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

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by Terry, Nov 19, 2005.

  1. boober

    boober New Member

    Man, THANKS TERRY! for running this site. My near 20 year old water heater is acting up, I've replaced the dip tub, but I'm not sure if that will fix it, so I was looking at replacements since I think it's better to change it out now than later when it starts leaking. I looked at Lowes, since I have over $300 in gift cards for them, and was considering a Whirlpool until I came across this thread. Looks like I saved myself some SERIOUS hassles.
    I also was considering the the Sears Power Miser 12, because it can highly recommended for Consumerresearch.com. I'm VERY leary of all Sears products these days since their track record has diminished so greatly over the last decade or so. Any ideas on this type?

    I took a look at the link from Master Plumber Mark. Is it agreed that Rheem has a quality product? I wanted a direct vent model, but they have such a limited warranty compared to standard venting water heaters, I'm confused as to why. I looked at Bradford, but their closest person is in MN, and since I'm in WI, that doesn't work. Any other suggested models to look at?
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2008
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    San Diego
    Power vent heaters will tend to have a shorter warranty because there are too many parts which can go wrong. You cant reasonably warranty a blower or a pressure switch for a very long time. Best bet is to look for the best warranty your installing contractor will give.
  3. boober

    boober New Member

    I could see offering a shorter warranty for the power vent, but not for everything else... I was hoping to install myself, which may be an issue trying to get a rheem or bradford white...

    I've been planning to completely re-plumb my house with pex, but haven't gotten to it yet. I'll probably wait until summer, until school is out so I can install this all during summer break. Hopefully by then I'll have a source to buy the water heater...
  4. ladder

    ladder New Member

    cleaning the screen

    I've seen people talk about keeping the " lint screen " clean and was wondering if everybody agrees, that if a person kept it clean every 3 months, ( like Whirlpool asks ) that would take care of the problem... I myself think it would be ludicrous for Whirlpool to expect the average person to disconnect a few gas lines and a few electrical connections and unscrew and remove the entire housing to clean a " lint screen " every three months...... I don't think the threaded connections are designed to take it....... What do you guys think?
  5. clovis

    clovis New Member

    Anyone care to help on another home owner with a JUNK Whirlpool WH?

    30 gallon, FG series, 3 years old. Has worked flawlessly until a week ago.

    The pilot light went out, and relit, but continued to go out after a short time of running.

    Whirlpool sent the upgrade, and I installed, following directions to a T. Took about an hour.

    Pilot light relit...yippeee...I have hot water.....for about 4 minutes.

    Pilot light goes out after running for a 'cycle', and I have to relight the pilot.

    Lint screen was/is clean.

    Where is the problem?


    Last edited: Jan 25, 2008
  6. WHIRLPOOL CRAP--you are screwed

    LOWES has hung everyone out to dry...at least in our town

    they have pulled all the repair parts off their shelves....

    becasue of that lawsuit.... now you are at the mercyu of Whirlpool

    When I have worked on them, the only thing that I think
    could have possibly went wrong was trying to bend that crappy thermocoupling into position

    The only thing I can figure is that if it is not perfectly put back in to place like the original one was installed
    (which is almlmost impossible to do) the new thermocouoling gets

    subjected to higher heat that shorts out the coupling.almost immediately...........

    you might as well get a new water heater and forget about it---you are screwed---learn to live with it.

    I presently have a customer that I installed a Brad White for to replace that Flame lock junk..... they are trying to get a 150 re-imbursment from Whirlpool

    believe it or not, Whirlpool wants THE ORIGINAL RECEIPT for the purchase of the new water heater from the customer!!

    I have mailed them the sticker on the box from the heater that I installed with the ser# and mod # on it....
    and I have sent them a copy of my bill for $599 for the new heater.

    I honestly think that Whirlpool wont be happy with that either and will worm and weasel their way out of giving these people back one red cent..... on some "technicality".

    I honestly feel bad for the customer , and I am willing to help them with my time and effort, but am not planning on pampering Whirlpool by jumping through hoops untill
    the middle of next summer

    and neither should my customer..

    Last edited: Feb 15, 2009
  7. clovis

    clovis New Member


    Thank you for the quick reply!!!!

    I see you are in Indy. I am in Franklin.

    I think you are right. It is probably time for a new WH.

    Why the same problem before and after with the pilot light not staying lit? Do you think it is the thermocouple, both times?

    What brand do you recommend?

    One of my BIG concerns is that my problem lays outside of the WH...and a replacement of any brand will do the same thing. Can you advise?

    I am not mad at Lowes...just Whirlpool. And replacing with another brand just lets Whirlpool win. What more could they ask for???

    Again, THANK YOU!!!!!!!
  8. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Bring the heater back to Low*s, and tell them the story, then tell them you want your $$$ back. They will refund it if you have the recept or used a CC to buy it. If you don't have any proof they will give you a store credit which is better than nothing.

