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Whirlpool Thermopile Failure after 2 years
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- I had a Whirlpool Natural Gas Water Heater professionally installed on 2-27-2107. This unit came with a Honeywell controller and thermopile assembly. today is 05-18-2019 and the unit is not inoperative. The pilot is lit but the burner won't lite. I need a new thermopile assembly and it is not a readily available part.

Here are the issues that I have come across so far:
1. When I go to the Whirlpool website there is no direct link to Whirlpool water heaters, just kitchen appliances and washer/dryers
2. When I click on parts and accessories link it gives links to washers, dryers or pedestals. information about water heaters
3. I scroll down to the bottom of this page and I see a link to "All Replacement Parts". When I click that it takes me to another site managed by "RepairClinic"
4. When I enter the model number for the water heater it says Not Found
5. I entered the Part number for the Thermopile on the tag on the orange wire #321165-002 and 100078039 and again it returns as Part NoT Found

For anyone that reads this, the correct part number you need for a new thermopile assembly is 100112330.

It's obvious that Whirlpool is putting little effort into supporting their water heaters or their customers, and that the quality of their product is significantly below acceptable or industry standards.

I called their support line and they were able to order the thermopile assembly for $55 plus $27.95 in shipping to get it here by Tuesday. Today is Saturday. So that means almost 4 days without hot water.

And...since this water heater was a warranty replacement for a previous one that went bad they will not cover the cost of replacement parts for the thermopile

Lesson Learned: No more Whirlpool purchases for any of their appliances.

Gas Water Heater
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

I bought a Whirlpool Water Heater dated November 2004. Of course it is out of warranty, but I need to share my horrible experience and tell why I will never again purchase a Whirlpool product. The thermocouple on my Flame Guard Water Heater (WH), needed to be replaced. This t-couple made by Whirlpool is LEFT hand threaded. I guess I should have known that, and after trying to remove it for a long time I then noticed that that there was a very small tag on the thermocouple (T-couple),that says that it is.

Ok, my bad. So I go to Lowe's where I bought it for a replacement. The guy at Lowes says that I can only get that t-couple from Whirlpool. He said that since Lowes had so many problems with Whirlpool WH's that they stocked conversion kits themselves. He would need a special number from Whirlpool. Mind you, Lowes was willing to GIVE me the conversion kit for FREE!

So I go back home and call Whirlpool. Tech support said they no longer make the t-couple and that I would need a conversion kit. I told him that I needed a number for the kit for my guy at Lowes. Tech guy at Whirlpool didn't know what I was talking about, but he gave me the part # for the conversion kit. - Q: Why would Whirlpool make a 'back threaded' that was available only from them, and then stop making it long before any of the WH's would become outdated?

So I go back to Lowes and the guy said that was not the number he needed. So he calls Whirlpool himself and gets the number. This conversion kit was the only one that the guy at Lowes did not have in stock. So I go back home can call Lowes again. The conversion kit costed my about $44 including shipping. (Over night would have been about $80). And of course this would be on a Friday so I had to wait over the weekend during the coldest days of the winter.

When the kit arrived it was only then that I found out that while I was tightening the old t-couple trying to remove it, I STRIPPED THE VALVE on the WH. This means that now the entire valve had to be changed. That part costs $190 alone! So to make a long story short, a job that what should have cost me about $8 for a t-couple ended up costing me $230 in parts, and more in labor.

In case you are wondering why I did it, this was still cheaper than the cost of a 50 gallon tank and installation by a plumber. Whirlpool just lost a customer because the bean counters don't care about people. The conversion kit should have been made available for free to any one who owns the tank warranty or not because Whirlpool knows they screwed up. NEVER AGAIN Whirlpool!

Company Response 12/05/2017:

Whirlpool water heaters are manufactured through a licensing agreement with American Water Heater Corporation. Per their legally binding agreement, they have requested that all customer concerns be directed to them. You can use this link, or you can call (877) 817-6750 for further assistance.

