Troubleshooting Guide

Troubleshooting Guide - Rheem

Water heater not operating as expected?

Here are answers to the most commonly asked Troubleshooting questions. For more troubleshooting tips use the search box below to access the “Save A Service Call” section of your Owner’s Guide, or call Rheem Service on 131 031.



  • Not enough hot water (or no hot water)?

    Is the electricity switched on?
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    Check the isolating switch (typically located at the switchboard) and next to the water heater (if installed) are both turned on
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    Check the fuse marked “HOT WATER” or “WATER HEATER” at the switchboard
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    Check the power cord is plugged in (if applicable) and is turned on

    Is there a timer on the power supply?
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    If a timer has been installed, ensure the settings allow sufficient time to reheat the storage tank to meet your hot water needs
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    Make sure that your energy tariff allows sufficient time to reheat the storage tank to meet your hot water needs

    Are you using more hot water than you think?
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    Monitor your hot water usage and check if any outlets (especially the showers) are using more hot water than you realise. It is easy to underestimate the amount of hot water being used. Look at these simple steps to saving hot water:
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    Monitor the length of time spent in the shower, it’s easy to spend longer than you realise!
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    Ask your plumber to install a water saving shower head. Your plumber can also fit flow control valves to your showers, basins and sinks to reduce water usage
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    Use cold water to wash your clothes
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    Visit the Save Water website for additional tips on how to reduce your hot water consumption in the home

    Is the Temperature Pressure Relief Valve running?
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    It is normal for your water heater to discharge a small amount of water during the heating cycle via the relief valve
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    If the relief valve is discharging too much water (more than a bucket full of water in 24 hours), please contact Rheem Service on 131 031 or your local plumber
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    Not sure where to find the Temperature Pressure Relief Valve?

    Is the thermostat setting correct?
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    Ensure that the thermostat setting is appropriate for your hot water needs. Your plumber can assist you with this. If you have an electric water heater, you may also choose to have your electrician adjust the thermostat upwards to gain additional hot water capacity
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    On some models (Rheem Optima® and domestic gas storage), you can adjust the temperature yourself - refer to the “Temperature Adjustment” section of the Installation Instructions for your model
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    On temperature limited models (e.g., RheemPlus® 50°C models) increasing the thermostat setting will not increase the outlet temperature but will provide more hot water capacity
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    On houses with tempering valves, increasing the thermostat setting will not increase the outlet temperature

    Warning: Hotter water increases the risk of scald injury

    Is the water heater size correct for your needs?
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    Using the Rheem Water Heater Selector, check that you have the right capacity water heater for your hot water needs
    It is easy to underestimate the amount of hot water being used. Look at these simple steps to saving hot water:
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    Monitor the length of time spent in the shower, it’s easy to spend longer than you realise!
    -
    Ask your plumber to install a water saving shower head. Your plumber can also fit flow control valves to your showers, basins and sinks to reduce water usage
    -
    Use cold water to wash your clothes
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    Visit the Save Water website for additional tips on how to reduce your hot water consumption in the home

    Is there cold water only running from the hot tap?
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    Close the hot tap, wait 10 seconds and open the hot tap again
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    Check that the hot tap is open enough – the burner in a gas Continuous Flow water heater may not light at very low flow rates, try opening the hot tap further
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    Check the power supply to the water heater is switched on. For Continuous Flow models, check that the power supply cord is plugged in and the power outlet is switched on
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    Check that power is available in the house. Try using another electrical appliance
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    If you have a gas water heater or gas boosted solar, check that the isolation valve in the gas line is open
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    If you have a gas water heater or gas boosted solar, check that there is a gas supply to the rest of the house. Try lighting another gas appliance
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    Check that your gas water heater ignites after the tap is opened. Please note that storage heaters may not light immediately
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    In most homes, there is some distance between the water heater and the taps. This is what is known as a “dead leg”. When it’s not being used, the water in the line goes cold and has to be drawn through before hot water is available at the tap. Keep the hot tap open a little longer to check if this may be the cause
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    If the problem continues, call Rheem Service on 131 031 or your plumber

    No water running from the hot tap?
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    Check there is cold water flow from a cold water tap. If not, check the main water isolation valve to the residence is turned on
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    Check the isolation valve on the cold supply line to the water heater is fully open
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    If the problem continues, call Rheem Service on 131 031 or your plumber

    Is the water flow fluctuating?
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    Check how many hot taps or appliances using hot water are in use. Depending on your model water heater, the number of taps or appliances (e.g. dishwasher or washing machine) in use at any one time may reduce the water flow
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    Check this by opening one hot tap only so that it is fully open, e.g. the shower. If the water flow is normal, then try to plan your water usage to reduce the number of hot taps or appliances in use at the same time
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    Check the Rheem Water Heater Selector to see which hot water system could better meet your needs

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  • Water temperature not right?

