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Water Heater Smell

Woke up and smelled Burnt Beans Smell. Went to the basement and followed the smell to the furnace room. The smell was coming from the vent on top of the water heater. ( See Pictures ) What am I to do? Do i Need a new water heater or do I need to go on th eroof and see if the Flute is Clogged? I need help because It has caused headaches for my wife.

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Posted 2015-03-26T13:19:21+0000  by Drop Drop
This is one of those dangerous questions to diagnose without being there Drop!

What you describe sounds like either a gas leak or carbon monoxide backing up into your home.

There are sensors to test the area for CO, but whichever problem you face, this is what I would do:

1) Turn off your gas and water heater;
2) If the water heater is ready to be replaced, go ahead ... a replacement vent base comes with the new water heater;
3) If the water heater is not ready to be replaced, inspect the gas line and exhaust stack and seal leaks with aluminum foil HVAC tape;
4) Ensure the gas line connections are sealed with teflon tape or rectorseal;
5) Then purchase a carbon monoxide detector and operate in the room near the water heater; and
6) Turn the water heater back on and inspect several times over the first several days.

If you DIY, then you'll be able to eliminate the problem with these steps.

If you DIFM, your installer will eliminate the problem with the normal install procedure.

This repair is an 8.5 on a 1-to-10 scale where 10 is most difficult.
Posted 2015-03-26T17:15:01+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL
Carbon Monoxide is colorless and odorless.  Because natural gas is odorless, a chemical called Mercaptan is added to aid detection in case of a leak.  Many people describe Mercaptan has having the smell of rotten eggs.

Neither are something to fool around with and one of the symptom of carbon monoxide exposure is headaches.  Carbon monoxide detectors are readily available and the gas company will investigate leaks if you call them.
Posted 2015-03-27T01:51:32+0000  by Adam444
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