Whrilpool Electric Water Heater Does Not Work Well
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

After flooding in 2016, I purchased a Whrilpool 38 gallon electric water heater to replace the unit that flooded. I wanted a Rheem, but this was the only low boy unit I could find in my area. I've only had this unit installed a year and a half and it was problematic from the beginning. There are only 2 of us in the house and if both of us took a shower at the same time, the water would go lukewarm or we'd run out of water altogether. Our previous unit was a 40 gallon Rheem and didn't have this problem.

I called the phone number on the unit and after talking to the support representative, he thought I might have a bad lower element. It was still under warranty for parts, so I decided to replace it myself. He sent me an email and told me to go to any Lowe's (where I bought it from) store and show them the email and they would give me a new element for free under the warranty.

When I went to Lowe's, I showed them the email and they put something into their computer and found no record of it and had to get a manager to help me. He said he couldn't give to me under warranty because it wasn't in their system, but he would do so anyway and just mark it in the book that they used it on a display item and since it was only a $7 part, it shouldn't be a problem. He also told me they don't even sell the Whirlpool water heaters anymore, they now sell A.O. Smith, which he suspected were probably the Whirlpool units with a different name on them.

I replaced the element and found the lower element was corroded, which didn't make sense on a unit that had only been in operation a little over a year. This didn't help with the problem much, but we still ended up with lukewarm water halfway through our showers. A plumber suggested it could be bad elements or thermostats, so I bought a "tune up kit" at Home Depot and replaced the top element and both thermostats, but the problem persisted. Even setting a higher temperature didn't help.

After a year and a half, we had enough and ordered a Rheem unit from Home Depot, had a plumber install it, and put the Whirlpool out on the curb. After our experience, we don't recommend a Whirlpool water heater and after having to jump through hoops for a $7 part, I wouldn't recommend buying a water heater from Lowe's either.

Costly Repairs after 1.9 years of service
By -

Dear Sir or Madam: On June 15th, 2002, I purchased your Whirlpool Gas Water Heater with Flame Lock Safety System (model number FG1H4040T, product number 0730138, serial number 0215119499) at Lowe's. The exact store location is 5125 West Main Street, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 49002. Their phone number is (269)345-2110. Cost of the unit was $268.00, and there was a rebate at that time, although I do not recall the exact amount of the rebate. I installed the water heater per instruction and it has worked perfectly until last Thursday, March 4th, 2003.

My wife noticed during that day that the hot water coming out of the faucets was luke warm. I checked the water heater and found that the pilot light was out and the burner was not operating. I attempted to reset the pilot and restart the water heater. I followed the instruction per the operation manual for re-lighting the water heater. I held the reset button down and depressed the igniter button until the pilot relit. After holding the reset button down for 1 minute, I released the button, which caused the pilot to go out. I attempted this several times.

After several unsuccessful attempts to restart the water heater, I contacted the gas company to check the lines. They did, and everything was in working order. I then called a local heating and cooling company to come out and service the unit. The company was not an authorized Whirlpool repair facility, but because they were local and might be able to locate the problem easily in addition to not knowing it needed parts for the repair, we requested that they take a look. After they inspected the gas lines and found one small leak in a shutoff valve (Which they replaced), they were also unsuccessful in being able to relight the water heater.

They believed that the Flame lock Thermocouple was bad and suggested that it be replaced. Since Whirlpool uses reversed thread thermocouples, they did not have a suitable replacement part. My wife contacted your customer service department and they provided her with an authorization number ** for a replacement thermocouple at no charge to us. I was able to pick one up at Lowe's. The thermocouple was replaced, but the pilot light would continue to go out when the reset button was released after being relit. This repair occurred Friday evening.

On Saturday, March 6th, we made several calls to Lowe's and your customer service department in an attempt to locate a Whirlpool authorized service provider. Because of the weekend, it was difficult to find a service company open; however we were able to locate Northside Heating and Cooling in Muskegon, Michigan. They were an hour and a half away. Knowing that the service call would be more expensive for that reason, as well as being a weekend, we still were happy to have them come repair the unit. ** from Northside came out to repair the water heater.

