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Thread: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Hi,
    So not 1 hour goes by before I introduce myself (http://www.troublefreepool.com/99ways-t9063.html), and here I am already, asking for your help and experienced opinions.

    We bought the house/pool in early spring, and after opening the pool early summer I did not use the heater at all. Then water warmed up (with help of solar cover) and I didn't even cast a shadow over that contraption.
    Two days ago I noticed water slowely dripping from the corner of the heater.....I knew it was trouble.
    The heater in Q is a Hayward H-300, natural gas. I managed to make the sticker soemwhat readible ... and there seems to be a date on it - it reads: 1994.

    So far (that I can see) the leak doesn't impact the entire system much. It slowely leaks, and once the pump is turned off I can hear a slight gargling inside the heater.
    I will bypass it today, after work (fab a new pipe line, to eliminate the heater) as we don't really need it right now.

    ...so I ask you guys, is this (whatever it could be) fixable?
    Should I attempt to try and take it apart and see what gave, then possibly repair?
    Should I give it a proper burial ceremony and buy (or not) a new one?

    Pix 1: gives you somewhat of an idea on the condition of this heater (top removed; rust spots everywhere inside)


    Pix 2: bottom front, where the leak comes from (as far as I could peak in there (with a flashlight) I can not see a drip, or where the water is comming from, exactly)


    Pix 3: red arrow points to where the leak is comming from; green arrow show the flow


    Pix 4: equipment layout -reference pix


    ...any and all advice greatly appreciated.
    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    monkeywrench's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    HI and welcome to TFP
    I have a similar Hayward heater, the H-100 about 1/2 the size of yours,
    it's made for an above ground pool but my IG is so small that it works pretty well.

    I had mine apart this season to trouble shoot it and my heat exchanger looked similar to yours
    with some iron and copper corrosion. It wasn't leaking however.
    While looking for my parts on the Hayward site (or it could have been a link through a Lesiles site)I noticed that the heat exchangers were still available.
    That being said if yours is like mine the only 2 leak points in these things are the threads for the plumbing and the exchanger itself.
    Since you've gone as far as shown, you can either replace it or if there is an automotive radiator repair shop near by you could ask
    them to presure test it for leaks and if the leak is minimal they could braze the crack/hole.
    If it comes back with out a leak it most likely was leaking from the threaded ends. Just clean and retape

    good luck
    jb
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Quote Originally Posted by monkeywrench
    ...
    If it comes back with out a leak it most likely was leaking from the threaded ends. Just clean and retape

    good luck
    jb
    ...and where exactly am I looking for these threads?
    I don't mind takign the whole thing apart, but it came to my attention that even the small crews which hold the panels together are not too easy to remove (probably have nto been touched at all).
    Everything on it looks a bit rusty...yet I don't think the whole thing is a waste.
    It would be nice to be able to repair it.

    So, when looking at it from the front, where am I going to cut in to check on those spots?
    (I can take more pix if necessary)
    Thanks.

    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    PS:
    This is the replacement part list, directly from Hayward's website (hope links are OK, otherwise please remove, mods):
    http://www.haywardnet.com/pdfs/replace_pdfs/180-181.pdf

    ...and the worst part now is: even IF I had to replace the exchanger...how do I know which model it will be?
    The PDF shows 2 different models: H250ID (p/n: HAXHXA1251) and H400ID(p/n: HAXHXA1401)
    Will they be marked/stamped anywhere (it's impossible to read any more info off the stickers on the unit)?
    Thanks for looking.
    -99

    Edit:
    Also, found a place online which has this:
    Heat Exchanger Assembly H300 p/n HAXHXA1300 HAXHXA1300 $740.35
    ....yet the PDF from Hayward does not show a HAXHXA1300 number at all

    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Looking from the front, on the right side, where the white PVC pipe
    unions are, (inlet and outlet). Those white plastic pipes thread into the steel portion
    of the heat exchanger. By the looks of it the I/O unions are on the same side as the leak.
    You can use a "Monkeywrench" (pipe wrench) to remove them from the heater.
    First bypass the heater then split the unions, then remove them from the heater.
    Inspect for cracking or other evidence of a leak. If none,
    Clean the threads with a small wire brush, then wrap with teflon tape and I like to brush
    on some teflon paste as well,then reassemble.
    Be sure to check the condition of the o-rings in the unions. Replace if they are cracked or damaged.

