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I have a rheem hwh, model #42vp50fw,it is in lock out. my code tells me the flammable vapor sensor detected the presence of flammable vapors or contact a service agency, the house is having a walk through this weekend and i have no hot water. there are no flammable vapors present so what might the problem be?

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I can understand your anxiousness. However, there's no way the end user can override the flammable vapors cut out switch. But, here's what I would suggest you check: make sure that the direct vent is not clogged on the outside; that the damper is opening as it should; that there is not a minor gas leak in or around the water heater. If the heater is located in a garage, be sure there are no gasoline cans, paint cans, etc, anywhere near it. If it's inside the home, rather than a garage ... Have you painted recently, in anticipation of selling the house? Although you may not be able to smell it, the sensor may have picked up some paint fumes. Or worse case scenario is the sensor is faulty. Although this model was discontinued in November 2010, it still has a 6 years parts Warranty. This may be your chance to use it (worse case scenario).

Check the things I listed above and you may find the culprit.

Posted on Mar 11, 2011

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1 Answer

Reset lock out due to fvd


You can reset some models.... depending on gas control valve and FVIR design.
Some newer models you replace the sensor located on outside of tank.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-gas-water-heater.html#intellivent
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-flammable-vapor-sensor-works-Therm-O-Disc-25VS.pdf

Gene

Jun 04, 2014 | Rheem 40 Gallon FVR NATGAS Low WATER...

1 Answer

Hot water heater womt light, flammable vapor sensor code


Most likely: Combustion chamber got too hot because air intake is clogged with dust, causing less air to flow upward through vent pipe ... the slowed flow of air caused combustion chamber to overheat.

What brand and model water heater?
Look at label on side of unit and add comment.
Otherwise call service tech to repair/ replace water heater and clean arrestor screen (air intake) and replace or reset parts as needed, depending on model number and brand water heater.

AO Smith, Bradford white, and Rheem are main manufacturers.
Each has slightly different repair protocol, and each gas control valve can also be different. So more information is needed.

Identify gas control valve:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-gas-water-heater.html#intellivent
Rheem TRD/ FVIR glass vial
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-repair-Rheem-FVIR.html
How to remove combustion parts to inspect for Rheem glass vial and clean arrestor screen located under combustion chamber:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermocouple.html

Sep 30, 2012 | Audiovox Richmond 6G40-36F 6-Year Tall Gas...

1 Answer

Detecting gas and won't light


Open following link for troubleshoot error codes showing 7 flashes on Honeywell gas control valve is system lockout due to flammable vapor:
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/Honeywell-gas-control_error-Damper-series.pdf
The FV system in Rheem can be tripped by presence of flammable vapors such as gasoline or paint fumes etc, or it can be tripped if water heater was dropped, or mis-manufactured, or if gas control valve is defective, or if water heater is not getting adequate fresh air, or there is inadequate venting of combustion by-product.
When combustion chamber overheats, then glass vial breaks and damper shuts off air supply to water heater and it will not light.
Open following link for possible help fixing the problem:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-repair-Rheem-FVIR.html

Jun 13, 2012 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Rheem 42VP50FW flashes 2-3 (FVD Interface/miswiring) wont ignite


Your safety device is probably sensing humidity as vapor. That's what ours seems to do. The replacement FVD is Rheem AP13447-3 Flammable Vapor Detection Sensor. It's down near the floor, can be pried off with a screwdriver, and unplugged. It needs to be replaced, since the heater will not ignite if its unplugged or too high resistance (detecting gas, or, if broken, moisture after a rain).
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007IB22NM

Jan 02, 2012 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

My water heater say i have flammable vapors present and is locked out how can i reset it or fix it there are no vapors present


Contact Rheem
http://www.rheem.com/Contact.aspx
1 800 432 8373
Locate product information on label on side of tank.

Typical manuals say if lockout occurs, then refer to gas valve codes and/or troubleshoot section:
http://globalimageserver.com/fetchDocument.aspx?id=a92c7d0e-8a95-48ba-8810-cd714f33d47a
http://globalimageserver.com/fetchDocument.aspx?id=80b1d50e-695f-49ac-9aae-3e9489ef1e5a

For example the manual says:
1. Verify no gasoline or flammable
vapors are present
2. Reset control using ON/OFF switch
on the gas control valve
3. Replace the flammable vapor sensor
http://waterheatertimer.org/images/Wiper-FVSensor-100.jpg
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/Rheem-Parts-Guide.pdf
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/Rheem-parts-list.pdf

Aug 11, 2011 | Rheem 50 Gallon FVR NATGAS Water Heater...

1 Answer

What is the little round white piece that the black and white wires from the gas control connect to ?


I believe that is the FVIR system.
See image:
http://waterheatertimer.org/images/Whirlpool-Resettable-FVIR-5.jpg
I'm not sure if Rheem water heaters have customer-resettable FVIR, but industry changes fast.
Bradford White and Whirlpool have customer-resettable.
Without resettable FVIR, a flammable vapor incident requires service call by technician.