Per his description of the work, the water heater was not sensing flame. He replaced the gas valve and installed a second thermocouple. He checked the gas lines, draft, plus the unit and found them to be good working order. He was able to restart the water heater. Although the parts were covered under warranty, labor for the repair was $393.75. I find that amount outrageous and far more than what I paid for the water heater itself. To add insult to injury, 30 minutes after he left, the unit failed again, and I could not get it relit. With the same symptoms as before, I contacted ** again, and was told that he did everything he could do to repair the unit.

He suggested I contact Whirlpool. I did, and I spoke to a customer service rep that stated to me that he obviously did not fix the unit and to have him come back and do so. When I mentioned that this unit had a 9 year warranty, I was told that the warranty covered the tank only. Obviously, the tank is not the issue. I contacted ** again, and after some trepidation on his part, he agreed to come back Monday to look at the unit again.

This means that either my wife or I will miss a second day of work waiting to have the water heater repaired... hopefully repaired. We also contacted the Lowe's store where we purchased the water heater to inquire what recourse we have with this faulty unit. They took our information, and were going to inquire to Whirlpool for resolution.

So here's where I'm at. I will wait until Monday and see if Northside can get the water heater functioning again. If they can not, then I am forced to replace this unit. After 4 days of cold water, and a water heater that is only 1.9 years old, I am extremely displeased with the level of reliability and service I have received from Whirlpool. I appreciate not having to pay for parts, but the lack of assistance and outright poor attitude from Whirlpool has given me a bad taste. If I have to replace the water heater, I promise you it won't be a Whirlpool.

The name Whirlpool will never again grace this household. In addition, I will find every internet based consumer advocacy group I can find and post this letter. I would not wish this level of frustration upon my worst enemy. I hope no one has to go through such a finger pointing exercise. I do not expect much of a response from Whirlpool, if their customer service is a reflection of the company's attitude. But I'm writing this letter in as much for the therapeutic effect as for any kind of resolution it might bring.

Poor Customer Service
By -

MACON, ILLINOIS -- I purchased a flame lock water heater on March 13, 2004 from Lowes in Forsyth, IL. We installed the water heater Nov. 19, 2004. On Dec.31, 2004 the thermocouple burnt out. I called my son-in-law, as luck would have it, he was at Lowes and stated he knew what the problem was and he would pick up a thermocouple and he installed it for us. The reason he knew what was wrong, he owns the same water heater and has now replaced 4 thermocouples in less than 7 months. The last one lasted 10 days. I went to Lowes a few days later to speak with the manager about the problem with the water heaters, and was told he was in a meeting.

I talked with a zone manager and preceded to tell him about the defective water heater, and asked for Lowes help to resolve my issue. I explained I was told by Lowe employees that this is an ongoing issue and they have passed out hundreds of cases of thermocouples. I also advised him that I did not want to have to drive 40 miles round trip to replace the thermocouple every 6 weeks. He was quite nice and took my name and number and stated he would call Whirlpool and let me know what they said. I told him I was calling Whirlpool also. He refunded the money I paid for the thermocouple, and gave me a spare, and apologized for the inconvenience.

I sent Whirlpool an e-mail because they were closed for the Holiday. I did receive a call from American Water Heater Co. which I found out makes Whirlpool water heaters. He asked me a series of questions to determine why the thermocouple burned out. He had me to do a draft test to determine if there was enough air flow. He stated the flame should be going directly into the vent. Since I only had a lighter and not a match to test, it was difficult to determine because I had to turn the lighter sideways, and the flame only wanted to go straight up.

He determined that it was an installation problem. I explained to him about all the thermocouples they were replacing at Lowes and there was no way, that all of these water heaters were improperly installed. I stated to him I believe it is a design defect or a manufacturing defect. He stated that was my opinion and we hung up. I contacted Whirlpool customer service again by phone and was transferred to Am. Wtr. Htr Co. again. The CSR told me the same thing. It is an installation problem, advised me to send copies of the water heater, the area it was in, my furnace and the vents.

