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Will, President & Small Business Owner
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 342
Experience:  Thirty years experience in electrical, electronic, and mechanical device repair,
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i have an AO Smith ProMax GVR 50 water heater. the pilot will

Customer Question

i have an AO Smith ProMax GVR 50 water heater. the pilot will stay lit forever unless the burner comes on. The burner will stay on for about a minute or so but then the temp controller clicks and shuts off all gas. i can re-light the pilot and the burner but again, after a minute or so it shuts off. the combustion air screens are clean and the flame is blue...until it shuts off.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  John replied 6 years ago.

First, check the thermocouple connection at the gas valve to make sure it's clean and tight. If it seems OK, you'll need to remove the burner assembly. After removing the mounting screws on each side, pull it out, while wiggling it back and forth to remove it. You'll need to shut off the inline gas valve, and disconnect the gas line before you start.

After the burner assembly is removed, check to make sure the pilot assembly is as close the the burner as possible. If there's soot and/or dust on the assembly, vacuum it off.

If, after the burner assembly is reinstalled, it still does'nt work correctly, you'll need to replace the pilot assembly. The part number for natural gas is 183824-180, and for propane is 183824-182.


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Customer: replied 6 years ago.

In my description of the things I had done, the thermocouple had been tested. That is not the problem. The burner assembly was fine.


Thanks anyway.

Expert:  Will replied 6 years ago.
If the thermocouple was tested correctly it will show good for the current ambient temps and will measure out at the correct resistance, but it is a bimetal device and the cure is usually the thermocouple, however if you are absolute on the thermocouple, then how tight is the home? A change in outside air pressure on a well insulated stucture can create a down draft and blow the pilot out, also the position of the end of the couple must be as instructed by the manufacturer, it it is too far away [and they can be set usually by a clamping device] from the flame it cools off too quicly giving a false e gisignal to the gas valve giving the valve a false negative indicating no or low flame, also has the pressure of the gas been checked? Low gas pressure caused by many possible situations beyond your control will lower the gas pressure, causing both the valve and thermo couple [even a new one] to malfunction as there is not enough pressure or volume to provide enough flame just the opposite if the pressure is too great it could blow out the pilot flame, but is sounds like a mechanical condition where the burner ignites and is either too low or too high, also although you have cleaned the ducts the whole assembly might need to be removed and cleaned, such as in delayed ignites where you hear a bang when the flame of the couple finally finds the gas from the burner, pre iginition is the term but delayed ignition is the reality I found a testamonial for you:

I have had the same issue CONSTANTLY I replaced everything . HERE'S THE SOLUTION !!!!!!!!!!!!!!I have talked to every plumber there is. The SOLUTION!!! that Dang ceramic filter was Plugged ! the top was full of rust and the bottom full of dust. I took the whole burner out and sucked all debris first then blew it all out then cleaned again. then put back together.. I have seen a good flame on the burner till now BUT WOW what a difference !!!! this is the problem for sure !! I had every symptom mentioned now it ignites without fail and stays lit

Expert:  Will replied 6 years ago.
So remove the entire burner unit and vacuum the entire assembly, based on an old cabin I had and this solution for your specific model it makes perfect sense