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Gas Pilot Light Works Till Water Lukewarm Then Burner & Pilot Light Cut Out

Gas Pilot Light Works Till Water Lukewarm Then Burner & Pilot Light Cut Out


  #1  
Old 11-06-04, 06:58 PM
sellmeabeach
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Question Gas Pilot Light Works Till Water Lukewarm Then Burner & Pilot Light Cut Out

Hello,

I hope some one can help me out here.

I have here a Reliance 501 40 gallon gas water heater.

It is about 16 years old they say.

The pilot light keeps going out so I changed the thermocoupler. The pilot light still kept going out so I put in another thermocoupler. Still keeps going out.

So heres the details of the problem. The pilot light lights up fine and stays lit a warm blue. The burner fires up when the thermostat is turned up & warms the water up to lukewarm, not hot, just lukewarm. Then the burner cuts off & so does the pilot light. The pilot light then will relight if you hold down the relight, but when you let off the button & try to turn it to on it goes out.

There is no spill switch that I can find, & am bewildered on what to try to fix next.

I suppose it is about time for a new one, but I would rather try and get another couple years out of this one.

Thanks for your help.
 
  #2  
Old 11-06-04, 07:51 PM
sellmeabeach
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Just lit the pilot again & went through the cutout cycle heres more symptoms

Just lit the pilot light again after letting it cool down for a hour or so.

The pilot won't stay lit immediately after it cuts out.

Anyways lit the pilot & turned it on. Turned the thermostat up and the burner heated the water for about 15 minutes. After about 15 minutes it started to sound sort of like a teapot starting to boil. First a hardly audible hum. Then a bit of a whistle. A couple of minutes after the whistle started the burner & pilot light cut out and would not relight and stay lit.

Please let help me understand what is wrong with this heater. Rather than just go out an buy another one, I would rather more understand the inner workings of a water heater & fix it if cost effective.

Thanks for your help.
 
  #3  
Old 11-06-04, 08:57 PM
Gas-repairs4U
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Dear sell,

Sounds to me like you have a bad operating control valve (the one where you turn the knobs to light pilot, and turn temperature up). There is an internal "hi-limit" built inside of the valve that is not replaceable. However, replacing the operating control is possible. Before you do this, make sure there is water throughout the plumbing, and there is no "air" pockets in the lines of the plumbing.
 
  #4  
Old 11-06-04, 10:27 PM
sellmeabeach
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Operating Control Valve Replacement

Gas Repairs,

Thanks for the reply.

Looked around the internet for information on control valves and replacement. Haven't had any luck finding anything yet.

If anyone knows any place I can get more information on replacing the valve that would be great.

Also, where would one find a replacement Operating Conrol Valve for a Reliance 501 40 gallon water heater on Sunday afternoon?

Thanks for your help
 
  #5  
Old 11-07-04, 05:42 AM
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Hello: sellmeabeach.

Based on the age of that tank, any sort of problem described, other than replacing a T-Couple, is not worth attempting to fix or correct. Any replacement control valve, cost wise only, is not worth the investment into that tank of it's age.

Secondly, there is a very high possibility that tank has an internal restricted vent flue and or partially collapsed baffle in the internal flue. either or both of which will cause a lack of air flow which causes and or creates a condition referred to as "Smoothering Flames." A very serious condition.

Best suggestion I can make, based upon the facts you provided, replace the tank with a new one of the same water capacity size. You will be far ahead and way better off both in the short run (problem free with hot water now)and for the long term investment.
 
  #6  
Old 11-08-04, 09:34 AM
sellmeabeach
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Bought new heater

Sharp,

Took your advice. Went and bought a new one & installed it last night.

Couldn't find a operating control valve, and the natives were getting perturbed about cold showers.

The risk that it might not be the valve & 2 more days of cold showers just wasn't worth it.

Thanks for your insight and time taken to answer this thread.
 
  #7  
Old 11-10-04, 01:43 PM
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My pleasure. Glad to help.

Another reason for concern is carbon monoxides;

Information here:
CARBON MONOXIDE:
http://www.carbon-monoxide-poisoning.com/symptoms.html
 
 

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