Take a look at the photo of the travel trailer’s 6-gallon hot water heater covered in white insulation. See the three knobs? They are called valves. I’ve numbered them in blue. I love these valves because they show if the water is flowing by the direction the valve knob points. They only rotate 90°. When the long part of the valve knob runs across the pipe, that means the valve is closed. When the long part of the valve knob runs with the pipe, that means the valve is open and water flows.
I’ve also added orange arrows showing the direction I think the water is flowing. Valves 1 and 3 are blocking water flow in those positions. With valve 2 open it lets cold water into the hot water line. This is why we have cold water coming out of the hot water faucets. I think — mind you I’m thinking here but I think my thinking is spot on — valve 1 and 3 is why the hot water heater is empty.
I’ll test my thinking this next trip by closing valve 2. That should stop cold water from passing through into the hot water line. Then I will open valves 1 and 3 which should send water into the hot water heater and out the drain which I will then plug. I figure I need to bleed the air out of the hot water tank by lifting the pressure relief valve briefly and turning on the faucets.
Here’s a photo of what is behind the biggest access door I’ve identified the hot water drain and relief valve.
I am not particularly pleased that water, propane, and electricity are such close neighbors. Glad we live in a place with really, really low moisture so any water will dry quickly.
Okay. Those travelers in the know. Is my valve thinking right?
Yes, of course I will read that section of the manual. I am one of the few people in the universe who reads and keeps manuals that come with the product. And watches the videos. And researches additional information until I am absolutely sure.