    Water temperature too high?
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    If your water heater is fitted with a temperature limiting valve set to deliver water at a specific temperature (e.g. RheemPlus® is set to 50°C) and the water is hotter than it should be, call Rheem Service on 131 031
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    If your hot water is hotter than it should be and you don’t have a temperature limiting valve installed, then you could:
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    Have the thermostat on your water heater adjusted downward (with a Rheem Optima® or gas storage water heater you can do this yourself). Please note that gas storage must be set no lower than 60°C and a gas continuous flow booster for a solar system must be set no lower than 70°C
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    Ask your plumber to install a 50°C temperature limiting valve
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    Consider purchasing a temperature limited water heater (eg, a RheemPlus® model or a factory pre-set 50°C Continuous Flow model)
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    Please note that extra care must be taken by all householders when using hot water until the valve is serviced or replaced

    Water not hot enough?
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    The water temperature may be lower than usual due to heavy hot water usage
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    Do you have a solar water heater? Check that the booster is being used as per the installation instructions for your model. If you have a timer installed, you will need to ensure that sufficient time is allowed to heat enough water to meet your household’s hot water needs
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    If you have a 50°C temperature limited water heater, then hot water to your whole house will be limited to 50°C

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  • Temperature pressure relief valve running?

    A temperature pressure relief valve is installed on storage water heaters. This valve protects the water heater, by relieving pressure and allowing water to escape, as the water inside the cylinder expands due to heating. Not sure where to find this valve?


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    Normal Operation
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    A small volume of water may discharge from the valve during the heating cycle. This is normal operation. However, if it discharges more than a bucket full of water in 24 hours, there may be another problem
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    Continuous Dribble
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    A continuous dribble may indicate a small particle of foreign matter may be caught in the valve. Try gently raising the easing lever on the relief valve for a few seconds. This may dislodge any particles and clear the fault. Release the lever gently
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    Steady flow for long periods (often at night)
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    This may indicate the mains water pressure sometimes rises above the designed pressure of the relief valve. Ask your installing plumber to fit a pressure limiting valve
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    Warning: Never replace the relief valve with one of a higher pressure rating
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    Heavy flows of hot water until water heater is cold - then stops until water reheats
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    An electric water heater must be switched off at the switchboard
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    If you have a gas water heater, the gas control must be turned off using the knob on top of the gas control thermostat
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    Phone Rheem Service on 131 031 or their nearest Accredited Service Agent to arrange for inspection
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  • Higher than expected electricity or gas bills?

    Keeping your energy bills down is really important. There are many things you can do to help. For example:
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    Electric water heaters on full tariff can be expensive to run. You may be able to switch to a lower cost “off peak” tariff. Check with your energy provider or ask your electrician / installer about options available to you.
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    High efficiency gas, solar and heat pump water heaters can be a lower running cost alternative, particularly compared to an electric water heater on continuous tariff or an older gas storage water heater. You may also be eligible for a government incentive if you're replacing an electric water heater with one of these high efficiency water heaters.


    Additionally, you should check the following:
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    Is the Temperature Pressure Relief Valve running excessively?
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    For a solar water heater, check if you’re using the booster heating unit properly / too frequently?
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    Are you using more hot water than you think (it’s especially easy when running a shower)? Carefully review the family’s hot water usage. Inexpensive flow control valves can be easily fitted to the shower outlets to reduce water usage
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    Is there a leaking hot water pipe, dripping hot water tap, etc? Even a small leak will waste a surprising quantity of hot water and electricity. Replace faulty tap washers, and have your plumber rectify any leaking pipe work
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    Has there been an increase in your family's hot water usage? An increase in hot water usage will result in an increase in water heater operation


    For more information, look up your model's Owners Guide, call Rheem Service on 131 031 or contact your local plumber
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  • Is my unit still under warranty?

    The major components, like the cylinders in storage water heaters, come with 5, 7 or 10 year domestic warranties; the heat exchanger in our continuous flow models come with a 10 year domestic warranty and our solar collectors come with up to 5 years domestic warranty, conditions apply. For more information, please go to the Warranty page on this website.
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  • How do I get a quote?
    If you need to replace an existing water heater, your local plumber or hot water specialist will be able to give you a quote.

    Remember it might be appropriate that your new water heater is a different model to your old water heater. Changes in family size (the number of users) may require a larger, or smaller water heater. Also there are government incentives available to move away from electric water heaters to solar, heat pumps or gas fired models. If the installation is in the major Australian cities Rheem Service (phone 131 031) can provide advice on the most suitable model for you and a price to install or replace.

    If you need service on any Rheem water heater or room heater ring our 131 031 number and you will be connected to the nearest Rheem Service office.

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  • What do I do if my water heater is leaking?
    Rheem heat pump water heaters and high efficiency gas storage water heaters will produce condensation as part of the normal operating conditions. Normally this condensation is drained to the exterior of the heater and may be noticeable as a small wet patch on the surrounding surface. Condensation will be at its highest level during humid conditions for heat pumps and colder ambient conditions for gas storage heaters.

    If the water leak is substantial (more than a bucket of water in 24 hours) and continuous, contact your local plumber or hot water specialist for assistance, or call Rheem Service on 131 031

    All water heaters will eventually fail and need replacing. For storage water heaters this is usually evident by water leaking from the storage tank continuously. You can often temporarily maintain the supply of hot water by turning off the cold water supply valve on the inlet to the water heater in between usage periods. You will need to contact your local plumber or hot water specialist for a replacement quote or call Rheem Service on 131 031 for advice on the appropriate replacement model
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