Can't light Rheem 22V40FN

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by mc510, Nov 29, 2016.

  1. mc510

    mc510 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2009
    Location:
    California
    House is currently unoccupied so I turned off the water heater according to instructions, then also turned off the valve on the gas supply line. Now, a couple of months later, I turned the gas supply back on and tried to light the pilot. I don't see a spark when I depress the lighter, don't see a pilot flame, and don't smell gas.

    Is there a trick to lighting a heater that's been off for a while? Is it likely that the piezo sparker is broken?
     
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

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    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Does the gas work for something else in the house?

    Is this a WH with a red button? Try holding that button in longer -- maybe a minute.
     
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  4. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    Are you following the instructions for lighting the unit?
     
  5. mc510

    mc510 Member

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    Dec 18, 2009
    Location:
    California
    Yes, there's a gas stove; I tested that and it worked fine.

    The button is not red -- from the lousy pictures that I took when I was there, it looks green ... but perhaps is gray or black. But definitely not red.

    I am following the directions to light but I never see a spark or a pilot flame.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2016
  6. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Plumber
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    Normally you would set the temperature to pilot, depress the button, and click the striker. There is a window where you can see the spark from the igniter, and the flame when it lights. If you let up for even a moment, it needs to reset for a while. I find myself holding the button down for up to a minute at times.
     
  7. mc510

    mc510 Member

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    Dec 18, 2009
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    Yeah, that's exactly how it works on this Rheem ... Set temperature to "pilot", turn gas control knob to "pilot" then press and hold down, press the sparker button, hear a nice loud click, keep holding button down ... but I don't see any spark or any kind of glow from a flame. Repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, conclude that more of the same isn't going to produce a different result.

    I saw a comment somewhere on the internets that these Rheem units have a very faint pilot light, so I suppose that maaaaaaaybe I'm just not seeing the pilot when it's actually lit? But I don't don't really think that's the case; unit is in a pretty dim area and my eyes aren't that bad.
     
  8. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Once the pilot is lit, you can rotate the dial to heat, and the flames will come on. It kind of makes a roar when the entire burner lights up.
     
  9. MASTERPLUMB777

    MASTERPLUMB777 In the Trades

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    Retired Master Plumber
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    Texas
    May be time to call a professional ?
    Also very important run all hot water valves in house to make sure you flush out all the water heater to get rid of germs and bacteria
    That might have built up as whale hydrogen
    Gas !
     
  10. dj2

    dj2 In the Trades

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    Aug 13, 2013
    Location:
    California
    Call your gas supplier, most gas companies light up pilots for free.

    If you have a problem, the gas company rep will note it on his report paper.
     
  11. mc510

    mc510 Member

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    Dec 18, 2009
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    Thanks dj2, great idea; I had forgotten about that!
     
  12. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Sensitivity trainer and plumber of mens souls

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    sometimes, its wise to unplug the wire where the sparkey thing and the wire to the bottom
    of the heater plug in together... and plug them back together again... on occasion the spark grounds
    across the line at the plug into the side of the heater and does not make a spark happen down at the
    piolet light. check that connection first.
    .
     
  13. mc510

    mc510 Member

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    Dec 18, 2009
    Location:
    California
    Huh, never would have thought of that .. thanks Mark, I will give that a look when I get back to the house.
     
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