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Thread: Whirlpool Flame Lock water heaters, reviews, troubleshooting, repair and support.

  1. #601
    DIY Junior Member klingon's Avatar
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    Got rid of it right away. You will have major problems and headaches and the manufacturer will refuse to help except to send more parts which will only work for a couple of months at a time.

  2. #602
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Default Terry>>>>the party is over

    Terry, thought I would pass this information on to everyone
    about the new policies that Whirlpool has just implemented..in the last few months..

    I am getting calls from all over the USA stating that Whirlpool will
    not send out free parts any longer to the older heaters...
    THE RECALL PERIOD IS OVER on that older flame lock heater and
    they are telling everyone to pound rocks up their butts ...
    They will send new parts but at the low low price of about $$179.00 plus shipping..
    so most folks I talk to see the writeing on the wall and just install a better brand

    Basically the free-bees are over now and their whole tone on the phone has gone to one of acting like they care to totally snotty and could care less....

    their newer heaters 2006--2010 are still giving them fits but they are not
    willing to help much more than sending one set of parts... and now they are trying to place the blame on bad gas, bad ventilation ect....


    ..



  3. #603
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    Terry, thought I would pass this information on to everyone
    about the new policies that Whirlpool has just implemented..in the last few months..

    I am getting calls from all over the USA stating that Whirlpool will
    not send out free parts any longer to the older heaters...
    THE RECALL PERIOD IS OVER on that older flame lock heater and
    they are telling everyone to pound rocks up their butts ...
    They will send new parts but at the low low price of about $$179.00 plus shipping..
    so most folks I talk to see the writeing on the wall and just install a better brand

    Basically the free-bees are over now and their whole tone on the phone has gone to one of acting like they care to totally snotty and could care less....

    their newer heaters 2006--2010 are still giving them fits but they are not
    willing to help much more than sending one set of parts... and now they are trying to place the blame on bad gas, bad ventilation ect....


    ..




    That does Suck a Vacuum.


    I wonder if Sears is still honoring the recall ?
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

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  4. #604
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonL View Post
    That does Suck a Vacuum.


    I wonder if Sears is still honoring the recall ?

    That is a very good question.. their are plenty of sears complaints on the
    internet too
    http://baheyeldin.com/technology-in-...er-heater.html
    Sears and Whirlpool belong to the same group and I have
    heard that in some parts of the country a Sears guy will come out
    and service the Whirlpool heater.....

    Of course that is if you want to wait about a week
    and take a full day off work to meet their service schedule

    they know that both heaters are
    peices of junk and cannot afford to send repairman all over the
    place for free..... It apprears that the tactic used now is
    to run complaints through a guantlet in the hopes that the customer will give up


    #1 increase the phone waiting times to about a 45 minutes, then
    mis-direct them with the first call for service... having them experiment
    themselves by calling the gas company first, ect... I have also heard of a
    lot of accidental hang ups while waiting on the phone...

    #2 it appears they hope that the the customer will not wait a week for service or having to find their own plumber to service the heater for Sears or Whirlpooll

    #3 pay a few hundred dollars for parts to be shipped out in about a week, then fork over about $200 to pay a plumber up front and hope to get re-imbursed by
    Whirlpool or Sears later down the road.. that could take 6 months

    I can usually fix a Sears heater with repair parts from A>O>Smith.
    They are interchangeable.... But I dont and will not warranty the
    materials and its all C>O>D ... I cannot even guarantee how long
    the repairs will last....

    Only a very stubborn few people will hang on line for an hour, or call back. and start over after they have been misdirected a few times by the operator...

    Most folks finally just give up and go away ...the only ones that hang on are the heaters that are only a few years old...

    I usually try to tell the folks with a heater over 6 years old just to walk away and buy a better brand....



  5. #605
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    That is a very good question.. their are plenty of sears complaints on the
    internet too
    http://baheyeldin.com/technology-in-...er-heater.html
    Sears and Whirlpool belong to the same group and I have
    heard that in some parts of the country a Sears guy will come out
    and service the Whirlpool heater.....

    Of course that is if you want to wait about a week
    and take a full day off work to meet their service schedule

    they know that both heaters are
    peices of junk and cannot afford to send repairman all over the
    place for free..... It apprears that the tactic used now is
    to run complaints through a guantlet in the hopes that the customer will give up


    #1 increase the phone waiting times to about a 45 minutes, then
    mis-direct them with the first call for service... having them experiment
    themselves by calling the gas company first, ect... I have also heard of a
    lot of accidental hang ups while waiting on the phone...

