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Gas or exhaust odor when power vent water heater fires up

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Steve says:
November 30, 2010 at 12:43 pm
I installed a new power vented, induced draft, gas water heater. Works fine, except for when the unit fires up and only venting takes place, one can smell gas or exhaust. I take it from reading in your post: water heater PVC vent pipe, that my venting may be inappropriate (currently – 6" horizontal run from exterior wall with 45 degree elbow facing down).
Can it only be venting issue or is there other concern, with regards to the unit, that I need to be concerned about?
asked in Gas Water Heater by darekrudy (21,730 points)
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1 Answer

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Hi Steve,
With power vent water heaters you rarely smell exhaust inside the house. The induced draft motor should start some time before the burner kicks in and stop a while after the burner turns off. Check all the vent pipe connections – they must be air tight, and check the pipe for any obstructions (rodents, birds, etc).
If you smell gas after the burner kicks in, there might be a loose gas pipe at the regulator – between the regulator and the burner. Put some soapy water mixture on all gas pipe joints and look for bubbling.
answered by darekrudy (21,730 points)