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Old 01-05-2010, 03:43 PM   #1
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


Hello everyone, new here and new to home ownership. We have a house that was built in 1987, it's 3 bed 1.5 baths. The hot water heater is a GE SmartWater PE40M09AAH 40 Gallon heater that I believe is only about 8 years old.

We notice the hot water seems to work great everywhere except the shower. It seems to run out very very quickly, 5-7 minutes into a shower before you are reaching for the knob to jack the hot water up a little. We're lucky if we can get about 15 minutes of hot water total before the hot is on all the way and its still getting colder or is completely gone.

We don't have any previous home ownership experience so we've never had to fix anything like this and I'm wondering if there's things I can try myself. I'm very mechanically inclined guy so I don't have a problem at least trying something DIY style before calling a plumber.

Thanks for any help & suggestions you can give!

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Old 01-05-2010, 05:01 PM   #2
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


Try a water saving showerhead. Less gallons per minute = more minutes of hot water

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Old 01-05-2010, 05:34 PM   #3
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


yeah, our shower head is already low flow. we put that in when we moved in.
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Old 01-05-2010, 05:39 PM   #4
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


What is the WH Temp set to ?
Gas, propane or electric ?
Soeone may have turned it down to save$$
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Old 01-05-2010, 05:51 PM   #5
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


It's also possible the bottom element in the water heater is out and you only have half a tank heating.
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Old 01-05-2010, 05:52 PM   #6
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


If google is right, this is an electric water heater. Sounds like one of your elements is likely no good. I believe the lower is usually the one that goes first (someone will confirm).
Try here for specific info:
http://www.bobvila.com/HowTo_Library...ers-F2171.html
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Old 01-06-2010, 08:59 PM   #7
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


I would not put any money into an eight year old tank, especially a GE. After eight years a tank is usually close to borrowed time. My suggestion is to install a new Bradford-White 50 gallon tank. If you're inclined to think of tankless, talk to a licenced plumber about options. Good luck!

Quote:
Originally Posted by agentphish View Post
Hello everyone, new here and new to home ownership. We have a house that was built in 1987, it's 3 bed 1.5 baths. The hot water heater is a GE SmartWater PE40M09AAH 40 Gallon heater that I believe is only about 8 years old.

We notice the hot water seems to work great everywhere except the shower. It seems to run out very very quickly, 5-7 minutes into a shower before you are reaching for the knob to jack the hot water up a little. We're lucky if we can get about 15 minutes of hot water total before the hot is on all the way and its still getting colder or is completely gone.

We don't have any previous home ownership experience so we've never had to fix anything like this and I'm wondering if there's things I can try myself. I'm very mechanically inclined guy so I don't have a problem at least trying something DIY style before calling a plumber.

Thanks for any help & suggestions you can give!
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Old 01-06-2010, 09:20 PM   #8
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


I had the same problem and installed a tankless water heater, I am not sure if it is your budget or not. Works great going on three years.
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:22 AM   #9
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New Home to us...Hot Water runs out quick.


I have a tankless heater and it works fine for the shower, but I had issues with it when we used it for the kitchen. Installed a conventional electric for the kitchen and it works much better.

It sounds like the bottom element might be bad. They're pretty cheap.

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