I sent these over 3 weeks ago, and still have not heard from anyone. Eight days ago I contacted Whirlpool again by e-mail and have not heard from anyone. This is the poorest customer service I have ever encountered. I am going to return the water heater back to Lowes and get my money back. I would not recommend Whirlpool products to anyone, and I will never buy another one of there products.

Wiring Panel on 5 Year Old Whirlpool Heater Shorted Out and Almost Burned Down the House
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

BENTON HARBOR, MI -- We have a Whirlpool heater in my apartment installed since 2014 when it was manufactured, probably four or five years ago. I watched the landlord installed it. Yesterday morning the upper wiring panel on the thing shorted out, started a fire, and almost burned the building down. It has the appearance of a poorly connected wire to a screw. This was a panel the manufacturer wired, not the panel on top of the heater where my landlord connected the power cord. We have not even gone into this panel; the temperature control dial is in the bottom panel. It looks like poor quality control in manufacturing.

It was Model E1F50RDC45D, product number 100028511. Whirlpool hot water heater with two black panels on the front; top for their wiring and bottom has the temperature dial, connectors to household power are in a separate panel on top. If Whirlpool answers this by saying I complained about the wrong company, this seems to be their standard answer and it's certainly consistent with the quality of their products. Don't even try it Whirlpool. I'm putting terrible reviews of you AND your product everywhere I can find and won't be back here. GET it together. Don't burn down peoples' houses and you'll not get bad reviews!

Defective Product
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY -- Bought a Whirlpool water in 2013 model N40S61-403 from Lowe's. The thermostat control valve is a Honeywell with model WV8840B1109. Pilot light went out last night and will have to be replaced. Plumber said it would be more cost effective to replace entire water heater as installing replacement control would be in excess of $300. Whirlpool's website is difficult to navigate.

Honeywell said Whirlpool needs to take care of this - not them. Apparently, there are many problems with this unit. I researched online and there are thousands of results about problems with this unit - over 500,000 results on Google. Pilot light sparks but will not stay lit. It's a defective product. Don't buy this product.

Company Response 12/05/2017:

Whirlpool water heaters are manufactured through a licensing agreement with American Water Heater Corporation. Per their legally binding agreement, they have requested that all customer concerns be directed to them. You can use this link, or you can call (877) 817-6750 for further assistance.

Hot Water Heater Is a Piece of Junk
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO -- BUYER BEWARE! One year ago I purchased a 40 gal. Whirlpool hot water heater and it is already malfunctioning. I called Customer Service and they were happy to send replacement parts. I would pay the shipping and installation charge. They also went on and on about how I should service the unit every six months. I explained that I could not afford to deal with such a high maintenance unit.

Long story short, THEY CONTINUED TO BABBLE ABOUT RECOMMENDATION TO REPEATEDLY SERVICE THIS UNIT. That is NOT a solution. I would NOT recommend purchasing any Whirlpool product and I will recommend the Lowe's find another manufacturer who is willing to stand by their product.

Don't Buy Whirlpool Water Heater
By -

I am writing in regard to a Whirlpool water heater (Model #FG1F4034T3NOV) that we purchased from Lowe's in May 2004. The water heater stopped working on a Saturday morning (11/1/08). We tried lighting the pilot light several times, but it would not stay on. When we called Lowe's, they gave us a 1-800 number to call, but, we were not able to reach anyone at that number until Monday morning (already two days without hot water).

I was told that there was a defect in these models and that we would need to obtain a part and either install it ourselves or have someone install it, so that our water heater would work properly again. I was told that I could pay $15 to have the part mailed to me and probably would receive it the next day.

This, to me, was unacceptable. We have a family of four who had already been without hot water for 3 days and now I was going to have to pay for a part to be shipped and wait another 2 days for hot water! The man on the phone said I could go to Lowe's and the part would be available free of charge. It was then up to me to install it or “if I didn't feel comfortable doing so” I could hire someone to install it. I went Lowe's. They didn't know what I was talking about, but vaguely remembered this happening to another customer.

