whale fault codes

Whale Space Heater Fault Codes

Whale Space Heater Fault Codes

The Whale space heater is used in many Caravans and Motorhomes due to its space saving design of being fitted under the floor. Weighing just over 10kg it is considerably lighter than the Truma Combi or Alde variants helping in weight distribution throughout the van.   

If your Whale space heater develops a fault the heater will diagnose and display the fault on your control panel. 

Firstly, there are two types of control panels that are commonly used, the rotary switches and the Duo Control Panel which also operates the water heater

Whale heater fault panel
Rotary Switches
Whale space heater control panel error
Duo Control Panel

Both use the same fault codes to indicate the issue but display them in a different way depending on what control panel you have.

If you have the rotary switches the red led will flash a number of times then pause then repeat the flashes again, you then need to count the number of flashes and then check the list below to see what triggered the fault. 

If you know why it failed you can do a “soft reset” by turning the power selector switch to the energy source it failed on then back to zero (off) three times within 5 seconds. If this doesn’t clear the fault see further down this article.

If you have the Duo Control Panel it will display a red “!” on the left of the display. If you press and hold the space heater button it will illuminate a number of bars, the number of bars showing correspond to the fault code number. See table below.

To do carry out a “soft reset” on this panel you need to hold the “heating” button and the “+” button this should reset the fault. If this doesn’t clear it see further down this article.

Last update on 2023-01-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Whale Space Heater fault code list

Number of flashes or bars illuminatedThe faultHow to rectify
1No flame detectedCheck the gas bottle is on and has gas in it. Make sure the gas taps are open. Check the exterior flues are not blocked. Use Propane gas if camping in climate below 5°C
2OverheatedCheck the air outlets are not blocked or all in the "no air flow" position. Turn off and allow to cool.
3Low/High voltageThe space heater needs between 11.5 - 15volts. Check battery voltage.
4Combustion air faultCheck external air intake and exhaust flues for blockages.
5Internal faultReset the space heater (see how further down page)
Solid light2 x faultsTwo issues have happened at the same time or five clearing attempts have failed. Attempt a reset (see below).

To clear fault codes if you have the rotary switches or the Duo Control fitted you need to simply turn off the 12Volt at the master switch (or disconnect the leisure battery) in the van then back on. This should reset the space heater (this only works for codes 1,3,4 and 5). You get 5 tries at doing this, if the fault still appears press the Red reset button on the heater where it protrudes to the inside of the van. If you have fault code two flashing or a solid red light this must be cleared by also pressing the Red reset button. 

whale space heater reset
Red Reset Button
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Last update on 2023-01-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A known issue for the Whale space heater is when they are installed, sometimes the flue/intake pipes dip down before it exits the side of the van. This can allow rain and condensation to gather in the dip of the pipes and eventually it will fail to light on gas, worth a quick look and reposition if it is (so that it has a downwards slope to the exit).  

Wahle space heater flue correct installation
Should look like this

Any other Whale space heater issues?

Overall these space heaters are very good with not many issues to speak of. They heat the vans well and have the advantage of not taking up the valuable interior space. The only other issue i’ve seen is where water has managed to get into the casing of the heater  causing corrosion internally of  the pcb and the fan. They are a simple bit of kit to work on so its a case of disconnecting all pipe work, dropping the heater and splitting the case open to reveal all the internals and have a poke around.

Any normal fault codes are usually due to user error, like shutting the power off when they are in use, this can cause a code to appear. Always allow the space heater to run its cool down fans after you have turned the heater off on the control panel, this takes about five minutes and only then turn the main 12v off. 


You may be interested in our article about Whale Water Heater Fault Codes which can be found here. Some of the code meanings are similar  to the space heater so you can familiarise yourself if they occur. 

Or you may be interested in our Best Caravan Aerial article, listing all the top aerials and the differences between them.

I hope this has been of some help. CaravanMotorhome.org.

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