The pilot light on Bradford White goes out every few days, especially during the winter.

by Gail
(Rockland, MA)

My Bradford White MIMS30T6LX model was installed in my manufactured home about April of 2015. The water heater goes into a closet in the master bathroom and is a direct vent gas unit made for this type of installation in manufactured homes and, as I understand it, air intake comes from the bottom and the unit vents out the top.

I didn't have much of a problem until the furnace went on in the fall. My old Miller gas furnace had failed in March of 2015 and I wasn't able to get a new one (also Miller) installed until May, so it wasn't turned on except to test it until it got cold in the fall. The furnace is in a closet to the left of the door to the master bedroom and the bathroom with the water heater closet is on the far side of the bedroom and is the last room in the home. There is a window in the bathroom and one in the bedroom that opens and there are floor vents for the heat in both the bedroom and the bathroom which I keep mostly closed because it gets too hot to sleep. I also keep the bathroom window open about .5 to .75 inch.

The pilot light on the water heater began to go out every few days. I had the plumber and hvac contractor that I got it from come to check why it was happening several times and was charged $80-120 each time and no solution was offered except that extending the vent pipe on the roof might help. Then there was the suggestion that the furnace and the water heater were competing for air but no good ideas on how to fix that.

I spent most of the winter with no hot water because it was too expensive to have someone light the pilot every few days. Except for windy days, the pilot light stayed on pretty well during the summer but now it goes out about once a week. I found someone to relight it more cheaply and he also installed a taller chimney on the roof but it still goes out. I paid over $1600 dollars for the water heater and can't afford to get a new one now. I just found some bad reviews of the Bradford White products which I wished I had known about.

Any suggestions? I refuse to go through another winter with cold water. I'm going to get a lesson on lighting the pilot light myself even though it scares the heck out of me and I'm not very agile at 69 with a bad knee. I'm going broke and can't get the handyman to come all the time because he works out of town a lot.

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