Water Heater Questions and FAQ
Reviews, troubleshooting, repair, parts, recall, warranty, thermocouple, support
Conversion kit for Whirlpool Water Heaters
Whirlpool water heaters have been generating many complaints lately.
Pictured above is the repair kit that Whirlpool can send out.
What is the basic design flaw in the Whirlpool Gas FVIR water heater????
1. The AIR INTAKE screen is small, and over time can clog with lint, dust, and hair.
You must clean the lint off from the bottom of the unit and from inside the heat chamber every 3 months or it will not get enough air to operate correctly.
2. you cannot buy replacement parts that will fix this "built in design flaw" once and for all.
3. This brand sucks up
lint like a vacuum sweeper, and then gets starved for
4. Their new improved "thermal fuse design" upgrade is no improvement at all , it overheats and burns out even quicker than the original design. If there is any downdraft that happens when your furnace comes on it can kill this fuse.
5. Read this link for more info on this awful brand......
Tampering or " jerry-rigging " this unit to make it work is a Liability and Safety hazard and should not be done . It is unsafe for financially strapped home-owners to have gas valves and gas burners mailed to them, and then be expected to repair the heater themselves.
6.. look at the junk sucked up into the bottom of the air screen on this Whirlpool heater
The water heater has a 9 year warranty. The first
time it happened I wanted to exchange the water heater
for another brand, but Lowes said they wouldn't do it.
I called Whirlpool and dealt with them for a while on
the phone, but they wouldn't take it back either.
They sent out a replacement thermocouple, but for some
reason, in the next few days I also received a box
with another thermocouple plus regulator unit. That's
strange, since I never reported a problem with the
This last time, I was told some strange things by
Whirlpool customer Service. The informed me that they
no longer provide RA #s that allow the customer to
pick up the part at Lowes, and that I would have to
purchase the part myself and ask Whirlpool for
reimbursement. If I wanted it sent by Whirlpool there
would be a $5 charge for S&H. Evidently Whirlpool has
paid some coin in maintaining the warranty. The
customer rep I talked to agreed to send one to me and
waive the charge, but this would be the last time they
I hung up the phone, but called back about 30 minutes
later with some additional questions. Low and behold!
In the next several days I received my thermocouple.
The next day I also received another thermocouple.
Customer Service apparently duplicated the order.
What is also interesting is that one of these
shipments also contained two plastic screen pieces
that are designed to wrap around the bottom of the
water heater and act as a primary filter to keep dust
away from the main filter on the bottom of the water
heater. The instructions indicate that only one strip
is used, so I guess they sent me an extra one. Each
strip will only wrap about half-way around the heater.
What's funny is that I have heard several different
stories from Lowes and Whirlpool about this over the
several times I have had to deal with it. The last
time I drove all over the city to various Lowes and
none of them had the part. They said there was a "bad
lot" of thermocouples. Whirlpool denied it. Most
recently, the first rep I talked to said the part was
"doing exactly what it was supposed to" by burning
So in answer to your question, no the problem isn't
fixed in the "proper manner". But because I don't see
any immediate or critical safety issues I'm going to
leave the plug out as an experiment to see if it
corrects the problem. If it doesn't I would think
that there is more to this issue than a throttled air
supply from a dirty screen. It's strange that I
haven't seen anything on the .gov sites about this.
Maybe the feds aren't aware of the problem.
Tim in Fort Worth