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Old 12-20-2018, 10:06 PM   #1
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New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Two days ago I had a new water heater installed. It's an AO Smith.

However, I'm only getting hot water for a minute or so and then the water turns cold. Then after an hour and I turn on the hot water tap, the same thing happens. The hot water comes on then it turns cold after a minute.

The plumber cannot figure out what's wrong.

Below are some photos.
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New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-water.heater5.jpg   New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-water.heater1.jpg  
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Old 12-20-2018, 10:32 PM   #2
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Smart money is bad dip tube.
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Old 12-20-2018, 10:36 PM   #3
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


LawnGuy,

We have confirmed that the hot and cold are not reversed on the water heater.

We have also run the hot water till it turned cold then went to the basement and touched the hot pipe to see whether it was hot or cold. The pipe was hot. If the pipe was cold this supposedly means that the heater's dip stick is broken which would cause the problem I'm having.
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Old 12-20-2018, 10:53 PM   #4
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


My previous water heater was really old. It was installed around 1967. This thing was amazing. The only reason I replaced it is that its shutoff began leaking and it looked too fragile to fix.

I'm attaching some photos.
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New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-water.heater.info.jpg   New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-water.heater.jpg  

Last edited by stripedbass; 12-20-2018 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 12-21-2018, 08:58 AM   #5
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Does this happen at any faucet? Something else to try if you have not fixed the problem yet. Run a test rather than a full shower. When the water turns cold, run down to the basement and feel the hot outlet pipe of the heater. This latter could rule out an antiscald assembly up in a shower valve (or sold separately) malfunctioning and mixing in too much cold water.

Also the washing machine hookup should be turned off at the wall when not in use, which will prevent short circuiting of hot and cold water and also all sinks and other showers should be turned off using their regular faucets and not a sprayer hose shutoff.

(OT)
Allcraft? 1967? The apartment I grew up in (in the 1950's in Cambridge, MA) had an Allcraft with a copper tank (which replaced what I think was an INCO nickel tank). Such a tank will last a very long time.
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Old 12-21-2018, 09:00 AM   #6
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Quote:
Originally Posted by stripedbass View Post
Two days ago I had a new water heater installed. It's an AO Smith.

However, I'm only getting hot water for a minute or so and then the water turns cold. Then after an hour and I turn on the hot water tap, the same thing happens. The hot water comes on then it turns cold after a minute.

The plumber cannot figure out what's wrong.

Below are some photos.

Although rare, sometimes you can get one dead on arrival for some reason. It's a brand new install, if it doesn't work properly, the plumber should replace it with another one. Just my opinion.
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Old 12-21-2018, 09:46 AM   #7
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Unlike the past 3 days, today I did not get hot water for even a minute. The water is just cold.
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Old 12-21-2018, 09:50 AM   #8
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Hi Allan,

I had already tried this test. The hot pipe was hot when the water turned cold (someone had suggested the test to me). But thanks for trying to help me!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post
Run a test rather than a full shower. When the water turns cold, run down to the basement and feel the hot outlet pipe of the heater. This latter could rule out an antiscald assembly up in a shower valve (or sold separately) malfunctioning and mixing in too much cold water.
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Old 12-21-2018, 09:56 AM   #9
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Obviously , you do not have any hot recirculating system involved.... or I'm sure you would have mentioned that.

Does this happen at other faucets through out the home.????

Maybe a strange coincidence with a bad shower anti-scald... I don't really know how they work... but perhaps the new water heater is set to deliver a higher temp than the old, and when it hits your anti-scald shower valve, that shower valve is acting strangly.
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Last edited by MTN REMODEL LLC; 12-21-2018 at 10:00 AM.
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Old 12-21-2018, 10:13 AM   #10
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Maybe I missed it, but Allan asked "Does this happen at any faucet?" Is this just a problem at the shower?

If it is happening at all faucets then (as suggested) look for an anti scald device that can mix cold water into the hot.

I assume no other plumbing changes were made when water heater was installed?

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Old 12-21-2018, 06:31 PM   #11
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Do you have single handle moen faucets? A bad O ring on the cartrige will allow pulling cold water into the hot water.
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:46 PM   #12
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Hi Allan,

To your other points:

1) Yes, the problem with not getting steady hot water happens with all my faucets. I only have 2 faucets at the moment (kitchen and shower). My bath sink is disconnected at the moment (I need to install a new undermount sink bowl). I'm attaching photos of my faucets in case they are a factor.

2) My washing machine is always turned off when I'm not using it. And it does not have a switch on the wall. The only power switch is on the washing machine itself.

3) Yes, those Allcrafts are real beauties.

I'm in a 12-unit condo building. When I bought my condo in 2004, the home inspector told me that my Allcraft could last a week or another 10 years. The only reason I replaced it is because its shutoff was leaking and it seemed too fragile to fix. Now I'm kind of regretting it. We could have just turned the building's main shutoff off and replaced the water heater's shutoff. On well...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post
Does this happen at any faucet?......

Also the washing machine hookup should be turned off at the wall when not in use, which will prevent short circuiting of hot and cold water and also all sinks and other showers should be turned off using their regular faucets and not a sprayer hose shutoff.

(OT)
Allcraft? 1967? The apartment I grew up in (in the 1950's in Cambridge, MA) had an Allcraft with a copper tank (which replaced what I think was an INCO nickel tank). Such a tank will last a very long time.
Attached Thumbnails
New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-faucet.kitchen.jpg   New water heater only sending hot water for a short while-faucet.shower.jpg  
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:49 PM   #13
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


Today I'm getting hot water which seems to last a bit longer before it runs out the cold comes in.

The plumber has not been able to swing by place. Says he's really busy but will try his best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stripedbass View Post
Unlike the past 3 days, today I did not get hot water for even a minute. The water is just cold.
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:51 PM   #14
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


jmon,

We'll see what happens. I hope the plumber, if he cannot fix the problem, will do the right thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmon View Post
Although rare, sometimes you can get one dead on arrival for some reason. It's a brand new install, if it doesn't work properly, the plumber should replace it with another one. Just my opinion.
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:54 PM   #15
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Re: New water heater only sending hot water for a short while


MTN,

I don't think I have a hot recirculating system. I hope my faucet photos give you an idea of what I have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MTN REMODEL LLC View Post
Obviously , you do not have any hot recirculating system involved.... or I'm sure you would have mentioned that.

Does this happen at other faucets through out the home.????

Maybe a strange coincidence with a bad shower anti-scald... I don't really know how they work... but perhaps the new water heater is set to deliver a higher temp than the old, and when it hits your anti-scald shower valve, that shower valve is acting strangly.
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