Electric WH leak


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Old 11-07-13, 01:21 PM
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Electric WH leak

A 4 year old 55 gal Kenmore just started leaking around the upper element. Pretty bad too, dumped quite a bit of water and even now, with the tank drained, I can hear air hissing out of it. The warranty specifically says that for 9 years from the date of purchase Sears will "supply a free water heater for one that develops a leak" yet, when I call the warranty department, they gave me a song and dance about this being applicable only to a tank leak. Now a tech is coming over tomorrow to determine exactly what failed and that's fine, I just don't want the guy to fix something I can easily do myself, like a new element and gasket. Or charge me for a service call when he tells me I'm not eligible for replacement and I send him on his way.. Anyone have an experience similar to this? What's my line of action?

Thank you
 
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Old 11-07-13, 01:27 PM
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Hate to say this, but read your warranty. If the leak is the gasket or the element itself, your going to be out of pocket for a service call. Take a really good look at where the leak is, it may be a simple fix for the DIY.
 
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Old 11-07-13, 02:56 PM
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The warranty says exactly what I quoted. The "tank only" bit was given verbally over the phone.. To me it looks like the tank is shot because I see rust above the element on the welded pipe nipple. What bothers me is the way Sears sets up a service call.. given what the warranty states, there should be an initial evaluation by a tech at no charge. Then, if it isn't a warranty issue, you should have the option of fixing it yourself or telling a tech to do it.
 
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Old 11-07-13, 03:25 PM
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You should have a parts and tank warranty... Typically its 6 yrs parts 6 yr tank and 1 yr labor.

With yrs probably a 9 yr parts too... unfortunaltly labors not included..

You may get away with no service call if you just tell the person to leave... You can have then drop a new tank for you but I think they need to take the old one..

Will they charge you to remove it? IDK..

But wait until you see what they will charge for labor to install the new one.. It will be close to the heater price itself I am sure...

Ive done it... The service people/company need to make their money back somehow and minimize loses......
 
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Old 11-07-13, 03:26 PM
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I wonder how long you had to wait for the repair people... days?
 
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Old 11-07-13, 03:51 PM
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I called today, appointment is tomorrow. Hope someone shows up as I need to take a day off.

I just want a new appliance. I'll dispose, pick up and install myself.

4 years is a joke, I had a bottom of the line Bradford White before and it lasted 8 years.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 08:09 AM
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If the service tech removes the element and finds a manufacruring defect in the sealing surface, you may get a new unit, it depends on the wording of the warranty. If he finds a bad gasket at the element, you'll probably owe for a service call. I would have removed the element and checked it myself before calling for a service tech to come out.

If you were satsified with Bradford-White, why did you go to Sears for this water heater? BTW, Sears does not manufacture water heaters.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 08:21 AM
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Interesting, I think I found your warranty online.

6 - YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY ON WATER HEATERFor six years from the date of purchase, if this water heater is installed and operated in a single-family home in
accordance with the owner’s manual instructions and all local applicable plumbing codes, Sears will:
1. Supply free water heater parts for those that are defective in material or workmanship.

2. Supply a free water heater for one that develops a leak.

For the second through sixth year from the purchase date, you must pay the labor cost for installation of parts or water
heater.

For commercial, institutional, industrial or residential use by two or more families, the above limited warranty is only for
two years. During the second year you must pay the labor cost for parts or water heater installation.
1-YEAR EXCLUSIVE KENMORE LABOR WARRANTY
For the first year from the date of purchase, Sears will, free of charge, supply and install new water heater parts for
defective ones or a new water heater for one that develops a leak.
WARRANTY SERVICE
To obtain warranty service, call 1-800-4-MY-HOME® (1-800-469-4663).
This warranty applies only while this product is in use in the United States.
This warranty gives you specific legal rights, and you may also have other rights which vary from state to state.
http://download.sears.com/own/spin_prod_253204101.pdf

Considering the actual warranty wording, you may be able to get a new unit, but labor charges will probably still apply.

Mike, what do you think?
 
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Old 11-08-13, 09:08 AM
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Labor? As in coming out to confirm that I am eligible for a new unit? I wish them luck trying to get me to pay for that.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 12:43 PM
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Labor? As in coming out to confirm that I am eligible for a new unit? I wish them luck trying to get me to pay for that.
I don't see anything in the warranty about free service calls after the first year. It looks to me like you'd have to take the defective unit back to Sears yourself to get a free replacement with no service call charges.

I called today, appointment is tomorrow.
From what you stated earlier, it sounded like you called them and asked them to send a service truck out to your house.
 
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Old 11-13-13, 05:37 AM
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Good advice, Joe. Thanks.

And for anybody else who has a Kenmore WH with a leaking tank still covered by the warranty - if you can remove it yourself, don't waste your time calling the warranty department. They will send a service guy over to confirm what you already know and charge you for the call. Just drain and rip the old one out, throw it in a trailer or a truck and take it straight to Sears (preferrably with the original receipt). It may take a few hours but you will get a new one.
 
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Old 11-14-13, 06:00 AM
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So....should I asume the service guys came, confirmed the leak and charged you for the service call? OR......you removed the unit yourself and took it to Sears for a free replacement?
 
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Old 11-16-13, 08:44 AM
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I went with the second option . As it turned out, even if the service tech had come, they would still want the bad unit returned to the store. Suited me just fine, I didn't have think of how I would dispose of it.
 
 

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