Flammable vapor ignition retardation was mandated on gas water heaters because of insurance property and casualty losses.
In event that flammable vapors enter gas water heater (result of cleaning, painting, or working with fuel or on cars, etc), the sensor stops ignition of vapor.
Without FVIR, pilot flame or burner will ignite vapors and burn down house and occupants.

Older Rheen water heater manuals show illustration with man being engulfed in flames.
Today, that is largely prevented.
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html#FVIR

Add a comment for more free help.
Also take advantage of fixya expert assistance live.
For a price, expert works with you via e-mail while you work on water heater or any do-it-yourself project.
Fixya is always less expensive than a service call.

Feb 22, 2011 | Rheem 40 Gallon FVR NATGAS Low WATER...

1 Answer

I have a GPVH 40 100 AO smith hot water heater.The FV (flammable vapor) sensor has been setoff from us painting the floor yesterday. How do I reset the unit?


AO smith manuals
http://www.hotwater.com/lit/im/r-gas.html

GPVH series manual
http://www.hotwater.com/lit/im/res_gas/315465-000.pdf
You can search the manual for FV

The FV sensor shorted because it detected flammable gas

Quote manual:
Flammable liquids (such as
gasoline, solvents, propane (LP or butane, etc.) and other substances
(such as adhesives, etc.) emit flammable vapors which can be ignited
by a gas water heater's hot surface igniter or main burner. The
resulting flashback and fire can cause death or serious burns to anyone
in the area. This water is equipped with a FV sensor for detecting the
presence of flammable vapors, see Figure 3. When the sensor detects
those vapors, the unit will shut down and not operate. Should this
happen, please refer to the troubleshooting guide on pages 28-30.

Troubleshoot step 14-15 says
replace the FV sensor
call tech assistance number that shows on water heater
AO Smith will refer you to a plumber
I don't believe homeowner can buy these parts due to Federal regulations
The shorted FV sensor probably saved you a flash-over
The cost of 2nd degree burns from a flash-over would be astronomical.
Fortunately you're ok, and the other folk in the room are ok.
In the old days.
Two guys I knew, winter 1978 Chicago, were laying VA tile using the black mastic.
They were killed and the house burned down because of the water heater.
Main office marked the event with a memo saying they still owed money on their account.

The only company with a re-settable FVIR that I'm aware right now is Bradford White
http://www.thetankatwaterheaterrescue.com/forums/forum3/2679.html
http://411plumb.com/bradford-white-defender-water-heater-review
Bradford White Defender FVIR is resettable without buying parts.
324e006.jpg

Oct 24, 2010 | Water Heaters

2 Answers

Hosed basement floor. soaked flamable vapor sensor. Removed and dried sensor. control now in lockout. How do you get control out of lockout???


    Certain Rheem water gas water heater models feature electronic controls with a flammable vapor sensor installed on the bottom portion of the water heater unit. This sensor is designed to shut off your water heater system to prevent fires in case flammable vapors are present within the area. If your flammable vapor sensor caused your water heater to shut down, check the area immediately for leaking gas or other flammable products. Common household chemicals such as bleach can also trip the safety system as well as unsuccessful burner ignition attempts.


    White Rodgers Intelli-Vent PowerVent Control Equipped Models
  1. Step 1 Turn the water heater's blower switch off and disconnect the power cord for the water heater (refer to your particular model's operation guide for the exact location of the blower switch). Disconnect the Molex connector attached to the bottom of the control pad (the left most connector with five pins).
  2. Step 2 Turn on your multi-meter and set it to read resistance or "ohms". Connect one of the multi-meter's probes to the number two pin and the other probe to the number three pin of the Molex connector (middle black wires). If the reading on your multi-meter reads below 9k or above 45k ohms, the flammable vapor sensor is faulty and in need of replacement; you cannot reset the system until this issue is resolved.
  3. Step 3 Reconnect the Molex connector to the bottom of the control pad, reconnect the water heater's power if and turn the blower switch to the "ON" position. Press both the left and right buttons on the control pad at the same time. Wait for the green light on the control pad to blink and press the following buttons in sequence: Left, Right, Left, Left, Right, Left, Right, Right (you will need to perform these actions within 30 seconds of reconnecting the power cord to the water heater in order to be successful).

Jul 23, 2010 | Rheem Water Heaters

1 Answer

We have a Rheem powervent gas water heater (50 gallon). We can't seem to get the pilot light lit, it won't light at all. The Flammable vapor sensor code flashed. We had a fire in the basement but the tank...


yep, for certain it is the vapour sensor tripped by the paint fumes. I work in the hvac field, on service and at least half a dozen times a year, i go to no hot water calls, due to the sensor being tripped off by kitty litter. the sensor is designed to be as failsafe as possible. Any slight detection of vapor, that could potentially be combustible and the ignition sequence is locked.

Mar 14, 2010 | Rheem 50 Gallon FVR NATGAS Water Heater...

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