    jb
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    monkeywrench's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Just looked at your pdf, assembly #45 is what I was talking about but this one is a lot different from mine.
    The exploded view of assembly 45 shows many threaded fittings, ant one of which could be the
    the culprit.
    Item 6 & 7 was the connection it assumed was a threaded fitting, it but it is an o-ring seal. The o-rings could be shot. If your going to fix it your self your going to have to dig into it further to find
    evidence of a leak.
    I would suggest a socket and ratchet for those rusted bolts, you'll just make yourself nuts with a screw driver.
    If this is beyond your scope,you might want to check with hayward to find a local shop to go through it for you.

    Too bad you don't live closer to me
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Quote Originally Posted by monkeywrench
    Looking from the front, on the right side, where the white PVC pipe
    unions are, (inlet and outlet). Those white plastic pipes thread into the steel portion
    of the heat exchanger. By the looks of it the I/O unions are on the same side as the leak.
    You can use a "Monkeywrench" (pipe wrench) to remove them from the heater.
    First bypass the heater then split the unions, then remove them from the heater.
    Inspect for cracking or other evidence of a leak. If none,
    Clean the threads with a small wire brush, then wrap with teflon tape and I like to brush
    on some teflon paste as well,then reassemble.
    Be sure to check the condition of the o-rings in the unions. Replace if they are cracked or damaged.

    jb

    Found a 1 year old H300 heater on Craigslist...asking price $1250.
    :/
    I hope it won't have to come to this...



    Will check.........and come to think of it, I did remove them recently, to replace a piece of tubing and put new unions in (visible on the pix, by the filter valve).
    Hmmm...could I be this lucky!?!?
    Nahhhh, it's gotta get more complicated (and expensive)

    PS:
    Here's a pix of the inlet:

    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    It looks like you can view quite a bit if you get as many covers off as you can and pump the water through it. see what you can see before you disconnect it.

    jb
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Yup, I'll try to get all the covers off, and hopefuly get to see a 'naked' exchanger...allowing me to see where the leak really is.
    I'll take some pix...
    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Update:
    Took me a couple of days, but I finally got got to taking the heater apart last night. In case anyone wants to see how a semi-stripped H-300 looks like, here's a pix:


    I think I found the reason why it leaked, and here's why.
    Number 1 on the picture below shows a threaded fitting which either came loose,or was loose to begin with. It dripped water down to the bolts (number 2) below, slowly eatign them away. Time takes toll on them, but these 3 were pretty much gone.


    Changed the bolts, and the leak is contained.
    However, after noting what happened to these bolts I decided to investigate a bit more.
    Tookt he cover off the exchanger itself (sry, no pix of it) b/c I wanted to see the rest of these bolts...fromt he back.
    Here's what most of them look like up front:


    ....and here's the back!


    I can only imagine that in tiem the rest of these will start giving way and I will have more and more leaks (as the pressure changes b/c of flowing/heated water, the weakened bolts/heads will eventually start failing). I will be disconnecting all sensors and fittings on this heat exchanger within the next couple of days, and changing ALL these bolts!
    This is what happens after 14 years of service (or just sitting around).
    Overall the rest o fthe unit is a bit rusted here and there, but seems to have plenty o flife in it left.
    THe exchanger itself is aluminum , and as logn as it ain't cracked it should last for a while longer.

