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Old 08-15-2009, 02:39 PM   #1
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brand new Hot water heater won't stay lit

We had a water heater that was leaking water and got the same exact model to replace it, we re-used all the existing vents and gas pipe to reconnect it, when I light it the pilot light will burn for a while but will eventually flicker out, If I turn it the thermostat to on it does light the burner and for 1-2 seconds it looks like it's burning great (small blue flame ring) however after that the flames start moving away from the center until they burn themselves (and the pilot light) out.

with the pilot light on I think I can feel some heat going through the area between the vent line and the water heater but to me it's really acting like it's getting starved for air, is there any possibility that something inside the tank is reducing air flow to much? the vent line is very short into the furnace and the furnace runs just fine.

after it does run if I wait 30 seconds or so I can hear a solenoid trip so it seems like the thermocouple should be good.

It is new but the G.E. warranty on the replacement unit is a joke, they want a plumber on site to use a manometer to measure the gas pressure and then want someone to verify that the ducts (that run through three stories) are clear.

any help would be much appreciated.


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Old 08-15-2009, 05:07 PM   #2
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Flame sensors can be high tech and the ones that depend on the elec. conductivity of a flame may be prone to not seeing a flame when there actually is one.


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Old 08-15-2009, 11:14 PM   #3
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This may sound stupid but are you sure the gas valve is open all the way? sounds like a lack of gas.
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Old 08-16-2009, 06:37 AM   #4
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i'm with plumber jim. it may be something else beyond me but sounds like lack of gas. pure and simple. check any valves you turned on and off to do this project. be very careful here. you could kill or injure yourself in a flash. respect gas. thanks, bb
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Old 08-23-2009, 08:31 PM   #5
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sorry for the late update, unfortunately I don't have an final answer for what it was, after a lot of hassle the G.E. Tech finally came out and tried to blame it on the gas, the gas guy came out and said that was fine, got a replacement of the same unit from home depot and this unit would not keep the pilot light on at all, I switched the thermocouple out with the other new water heater and it worked perfect.

these G.E. water heaters are junk, I had to get parts from 2 brand new in the box units to get one working one , great quality control
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