their rigs to be serviced, or, in our case, to have something done that would be recorded for Rollin' On TV. Little did we think that water pressure at a major manufacturing facility might be very different than at a campground!
We hooked up as usual, then freshened up and went to meet the crew for dinner. This is a bit of diversion from the story, but I have to say how much we enjoy the Rollin' On TV Team; Jose, the brainstorm of Rollin' On TV and his sweet wife, Sandy; Jeff, 2nd in command, and Marv Leake, our awesome Assistant Director on this project, were on this particular expedition with us. After our primary mission at Lance, Jeff and Marv took off in a Lance 1172 truck camper (OMG what a beauty!) for a review that you'll see in an upcoming segment on Rollin' On TV.
After dinner and wonderful conversation, Laurie and I headed back to our cozy nest parked in the Lance parking lot, played and snuggled up with Rue, and soon were enjoying a nice restful night.
At 3am, we awoke to a strange sound on the AquaGo panel, a different sound than the normal one. There was obviously something wrong. I opened the door and looked at water GUSHING out from the unit! There was a water spot on the pavement that encompassed the RV footprint and more. Well, at 3am there isn't too much one can do. We shut off the AquaGo and turned off the water spigot. In our minds we were trying to figure out what happened. Our first thought... we KNOW it didn't freeze this time. We were so careful about that after the first pain of freezing out our first water unit (yes it does freeze in Arizona!). So what happened??
At 6am PST, I emailed my contacts at Truma. Within an hour, we had spoken to both Billy and Melanie. As our luck would have it, there were going to be two top Truma techs AT Lance the very next day who would troubleshoot what happened! The positive response to our situation was mind-blowing! And, in what world does something like this happen as you are parked at a major RV facility and top techs from the company will be there the next day?? We are blessed and grateful for the crowd of angels that watch over us! But, we also know how important it is to write this story because why it happened is something that can easily happen to any newbie and if we can get some of you to go buy the darn stuff that you really do need NOW, then we've done our job!
If you haven't figured it out yet, the pressure was more than the AquaGo is designed for. It is not designed for over 100psi and recommends the user does not go over 55psi. Bob Rogers, the Director of Marketing, walked us into the Lance RV parts store, picked up a water pressure regulator and handed it to us! It's not even an expensive piece!
The AquaGo worked as designed! The water pressure relief valve had responded exactly as it was supposed to, to protect the unit. Once we added the pressure regulator to the hose and turned the water back on, the AquaGo worked fine. No more leaks or problem!
There is so much more to our visit to Lance, but this is the first story. This was our RV Newbie mistake, not getting a water pressure regulator right away! Are we the only ones that took the risk of not having one?