Attached is our HOTTAP User Guide:
HOTTAP Lights but but can only stay on with 'LO' Water Flow:
If you find the Hottap works well on LO but then turns off when you adjust water flow upwards, the problem will be with your water supply. Try these things:
- Check for blockages in your water lines. Unscrew your blue quick connect adaptor on the water inlet, and look inside the brass inlet fitting to make sure the mesh is clear. Make sure to clean the inline filter on your pump also if you have it.
- If you're aren't using a Joolca pump, then make sure your pump matches the specs below:
- Flow rate between 6-12 LPM
- Pressure between 45-65 PSI
- Try the Hottap on mains water. If it works fine you can work backwards to figure out what is restricting the flow to the Hottap.
HOTTAP lights up (on any water flow) but later turns off:
Reaching Cut-off Temperature
Make sure the unit is not exceeding 50 degrees Celsius otherwise the flame will cut out
automatically, this is to prevent scalding.
- Turn water flow HI and/or turn the gas dial LO. This will reduce the temperature of the water, helping it stay under 50 degrees Celsius.
Wind Related Issues
The HOTTAP has a flame sensor as a safety component. This is designed to shut off gas supply to HOTTAP as soon as it notices that the flame has been extinguished. What wind does is act to push the flame sideways or stretch it upwards which simulates a 'flame out' and causes the safety circuit to kick in.
There are a few things we can do to remedy this, try the below:
- The default position of the top vent has louvres that are facing into the unit, which can in effect 'catch' the wind and send it down into the Hottap. By removing the 4x screws on each corner and flipping the grill upside down, we'll make the louvres face upwards and help to direct any oncoming wind 'up and away' from the unit.
- Blocking the side ventilation holes can help to reduce the wind effects. We have tested the unit and it does not hinder the performance in any way by blocking this vents totally (we've used aluminium tape).
- Building a box around the unit. Use sheet metal or something non flammable. Make sure its adequately ventilated. Legal requirements are a 1m form the top and 50cm from sides, 0 from the back. (cant be near any combustible eg. gas bottles).
Firstly we need to make sure that HOTTAP is actually not lighting. Look through the front slit holes on the unit and see if you can notice a blue flame appearing across the burners. If you can, refer to this article.
If the unit is definitely not lighting, try the below:
No clicking and LED screen doesn't power on:
The HOTTAP needs adequate water pressure to operate correctly, so if nothing is happening check the following:
- Make sure the water hoses are on correctly (cold water in on right hand side, hot water out from the middle). If the hoses are back to front the Hottap won't turn on.
- Make sure the batteries are making contact with the springs and metal tab inside the battery box. Try pushing the battery box further into the unit and see if that helps.
- Check for sufficient water flow and pressure.
- Try the Hottap on mains water. If it works fine you can work backwards to figure out what is restricting the flow to the Hottap.
- If you are using a 12V pump, ensure the pump battery is fully charged. If the battery is only 50% (for example) the 12V pump will put out a lower flow and pressure than it should.
- If you're running on tank water or a gravity fed system you may not have enough pressure to turn the Hottap on, try the next step below.
- Adjust the ‘water flow’ setting on the HOTTAP to ‘LO’. This will make it easier to ignite (in case it is a water flow issue). If you find that the HOTTAP ignites when set to ‘LO’ water flow but turns off when the ‘Water Flow’ is adjusted higher, see this article.
- Check for blockages in your water lines that could restrict water flow. Unscrew your blue quick connect adaptor on the water inlet, and look inside the brass inlet fitting to make sure the mesh is clear. Make sure to clean the inline filter on your pump also if you have it.
- To flush the system, connect the input water source to the ‘Water Outlet’ and turn on. Once complete, reconnect the appliance as per instructions.
I can hear clicking and my LED Screen Lights up, but there is no ignition:
- Purge the gas:
- To do this, have your gas bottle 'Open' and slowly unscrew the inlet gas connection on your Hottap until you hear gas seeping out. Let it purge for a few seconds and re-tighten. Wait 30 seconds for the gas smell to disappear and try to ignite the Hottap.
- Try brand new batteries. If batteries run low, they will have enough power for the ignition (the tick tick tick you hear), but not enough power to open the gas solenoid (this is the part that lets gas flow into the Hottap).
- Ensure that you're using either a 4.5kg or 9kg LPG bottle. Also make sure that you open the valve on the gas bottle fully. Needless to say, make sure the bottle is not empty.