    Buy a Rheem or Bradford White.
  9. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    You should be mad a Low*s, they are well aware of the problems and still sell them without having them corrected..
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2008
  10. Raucina

    Raucina Previous member

    If you really want to hate Whirlpool, do a search on "Maytag Iowa " or "death of Maytag Iowa" - plant built in 1890's, one of America's icon manufacturing facilities that lasted until this year. Whirlpool bought it up, shut it down and took the washing machine factory to various parts of the US and the orient.

    Several million square feet of punch presses and an entire community and culture destroyed for the sake of a higher profit margin. Its a repetitive saga that will pull us down to a developing nation again.

    They likely did the same to get a water heater in their stable, and the left hand has no idea what the right hand is doing, thus all the parts confusion.

    whirlpool can make a nice dryer with a pull out lint screen, but the a**holes in design can't mount that same unit in the water heater with a prefilter.
  11. Nate R

    Nate R New Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    Why do you think that plant was sold? Because it was greatly profitable as it was?
  12. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Corporate greed! The competitor (Whirlpool) was selling 3rd world junk and had a higher market share selling cheap junk! They saw a quality manufacturer as a threat and bought it out, turning it into yet another cheap junk outlet!

    Go ahead buy every cheap 3rd world bit of junk you can buy. Then wonder one day why you are unemployed in a country that joined the third world.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2008
  13. clovis

    clovis New Member

    The saga continues.

    I have been lied to by Whirlpool so many times that I am beginning to wonder if anyone in the world tells the truth.

    I don't think I will ever knowingly purchase another Whirlpool branded appliance as long as I live. This includes Kenmore and other makes by Whirlpool.

    I will update later.

    Putting in a new water heater today, after 10 days of no hot water, and being JACKED AROUND BY WHIRLPOOL.

  14. clovis in Franklin

    You probably have a home depot or menar//* in Franklin Ind..

    They sell Rheem-Richmond heaters... and GE-Rheem heaters....

    go get one of those....

    Then my suggestion....

    take the old whhirlpool heater back to lowes at about
    10;30 at night.....

    set it out in the parking lot
    take a can of kerosene and set it on fire.....

    that will be a pretty site for them to clean up
    on sunday morning.... http://www.weilhammerplumbing.com/galleryiii/
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2009
  15. clovis

    clovis New Member


    I my goodness!!!! That is hillarious!!!!

    After having no real hot water for 11 days, I think this is the first time I have laughed out loud!!!!

    Actually, if you can believe it, Lowes is working with me on the WH.

    The saga continues...it will be Monday before I get a definite answer on the WH. We will see if Lowes really makes good on their customer service.

    Still laughing...

    Last edited: Jan 27, 2008
  16. clovis

    clovis New Member

    For what its worth, if anyone cares:

    When my last WH went out, I wanted to put in a quality replacement. We have a local place called The Plumbing Store. They have been great to deal with over the past 15 years. They sell Lukenhiemer (???)...I am sure I butchered that bad...this is the brand that most of the local plumbers install.

    The Plumbing Store was closed the Saturday afternoon when gallons of water were spewing onto my basement floor.

    Lowes and the wonderful Flame-Lock Whirlpool WH was the fastest and closest option.

  17. get a store credit...

    Lowes employees are in a bad spot... they are all slaves
    to the corporate gods above them and they cant
    stand up and complain to anyone above them about
    the crummey quality of the heater that they sell...

    without loseing their jobs...

    they are no better off than the chineese that make the junk
    that they sell, they just dont know it yet...

    wait a few more years and they will be in the same boat when our currency totally collapses...and they will be no more than slaves too..

    so all they seem to be able or allowed to do is give you some sort of in-store credit if you whine and moan enough to them..

    The reason that Lowes keeps buying these heaters is Whirlpool gives Lowes gigantic incentives and rebates
    to the tune of millions of dollars every year to buy a certain number of those shitty heaters..

    all the money, bribes and trips around the world go to the evil corporate overlords.... that run whirlpool.....amd they dont want to give that up.

    they are getting a hell of a kick-back ...
    and that makes it kind of fun to
    take a big dump on the little consumer....

    Its Whirlpools problem, and they still get a big pay off.

    so they deny that their is a problem...and keep sticking it to the little guy,......

    Dont put in a new whirlpool heater, they are no better than the old unit.....

    take the credit if they give you one,

    if they dont , IMHO...have the barbecue in the parking lot....

    Last edited: Feb 15, 2009
  18. just got one to change on monday

    just got a call from another poor sap
    with a 2004 Flame Lock.......

    going to change it out on Monday for $599
  19. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Lochinvar maybe? http://www.lochinvar.com/class.asp?cat=WH They're good units!

    I posted this a while back in the thread... Its how I'd like to return one!

  20. statjunk

    statjunk DIY Senior Member

    I will never buy another Whirlpool product again. Does anyone know the list of brands under the Whirlpool manufacturer?

    I want to avoid those too.

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