They called another Lowe's store and that store said that they weren't sure, but they might have the part I was talking about. At this point, I was very frustrated. If this was a problem with these models, why wouldn't Whirlpool make the parts more available and make their retail distributors more aware that customers may be looking for this part??? I then drove 35 miles round trip to get the part.

When I opened it up, I realized there was no way I could install this part myself… why would they even suggest that the customer install this on their own? I called a plumber that would be able to come before closing time that day (trying to avoid after-hours charges and trying to get hot water before yet another day went by!).

The plumber was quite familiar with this model and this problem with the thermocouple (which tells me this is probably a widespread problem with this model). The plumber charged me $221 to install the part and make sure the water heater was operating properly. I was relieved to have hot water, but angry that we had to pay money for this problem that was not our responsibility!

I don't understand how you as a reputable company (not reputable in my eyes anymore) can not take responsibility for a defect in one of your products. Why should the consumer have to pay the price of fixing a defect in a product that we bought just 4 years ago and is still under warranty? We felt confident that we were buying a quality product and that Whirlpool would stand behind their products, but now I feel very differently. I will not buy Whirlpool products anymore.

Do Not Buy Whirlpool Gas Water Heater, They Are Junk!!!!!!
By -

CALIFORNIA -- I have purchased a Whirlpool 50 gallons Gas Water Heater model # BFG1H5040T3Nov on Jan. 12, 2008 at Lowe's. The water heater only lasted for 2 and half months. Then I have problem with the pilot light won't stay lit. I called the Whirlpool 1-877-817-6750 number on March 25, 2008 (Tuesday). They gave me another phone number to call, which turned out to be Sears. The Sears technician came out on the next day Wednesday around noon time; he changed some kind of wire around the switch area.

After he left, in the same day afternoon, I found out that the problem still occurred and hasn't been fixed. So I call Sears back at around 4 p.m. to have the technician come back. They told me that the technician might give me a call back. If not then I will have to call back tomorrow to make an appointment. I asked why can't I make an appointment now. They told me that the technician hasn't close the report and the day hasn't end yet. The computer system won't allow them to make an appointment.

I called Sears again at 8 p.m. hoping to make an appointment for the next day Thursday, but they told me they can't make an appointment because the day hasn't end. So I called them back at 2 a.m. at night. I was surprised that someone actually answer the phone. I told him I want to make an appointment. He said that not until Friday.

I was so mad, because I already don't have hot water for 3 days. Now I have to wait another 2 days. I told him that I can't wait another day because I have been taking cold shower, and also it's their technician's fault for not fixing my water heater correctly in the first place. He said he can't do anything about it, the earliest time is Friday, or else I have to call the plumber on my own.

So on Thursday I called Lowe's and sees if I can return the water heater since the return policy on the back of the receipt said 90 days. I called Lowe's and asked for to speak with the return department, the store associate answer the phone named **. I told him about what happen with the water heater, he said, "Well, if you already called Whirlpool and they turned you down, then you can bring back the water heater."

So I brought back the water heater to return, but the manager named ** told me I can't return it, because I need to have the RA number from Whirlpool. I told her that I called before; the guy named ** told me that I can. Then ** the manager told me that when I called, I should have asked to speak with the manager. ** is just a cashier, and he doesn't know the policy.

So now the Lowe's Manager ** putting the BLAME on me that I should have ask for a manager, which I think that Lowe's should train their employees right, because if the store associates at the Return Department don't even know the return policy, then they should not even be there. I would NEVER shop at LOWE'S or Sears and NEVER buy any Whirlpool JUNKs!!!!!!!!

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Whirlpool Water Heaters Rating:
Star Empty star Empty star Empty star Empty star
1.0 out of 5, based on 14 ratings and
64 reviews & complaints.
Contact Information:
2000 North M63
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
616-923-5000 (ph)
616-923-5038 (fax)
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