Smell AROUND hot water heater


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Old 01-26-06, 03:04 PM
J
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Smell AROUND hot water heater

Had a professional plumber install a new GAS 40 GAL hot water heater LOCHINVAR brand 2 weeks ago after my 10 year old American tank died. The plumber connected the old venting to the new tank. Meaning the old tank had a 3" vent pipe going to my metal chimney. I have noticed ONLY when the tank is heating up some smells coming from the exhaust area. I would NOT describe these smells to be sulfur like natural gas...but rather more of a metal burning smell - exhaust. I had the plumber come back and he claims that the vent is ok a 3" even though the code has changed to 4" in my area for some reason. He also claims it is venting properly. Should I go ahead and try upgrading to 4" vent pipe?? -- I also notice one bead of condensation that forms on the top of the tank under the draft hood when it heats up...no larger than an eraser head but it forms everytime the tank heats up then when the tank cools it disappears slowly. I NEVER had any smells with my old tank with this exact set up...what has changed with the new tank? HELP!
 
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Old 01-26-06, 07:53 PM
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jwb007, Welcome to the DIY Forums.
I would check with your local code office about the vent. Your plumber may have assumed that since only the heater was being replaced, that the old vent was okay. Depending on where you are, if an existing unit is replaced, it must meet current codes. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-27-06, 07:24 AM
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thanks!

I appreciate your response. I did check my codes and they now require all 3" vent pipes to be upgraded to 4". The plumber simply connected my old 3" to my new tank. I can have him come back and upgrade it. Do you think upgrading a vent pipe will reduce odors? I am still confused why my old tank that I replaced would be just fine with a 3" pipe and the new tank produces smells using this same set up? Are new tanks these days set up to produce more fumes?
 
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Old 01-27-06, 08:46 AM
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New units, new technology. The vent piping is designed to fit the requirements of the heater. I do not know all the technical data however testing must have shown a need for the larger piping.
 
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Old 01-16-12, 11:13 AM
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I realize this is an old thread but I'm experiencing something similar. Did switching to the 4" vent pipe solve the problem?
 
 

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