Jump to content

Hot water heater wire configuration


Recommended Posts

Hello everyone.

I have a 2007 Jayco Jay Flight 31BHS RV with a new Atwood GC6AA-10E hot water heater that was already in the RV when I purchased it and they told me it was wired and good so I took their word for it. They lied to me and I tried numerous times to get them to fix it but it never happened. Lesson learned as I will next time have every part of an RV tested in front of me before purchasing. Saying that I need help getting the proper wires together. I have Red, Yellow, Brown and White coming from RV and Blue, Orange, Green and White coming from Hot water tank. Can someone please tell me what wires go together. I have googled and watched videos and I have come to my assessment of what I think it should be. Correct me if I am way off. 

Blue - Red, Green - White, Orange - Yellow and White - Brown

I'm sure it's simple to most but to me it's confusing. 


Thanks and appreciate your help. 


Wires RV.jpg

Wires Tank.jpg

RV Panel.jpg

Atwood Wiring Diagram.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is one of those situations where if we were there armed with a VOM it wouldn't be as hard to figure which wires are which, but over the net its tough grrrrrrrrrrrrrr lol. Similar to Kirks good points, sure a manual would be great HOWEVER don't bet your life or risk the equipment on all the colors being exactly perfect...……..

 Be sure to protect and don't let any wires touch each other or the case/frame and then when set to operate on LP gas and is ON two of those feed wires (subject to the inside switching) should exhibit 12 VDC across them. Similar, if plugged to shore power and set to AC and turned ON (This can be dangerous or even deadly, don't attempt if you're inexperienced) subject to switching there should be 120 VAC across two wires (but use Ground for Ground and Neutral for Neutral and don't confuse or mix the two). Now once those source feeds are all identified WHERE THEY CONNECT TO THE HEATER UNIT IS ??????????????  That would require some resistance and other checks but Im not going there now lol.  One may be able to look and see what on the unit  requires 12 VDC and what requires the 120 VAC, that shouldn't be all that hard, just see where on the heater they attach.

 Best and all I can say for now, if in doubt hire a technician, don't risk injury or damaging the heater

John T


Link to comment
Share on other sites

 If you look around behind the water heater there probably is a small brown wire with little wires inside. These are signal wires. They connect to the white orange blue and green wires.  As in the diagram. They connect the wall switch to the heater. They may be color coded the same . They may not.

Is there a romex 110 volt ac wire already connected to a black plastic box on the back of the water heater. That gives 110 volt shore power to the water heater.


 The yellow wire goes to that black plastic box on the back of the water heater. Hopefully they is a yellow wire on the outside of that box.


 Be sure to have the breaker off for the water heater.

 A volt meter is a almost a must.


 This will tell us if you feel comfortable with finding these wires and where they go.


 If so we can continue.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 years later...

I bought my ACE motorhome late last year. I’ve just replaced my tank after a winter freeze tank breakage. I’m not sure if the (elec) water heater was working prior to buying the RV so now I have an “issue”. I reconnected all wiring as I found it but, when I connect the Green from the control card to the -12v from the RV I blow the heater fuse. Any ideas? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What make and model or water heater? On the water heater schematics that I have for either Suburban or Atwood, the green wire is to ground. My best guess is that you have something else wired incorrectly and so it is shorting to ground.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My heater is a six gallon Atwood. The problem is that the wiring diagram shows the colors of the wires going “to” the RV but no colors for the wires coming “to” the heater connections from the RV. In fact, the colors do not match each other. The main puzzle for me is the green wire (5) is shown on the schematic as to ground on the RV chassis but is also noted -12volt !  Where do I find and what is a -12 volt connection ? It’s giving me a headache. Thank for any help getting my elec heater working. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 minutes ago, Todd Sween said:

The main puzzle for me is the green wire (5) is shown on the schematic as to ground on the RV chassis but is also noted -12volt !  Where do I find and what is a -12 volt connection ?

The ground connection and -12 v DC are the same thing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Todd Sween said:

 Where do I find and what is a -12 volt connection ? It’s giving me a headache.

As Darryl said, the -12V is the ground side. The -12V or negative post of the battery and of the converter are both connected to the chassis and that is what is meant in the schematic. The automotive industry has done that for years and RVs use the same method so that the 12V systems are compatible with either a tow vehicle or with the 12V system in a motorhome chassis from the factory. 

It is a common practice to label the connections in a schematic the same as the markings on the battery terminals. If you look at your battery it will have one post marked with a + and the other with a -. The + side is connected to the positive or supply side of all 12V equipment and the - is connected to the chassis. That is true for both the chassis battery and for the RV battery. 

Edited by Kirk W
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Green or black is normally ground/ 12V negative for a 12V circuit. Perhaps that's why you blow a fuse connecting green to 12V+. That is easy to test IF you know how to use a volt.ohm meter or continuity tester.

Edited by Ray,IN
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


RVers Online University


Our program provides accurate individual wheel weights for your RV, toad, and tow vehicle, and will help you trim the pounds if you need to.

RV Cable Grip

RV Cable Grip

All the water you need...No matter where you go

Country Thunder Iowa

Nomad Internet

Rv Share

Dish For My RV.

RV Air.

Find out more or sign up for Escapees RV'ers Bootcamp.

Advertise your product or service here.

The Rvers- Now Streaming

RVTravel.com Logo

  • Create New...