    #2 it appears they hope that the the customer will not wait a week for service or having to find their own plumber to service the heater for Sears or Whirlpooll

    #3 pay a few hundred dollars for parts to be shipped out in about a week, then fork over about $200 to pay a plumber up front and hope to get re-imbursed by
    Whirlpool or Sears later down the road.. that could take 6 months

    I can usually fix a Sears heater with repair parts from A>O>Smith.
    They are interchangeable.... But I dont and will not warranty the
    materials and its all C>O>D ... I cannot even guarantee how long
    the repairs will last....

    Only a very stubborn few people will hang on line for an hour, or call back. and start over after they have been misdirected a few times by the operator...

    Most folks finally just give up and go away ...the only ones that hang on are the heaters that are only a few years old...

    I usually try to tell the folks with a heater over 6 years old just to walk away and buy a better brand....




    I guess Sears has really gone down hill over the years.

    When I worked there I could do whatever it took to make a customer happy.

    That included Replacement of a Lemon, using another model.

    And Technicians had a book that lists problem units, and recalled parts.


    I think some of those post, in the link you provided was a bit over the hill. But fun reading, Thanks.

    You don't call someone trying to help you a dumb ass, even if they are, If you expect good service at a later date.

    I would call the Sears Service Manager, and ask politely, If he could help fix the problem.

    Most likely this falls under the Lemon Law.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnuso...s_Warranty_Act


    What a mess.
    Last edited by DonL; 09-16-2013 at 06:27 AM.
    Theory only works perfect in a vacuum.

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  6. #606
    DIY Junior Member bill242's Avatar
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    Question Cardboard Boxes are a major source of lint contamination

    While it may be covered somewhere I failed to see any mention of steps taken to minimize the "lint problem" at its source.
    I am a retired refrigeration tech who has had to deal with refrigeration condensors plugged with various forms of debris including lint. My first exposure to a common cause was dealing with an old style beer case--the kind that had an air curtain you reached through to get your six-pack(s). The earlier sixpak beer containers were made of cardboard not the plastic you see now. When I was trying to find the cause of reduced airflow from the honeycomb at the top where the air was discharged downward to the intake at lip of reach in case I decided to call an old retired refrigeration guy who was one of those unique guys who had always taken the time to determine the "root cause" of the various problems he was confronted with. When I explained my problem with low airflow even though the fans were all working fine, he asked me if the case contained any bottles in cardboard containers. When I told him they were all cardboard, he said for me to pull the honeycomb down and out and to remove all the lint that I would find on the top of the honeycomb air straightener. I was amazed there was so much lint and that it had come off the edges of all the cardboard beer holders. Not long after, I was called to fix an ice machine at Children's Hospital in Palo Alto. As I walked down the hall towards the ice machine I could see cardboard boxes stacked on top, around the sides and elsewhere nearby. I couldn't help but wonder if the condensor was plugged like the beer case, with a lot of lint from the open edges on the box flaps--well it was and from then on I always explained to customers the importance of eliminating the storage of cardboard of any kind, on top of or anywhere near a refrigeration system if they wanted to cut down on the problem with dirty condensors--and to check for lint before they called me. Shutting off the machine for a few minutes and then brushing the condensor and/or using a vacume if available was all they had to do.

    I would suggest a likely cause of a water heaters screen plugged with lint is due to cardboard boxes stored somewhere in the area nearby. Removing the boxes or covering them well with plastic might help to reduce the frequency of cleaning
    At home I only use those plastic boxes you can buy at Hum Depot or Lowers (and walymart, trrget, etc) --no cardboard boxes at my home, anywhere. A solution if you cant remove cardboard boxes is to use a can of spray-paint to coat the edges which will help limit the fibers coming loose (remember not to spray-paint near a gas water heater as the paint vapors are flammable--be careful
    Last edited by bill242; 10-05-2013 at 01:58 PM. Reason: misspelled words

  7. #607
    DIY Junior Member Smunderdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    Terry, thought I would pass this information on to everyone
    about the new policies that Whirlpool has just implemented..in the last few months..

    I am getting calls from all over the USA stating that Whirlpool will
    not send out free parts any longer to the older heaters...
    THE RECALL PERIOD IS OVER on that older flame lock heater and
    they are telling everyone to pound rocks up their butts ...
    They will send new parts but at the low low price of about $$179.00

    ..