    Anyway, sorry for such long posts...hope these pix/etc will help anyone with similar problem if they stumble upon this thread.
    Monkey-thnx for suggestions.
    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    I had a Hayward Comfort Zone 250(still have it sitting in back) that I replaced with newer model. The bolts corroded to the point of failure, then the gaskets leaked, then the cast iron headers started corroding. These new ones with the composite headers won't corrode, but the bolts seem susceptible to corrosion from the heat and dis-similar metals. FWIW I would get the best bolts/nuts that you can, not the cheap hardware store kind, and replace them one at a time to save the O-ring gasket. If you do open it up, get a new O-ring first, the old one is probably "set" from the heat cycles, and will probably leak.
    Good Luck!
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
    1 hp. Pac-Fab Challenger pump 300# sand filter
    Intex 8110 SWG, Hayward CL220 offline feeder
    Hayward 250K Btu gas heater
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Hey 99,
    Good work
    Looking at the "back" of the "bolts" they appear to be pressed in studs which means if you are
    planning on changing them the may have to be drilled out. Be sure to use stainless steel replacements if you decide to go that route.
    Also, since you've got it that far apart. You might want to pull out the six burner tubes from the front and vacuum out the fire box and wire brush the tubes. I bet you'll find a lot of crud
    in there, I do mine every season and there is a lot of crud every year.
    there is a fire proof gasket behind the tube flanges so you may want to order some.
    Sounds like a good winter project, disconnect it and bring it in the house
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Just when there was a little light at the end of this tunner, the train came crushing everything down.
    Looks like the heate ris toast.
    The exchanger leaks behind the plates as well, throught he openings, and no amount of new bolts/gaskets/etc prvents it from leaking.
    THe fireproof "box" of that fiberglass-like material is simply falling apart (from old age, i assume).
    The crate brackets which support(ed) the exchanger rusted out, and upon removal (of the exchanger) one side almost reduced itself to dust.
    Whatever is/was inside the firebox, and was not made of SS is pretty much disintergrating upon contact.
    ....so even aside fromt he exchanger leaks, it looks like the whole thing is ready for the grave yard.


    ...now debating whether to buy new, used, or even at all......
    Is 1000-1200 a good price for a 1 year old H300 (found on craigs)?
    I really don't want a brand new one, if I can get away with it. If mien lasted for 14 years I can only imagine that there should be no real problems with 1 to 4 year olds.
    Any suggestions?

    Sean,
    WHere is that dang Buy/Sell/Trade forum?

    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Quote Originally Posted by 99ways2die
    Sean,
    WHere is that dang Buy/Sell/Trade forum?

    -99
    It was a total flop, so it was removed. In fact, it was the least used forum I have ever put on TFP.
    TFP Founder

    My Pool: 13K gal IG gunite with 7' spa, Pentair Cartridge Filter, Intellichlor IC40 SWG, Polaris 280 Cleaner, TF-100 Test Kit w/ salt test.

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Bummer...I almost feel sad.
    But, in a way, I can understand why/how it would be seldom used.
    After all, what would we sell? Newly abandonned chlorinators and open box/leftover "shock"??


    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    99,

    Our church has put me in charge of selling some used pool equipment from some property they purchased.

    A gas heater, in apparent good shape, is one of the items...(Pumps, filters, winter covers, etc). If you have further interest (I'm way down in NC) PM me and I'l get you all the particulars and an honest assesment of it's condition.

    (SeanB is dying to mention the "classified" forum was my brainchild and I whined and whined until he put it in.....Truly, I can't remember if there was ever one post in it....that pretty much sums up my business acumen)
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Hah,
    I saw that thread (and was going to BUMP it, but write too much as it is....and Sean likes me too much already anyway), but since I didn't see the actual section I figured it never came to life.

    I'm looking at local CL listings as we speak; have a few 1 to 3 year old options listed.
    Anyway, ideal replacement would be an H300 NG....as everything would fit the same and I could have it up and running in no time. Let me know if you have anythign in the range or 300-400 BTU.
    THanks.
    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    99,
    Sorry things didn't work out
    We gave it our best shot. On the bright side,think of the experience you've gained
    jb
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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    99ways2die's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!


    Yup...now I can say that I am almost qualified to work on a heater.........that simply fell apart.
    LOL

    BTW:
    How do we feel about a direct replacement?
    I found a semi-local listing for the very same H300 that I have (dual, nat. gas, etc).
    THe lady claims it's "new or like new" ...... and may let it go for $500.
    Worth it?

    I know there are other, better options....but do you guys think it's a good idea to use nat. gas heater (this one) with a solar cover.......or switch to other, better alternatives (solar, etc...which I'm not even sure if I can use anyway). This H300 would be simply "drag and drop."
    Thanks.
    -99
    30K gal, in-ground/vinyl, S-270T filter, 1HP pump, H-300 gas heater, Liquidator,Blue Diamond robot, Poolskim

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    monkeywrench's Avatar
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    Re: Leaking gas heater (Hayward) H-300....hAlp!

    Well, now you know what almost new shouldn't look like

    jb
    14x28 IG Vinyl
    12.5k gal
    Hayward SP-Super Pump
    Hayward Pro-Grid 36sqft DE
    Hayward auto chlorine feeder (offline:using BBB)
    Hayward AG Gas heater

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