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Old 05-07-2013, 04:55 AM   #1
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GE water heater failure


Arggggh woke up to a cold shower this morning. Ge SG50T12AVG00 heater with White Rodgers 37C73U837 gas valve. No pilot and certain there's gas available. I hate to just start replacing stuff. Any suggestions or experience in the crowd?
The heater is under two years old and has been fine until now.
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Old 05-07-2013, 05:29 AM   #2
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GE water heater failure


did you try relighting it if it doesn't hold the pilot when you release the valve from push down the thermocouple might be shot.. easy change out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDvo4yJ1OdE
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Old 05-07-2013, 05:49 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by biggles
did you try relighting it if it doesn't hold the pilot when you release the valve from push down the thermocouple might be shot.. easy change out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDvo4yJ1OdE
Will not relight at all.
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Old 05-07-2013, 06:22 AM   #4
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Does this water heater have a sealed hatch down below with a glass window to see the pilot light?

If you wait several hours and then try to relight the pilot, does it stay on at least for a few minutes after you let go of the red button but the burner won't keep running?

You could have had an air intake damper trip. This usually needs a serviceman to fix although some homeowners have succeeded in jury rigging a fix.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:38 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by AllanJ
Does this water heater have a sealed hatch down below with a glass window to see the pilot light?

If you wait several hours and then try to relight the pilot, does it stay on at least for a few minutes after you let go of the red button but the burner won't keep running?

You could have had an air intake damper trip. This usually needs a serviceman to fix although some homeowners have succeeded in jury rigging a fix.
Well, I pulled the burner out and checked for clear passages to pilot and main by just blowing through both pipes. Tested the igniter and thermocouple output with a torch and fluke. All seems ok. Tested the gas valve by just pushing the pilot valve without anything connected, and got flow of gas. Slapped it all back together and VOILA, pilot lit. Pilot stayed lit. Main burner lit, stayed lit. Hot water is building and so far, ten minutes, burner still going strong.
Is it possible the gas valve has to be depressurized before restart in some case of shutdown?
I did turn the gas off while I disassembled the burner.
I didn't see any over temp device connected anywhere but I suppose it is in the tstat portion of the main body of the valve and unseen or protected against bypass (for damn good reason!)
I guess all I can do is monitor it closely for now.
Seems like I have good airflow and exhaust piping too.
The wife has been here and does not remember any gas going out but then again, the water heater is the only gas device we have that would need a manual restrike.

Things that make you go hmmm!

Thanks for all the help guys and girls.
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:05 AM   #6
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GE water heater failure


Glad you have hot water back. I'm frankly surprised that such a new heater doesn't have electronic ignition instead of a pilot light.
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Old 05-07-2013, 06:13 PM   #7
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GE water heater failure


You should clean your burner assembly at least once a year. You should also trip off your temperature and pressure relief valve to make sure it is not blocked once a year. You should replace it every three years. You should also replace your Anode every three years. If you replace the anode you will not need to purchase a new tank. You also should drain out the crud from the bottom at least once a year....
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Ghostmaker View Post
You should clean your burner assembly at least once a year. You should also trip off your temperature and pressure relief valve to make sure it is not blocked once a year. You should replace it every three years. You should also replace your Anode every three years. If you replace the anode you will not need to purchase a new tank. You also should drain out the crud from the bottom at least once a year....
and don't forget to brush your teeth before bedtime
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:40 PM   #9
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GE water heater failure


Glad to hears your up and runing, keep an eye on it may be the begining of a problem with the magnetic gas valve inside the control. if its under warranty Contact GE they may send you out a new unit (control) before it goes down again.
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