A proper venting system
or an electric tank…
Other appliances using combustion air.
Negative Building pressure from stack.
Damaged baffle in the water heater.
A properly operating burner and intake and exhaust systems…
Sealed combustion chambers. . .
On this particular model, the interior heat shield was likely missing or improperly installed.
A new water heater
I don’t think they are actually “sealed.” Do you guys know why?
They couldn’t vent properly if they were actually “sealed.”
No… not quite… I’m not talking about venting… I’m referring to something else in relation to being “sealed.” Why isn’t it actually a sealed chamber? (not venting, but…)
These new so called sealed water heaters are not so sealed they also require combustioin air like any other gas appliance
Combustion, of course.
Obviously these units can’t be completely sealed. That would defy physics. Generally, combustion air is supplied to the combustion chamber through a port in the base. These models usually have a flame arrestor built in as well.
The following is excerpted from the course materials of this. The course material comes with the online video course. The video is on sale now for only $15.
In the course we tear apart an FVIR system of a tank. Real slow. So that you all can learn in detail all you need to know about water heater tanks, including FVIR systems. If you don’t know everything there is to know about FVIR, or water heater tank components, then you must not have watched this. (purchase unlimited viewing while discount lasts)
Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant (FVIR) Water Heater
In 2003, a new standard for water heaters was developed and phased in. It says, “The water heater should not ignite flammable vapors outside the water heater created by the spilling of gasoline onto the floor.” The Consumer Products and Safety Commission found thousands of fires, injuries and deaths were related to water heaters. Most of these cases were because of improper storage or handling/spillage of gasoline.
If the tank is in compliance with the FVIR standards, it does not have to be raised 18 inches in garages or similar locations, unless required by the manufacturer or local code authorities.
A FVIR water heater has the following components: 1) a device to prevent ignited vapors from passing out of the combustion chamber, 2) a one-way intake system to control the movement of makeup air into the combustion chamber, 3) an inner door and burner assembly to create a sealed junction with the combustion chamber, preventing combustion air and flammable vapors from entering the chamber through the front of the water heater.
All FVIR water heater tanks have things in common. 1) A flame arrestor plate. Located under the burner, the metal plate is designed to allow combustion air into the combustion chamber but keep flames from escaping downward and igniting flammable vapors below. 2) Thermal cutoff switch. It is designed to shut down the heater if it senses excessive temperatures caused by inadequate combustion air inside the chamber. Inadequate combustion air can be caused by an explosion of flammable vapors, inadequate venting, inadequate makeup air or the accumulation of lint, dust, or oil on the screen. 3) A lint, dust, and oil screen. The screen is designed to protect the combustion process from lint, dust, or oil. The screen openings can become clogged, especially when the tank is located in a basement or utility room.
**FVIR System on a Bradford White Defender Water Tank **
During normal operation, air for combustion is drawn into the water heater through the openings in the jacket. This air travels down and around the combustion chamber and enters through holes in the very bottom of the corrosion-resistant combustion chamber. The air then travels up through the oriented flame arrestor plate louvers, where the velocity of the air is increased and its direction altered. The air then mixes in a normal manner with the supplied gas and is efficiently combusted, producing very low NOx emissions (nitrogen oxides).
In the case where trace amounts of flammable vapors are present in the air flowing into the chamber, the vapors are harmlessly ignited by the burner/pilot flame. If flammable vapors are in sufficient quantity to prevent normal combustion, the burner/pilot flame is shut down.
Should the flammable vapors continue to the burner, the flame arrestor plate prevents the flames from traveling backwards and igniting vapors outside of the combustion chamber. The calibrated, multipurpose thermal switch recognizes this and shuts down the pilot and main burner. This switch also deactivates the burner and pilot in the unlikely event of restricted airflow caused by severe lint, dust, or oil accumulation on the arrestor plate.
p.s. who can tell from the tiny photo?
Sorry for the size of the photo. I can’t find another one of a large size. I’ll just make my point.
It’s a dip tube hole. Anybody know why there’s a hole in the dip tube? And where is it located?
STOP! Don’t look up the answers. Anyone can do that… My point is: If you don’t know the answers off the top of your head, then there’s something missing in your basic knowledge of water heater tanks and their vital components (imho).
Well, you’ve got me there. I know what a dip-tube is, and what it does, but I’m not sure what the hole is for.
I do know (however) that many poly-based dip tubes manufactured for water heaters between 1993 and 1996 were defective. They were installed in both gas-fired and electric heaters and had a tendency to break and/or disintegrate. This renders the water heater, essentially, non functional.
If the dip-tube is broken, the water heater will produce hot water for only a brief period, followed by luke-warm, or even cold water. This is one reason why it’s important to run a significant amount of hot water during an inspection.
At the top, to prevent siphoning through the tube. But I don’t remove the dip tube when inspecting WH.
I don’t think Ben is suggesting that we disassemble a water heater during our inspection. . .
I fully agree that knowing the “ins & outs” of a system or component will help us be more competent as inspectors - and to that end, these videos may be very beneficial. However (and nothing personal), I just can’t get behind the PPV “movement” that iNACHI is currently promoting.