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Gravity Fed HWS Cutting Out

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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Gravity Fed HWS Cutting Out

    Hi All,

    We have just moved into grandma's place and are having issues with the gravity fed electric hot water system in the roof. When you run the bath tap, water initially comes out at a decent flow rate, then slows down and eventually cuts out. If the tap is closed again and re-opened a little while later, the same thing happens. It also happens in the shower and the laundry. The house had been vacant for a while. The tap to the hot water system is open and the system is getting power. Does any one have any suggestions on what to try, before I get a plumber in to replace the HWS. Thanks in advance.

    Dom.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by dominicw View Post
    Hi All,

    We have just moved into grandma's place and are having issues with the gravity fed electric hot water system in the roof. When you run the bath tap, water initially comes out at a decent flow rate, then slows down and eventually cuts out. If the tap is closed again and re-opened a little while later, the same thing happens. It also happens in the shower and the laundry. The house had been vacant for a while. The tap to the hot water system is open and the system is getting power. Does any one have any suggestions on what to try, before I get a plumber in to replace the HWS. Thanks in advance.

    Dom.
    What is happening is the flow into the hottie is not enough to equalise the flow out.

    It is most likely not the water heater but the Plumber needs to check the age and condition of it just the same,

    or you can see if you can find any date on the unit and come back to us .

    If the home has old gal pipes then they are most likely rusted internally and need to be replaced, however,

    it may be only where the brass tap is screwed to the gal pipe at the hottie, although I doubt it.

    Call the plumber.

  3. #3
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    The unit is as old as the house, so about 50 years old. The house has copper piping.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dominicw View Post
    The unit is as old as the house, so about 50 years old. The house has copper piping.
    Have you been in the ceiling and seen the copper all the way to the inlet of the heater ?

    If there is a lever valve on the side or top where the main cold supply comes in, then there could be a blockage there.

    Without seeing it that's about all I can tell you.

  5. #5
    Slow but rough Uncle Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclic View Post
    Have you been in the ceiling and seen the copper all the way to the inlet of the heater ?

    If there is a lever valve on the side or top where the main cold supply comes in, then there could be a blockage there.

    Without seeing it that's about all I can tell you.

    Possibly the ballcock valve is a partly blocked so the header tank isn't getting a full inflow. Or the pressure to the ballcock is very low.

  6. #6
    Daniel Morgan
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    Quote Originally Posted by dominicw View Post
    The tap to the hot water system is open
    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
    Or the pressure to the ballcock is very low.
    It might pay to also check/change the valve in the tap to the HWS, these don't get much use and could have fallen to bits.

    These bits can end up in the inlet to the ball/float valve reducing the flow.

    Turn the water off at the mains before opening that tap though.

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