Gas Hotwater heater


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Old 04-06-01, 01:32 PM
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Like AndreaPT I too have a hotwater heater problem but of a slightly different nature. I'm wondering if you would presrcribe the same remedy. My problem is I used to have excellent hotwater pressure and volume but now it has slowed considerably, it still comes out hot and it doesn't run out but the stream is pretty weak. The appliance is an A. O. Smith gas water heater, 92 plus effiency and is 5 and one half years old. Also I went to Lowes to look for a plastic dip tube just in case I need to replace it but they didn't carry one. Should I just replace the water heater? CT.
 
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Old 04-07-01, 07:02 AM
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Hello Ctiggs and Welcome to the Do It Yourself Web Site and my Gas Appliance forum.

I want to thank you for reading the archives first, in search of the answer to your question. I went back and re-read AndreaPT's posting.

Your correct, it does not answer your question completely. That posting left some doubts as to what was exactly the problem. Therefore, I covered those I thought would apply.

In referrence to your question, thanks for posting more specific and detailed information. Sure helps me.

I am not a plumber but your problem sounds more like a water flow restriction caused by debris in the faucet strainer screens, faucet valve, inlet cold water valve to the tank or within the hot, cold water piping system.

If the house has steel, black iron or galvanized pipes, internal rust corrosion could be the source of the problem. Check the faucet screens and shower heads first. Remove them and clean or replace them.

While each is removed for cleaning, open fully each hot and cold water faucets and flush out the system. If the water runs out brown and rusty, you have one of the above mentioned metal pipes installed in the house.

Then flush out the hot water tank. Within the archives, will be instructional steps on how to accomplish this.

Your also correct about replacement dip tubes. Replacements are difficult to purchase. Contrary to popular belief, I concur with the water heater manufacturers. Plastic dip tubes will last the life of the water heater. Therefore, replacements are not likely.

Try the above suggestions if you haven't already done so and use the reply button to update or inquire about further steps to take to resolve this problem and continue this topic, if need be.
 
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Old 04-07-01, 08:38 AM
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Gas hotwater heater

You're good! Right after I emailed you I continued working on the problem and disconnected the inlet pipe to the water heater. To my surprise the line inlet cold water line on the tank had completely corroded up. I had to force a screwdriver through the corrosion and make a pin hole then I widened that as much as I could. I reconnected every thing, relit the pilot light and presto the system worked well. Your analysis though was right on the money.

I guess the only qestion now is can I replace the iron joint on the water heater with a copper joint so this can't happen again. Thanks again Charlie.
 
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Old 04-07-01, 04:08 PM
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Hi: Charlie

In this instance I would suggest you take a good eyeball visual of the needed part or parts plus written measurements and make a trip to your local hardware store.

What I think you may want to consider doing asap, is a replacement to a brass pipe fitting to replace the iron pipe fitting. What you already have done is to temporally cure the symptom of a restriction.

The corrosion removed has thinned the existing pipe and the remaining corrosion will continue to expand, causing yet another restriction soon. Worse yet, cause the existing pipe to spring a leak.

Also consider possibly installing a replacement inlet cold water valve, if this also shows signs of severe corrosion.

You should not forget to clean the faucet screens at every sink and the shower heads now that you found the problem. Whatever corrosion you loosened up with the screwdriver from inside the inlet pipe has fallen into the tank.

I also suggest you flush the tank to remove any sediment which has settled to the bottom of the tank. The archives, within this forum somewhere...hahaha...contain the basic instructions.

Once all this is completed, it's time to relax and have a BEER!...hahaha...

Regards & Good Luck
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