The HOTTAP can handle a bit of wind - after all it's designed to be used outside! However if it's very windy the flame inside the HOTTAP can be blown around a bit, the flame sensor will recognise this and step in to shut the unit off (you don't want gas being pumped into the unit with no flame lit!). When it's extremely windy, the best advice is to shield the top 1/3 of the HOTTAP as best you can - with some sort of awning, or better yet, enclosure which is well ventilated.
Flipping Top Vent
Now, there are times where it seems the HOTTAP keeps going out in the slightest of breezes. In our experience, this comes down to the way it's being used and where it's hanging, or being mounted.
What can happen when you have the HOTTAP hanging or mounted against a large flat surface, is that the wind can get caught against the flat surface and be directed straight down into the unit. This would amplify the effects of even a small breeze - and cause the flame to move around and the flame sensor to kick in.
The top vent of the HOTTAP has louvers facing down into the unit - which can 'catch' wind and direct it straight down into the gas burner. We can take the top vent and flip it around (by simply removing the 4 screws that hold it in place) you'll find the louvers are now facing upwards and act to push oncoming wind 'up and away' from the unit, significantly improving wind performance.
Default - Top Vent
After flipping the top vent around, the louvers are facing upwards to deflect wind away.
Blocking Side Holes:
One thing we've also found is that by blocking the side ventilation holes, we can help to mitigate the wind effects. We have tested the unit and it does not hinder the performance in any way by blocking this vents totally.
Here we have used Aluminium tape to block the vents from the inside, but you can just as effectively block them from the external side.
Firstly, make sure you've adjusted the gas and water control knobs (red for gas, blue for water) to set your temperature. For hottest water, gas should be set to HI, and water to LO. Conversely, for coldest water, gas should be set to LO and water to HI.
If the water temperature is getting too hot, even when you increase water flow to HI and heat to LO it usually is a poor water supply issue. The water is flowing through the HOTTAP too slowly and as a result heating up very quickly. Check the following things:
- Incoming water temperature is too high. For example, if you have a long water inlet hose, the water in the hose can heat up in the sun – as soon as you turn on the HOTTAP the incoming water temperature is high, and the temperature shoots to 50C and will turn the unit off (safety cutoff). If this happens, try ‘flushing’ the hot water through (turn off gas so the HOTTAP doesn’t ignite a flame). After 30-60 seconds of flushing, the water in the hose should be back to normal. Turn on the gas and try again.
- There is a blockage somewhere. This will be obvious as there won’t be any difference between the water flow out of the shower hose between the low water flow setting and high water flow setting. Usually there is a big difference between low flow and high flow. If there isn’t, it could be a blockage in the shower head, HOTTAP water inlet filter (you need to unscrew the blue quick connect adaptor), or a blockage in the pump filter.
- If you are running off a 12V pump, check the suction side filter to make sure it is clear. If not, the pump will put out a lower flow and pressure - this will cause the water to heat up quickly. Also make sure the pump battery is fully charged. A pump running off a 50% full battery will also run at a lower flow and pressure.
- Check the specifications on your pump (if not a Joolca pump). You should have a pump which is capable of a flow rate between 6-12LPM and a pressure setting of 40-60PSI. Anything less than 6LPM and the HOTTAP may turn off as the pump can’t supply enough water at the high water flow setting. Anything more than 12LPM and you will find your pump pulsates (goes tick tick tick tick) when you turn the water flow setting to low on the HOTTAP.
- Adjust the gas regulator and water regulator to meet your desired temperature. To increase temperature as high as possible; turn the gas regulator control from LO to HI and turn the water regulator control from HI to LO.
- Check source water temperature. If the source water temperature is too cold then you may need to ‘cycle’ the water through the system back into the source reservoir then through the appliance again to meet your desired temperature.
- Check if there is a flame in the ‘viewing window’. If you cannot see a flame it could mean that the unit has switched off / not ignited, try restarting the unit and monitor the 'viewing window' for a flame.
If your shower head is leaking from the connection between the shower hose and the shower head, please check that you’ve placed the small black washer in between the connection.
The HOTTAP can be connected to a bayonet fitting, however, the only hosing we offer with the HOTTAP is a 1.2m Gas Hose and Regulator (as standard). Any other fittings that maybe required to fit onto a bayonet can be sourced from a hardware or plumbing store.
The HOTTAP is designed with freshwater use in mind, using saltwater or brackish water can affect the internals and leave them susceptible to rust and corrosion.
