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Thread: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

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    New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    I had a new Hayward Heater (H400) installed today. The heater initially fire up fine. Reached 100 degrees on the spa, cooled to 93 I when I checked the heater the "IF" (ignition failure) was blinking. I tried firing it again with the same result. An hour later, after it recirculated the pool water into the system which was cold, the heater fired up. I didn't let it get to 100 degrees this time but rather called the installer. He came back out to look at it and told me that it runs for a bit and then looses gas supply.
    He is going to call Hayward on Monday. In the mean time, I am trying to troubleshoot myself.

    My previous heater which died after ten years had a similar problem towards the end if its life. When we moved into the house two years ago everything worked fine. Several months ago I noticed the heater would get the spa to temp but would not kick back on when the temp dropped.

    Do I need to have a pressure drop test done? Problem with the gas line or the heater?

    Any thoughts?

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    How big was the old heater? Was it quite a bit smaller or was it the same BTU?
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    250,000
    I had two separate qutoes and both told me that the line could handle the 400,000

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Is it natural gas or propane? 400k might need a little bigger line. How big is your line now?
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Natural. Not sure the size. How do I measure?
    It is a 3/4 inch pipe.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Well, you look at the pipe going into the heater. If you're not used to looking at pipe size it might be a little tough.
    According to Hayward, you need a 1 inch line for a 250k, and inch and a quarter for 400k. Doesnt sound like much, but it could make a difference. Is it a 2 stage or single stage system? If its 2 stage there would be a second regulator near the heater. How far from the meter is the heater?
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    3/4" for how long? More than 5' and you will starve it. The main run needs to be 1.5" up to 125 feet and 2" beyond that. The 3/4" is just to get from the regulator to the feed.

    Are you sure the gas meter can handle the load? It has to have the capacity to handle ALL gas appliances running simultaneously.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    I think your pipe size is too small by half an inch. Of course it depends on the pressure too.
    That 400k will really pull the gas. Is it single or 2 stage?
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    It does appear to be a two stage. There is a regulator about a foot from the heater. It is dark here so I am going to have to look at the meter when it is light out.

    What I am trying to determine is how big the line is. The gas pipe comes up out of the ground about two feet from the heater, there is a regulator and then the the pipe to the heater which is a 3/4 inch connection into the heater. Is the pipe before the regulator the main line that I need to determine the size of? While it also say on my gas heater the btu's it handles?

    Thanks so much for all your help thus far.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    No, the meter wont say. Ultimately, you'll need someone to use a manometer to measure the gas pressure at the heater. You need about 3 inchs of water column at the heater. If its lower than that, the heater is starved for gas.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Lets make sure that when a 2 Stage system is mentioned, we are all on the same definition.

    My understanding of a two stage system is on that takes high pressure from the house meter(this is not normal) and drops it to a medium pressure. The medium pressure is feeding another meter that drops it to a lower, normal pressure before feeding the device's regulator.

    Such a system may server a multiple unit dwelling building or large restaurant but not normally a house. Homes are typically fed from the street to the home's meter and distributed directly to each device's own ON/OFF regulators.

    Side Note:
    NJ Nat Gas used to have a program where a pool heater got it's own regulator for reduced, off home-heating season use(i.e Summer) but did away with that several years ago. Both of these regulators were fed in parallel from the street. Other gas companies may do or have done this too. End Of Side Note.

    When too much 3/4" pipe is used, the pressure in the 3/4" pipe drops. Because the pressure in the pipe is pretty low to begin with, the delay in re-pressurizing the pipe is enough that the device, the pool heater, is starved. The larger pipe behind the 3/4" will not suffer as large a pressure drop and sufficient gas pressure is available for the heater.

    As bk204 suggested, a manometer will be needed to test the static pressure and the under load pressure of the supply side of the device's regulator. If they check out, then the pressure on the discharge side will need to be tested. If that side fails, the regulator is faulty. If the under load supply side fails but the plumbing is of sufficient size, the home meter is over loaded and needs an upgrade.

    HTH

    Scott

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Scott,

    2 stage NG isnt as common as 2 stage propane but the basic idea is to be able to run a smaller pipe at higher pressure over a longer distance. Once you get near the gas appliance, you step down the pressure with another regulator to the 3" WC but use a bigger pipe. There's still only one meter, but 2 regulators on each end.

    With propane, you can run say 10 psi off the tank down a 1/2" line over 100 feet or more, then step the pressure down to 11" WC and go to the heater with a 1.25" line.

    Any 2 stage gas system just lets you run a smaller line under higher pressure over a greater distance. Gas on the street is at a higher pressure than what goes in the house. The meter only measures the gas, the regulator steps down the pressure so it wont blow the stove up. In the case of 2 stage, the gas company increases the pressure and runs the gas down to a second regulator and steps it down into a bigger pipe.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    The systems in my area won't provide the medium pressure to run smaller pipe so the systems need, on the customer side of the meter (which has a regulator in it) need to maintain the low pressure. If you push to much pressure, most devices won't open to prevent too much gas from being fed to the burners. The only way to get more gas to the end point is to use larger pipes and larger meters. To do otherwise would require additional regulators at every device, which raises costs over and above the cost of simply using a larger pipe.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Quote Originally Posted by PoolGuyNJ
    The only way to get more gas to the end point is to use larger pipes and larger meters. To do otherwise would require additional regulators at every device, which raises costs over and above the cost of simply using a larger pipe.

    Scott
    Exactly how they do it. But the cost isnt what you think.



    Depends on the gas company how they are set up to do it. In the case of having gas appliances in the house and a pool heater some distance away, you would use multiple regulators. A regulator is actually pretty cheap compared to running large gas lines over longer distances when you can do the same thing with a regulator and a 1/2" line. As I said, it depends on the local gas company and how they have things set up. Some gas companies run a 5-7" inch WC right on the street. In that case, you run bigger pipe. If you have 2 psi service, thats when you would use 2 stage. (As a reference, 7 " of WC is equal to ~0.25 psi, so 2 psi is a LOT gas).
    At any rate, 2 stage systems are much more common with propane.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Is it rigid pipe to the heater or flex? I've seen problems when heaters are hooked up with flex.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Quote Originally Posted by simicrintz
    Is it rigid pipe to the heater or flex? I've seen problems when heaters are hooked up with flex.
    Generally rigid is better. The flex stuff is actually good to use for a longer distance. Propane can be run with vinyl coated copper. Flex for NG is ok for inside the house feeding a stove (smaller pipe to a kitchen stove, less BTU than a pool heater for sure)!

    All of it really depends on code. Some of it's pretty universal, but quite a bit varies.
    It's kinda funny. Gas codes vary around the country as much as anything. Plumbing water and waste, and electrical codes for the most part are pretty standard, but gas can be all over the map.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Rigid is generally better, depending on the size of the heater. If you're installing anything over 250k btu, a flex line which is rated for the correct btus and also rated for outdoor installation is often more expensive than doing rigid. The flex lines inside diameter is smaller & causes huge problems for the larger gas heaters. All heater manufacturers that I've ever worked with specifically recommend AGAINST the flex for larger heaters.
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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    One other thing you might consider too is when going from 250k to 400k, the venting requirements will change, the size of your combustion vent will need to be bigger.
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    Re: New Hayward Heater won't stay lit

    Quote Originally Posted by Beep
    One other thing you might consider too is when going from 250k to 400k, the venting requirements will change, the size of your combustion vent will need to be bigger.
    Thats only applicable if the heater is located in a structure.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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