Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

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    wprager
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    Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:36 am

    OK, rather than starting yet another thread on a very specific topic, which would probably die out after a couple of replies, I thought I'd start something more generic. We have lots of members with a lot of experience in all different areas, and many (most?) are homeowners who have probably faced the issue you may be having now. So, ask away. I'll start.

    A few days ago, the first day of exams for my oldest, of course, we woke up to find no hot water. None at all. I've had an issue with my temperature regulator switch in the past where it didn't "trigger" if there wasn't enough volume of water going through -- basically, the hot water would run cold until I opened another tap or ran the shower or whatnot; the best one to "fix" this issue was the soaker tub in the main ensuite, as it would produce the bet flow. However this time even that didn't help. Eventually I went to the basement and saw that the diagnostic light at the bottom of the water tank (a small unit where the gas line attached) was flashing red. I read the stick-on instructions which said that, if it was solid red, to shut off the gas and call someone, but if it was just flashing red, to "follow the instructions". Looking around, the only instructions I saw were the startup ones. So I followed them to turn off the power (unplug the cord), turn the gas off and the temperature know to lowest setting, then turn the power back on, turn the gas switch on, then finally turn the temperature switch to the desired position. The burner started up again, I didn't blow anything up, and a little while later we had some warm water (too late for my son, but his exams went fine, regardless of his appearance).

    So the questions I have:
    - What could have caused this? We had really, really cold weather for a few days in a row leading to this. Could that be somehow related?
    - Should I call someone to check it out? The hot water tank is a rental unit. The "instructions" did not say anything about any follow up.


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:41 am

    And another issue. Yesterday when my wife got home, as the garage door was closign I heard it thump down to the ground pretty loudly. She took a look to make sure the car wasn't sticking out or something like that, but everything appeared fine.

    This morning when I clicked to open the door, it lifted up a little, then stopped. I had to "assist" it to get the door up. This is a double-door but really think, so not that heavy. When I got back I watched it closely as it closed. It appeared to be traveling a lot faster than usual, then it slammed into the floor and reversed before stopping a foot off the ground. I tried a few more times and managed to get it to stop almost in the correct place (still a slight gap under it). And that's when I noticed that the spring on the left hand side was split in two pieces. I know that's not good and nothing that I could fix.

    Can anyone recommend a good garage door repairman who could do this job, preferably based in Kanata?


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by tim1_2 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:43 am

    I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by SeawaySensFan on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:43 am

    wprager wrote:And another issue. Yesterday when my wife got home, as the garage door was closign I heard it thump down to the ground pretty loudly. She took a look to make sure the car wasn't sticking out or something like that, but everything appeared fine.

    This morning when I clicked to open the door, it lifted up a little, then stopped. I had to "assist" it to get the door up. This is a double-door but really think, so not that heavy. When I got back I watched it closely as it closed. It appeared to be traveling a lot faster than usual, then it slammed into the floor and reversed before stopping a foot off the ground. I tried a few more times and managed to get it to stop almost in the correct place (still a slight gap under it). And that's when I noticed that the spring on the left hand side was split in two pieces. I know that's not good and nothing that I could fix.

    Can anyone recommend a good garage door repairman who could do this job, preferably based in Kanata?

    I'll fix it for you for 600.00 bucks plus parts.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by SeawaySensFan on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:45 am

    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by tim1_2 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:46 am

    wprager wrote:
    Can anyone recommend a good garage door repairman who could do this job, preferably based in Kanata?

    Yeah, don't fix a spring by yourself...it can be quite dangerous. I'm in Stittsville, and I've used http://www.garagerepair.ca/ with success.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by tim1_2 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:47 am

    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?

    Yeah, which is good, but if you purchase a reliable unit, it shouldn't need service until it's well past the point of paying you back in rental fees.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:50 am

    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    I think it's been a while since you've seen a hot water tank rental bill. Or maybe it's different in PQ (in Ontario the typical hot water tank is gas-fired; I think electrical ones are probably a lot cheaper and have lower maintenance costs). Rental is over $40/month with taxes.


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:51 am

    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?

    There is always the fine print. They'll probably charge for the labor but not parts.

    Oh, and the unit is about 5 years old, so not ready for retirement yet.


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by SeawaySensFan on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:51 am

    tim1_2 wrote:
    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?

    Yeah, which is good, but if you purchase a reliable unit, it shouldn't need service until it's well past the point of paying you back in rental fees.

    Agreed but I was curious. Once mine craps out I'm getting an instant heater.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by tim1_2 on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:52 am

    You rental is $40 / month? You are getting ripped off and should just buy a new one. Mine is $20 + tax.
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:56 am

    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:
    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?

    Yeah, which is good, but if you purchase a reliable unit, it shouldn't need service until it's well past the point of paying you back in rental fees.

    Agreed but I was curious. Once mine craps out I'm getting an instant heater.

    I've asked around about those ones. Not all I heard was good news. You won't save on energy costs, especially for a family like mine (6 people). You're better off with a tank (in my case, probably a bigger tank). And they are very expensive to begin with.


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by wprager on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:02 am

    tim1_2 wrote:You rental is $40 / month? You are getting ripped off and should just buy a new one. Mine is $20 + tax.

    What size is yours? Who are you renting from?


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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by NEELY on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:02 am

    Well I used to install and repair furnaces. water tanks, AC's, etc, lol. Have my gas and oil licenses so maybe I can help out...

    If the water tank is a rental then just call who ever you are renting from. Chances are it's Direct Energy. It's their tank and if you are not getting any hot water then they should be able to either A) come in and fix it by putting in a new gas valve, thermocouple, or w/e it is that's wrong with it. Or B) they come in and replace it. All of this at no charge as is it part of the rental agreement.

    How old is the water tank if you don't mind me asking? Is it directly vented outside or does it use a chimney to pull the flu gases?

    Also, I will add the weather has nothing to do with not having hot water short of a down draft in your chimney blowing out the pilot light if that is indeed the appliance you have.

    I would also suggest going out and checking the termination of your flu pipe if it is direct vent, sometimes in the winter snow build up or ice will cause blockage and a safety will then cause the hot water tank "not to work". So before you call, just make sure there is no ice, snow, or any other obstruction at the termination of the flu outside. Saves everyone time this way, they don't have to show up and you don't have to wait.


    Last edited by NEELY on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: Random household issues -- questions asked and answered here

    Post by SeawaySensFan on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:03 am

    wprager wrote:
    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:
    SeawaySensFan wrote:
    tim1_2 wrote:I don't have much experience with hot water tanks, but if it happens again, I'd call someone. Also, if it needs replacement, I'd recommend doing a bit of research and actually purchasing a reliable unit. The typical rental charge for a hot water tank is around $20 / month which ends up being a rip off.

    Don't you get free service with rentals?

    Yeah, which is good, but if you purchase a reliable unit, it shouldn't need service until it's well past the point of paying you back in rental fees.

    Agreed but I was curious. Once mine craps out I'm getting an instant heater.

    I've asked around about those ones. Not all I heard was good news. You won't save on energy costs, especially for a family like mine (6 people). You're better off with a tank (in my case, probably a bigger tank). And they are very expensive to begin with.

    I have well water and a lot of Dung accumulates in a tank. I think this is just a better solution for me. I've seen them for sale used but, yes, they are expensive for sure.

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