It won't cause total damage immediately but saltwater, for example, will certainly reduce the lifetime of the unit, though by how much we're not sure as we've not done any specific testing for this scenario.
When it comes to pumping water there is a vast amount of options available to choose from however you need to be certain of the requirements in your system otherwise you are likely to find that the particular pump you have is not fit for purpose.
When it comes to the HOTTAP Hot water system the ideal specifications for the pump are that it flows at least 6 litres per minute and no more than 12. You are also looking for a pressure level around 60 PSI. Meeting these operating ranges will ensure optimal operation from the HOTTAP system.
Main types of pumps you may come across are:
Centrifugal water pumps
These style of pumps generally consist of one or more impellers typically driven electrically. You will find Bilge pumps fall under this category. These style of pumps are not suitable for the HOTTAP due to their nature of providing high water flow rates but low water pressure. We have found from past experience that generally these will not have the required water pressure to activate the pressure switch in the HOTTAP.
Positive displacement pumps
PD pumps do not have impellers, instead they consist of either rotating or reciprocating parts and generate high pressure to push the water along the system. These style of pumps will generally provide lower flow rates than centrifugal style pumps however provide much higher water pressure. These style of pumps are ideal for the HOTTAP system and as long as the specifications are within 6-12 litres per minute and around 60 PSI it will be perfect for the HOTTAP system.
If you are in doubt and want to eliminate any unknowns you can grab the FLOTAP which is specifically engineered for the HOTTAP or if you pick up the HOTTAP Outing kit you will already have the FLOTAP included.
We recommend for majority of the time to always leave the red dial on full heat, then control your water temperature by changing the blue dial.
If you want really hot water, leave the blue dial on lowest flow. If you want to lower the water temp, move the blue dial to medium or high water flow.
Once you move the blue dial the water temp should change after a few second, then stabilise after another few seconds. Change the blue dial again, the same thing happens, the water temp starts changing after a few seconds and stabilises after another few seconds.
As a test you can try the following:
Adjust the red dial to HI and blue dial to HI - you'll probably get water about 35-40C on your typical day where the temperature is somewhere around 20-25C.
Start moving the water dial and you'll see the water temperature starts increasing. If you moved the dial and the temp is getting close to 50, increase the water flow and the temp should start dropping again.
You can definitely use a gravity system at home to run the HOTTAP however please be mindful that you will require a specific set of conditions in order to meet adequate operation of the system.
You'll need 10PSI minimum to open up the pressure switch on the inside of the unit and you'll need 6LPM flow rate as well.
Usually we find that with gravity systems (this is assuming a tank 10-15m above the shower on the side of a hill) has enough pressure to fire up the HOTTAP on the lowest flow setting, but then once you try to adjust the dial to anything more than 1/4 water flow, the unit will cut out.
This is because there isn't enough water flow and pressure to keep that pressure switch inside the unit opened up, so it closes up and the system shuts down.
If the tank you're talking about is anything less than 10m above the shower, then you'll run into issues. If you're not running through the HOTTAP than gravity fed shower is OK, it's just when you want to connect to the HOTTAP you'll need to make sure you have enough pressure/water flow.
Reason for that is the size of the burners are designed for a certain water flow/pressure. If the water flow comes in at a much lower flow rate, then the water will heat up very very quickly way beyond the safety cut-off of 50C (basically it'll be useless as you can't have a shower).
From past experiences we have found in many cases it is easier to obtain a pump to enjoy the system to its full potential. Check out our FLOTAP for further information.
Your HOTTAP unit has been designed to be used outdoors however to ensure the unit remains in pristine working condition we strongly urge you to make all possible attempts to shield the unit from the elements. The unit is splash proof however prolonged exposure to rain may result in the degradation of the internal components and this is due to small trace amounts of acids in rain which over time react with appliance surfaces.
The easiest way to go about protecting your unit is to simply pack it away after use and keep it under cover inside to shield it from weather however if your situation requires the unit to be exposed outdoors we offer the Joolca Carry bag, it features premium waterproofing and padding for extra protection and will ensure your unit remains in tip-top shape.
One last note regarding very cold temperatures - if you are in an area at a time when the temperatures approach or drop below zero you must drain the unit of water to prevent the water from freezing inside the unit and causing damage due to expansion. The best way to do this is simply detaching both water quick fittings and letting the water drain from the unit, this will ensure that even if the temperature drops below zero your unit will remain safe and ready for next use.