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Repoman75 04-13-2005 02:15 PM

New Water Heater, worse pressure
I live in a 2 full bath condo. My water heater which was 19 years old just broke due to a shelf falling on the drain pipe and bursting it. Prior to this accident, the water heater was great. I could use the dishwasher and shower, toilet and shower, even washing machine and shower without losing hot water OR even a decrease in water pressure. Now, I just got my new energy efficient water heater, and if the shower is on and I flush the toilet, the shower pressure cuts in 1/2. What's up with that?? Both water heaters were 40 gallons. Is there anything to check in terms of pipers, or anything that can be done??? Or is the old one just built better?


DGardECU 04-14-2005 09:45 PM

Water Heater Woes
I'm guessing that you new equipment has some water restrictions devices install on puprpose to promote water conservation, or prerhaps just has some smaller i.d. flow passages. Either way, you may be able to remove restrictors, which might be against code, or install larger pipes. Good Luck. Hey, I'm new hear and last night i visted and found great info re:troubledshooting shallow well jet pumps. Can't find thise trheasds tonite. Do you know where I should look? Pardon my poor spelling.

Tomm 04-14-2005 11:10 PM

One possibility is if when you opened the feed line valve to the new heater the stem may have broken away from the gate before it got fully opened. I have changed a lot of water heaters and this is something that I have run across a few times, especially if the valving is cheap. A sure way to determine this would be to check the valve by turning it counter clockwise, if it just continues to turn...the stem is broke. If it stops turning then the gate is all the way open and is still attatched to the stem. Then you need to check for other restrictions, because your system is not right.

Teetorbilt 04-14-2005 11:31 PM

I'm with Tomm. Check the valve. There is not to go wrong when installing a water heater. DGard's input only refers to end use devices like shower heads and faucets, NOT water heaters

Repoman75 04-15-2005 12:20 PM

Ok. I checked the 2 main water valves on either side of the meter. One is now fully open, and the other is broke (just keeps spinning). But it was like that BEFORE with the old heater, so could that really be the problem? Someone else had mentioned the cold water valve into the water heater. For whatever reason, I can't even budge that thing. So it's the same as when the old water heater was in as well.

Do you think it has to do with the restrictions of the new heater? If so, in layman's terms, what can I do about that? Also, since the new water heater was installed by the local utility company (PSE&G), think I should call them to complain and send someone out?

Teetorbilt 04-15-2005 08:49 PM

A broken valve needs to be fixed and all of the parts found.
Gate valves offer the least restricted flow but when they fall apart the pieces can go into any configuration. When the new heater was installed there could have been a backflow situation which caused the broken parts to shift position. When flow is restored, the parts have an opportunity to once again reposition themselves and cause a resistance which could be more or less than the original problem.
I have been replacing everything with ball valves, KISS principal.

pipeguy 04-15-2005 11:30 PM


Originally Posted by Teetorbilt
I have been replacing everything with ball valves, KISS principal.

Is there a residential interior plumbing application, let's say up to 2" in diameter, to which a gate valve is better suited than a full port ball valve?

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