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    New Manual (9 Posts)

  • Tim McElwain Tim McElwain @ 10:32 PM
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    New Manual

    Just completed my latest manual on Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant (FVIR) Water Heaters 30, 40 and 50 gallon. It is a 355 page comprehensive manual on all the different systems used by  various water heater companies. It includes 95 color page illustrations. This is a must have if you want to properly install and service these water heaters. These are not your grandfathers water heaters. Included are the Bradford White ICON system, White Rodgers IntelliVent system along with Honeywell WV 8840 Control and Honeywell WV 8860 Control.

    The cost is $99.95 plus $15.00 Shipping and Handling. Contact me at [email protected] or call 401-437-0557.
  • Tim McElwain Tim McElwain @ 11:49 AM
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    Can not believe the

    two e-mails I received concerning this posting.

    E-mail # 1 We do not service these water heaters as it is cheaper in the long run to remove them and install a wall hung on demand.

    E-mail # 2  Worst thing they ever did to water heaters, anytime I see one it is a new one without FVIR.

    By the way 30, 40 and 50 gallon storage water heaters of any kind do not come with anything but FVIR since 2003 through 2007

    What is the consensus among those posting here on HeatingHelp, do you service and repair these units?
  • Steamhead Steamhead @ 9:56 AM
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    Goes to show once again

    that you can't fix stupid.

    Now back to your question- yes, we'll service a tank-type heater, but if it's older than about 7 years or so we'll tell the owner to look at replacing it.

    We do not push owners toward wall-hung tankless units. In the homes we work in there is often no good, safe place to install a sidewall vent, or a chimney flue that doesn't have something else using it. Plus, sidewall venting adds a lot to the cost of installation. Also, tankless units consume gas at much higher rates than tank-type ones, since they have to heat the water in real time. Running a new gas line adds to the cost, and in some cases the gas meter or even the gas service line from the street would need upgrading.

    There are more-efficient tank-type heaters than the usual landlord-grade ones. We've been using Bradford-White's M4-series units and like them a lot. More recently they came out with the D4 series, which adds a stack damper to reduce standby losses. This one requires an electrical circuit to power it, but that's a lot less expensive to install than making all the changes needed for a tankless heater.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"

    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists

    Oil & Gas Burner Service

    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
  • SWEI SWEI @ 1:54 PM
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    More-efficient tank-type heaters

    Does anyone in this country offer natural draft tank type gas water heaters with a barometric damper?  I'd love to have slightly better answer for existing chimney venting.
  • Tim McElwain Tim McElwain @ 7:20 PM
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    I do not know of any

    storage type water heaters with barometric draft control direct from the manufacturer. I have about a dozen or so that I have changed from draft hoods to barometric because of problems. In particular some on the new FVIR water heaters come with a built in vent restricter which causes high temps at the top of the water heater. By adding the barometric I can balance out draft and overcome some of the high temps.
  • SWEI SWEI @ 11:16 AM
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    Thanks, Tim

    Always looking to see what we can do with those old chimneys.
  • Keith W. Keith W. @ 3:38 PM
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    Low gas pressure

    In my area, the gas pressure (at the street) varies considerably: the new lines are run at 2-5 psi, as I recall, but many old lines are run at around 5" w.c., which means that you can't run most wall-hung on-demand water heaters (or condensing water heaters or boilers, or direct-vent/sealed-combustion units). It's a PITA. There is no way to get an "upgrade", the street pressure is too low. It can be completely different right down the street. This goes for Baltimore as well as DC, in my experience, though I have much less experience in Baltimore. Many manufacturers' require a minimum of 8" w.c. or so.
  • Jean-David Beyer Jean-David Beyer @ 5:14 PM
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    I must be lucky.

    The original gas mains in my neighborhood were installed around 1950. They looked like black steel gas pipe. They were nominally 15 psi, but when tested lately, they were closer to 8 psi. This summer, the gas company had all those pipes upgraded (they were starting to leak too much, for one thing). The old pipes were abandoned and new plastic pipe was installed. In addition to being about an inch bigger diameter, they put 50 psi in those pipes. They may have been 4 inches in diameter.

    A one inch pipe goes to my regulator that puts out 7 inches of pressure that is enough. Well I suppose so, since the 8 psi pressure at the street could do that too. But everyone in my neighborhood is switching from oil to gas, so the demand is up. Also several of my neighbors are installing natural gas powered backup generators.
  • Tim McElwain Tim McElwain @ 7:25 PM
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    The issue with gas pressures tends

    to be in the inner city with older low pressure cast-iron main systems which in the past ran at about 7" to 10" water column pretty consistently. Problems occurred with cold temps and high demand but we still usually had 4" to 5" W.C.

    All these systems need to be upgraded to high pressure lines at around 50 PSI to be able to satisfy the demand that is now being placed on gas systems with all the conversions..
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