    Just a quick note to say thanks for everyone that has contributed to this thread...

    I just had the opposite experience described above. My unit info is:

    FG1H5040T3NOV model #
    0441108411 serial # (first 4 digits are year and week of manufacture)
    0730269 product #

    It is a Whirlpool branded Craftmaster unit from 2004.

    Over the past week we have had the pilot go out 3x. The first two times I was able to get it to relight, but this morning (Saturday) it would not.

    The 800 number on my manual I called is 877-817-6750. I spoke to Jessica who was most definitely not in India and she was very helpful. Armed with the info in this thread, I told her I was aware of a recall and there was a replacement part available. She made it clear that it wasn't technically a recall, but they had redesigned the part. Whatever.

    Since my unit was still under warranty, she is shipping out the part today and claims it will be here on Monday. We'll see.

    Hoping this puts us back in business for awhile longer as I start shopping for a tankless replacement...

  8. #608
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smunderdog View Post
    Hoping this puts us back in business for awhile longer as I start shopping for a tankless replacement...

    Nice that they say they will ship the parts. They should be installed by a licensed technician.

    I think tankless is great.


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  9. #609
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Cool you got lucky

    Quote Originally Posted by Smunderdog View Post
    Just a quick note to say thanks for everyone that has contributed to this thread...

    I just had the opposite experience described above. My unit info is:

    FG1H5040T3NOV model #
    0441108411 serial # (first 4 digits are year and week of manufacture)
    0730269 product #

    It is a Whirlpool branded Craftmaster unit from 2004.

    Over the past week we have had the pilot go out 3x. The first two times I was able to get it to relight, but this morning (Saturday) it would not.

    The 800 number on my manual I called is 877-817-6750. I spoke to Jessica who was most definitely not in India and she was very helpful. Armed with the info in this thread, I told her I was aware of a recall and there was a replacement part available. She made it clear that it wasn't technically a recall, but they had redesigned the part. Whatever.

    Since my unit was still under warranty, she is shipping out the part today and claims it will be here on Monday. We'll see.

    Hoping this puts us back in business for awhile longer as I start shopping for a tankless replacement...



    I think you must be the original owner of the water heater
    and you simply got lucky... A Craftmaster is not technically
    a Whirlpool heater.... I dont know if you have the left handed
    threads on the craft master ...

    its all good either way if they are sending you the parts for free.
    that at least takes the sting out of it especially if they dont solve your problem..
    being a 10 year old heater, I would not attempt to throw too much money at this dog if I were you


    now all you got to do is find someone willing to work on it..


    the tankless route is not the way I would suggest going if this repair does not happen....

    but you can decide that on your own

    I hope that you have good luck with your experience...next monday....





  10. #610
    DIY Junior Member Smunderdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    I think you must be the original owner of the water heater
    and you simply got lucky... A Craftmaster is not technically
    a Whirlpool heater.... I dont know if you have the left handed
    threads on the craft master ...

    its all good either way if they are sending you the parts for free.
    that at least takes the sting out of it especially if they dont solve your problem..
    being a 10 year old heater, I would not attempt to throw too much money at this dog if I were you


    now all you got to do is find someone willing to work on it..


    the tankless route is not the way I would suggest going if this repair does not happen....

    but you can decide that on your own

    I hope that you have good luck with your experience...next monday....

    Actually the previous owners of the house put this water heater in back in 2004 - not sure if they ever registered it or not, but I didn't have any trouble with getting Jessica on the other end of the 800 number to send this kit out. It arrived as promised this morning by 11 am.

    The unit is a Craftsmaster unit - has their information on the label where the model, serial number etc info is located. It also has Whirlpool branding on it etc.

    There are left hand threads on it, so the new parts included the manifold door assembly and thermocouple adapter. No gas valve sent in this shipment.

    Just installed it and agree with previous posters that the small amount of clean up/vacuumiung (thx for the 90 degree elbow tip!) and getting the screws aligned on the manifold door are the only minor trouble points in the process. I am on my first cycle of getting the water heated back up and so far so good. We'll see what happens over the coming hours/days....

    I know I may have only bought myself some time with it of course. And Mark, I hadn't taken a look at the tankless pros/cons in quite some time and agree that it probably won't be the best fit when we need a new one. Since I'm here in Indy (up in Nora), I may be calling you for a Bradford White install....

