Water Heater Problem?

I am in process of selling my home. It has a 20 yr old water heater that has seems to work just fine for me. There is no rust, no leaks, and the temperature of the water is plenty hot when I need it.
The buyer's home inspector has just indicated that "water heater has slight back draft and poor rate of rise" and buyer requests this to be repaired prior to closing. What is he talking about? How significant is this? (also costwise) Is it something worthwhile repairing, or should water heater really be replaced?
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What is rate of rise , temp or flue rise, for temp rise tank could be clogged with setement, Or replace it with the cheapest one you can. There could be debris in the chimney.
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<< The buyer's home inspector has just indicated that "water heater has slight back draft and poor rate of rise" and buyer requests this to be repaired prior to closing. >>
This sounds like "home inspector" BS to me. Checking rate of rise means a lot of fussy work with measuring containers and thermometers and stopwatches and takes more time then the HI would like to spend on the job. Ask to see his work sheet and odds are he won't even have one. The so called back draft is a another implausible nifty. If you waft a bit of smoke near the heater vent and it blows back at you, there is a genuine backdraft. If the vent is joined with a furnace chimney, there should be an adequate draw at all times on both units. Put some cotton rags in a tin can, light them and let them smolder fo produce smoke for your testing. Take pictures of test in action for evidnce for the buyer. Go down to your box store and get the best priced water heater you are willing to pay for and slap it in place. