Question about Bradford White M-4-403S6FSX 40 Gallon - 38,000 BTU Defender Safety System Energy Star High Efficiency Residential Water Heater LP Gas

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New Bradford White M-4-403S6FSX LPG water heater worked as expected for about 30 minutes and now the burner won't light. Pilot light is on but no burner no matter where thermostat is set.

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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SOURCE: I need the basics for replacing a thermostat on a water heater...Bradford/White brand, model M250S6DS2 50 Gal, 4500 watt per element 240 voltage 50/60 hz. It keeps over heating even at lowest setting

Copy following link for replacing thermostat.
Suggest you might also want to test the elements while power is turned off, just in case the problem is element shorted to ground across metal tank to ground wire.

At least you know the 240volt power to water heater and the circuit breaker are good.

Posted on Oct 01, 2012

  • 42 Answers


Doesn't sound like its the dip tube, its a element problem, I would contact bw directly to see if heater is stil in warranty and they will send you new parts free.

Posted on Dec 18, 2012

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How do I light my hot water heater?

It is pretty easy - make sure gas valve is open, change control know to pilot. Press the ignitor a few times and once pilot lights up switch control to warm or hot position.

See instructions by downloading manual for MI-403SF6BN from this site
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1) Copy following links to identify gas control valve and read ignition procedure, and access service manual for your product:

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Rheem 300170 HWS service manual

1) Rheem does not post service manuals.
Call Rheem and ask why, since the other big manufacturers, AO Smith and Bradford White do post service manuals.

2) You need new propane gas control valve, and matching combustion parts to fit existing tank.

3) Rheem does not recommend changing gas type, especially from natural gas to LPG.
LPG is higher pressure, and burns much hotter and requires cast iron burner, unlike the lighter-weight metal used for Natural gas burner.
The manifold tube and thermocouple must match the gas control valve, and gas-type and have correct thread for propane.
The combustion chamber and heat transfer surface can also be heavier metal for propane heaters.

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I am thinking of purchasing a Reliance water heater and notice that there are many complaints about pilots continually going out. Have these issues been addressed? I currently have a A.O. Smith which has...

I do water heater research for specific purpose.
I see complaints about every brand except the brands that are no longer in business
Most complaints about gas heaters involve burners & pilot.
Here are some things that might help you decide:

New water heaters have to meet regulations
for clean-burning and efficiency.
As a result, water heaters exposed to poor incoming air supply, and poor venting are more likely to be affected by chronic pilot light problems.

Bradford White manual I was reading said, to remove chemicals from same room as water heater. Chemicals corrode water heater parts. This would affect the pilot light as well.
'Spray propellants, cleaning solvents, refrigerants, swimming pool chemicals, calcium and sodium chloride, household bleach, waxes and process chemicals are corrosive at very low levels with no odor."

Yearly maintenance: you're supposed to clean burner and combustion area with a wire bush and vacuum each year.

The FVIR is another consideration today. Flammable Vapor prevention.
Consult the manual before buying the product.
Many gas water heaters have a screen located on bottom of water heater. When the screen clogs with dust, the reduced airflow will stop the burner. Unless the water heater legs are set on bricks, then you can't get under to clean the screen.
If the FVIR trips because it detected a flash-over condition, you have to buy parts for all water heaters except the Bradford White. BW has a re-settable FVIR.

The 411plumb,com website is a good source of information
The Tank is a good place to post water heater questions
: Those guys are professional plumbers.

Maintaining your water heater is important.
Look for a brass drain valve instead of plastic.

Anode rod.
If water heater has two anode rods, the tank will last longer.
Inspect anode rod every 3 years.
Loosen anode rod before installing tank so it will come out easily for inspection
Or if it has a powered anode rod, it will supposedly last 'forever' ... until the burner gives out.

Other water heater ideas:

Oct 2010. If you have more questions, add a comment at bottom and it sends me an e-mail
There are a lot of good sources in the links above.

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