View Full Version : hotpoint gas hwt

10-11-2005, 11:35 AM
my neihbor has a new ( 2 months old ) hotpoint 40 gallon gas hot water tank, my question is that with the new FVIR technology does the combustion air get shut off if the flame burns outside of the combustion chamber, his HWT will not light, the pilot is lit but goes out as soon as the main flame comes on. It seems to be starving for combustion air. Any suggestions?

10-11-2005, 02:07 PM
Unless it is in a closet with no source of air, the problem may be with the gas control. This unit should still be under warranty. Call Hotpoint.

10-11-2005, 02:20 PM
Thanks jimbo, it is under warranty the owner wanted to make sure that it was a problem with the HWT before tearing it out and returning for warranty, we did take the screws out of the burner cover and pulled it out about an inch, the burner then works fine, when the burner is put back it dies out immediatly. The HWT is in an open basement, should have lots of combustion air.

10-11-2005, 04:14 PM
Ah, the joys of furnishing your own water heater. Put it in, try it out, take it out, return it, get a new one, install that one, and hope you do not have the same problem. Makes having a plumber furninsh and install it almost worthwhile, doesn't it?

10-11-2005, 07:33 PM
The burner access on an FVIR WH should normally only be removed by a trained technician. Specifically, they are not designed to ever be operated with that door open. Not seeing it, I cannot quite grasp your problem, but something in the safety circuit is not working.

master plumber mark
10-11-2005, 08:15 PM
probably not getting enough air.....

where is the intake for this unit???

around the sides or up from the bottom????

if it is on the bottom it is probably
sucking up lint like a wet vac

who actually makes this unit anyway????

then you got a sister to Whirlpool
and basically they are junk

if it is like the Whirlpool, then
it is just sucking up lint into the
air intake from the bottom

you arent supposed to leave the front lodjed open
because it makes the unit basically just
like the old ones were ....not totally %100 fire safe...

but it works ok that way , dont it???

it just voids the warranty and you arent spposed to do that..

I get the feeling I am going to be seeing a lot of these
units where the fire saftey seal is basically torn off over the
nextfew years...

people are not going to just keep fixing these over and over

I went out on a whirlpool last september to install all new parts
and the guy called me again today for the very same repairs!!!
you just cant keep them clean


go to my web site and look at the pics at the
bottom of the page and see if the air intake isnt like the one
you got....

their is also a link to the instructions on how to clean a
whirlpool unit...

good luck



on another note.....they arent just going to give you
another water heater ... not without a fight....

I would not advise just takeing out that unit without
permission from the hardware store......

they should have a plumber in the area that is suppoosed to
warranty that hotpoint brand....

they should be allowed to look at it first, and attempt
to make repairs---

even if that is 15 days from now....

if they cant repair it, then you are entitled to a new one..

aint it grand??

10-12-2005, 07:13 AM
Hotpoints are made by Rheem.

From the homeowners standpoint, there are 2 issues with buying from HD:

(a) You have to install it yourself. In this case it seems he chose to do that and saved himself a few hundred dollars. Can't hate him for that. He understood that he was shouldering the "labor" portion of the warranty.
(b) It is absolutely TRUE that he can slug that water heater up to the return desk at the depot and they will give him a new one, no questions asked. That's why people shop there.
(c) I still would like to bring up that at 2 months of age, Hotpoint should service this ON-SITE. Call 1-800-GE CARES

10-12-2005, 07:54 AM
Master Plumber Mark - Great Info, as I have one of these heaters and It all makes sense about the flame arrestor. I see that the instructions which I printed from the link mention a Filter accessory kit 6910609 or 6910610. Do you know what these look like? Prior to reading the bulletin I already had started thinking about putting a ring of furnace filter around the base so the intake air gets filtered some. Any other ideas? I am assuming the air comes from the floor below the heater. Many thanks, Dick Wells

10-12-2005, 03:22 PM
I have not specifically seen a Hotpoint ( as opposed to the GE brand,which I am familiar with). For the Rheem and GE brands, one of their "talking points" is that their units are resistant to lint and dust problems. They specifically spec that the units require NO cleaning of the baffles for the life of the unit. Other brands specify some periodic maintenance requirements. The Rheem and GE units sit flush on the floor. All air comes in around the sides.

Does any of this sound familiar to your Hotpoint unit? Is it possible you have an older unit which is not even FVIR? Did you have to remove a lot of screws to access the burner compartment?

10-12-2005, 04:42 PM
The hotpoint I have is less than 2 months old and is a 12 year unit. It sits on legs so it is about 2 inches off the ground and the link seems to show the flame screen in the bottom so maybe it can be cleaned from both above and below. I am thinking I better find out about the add on filter, whatever it is. Thanks for the thoughts, RW

master plumber mark
10-12-2005, 05:26 PM
I cant find a hotpoint, I did find a picture of
one and it did not appear to have a side screen
like the RHEEM units do.......

