Question about RELIANCE ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

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Our 40 Gallon Reliance 501 gas water heater stays lit for about 10 minutes and then goes out. Any idea what would cause this or how to fix it?

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Many problems are solved by replacing thermocouple, but usually pilot will not light if thermocouple is bad. And some Reliance water heaters, the thermocouple is grouped with TCO and not generic part from hardware store.
If the combustion chamber is sealed with gasket, you might need spare gasket on hand before taking out the burner assembly to replace thermocouple.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0aBPsNg6vo

Gas water heaters can malfunction for many reasons.
Service tech is best resource unless you have manual and can take time learning parts and how to replace.

Gas water heaters require periodic cleaning of combustion parts and tubes.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-install-gas-water-heater.html#troubleshoot

Other ez problems include:
Gas shut off valve not fully open and handle is not parallel with gas line, so gas is partially shut off
If water heater flooded, then replace heater.
Excess water vapor from bad venting rusted out the burner parts. Inspect burner for rust.
Not enough combustion air, for example the house was recently weather-tightened, or a louvered door replaced with solid door. Or air intake screen located on bottom of heater is clogged with lint or dust.
Very hot attic can cause pilot to go out.

Trace amounts of pool chemical, laundry chemical, process chemicals, wax, etc can cause damage to burner parts.
Low gas pressure can cause problem.
Air in the gas line.

Bad gas control valve.
If ECO was tripped, there should be no gas to pilot.
Gas control valve might have debris or water from gas line.

If FVIR event tripped FV sensor, that would explain problem, and you would need service technician.

If repairs cost more than $330, then buy and install new water heater yourself, same day.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-install-gas-water-heater.html

Upvote the help.
And take advantage of fixya expert assistance live.
For a price, expert works with you while you work on water heater or any do-it-yourself project.
Fixya is always less expensive than a service call.

Posted on May 24, 2011

Testimonial: "Thank you for your response. We ended up cleaning the burner parts the best we could and flushing the tank. Whatever it was it worked! Thx again."

  • Anonymous May 24, 2011

    Well good for you. And then the waiter serving your table, who 100% covered all the bases for answering a generalized question, who suggested cleaning burner parts, and gives you a link to troubleshooting/cleaning resources, who cannot know the DIY capabilities of the asker, and would not suggest a novice work on gas appliances for safety concerns, gets stiffed on the vote?

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Hot water tank wont heat water, how do you relight or resat, its a reliance self cleaning 808


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Dec 28, 2015 | Reliance Water Heaters

1 Answer

I have a Reliance gas 501 water heater model #5 40 PORT980. Yesterday, we had no warm water. I looked and the pilot lit was lit. I turned the temperature knob to very not and it lit the


Reliance
2nd and 3rd digit of serial number is year
C05 is 2005

What color is flame? Should be clear blue.
Pilot is burning so thermocouple is good, and sitting in pilot flame.
Pilot flame should be clear blue.
Otherwise clean burner parts.

Is water at tank hot??
If burner is not turning on, the gas control thermostat is probably bad.
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/How-to-replace-water-heater-gas-valve.pdf

Otherwise more information is needed.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-gas-water-heater.html

Sep 19, 2012 | Reliance Water Heaters

1 Answer

Reliant 501 Natural Gas won't stay lit


Reliance water heater?
Thermocouple is good if the pilot stays lit continuously.

501 is older model. Unknown if this unit has FVIR protection and sealed combustion chamber or open air intake on front of unit.
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/Reliance-2006-Service-Handbook.pdf

With FVIR protection:
Get more fresh air to the unit.
Clean the flame arrestor screen.
Test and replace the thermocouple:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-thermocouple.html
Inspect and clean burner and combustion parts
Test gas pressure, bleed air out of gas line.
Replace gas control valve.
Test draft air by lighting match and see if smoke is pulled into the vent pipe at draft hood on top of tank.

Aug 20, 2012 | Water Heaters

2 Answers

I don't have a problem, just a question.....we are in the process of buying ahome and the hot water heater is a Reliance 501, 50 gallon tank....with serial number G94278175...I would like to know the...


State, Kenmore, Reliance, Ace , Ambassador, Barnett, Century, Crosley, Energy Stretcher, Freedom, Freedom/Nipsco, Hardware House, Master Plumber/True 5, Mission, Nationaline, Patriot, Penfield, President, Regency, Century, The Plumbery, Thermo-king, TopLine
1-letter month followed by 2-digit year

So it was manufactued in 1994. Most water heaters will last 5-10 years for gas and 10-15 for electric unless they receive yearly maintenance (flushing tank, cleaning) so it is already past its expected life span.

That being said, an electric water heater is more costly than a gas one. If I was in your place I would start saving to replace the unit with a tankless gas water heater, as soon as the house closed.

Jun 09, 2011 | RELIANCE ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

1 Answer

I have a 40 gallon electric reliance water heater model no. 8 40 2ARS8 - serial no. M94566434 that I need dimensions for so that we can replace it with a new model. Thank you.


http://www.aosmith.com/OperatingUnits/Detail.aspx?id=138&ekmensel=c580fa7b_12_0_138_3
Reliance is an AO Smith company

http://www.reliancewaterheaters.com/prod/elec.html
Link above goes to Reliance electric water heaters
I cannot find your model number
The serial number seems to show it was made in 1994, so the spec sheet would be difficult to find
You must have bought a good heater and taken care of it for it to last that long.

http://www.reliancewaterheaters.com/lit/spec/electric/R606E0510.pdf

Typical 40 gallon Reliance electric:
18" x 59-1/2"
20-1/2" x 44"

http://www.reliancewaterheaters.com/lit/spec/electric/R909E0510.pdf
Self-cleaning type Reliance 40 gallon
19" x 60"
21-1/2" x 46"

The size of your heater can be determined by measuring the height, and then measure across the top to get the diameter. Your measurements will be close to the numbers shown above.

Oct 29, 2010 | RELIANCE ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

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