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  • Need some expert advice on GWH

    Hi guys, new to the board and appreciate the help in advance.

    Here is my situation and looking for some professional responses.

    I will be replacing my complete HVAC system in the spring which will also be the time at which I bring everything to code, incld Gas Water Heater venting. However, I believe my GWH is about to die as only the top half of the tank is heating. We did have someone come in for some quoting and they mentioned that probably the bottom elements are gone. Nonetheless, I will be replacing with a larger GWH. (I did try draining/cleaning, but did not resolve)

    So, what I want to do is this. Purchase a new GWH and replace the old one, but I am unsure about the differences in Direct vent, power vent, etc. I was told that due to the location of my GWH & HVAC, that it needs double direct venting (IN/OUT). So my main question is, do I need to buy a specific GWH that can later be used when my HVAC is upgraded and properly vented etc? Or can I just replace with the current type, which is tied into my chimmney and which is fine to be direct vented in the spring?

    PS. the tank will be installed by a friend of a friend who has his gas fitting license etc. So this will save me some money short term.

    thx.

  • #2
    Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

    Originally posted by handymanny View Post
    Hi guys, new to the board and appreciate the help in advance.

    Here is my situation and looking for some professional responses.

    I will be replacing my complete HVAC system in the spring which will also be the time at which I bring everything to code, incld Gas Water Heater venting. However, I believe my GWH is about to die as only the top half of the tank is heating. We did have someone come in for some quoting and they mentioned that probably the bottom elements are gone. Nonetheless, I will be replacing with a larger GWH. (I did try draining/cleaning, but did not resolve)

    So, what I want to do is this. Purchase a new GWH and replace the old one, but I am unsure about the differences in Direct vent, power vent, etc. I was told that due to the location of my GWH & HVAC, that it needs double direct venting (IN/OUT). So my main question is, do I need to buy a specific GWH that can later be used when my HVAC is upgraded and properly vented etc? Or can I just replace with the current type, which is tied into my chimmney and which is fine to be direct vented in the spring?

    PS. the tank will be installed by a friend of a friend who has his gas fitting license etc. So this will save me some money short term.

    thx.
    Just a tip if I'm understanding what GWH stands for...gas water heater. They dont have elements so ever who said its the botom element is wrong. If its gas and your only getting about half the tank off a draw then its probably due to a broken dip tube.

    Gas appliances need combustion air to operate. Make sure you have enough combustion air. We are not allowed to vent anything into an unlined chimney.

    Be sure you get the job inspected by the proper code departments.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

      Originally posted by TheMaster View Post
      Just a tip if I'm understanding what GWH stands for...gas water heater. They dont have elements so ever who said its the botom element is wrong. If its gas and your only getting about half the tank off a draw then its probably due to a broken dip tube.

      Gas appliances need combustion air to operate. Make sure you have enough combustion air. We are not allowed to vent anything into an unlined chimney.

      Be sure you get the job inspected by the proper code departments.
      Wonder if He has one of the disappearing dip tubes.
      [ wrong Chem. Makeup , recall. Check aerators for white plastic pieces }
      I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

        Originally posted by toolaholic View Post
        Wonder if He has one of the disappearing dip tubes.
        [ wrong Chem. Makeup , recall. Check aerators for white plastic pieces }
        Good point to check the aerators.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

          So you have a gas fired water heater where there is insufficient combustable air.Where is this.How big are you planning on going(BTU's)?
          Or do you in fact have electric now?

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

            Its a 25year old 40 gal GWH that I have now, and time to replace. Should have been at least a 50 gal considering the house is 3k sq ft. Although it has been fairly sufficient up until now, and I am going to put in a 50gal.

            I understand it should not be vented into an unlined Chimney, but that will be corrected in the spring when I replace the entire HVAC.

            What I need to know is, if I buy and replace the current GWH based on the current venting conditions. Can it be used as a direct vented GWH when the change my HVAC system in the spring?

            Sorry, I don't completely understand the differences between direct vent, power vent, etc. Maybe someone can better explain?

            I do know that it needs to be double vented based on location in the basement and the fact you need to walk through a bathroom to get to it.

            Which version do I need to get so that when they switch to direct vent I can still use the one I want to buy? Or is this even an option? Maybe I should just wait until spring. Just afraid this one may quit on me soon.

            PS. Sorry I mentioned element, but yes they mentioned possible broken tube. I just could not remember until you mentioned it.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

              I don't know about CA but here in New Jersey you would NOT be allowed to do it. It would NOT pass inspection AND it is dangerous regardless of the inspection requirements.
              ---------------
              Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
              ---------------
              “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
              ---------
              "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
              ---------
              sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

                Originally posted by handymanny View Post
                Its a 25year old 40 gal GWH that I have now, and time to replace. Should have been at least a 50 gal considering the house is 3k sq ft. Although it has been fairly sufficient up until now, and I am going to put in a 50gal.

                I understand it should not be vented into an unlined Chimney, but that will be corrected in the spring when I replace the entire HVAC.

                What I need to know is, if I buy and replace the current GWH based on the current venting conditions. Can it be used as a direct vented GWH when the change my HVAC system in the spring?

                Sorry, I don't completely understand the differences between direct vent, power vent, etc. Maybe someone can better explain?

                I do know that it needs to be double vented based on location in the basement and the fact you need to walk through a bathroom to get to it.

                Which version do I need to get so that when they switch to direct vent I can still use the one I want to buy? Or is this even an option? Maybe I should just wait until spring. Just afraid this one may quit on me soon.

                PS. Sorry I mentioned element, but yes they mentioned possible broken tube. I just could not remember until you mentioned it.
                to be truthfull we need pics of the old WH and room to help under stand what you are asking
                SMELLS LIKE $$$$$$ TO ME

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Need some expert advice on GWH

                  Originally posted by handymanny View Post
                  Its a 25year old 40 gal GWH that I have now, and time to replace. Should have been at least a 50 gal considering the house is 3k sq ft. Although it has been fairly sufficient up until now, and I am going to put in a 50gal.

                  I understand it should not be vented into an unlined Chimney, but that will be corrected in the spring when I replace the entire HVAC.

                  What I need to know is, if I buy and replace the current GWH based on the current venting conditions. Can it be used as a direct vented GWH when the change my HVAC system in the spring?

                  Sorry, I don't completely understand the differences between direct vent, power vent, etc. Maybe someone can better explain?

                  I do know that it needs to be double vented based on location in the basement and the fact you need to walk through a bathroom to get to it.

                  Which version do I need to get so that when they switch to direct vent I can still use the one I want to buy? Or is this even an option? Maybe I should just wait until spring. Just afraid this one may quit on me soon.

                  PS. Sorry I mentioned element, but yes they mentioned possible broken tube. I just could not remember until you mentioned it.
                  Manny,

                  It sounds as though your situation requires you to install some type of power venting water heater with it's own combustion air source. Or, if you want to go electric then you don't have to mess with venting issues. However, recovery is slower, and depending on your utility rates may cost more to operate than gas. However, if you get a Rheem Marathon electric water heater they come with lifetime warranties on the tank. (not electrical parts but those are relatively inexpensive.)
                  Rheem Marathon heaters are not inexpensive.

                  Just tossing out ideas.
                  Time flies like an arrow.

                  Fruit flies like a banana.

                  Comment

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