Water Heater is making me cold!


  #1  
Old 01-26-01, 01:26 PM
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Angry

I have a 40 Gal. (gas) Water heater. It was installed apporox. 6 years ago. My problem is this: When I try and take a shower the hot water only lasts about 10 min, and this is without any other water or gas appliances runing.

I have turned the thermostat up and the water gets VERY HOT, but for the same duration.

Is this caused by Mineral deposits? Is there any way that I can check this out. If someone could give me all the steps to check all the possibilities, I would appreciate it, as we are a poor California (energy starved) family.:-)

Thanks in advance

Mike
 
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Old 01-26-01, 02:48 PM
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Shower Faucet

Hi:mikelev

The most common cause for the problem you discribed with a water heater only 6 years old, is not usually the tank but at the shower faucet. I would suggest you start there.

If this condition is also at another shower faucet and also at the washing machine, then the problem may be with the water heater.

The idea here is to attemp to isolate the condition to a single faucet. Some shower faucet mixer valves <single lever faucets> are prone to causing this problem.

Should there be a lack of hot water throughout the entire house after ten minutes or so, then it's possible the water heaters internal dip tube is defective.

A highly unlikely problem since the dip tubes used in the last 20 plus years are made of PVC plastic and not likely to rust out as those made of steel in years prior.

If the problem needs further checking into, contact the local gas utility and request an appliance service check.
 
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Old 01-26-01, 03:18 PM
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This problem is at every faucet in the house (just thought I would as this for further diagnosis.
 
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Old 01-26-01, 08:14 PM
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Hi:mikelev

Thanks for adding more information. Based on this new information, it is likely the tank is the problem.

However, before you go through the work of removing the tanks internal dip tube <no easy task> try flushing the tank first.

To flush, simply attach a garden hose to the tanks water faucet and then put the hose some where outside where hot water will not damage anything. Then open that tanks faucet and let the hot water run out until it runs clear. Then close the faucet and remove the hose.

Do NOT open or close any other valves or faucets during this flushing. The idea here is to allow the cold incoming water to flush out any debris in the tank. It is not intended to empty the tank, just flush it.

Another item to remember, it takes COLD water coming in to push out the hot water. Therefore, the colder the incoming water the faster the internal HOT water dilutes.

You might try installing low flow shower heads and faucets before removing the tank and then removing to dip tube. I only suggest this if you don't already have low flows installed.

If the dip tube has to be removed, take the tanks inlet water connection off. The dip tube is installed in the cold water inlet side. It should reach down to about 2/3 of the depth of the tank. Check it for holes also.

Good Luck,
Tom

P.S.
Since this topic deals more with the water heaters physical parts then gas related items, you might also want to post this same question in the plumming forum.
 
 

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