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Paloma Tankless water heater wont kick on

I have model PH-12M-DN the pilot light will come on and stay light but when I turn the water on to demad the unit kick on it does not...I am guessing maybe a bad pressure switch but have no manual for this and can't find one on line. The unit is about 10 years old but is used in my poohouse and is on only half the year at most..It has worked perfectly every time I have turned it on in the past..any suggestions ?

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  • palsgal Feb 15, 2009

    The pilot light and main burner won't stay on in my Paloma water heater.



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Tankless Water heaters have a automatic pilot and digital water temperature control system; you have to turn on the water in the house to get it to kick on that is unless you have a circulation pump on a timer. If the gas supply doesn't have atleast a 2" rating that with cause the tankless to malfunction because it's not getting enough gas pressure; certified professionals rarely make this mistake. Moreover, if you don't have a water softener you are using with the tankless you voided your warranty; the minirals clog the heat exchanger.

Posted on Nov 28, 2008

  • Albion Buckingham Nov 26, 2010

    The Paloma PH-12M-DN is an older legacy series model. It has no digital water control system. It uses a water manifold and water pressure differential to open the gas valve via a rubber/metal diaphragm. If the unit has gas and the pilot is on and still no flame appears when the hot water tap is fully opened you probably have a hole in the rubber diaphragm which opens the gas valve. I have had this unit in my home for 30 years and have found the unit to be very reliable but somewhat affected by back pressure issues shutting of the gas when cold water is added to moderate the temperature. Other issues which would prevent the gas valve from opening are a bad thermocouple or gas valve but I have never had these fail. I replaced the diaphragm once in 30 years. I think it was in 1992.


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I have a Paloma Tankless Water Heater, Model #PTG-74PVN-2. It usually works great. Once in a while it just stops producing hot water for about 5 minutes and then goes right back in. It could be in the middle of a shower, and it just stops. I have no error message, but have not checked the board during a problem because I'm usually in the shower.

Posted on Aug 28, 2009


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I have an old Paloma PH-12M-DN tankless gas water heater. I have water flow on the inlet side, but no water flow at all coming out of the outlet side. What might the problem be?

the tank must fill before you will get any flow from the outlet.that will take some time before you get anything out. how long depends on the size of your tank.hth jq

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Burners on tankless Paloma PH-12m-Dn don't burn hot enough to heat the water

Check the flame color when it's on. Blue tips are correct. If the tip is orange or any other color but blue, the air mixture is out of adjustment. Check the owners manual for instructions on making this adjustment

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Under the gas valve is a removable panel. On models of that era there should also be a second panel behind the first. remove both.

the pilot light should be clearly visible.

If no pilot, turn the gas valve to OFF. wait 60 seconds. locate the tubes from the gas valve to the pilot location. turn the valve to pilot, and with a long match or grill lighter lit, place flame at the pilot location and press down on the pilot button beside the main valve.

pilot should light. If not shut off the gas and call a technician. If yes, hold the pilot button for 60 seconds, then slowly release. Pilot should stay lit. If not, shut off gas and replace thermocouple, start relight sequence over. If pilot stays lit, replace inner cover and adjust temp to 120 deg. If heater fires up, replace outer cover. Done.

If heater does not light, replace gas valve or entire unit. Water heaters have a limited life expectancy, and if my recollection is correct your unit is 10yrs past warranty.

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Pilot light on hot water heater is out

you need to shut off the the red nob and turn the nob off in front take the cover off remove the heat shield turn the nob on top to pilot use a piece of paper to light put in next to pilot and hold button down for 20 to 50 secs pilot should stay lit turn nob on front then burner should kick on then you should be all good

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The pilot won't stay lit on gas hot water tank.

Make sure thermocouple tip is seated inside the burner flame.
Make sure thermocouple is not overtightened. Finger-tight + 1/4 turn.
If the pilot lights, then ECO energy cut off is not tripped, but gas control valve might be bad.
Check color of pilot flame: it should be strong and clear blue.
If pilot flame is weak, or color of flame is yellow-orange: Clean pilot orifice and burner and combustion parts on yearly basis.
Clean air intake screen if applicable.
Increase air supply to water heater. Open a window and see what happens.
Check for adequate draft going up chimney using match under vent hood to see if smoke drafts immediately upwards.
Bleed air out of gas line.
Check gas pressure.

Open following links for troubleshoot resources:

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1 Answer

I have a Rheem21vp50e1a hot water heater. the vent is running continuously but the pilot is not on. Turned it off to reset and it will still not run. The house has gas so what could be the problem.

More information is needed to give accurate do-it-yourself help.
Have you changed the thermocouple?

Some model numbers do not have a standing pilot light.
What do the re-light instructions show on side of unit next to gas valve? What does your manual say?
What type of gas control valve does unit have. Is this electronic gas control valve?
Add a comment with information.

Open following links for READING about general pilot light problems across different types and models of water heater: do-it-yourselfer will find useful resources.

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You have tank-type gas water heater with standing pilot light.

Instructions for lighting pilot light are usually on front of water heater.
Since water heaters vary widely, if you want specific information without guessing, then add a comment with model number that appears on label on side of tank, and also describe the gas control valve on front of unit.
This information will let expert located manual and look up specific information plus troubleshoot steps for that model.

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Pilot Light problem

By controler I am guessing you mean gas valve? The next step, and I am not sure the water heater age rates this ,is to replace the gas valve. 

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