Repair or replace????

Old 11-13-13, 01:38 PM
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Smile Repair or replace????

I have an "iffy" gas fired, 40 gallon, high efficiency HWH. I also have two basic problems with same.

1 I drained this unit a couple of weeks ago and removed a big batch of rust/soil - don't really know which as there is a lot of red clay around here. I drained the tank, alternating off-on with the cold supply, till all was running clear.
Last night I was running a tub full to soak for relaxation, and the "mud" flowed freely.
What did I do wrong to not get all the sediment out????

2 For some reason,this unit has not been able to keep up with demand like it used to. Up until some couple of months ago there was no problem,but recently I've had to raise the temp on the t-stat, and even then if I linger a bit too long in the shower I end up taking an almost totally "hot water" shower.

If this is un-fixable, I'm probably going to get a tankless heater. I was planning to do that when this one gives up the ghost, but I was counting on 4-5 more years out of this one. This one is just a hair under 9 now.

I did have to get a leaking pressure/temp release valve replaced a few days ago and noticed that the probe of that valve was totally coated w/ whatever carbonate type substance is in the water.
That got me to thinking that possibly the heat exchanger tubes inside were coated likewise, and perhaps the heat x-fer had deteriorated to the point that I'm now experiencing inadequate supplies of hot water?

Any and all advice appreciated!!!!! HELP!!!!!
Old 11-13-13, 03:59 PM
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With water like that the last thing you want is a tank less heater.
For a tankless heater to work it need to since flow to turn on.
If the sensor is coated with minerals it just not going to come on.
Sure sounds like you should get the water tested to see if it need to be treated and add a whole house filter to keep out the sediments.
If you check into the total cost to install, buy and service a tankless there just no way to get a pay
There was no reason to totally drain the heater when flushing it.
Once the tanks flushed you need to remove the aerators on the faucets, the shower head and flush out all the lines.
Old 11-14-13, 05:34 AM
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How old is your current heater? If it's more than 10 or 15 years I'd consider replacing it with another tank heater. If it's newer then I would try repeated cleanings to try and remove more sediment. I would also disconnect the water lines where they enter the heater and pull the dip tube. If it has broken off or has holes it can kill the heater's capacity.

Unless the heater has been flushed regularly throughout it's entire life a layer of minerals and other debris accumulates on the bottom making it less and less efficient and less able to heat water. One flushing may get a small bit of the minerals out but if it previously hadn't been done for a while you probably did not get enough of the deposits out to make a significant difference.

I'm with Joe thinking a tankless is not the way to go. In general I'm not a fan of them since almost everyone I know with them ends up cursing them within 10 years as a flow sensor quits or a control board goes bad.
Old 11-14-13, 06:15 AM
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This one is just a hair under 9 now.
I'd replace it with another tank type heater, not a tankless.
Old 11-17-13, 05:29 PM
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Thanks for the input guys; I've decided that I will go with a replacement liked I now have, and be more faithful to maintenance procedures than I was with this one.
Again, thanks for the input.

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