Help me replace leaking hot water heater(gas)

mtrotApril 10, 2010

I called a reputable local plumber, and he gave me a ballpark figure of $800 to replace it! Can this be right?

My leaking unit is a Rheemglass Fury, model #22V40, 40000btu, with a first hour rating of 68 gallons. The Energyguide sticker says $222. It is at least 8 years old, as it was here when we bought the house.

The heater works just fine, but water has apparently been leaking for some time and gotten down on the hardwood flooring in the area near the heater.

What should I look for in a new water heater and plumber to install it? I imagine any new heater should be as good as this one, although I did read some water heater reviews on Sears web site and some reported problems with the pilot lights going out frequently. I did find 40 gallon gas water heaters for around $400. How much is reasonable for installation?

Thanks much for any help.

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jakethewonderdog

Mtrot:

There has been a problem with the Whirlpool FlameLock water heaters - many of which have been sold by Lowes.

That said, $400 is about right for a 40 gal gas water heater.

You will need to get a few quotes, but I'd suggest that you consider an installation from Lowes/Home Depot.

You will need a pan with a drain under the new heater (should have been one on the old heater) to prevent the problem you have now.

You will also need to decide what to do with the damaged floor.

Just an FYI: Often a "leaking tank" isn't really that at all but instead a leaking valve/fitting on top of the water heater that eventually makes its way down the side of the tank to the floor. Just something to rule out.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 8:48AM
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mtrot

Jake,

Thanks for the info. Yes, I do now see that water comes out of the faucet type valve on top of the water heater. I need to watch the situation further, but I noticed water coming out of that valve at the same time the burner had cut on to heat water. Water does not seem to leak from the valve at all times. I don't know if the valve is the only source of water, though.

Regarding the floor, I wonder if insurance would cover that in any way.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 9:07AM
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live_wire_oak

$700-$800 is going to be the ballpark you'll be in the replace your heater with a mid range gas unit and upgrade to a properly installed drip pan. Might even be a bit more if they need to finagle to route the drip drain to an acceptable drain. Attic installations will run about $75- $100 more.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2010 at 4:53PM
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asolo

FWIW....my insurance (AAA) covered a water heater leak in my slab home some years ago. Covered dry-out/mold-abatement, wall and carpet repair and replacement. Did not cover water heater itself.

Cause of my problem was failed pressure-reducing valve that allowed 127psi street-pressure into the house. That valve was also my responsibility to fix.

Replacing 40-gallon gas water-heater was about $550.00 for everything.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 12:30PM
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brickeyee

Try to determine if the tank is actually leaking, or the Temperature & Pressure (T&P) relief valve is leaking.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2010 at 4:10PM
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