Please help: water and GAS leak from water heater

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    • #278247
      Nancy Lange

      Yesterday there was water (believe it was cold water)running out, with sound of running brook, toward the back side of the water heater. We were getting good hot water. They all could not understand why there wasn’t more water in the garage; all wanted to replace the tank and a few more things; two gave the reason that the tank is just too old (13 yrs), one said there must be a crack in the fiberglass inside; they gave conflicting info on the measurement of the tank that would fit, and bad-mouthed each other’s company. One, the first technician, claims the second one blew out and shut off the pilot since it was on and giving us hot water when he was here, and came back a second time to re-light it for us. He had to take off the thermostat because something was flooded when the pilot, the gas and the water were shut off, and succeeded in relighting it, and was planning on coming back to replace it this morning. The thing is the water STOPPED running out! However, a nut on the thermostat was stipped, and thus had a GAS LEAK! PG&E came tonight, and fortunately was able to tighten the nut just enough to stop the gas leak. What’s going on? What caused the water to run out, and why did it stop? Is it the dip line? What do I do at this point? Will I be able to find a techinician that would be willing to repair it if it is all it needs? Will I be able to do it myself safely? Thank you in advance.

    • #298098
      Selgas
      Participant

      Would help immensly if you were to provide us with the make and model of the water heater concerned – we are not all mind readers ya know.



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

    • #298099
      Selgas
      Participant

      MMMMMMMMMMMM firstly let us condsider a couple of points here.
      I am assuming correctly or incorrectly that the Rheem unit you have is a full mains pressure unit and is approx 13 years old that has a water leak somewhere.
      I would check the following points before going any further.
      1. Is the anode connection on the top of the cylinder (sometimes under the top cover) leaking?
      2. Is the TPR Valve on the top or the side at the top of the cylinder leaking – perhaps through it’s vacume break or relief?
      3. Is the connection at the cold water inlet weeping?
      4. Is water leaking from the gas thermostat control valve where it screws into the cylinder?
      5. Is the flue flashing leaking (after rain) and running down the inside of the flue dripping onto the burner assembly under the water heater?

      If neither of the above prove to be the case then it is very likely the cylinder itself has developed a leak from somewhere inside itself and there is no other option available other than to replace the whole cylinder.
      Just to add some more detail for you a Rheem Gas water heater does not have a dip tube at all.

      Hope this data assists you.



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

    • #298100
      bozo
      Participant

      Peter,the Rheem heaters I put in have dip tubes.Care to comment on that? Thanks

    • #298101
      Robert Stephen Morton
      Participant

      Ok boys & girls. The Model & make of the Rheem HWS indicates to me that it is not an Australian model – possibly a Yank HWS.
      I believe for Australian situations mr Peter the sheep loving gasfitter is absolutely correct.
      I have not even fathomed out how the yank plumbers get hot water out of the end of a pipe yet so I wouldn’t comment on the post other than to say that Fibreglass isnt used in Australia, Glass lined Hws is porcelain lined – hence glass. – if the sacrificial anode is compromised then the glass lined cylinder has a reduced life.
      13 years seems to be a very good life for a HWS if the anode is U/S.
      Bob

    • #298102
      Selgas
      Participant

      Robert the skippy luvin Auzzie, hahahaha in USA they don’t use fibreglass in the cylinders either but they have used it there for insulation bewteen the case and the cylinder, so I can’t figure that one out except to say I reckon they meant to say Vitreous enamel or glass lining.

      Either way my response remains the same for now.



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

    • #298103
      Selgas
      Participant

      Bozo

      Can only comment that the Rheem cylinders we gat here are mostly made here in good old Kiwiland or in Auzzie and do not have dip tubes so to speak.
      In saying that there are cylinders imported here under the trade name of Ruud or is that Rudd, anyways they have top connections for inlet and outlet and DO have diptubes. These cylinders are imported I beleive from NC in the good old US of A, maybe they are known over there as Rheem??
      Anyways I hope this comment assists in some way.
      Cheers for now



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

    • #298104
      sc
      Participant

      I think you may be onto something. The “leak” did happen when and after the rain. Would the leak sounding more like a running brook, and the fact that it did stop, indicate it may be the flu flashing? I know what the flu is, but what is a flu flashing? And what needs to be done before the next rain? Thank you very much for your help. By the way, this is a water heater in the U.S..

    • #298105
      bozo
      Participant

      The flue flashing is the part that fits around the pipe going out the roof.Caulk it or re- tar it as needed.

      » This message has been edited by bozo on 20 January 2003

    • #298106
      sc
      Participant

      Thank you for your help. One last question – Do I cauk the inside from the garage, or retar from the roof side, or both? Thank you all. I am grateful for MasterPlumbers.com

    • #298107
      Selgas
      Participant

      Reseal it from the outside (weather side) of wherever the penetration goes through whatever roof and you will be fine, if it goes through two roofs then seal both again to be sure.
      Cheers



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

    • #298108
      sc
      Participant

      Thank you! I will seal around the flu flask. I don’t understand why the rain water didn’t go into the heater furnace since the water heater and the furnace are sharing the same flu. I am glad it isn’t !

    • #298109
      Selgas
      Participant

      First time I ever knew that you had two different appliances sharing the same common flue – not a good idea at all but down here that kinda stuff would not pass the inspections – still – you are in the US of A huh and we cannot figure out yet how you can get ater to run out of your pipes that way things are done there – so what would we know huh?
      Cheers



      Selgas Services Ltd
      Craftsman Gasfitters, Plumbers, Electrical Service Technicians

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