So I get the feeling its some sort of "new improved" bastard

cheaper unit that Rheem is selling in the hardware stores

The good Rheem unit DOES NOT have a screen

to clean or needs any type of filter change
the air ....it is sucked in from the sides
and goes through an inner burner chamber

the design is ok but I feel that it is overkill
and is almost too safe..

If it ever overheats, it commits
sueside and cant be re-started once that
safety vial is broken.

I guess I am gonna have to go to the HD to see for myself

exactly what new kind of dog doo they are pushing now.....

in my opinion , any unit that needs to have a sceen changed
every so often is a piece of DOG. doo.....
because of lint from the laundry is just
bound to make this a monthly ordeal...


1-800 GE CARES now that is a joke..

the GE is a off shoot of RHEEM and has the air
holes around the sides of the unit just like the RHEEM unit does

but it still is an absolute living HELL to get it serviced

check out this link for a good chuckle


I am curious to see what exactly it is you got

could you please send a digital pic of the unit to me???

maybe open up the front of it and take a pic??

thank you

10-12-2005, 05:46 PM
The heater looks like the one in the link that was in the weil page you posted. They are from Lowes. The air enters through the screen that is mounted in the flat bottom of the heater. I actually looked at the manual and it shows using a pivot mirror to look at the screen from the bottom and says to use a vacuum to suck the lint off of it. Guess I will have to rig up an angle head small tube for my shop vac in order to keep it clean. Seemed like a good idea at the time. RW

master plumber mark
10-12-2005, 07:32 PM
if it is identicle to the the dogs I
got posted on my web site you are in for
years of fun....

The biggest problem is that wehn it gets smothered
and I guess overheats because of not enough air,
that fat chubby thermocoupling (with the reverse threads)
must some how just short out and its $15.00

then the t stat is another 60 and its best just to change
them both out at the same time...

they will e-mail you free parts...in about 3 days...

but it is best to simply find a way to get more
air into the unit

and how you do that is your business.

It amazes me that we could put a man on the
moon in 69 and today you cant even figure out
how to make a decent product to heat water
without screwing it totally up .....

"american water heaters"

10-12-2005, 07:40 PM
Are you sure this is a Hotpoint? I don't know if they are available at Lowes. In this area, Lowes has Whirlpool and Maytag. These units do I think have the air inlet on the bottom, with the screen that clogs. They are also famous for burn-out of a limit switch built into the thermocouple. Check the thermocouple connection on the gas valve. If it is left hand thread, this is what you have.

10-13-2005, 05:02 AM
A thousand pardons..........It is a whirlpool. I think I will try putting an air filter "prefilter" like for my Honeywell air filter around the base. They are cut to fit so It shouldn't be too hard. RW

master plumber mark
10-13-2005, 05:33 AM
Believe it or not, maytags are even worse than

the Whirlpool (american water heaters) brand..

Lowes has discontinued that Maytag line about 3 years ago
around the mid west becauce they were all leaking dogs...

I am not even sure who Maytag has make their water heaters
for them , I think its More flo

all this greif????

10-13-2005, 07:42 AM
They can make a good heater that heats the water properly. In fact they made them for decades. Where the problem comes in is when they have to make a water heater that keeps idiots who, store gasoline next to them or use laquer thinner in the same room, from blowing themselves up.

master plumber mark
10-13-2005, 03:46 PM
honestly , its not the idiots that blow themselves
up that have caused all the problems

its the government trying to protect the
idiots from themselves..

the odds of the old style water heaters
starting a fire in a home were astronomical...

you had a better chance of hitting the power ball lottery
than have a fire from a water heater.

but once the goventment got the hair up their butts
to mandate that they should be safer, it became law

10-19-2005, 09:57 AM
The water heater is being returned to Home Depot and they are providing him with a new one, I told my neighbor to have Home Depots plumbing contractor install this one and then in the future it is all their problem for warranty on site. Home Depot agreed to this and are bringing out a new water heater, exchanging and installing the new one. He is paying the $300 for installation but I think it will be worth it. In the future sometimes it doest pay to try and save a few bucks. Thanks again and be wary, the way this unit draws its combustion air there will be problems keeping it clean.

master plumber mark
10-19-2005, 04:06 PM
just a thought here for you....

after all the troubles, have you considered just getting

an in store credit or your money back????

It sounds like $300 is a little steep for installation,
dont you think?? Usually most LOWES and HD stores
charge around $169.00

Especially when you are still stuck with a lemon --dog style unit....
Have you not considered calling a reputable
plumber in your area and getting a better NAME BRAND unit

like RHEEM or BRADFORD WHITE installed???

Dont you think it might be a good idea to at least
ask for a price for a better one??

10-19-2005, 04:27 PM
Here in the San Diego area HD gets $309 for the install ( PLUS $85 for the permit). The one year in home warranty service is provided by any GE authorized service co. After the first year, warranty is parts only unless you buy the extended warranty. Often, the HD runs promos where on the 12 yr warranty unit, they will extend the in-home time.