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Thread: Water Heater / Plumbing question

  1. #1
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    Water Heater / Plumbing question

    Not too long ago I replaced the water heater in our house. A day or two after I put the new one in we had a VERY noticeable drop in water pressure on the hot water side. The water is plenty hot and there is plenty of it - there is just hardly any pressure. I've checked everything I know to check, found no leaks, all the settings look good - I just dunno.

    Anybody have any thoughts before I call a plumber?
    If you have a pulse you have a purpose...

  2. #2
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    Kink in one of the flex water lines? Is the gate/valve on the cold water/inlet valve fully open?

    That's all I can think of off the top of my head for now.
    Thanks, Mark.

    Custom Bonehead.

    My diet is working good. I'm down to needing just one chair now.

    "Just think how stupid the average person is, and then realize that half of them are even stupider!" --George Carlin

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rios View Post
    Kink in one of the flex water lines?
    Nope

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rios View Post
    Is the gate/valve on the cold water/inlet valve fully open?
    Yep
    If you have a pulse you have a purpose...

  4. #4
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    No real answers either, but tell us the make and model of the water heater, what else was installed? Who did the install?

    Is there one of them pressure balancer things too?

    You know the thing that keeps you from getting scalded in the shower when someone flushes the toilet..........?

    Tank system, right? Is the inlet pipe the right size? Some heaters need a 3/4" inlet, some houses have 1/2".......?

    All the valves are the right way round, with the arrow pointing in the direction of water flow?

    Sorry, that is all I got off the top of MY head
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  5. #5
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    Trouble Shooting Tips.

    Mark, to determine whether the problem is in the inlet piping or the outlet piping from the water heater, connect a garden hose to the water heater's tank drain and run it to a sink drain or outside and have someone turn the drain valve on.

    Possibility 1.
    If the pressure is "good" from the hose, then you know that something is either partially blocking the outlet of the heater, OR something loose got pushed into the outlet line, (hopefully not in the outlet line because it could be ANYWHERE in that line and hard to find), but could maybe be blown back out with air pressure applied through a hot water faucett if the tank outlet was disconnected from the line. If the problem is inside the heater on the outlet, then something is loose inside the heater and you might or might not be able to blow it out through the drain valve and would probably need to exchange the heater for a new one.

    Possibility 2.
    If the pressure is "not" good from the hose, then the problem is either in the inlet line or internally in that line inside the heater. You could disconnect the inlet line from the heater and use air pressure through the tank drain valve to try to blow the obstruction back out of the heater or inlet line. If you cannot clear the blockage, then an exchange heater is in order.

    Good Luck.
    Last edited by Norman Hitt; 11-28-2007 at 10:03 AM.

  6. #6
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    Mark...I recently did some plumbing for a bath remodel. After some extensive work the upstairs bath and the kitchen sink hot pressure was very low. Spent a day trying everything I could think of...besides a complete redo. Then...I just happened to take off the faucet filter on the kitchen faucet and bingo...I had loosened up some pipe crude and it was blocking it enough to slow down the flow. My guess is you've done the same and there is a blockage somewhere.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the questions, Stu... I did the install - I'm no plumber, but this is the third one I've changed out and the first time I've had any trouble. I'll have to research your other questions for answers.

    Norman, I've already hooked up the hose to the drain and ran quite a bit of water thru it - plenty of pressure going that route.

    Norman/Glenn - I suspect this may be the problem. Mainly because for the first day or two everything seemed fine. Then all the sudden - no pressure. Sounds like I may need to unhook the line and try to blow back thru the faucett.

    Thanks guys - I'll post an update on this later.
    If you have a pulse you have a purpose...

  8. #8
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    Mark I had something of a similar poblem happen in my house. I had to tear my tap assembly apart to find that some calcium build up had broken free and had gotten jamed in the tap assembly and shower head. I scratched my head for hrs over it before I found it.

  9. #9
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    Thanks Drew... but the low pressure is at every faucett and both shower heads. So I'm thinkin' if something is obstructing the pipe it is between the water heater and the first faucett. Hopefully a little air pressure will resolve.
    If you have a pulse you have a purpose...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Cothren View Post
    ............ Stu... I did the install - I'm no plumber, but this is the third one I've changed out and the first time I've had any trouble. I'll have to research your other questions for answers..........
    Just so you know Mark, I was not inferring anything by asking if you installed it. I agree that hot water tanks are certainly within most home DIYers, just if someone else DID install it, you would be out of the loop on what exactly was installed, and you might be unaware of some new valve or something.

    Good luck trouble shooting plumbing is ALMOST as bad a trouble shooting faulty wiring on an old truck
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

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