  11. #611
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    I suggest that you leave some gap in the fire wall on the unit so it might get more
    air into it instead of depending on the bottom screen to suck in enough air...

    I did not realize you were in indy, and you are 100% correct that you bought yourself
    some time here... Most heaters dont last more than about 10 years in our water before they
    start to lime up .... You have done well with a craftmaster... they are actually more of a step down
    from the whirlpool back at that time....I think they have gone out of business since then...

    Be warned if the heater is somewhere in yourhome where it might cause some water damage
    I suggest you go to ******* and buy a 10 dollar water alarm called Zircon and place it close to the heater
    cause that day its gonna start to leak is soon comming.....

    good luck either way....

  12. #612
    DIY Junior Member Tim in Fort Worth's Avatar
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    Man, it really cracks me up that this thread is still out there and churning up trouble for Whirlpool! Is it possible that the comments here have somehow affected the engineering and design of later water heaters? Hopefully, no one has died because of these water heaters and if true, that might be in part because of all the information here. But I am also curious, does the person with the last Whirlpool Flamelock water heater still standing win a prize of some sort? It would be cool if someone could acquire it and put it on display in the Smithsonian, or at least the Plumbing Hall of Fame.

  13. #613
    DIY Junior Member fiveliter8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim in Fort Worth View Post
    Man, it really cracks me up that this thread is still out there and churning up trouble for Whirlpool! Is it possible that the comments here have somehow affected the engineering and design of later water heaters? Hopefully, no one has died because of these water heaters and if true, that might be in part because of all the information here. But I am also curious, does the person with the last Whirlpool Flamelock water heater still standing win a prize of some sort? It would be cool if someone could acquire it and put it on display in the Smithsonian, or at least the Plumbing Hall of Fame.
    Just found this thread looking for a dip tube for my FG1H5040T3NOV. I bought and installed this October 2004, and two weeks ago, started getting 10 minute hot showers. From what I saw on the internet, the dip tubes were a problem on mid-late 90's models, not in 2004. At any rate, the tube broke at the flare but was otherwise intact. While I had the tank drained, I pulled the gas valve and burner, both of which were in great shape, save for some lime crust covering the thermostat. There was VERY little debris inside the tank, which surprised me, especially not having a water softener or filter. There was a thin layer of white soot on the bottom of the tank which cleaned up easily. I cleaned the thermocouple and pilot nozzle with a dollar bill and re-installed everything. I fished the dip tube out and went all over town looking for a replacement with no luck. I reinserted the dip tube into the nipple and secured it temporarily with stainless screws until I can find a replacement. I fired it back up, checked for leaks, then went to bed, dreaming of a nice hot shower in the morning. No luck. The pilot went out at some point. The thing made it all this way, then I go and clean it up and now this, lol. Will try to give Whirlpool a buzz to see if they'll bite.

  14. #614
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fiveliter8 View Post
    Just found this thread looking for a dip tube for my FG1H5040T3NOV. I bought and installed this October 2004, and two weeks ago, started getting 10 minute hot showers. From what I saw on the internet, the dip tubes were a problem on mid-late 90's models, not in 2004. At any rate, the tube broke at the flare but was otherwise intact. While I had the tank drained, I pulled the gas valve and burner, both of which were in great shape, save for some lime crust covering the thermostat. There was VERY little debris inside the tank, which surprised me, especially not having a water softener or filter. There was a thin layer of white soot on the bottom of the tank which cleaned up easily. I cleaned the thermocouple and pilot nozzle with a dollar bill and re-installed everything. I fished the dip tube out and went all over town looking for a replacement with no luck. I reinserted the dip tube into the nipple and secured it temporarily with stainless screws until I can find a replacement. I fired it back up, checked for leaks, then went to bed, dreaming of a nice hot shower in the morning. No luck. The pilot went out at some point. The thing made it all this way, then I go and clean it up and now this, lol. Will try to give Whirlpool a buzz to see if they'll bite.


    you have really stepped in it now....
    you should have let sleeping dogs lie...

    10 years is really a great life out of one of these peices of junk
    You would be wiser to just get a new heater from Rheem or bradford.

    I am very curious to see what whilrpool will do for you....wether they charge
    your for parts or send them for free...

    I am presently
    getting about a call a day on average with someone asking for help
    with this trash.... most have already repaired the unit once or twice..

    good luck.... it will be an experience you wont soon forget



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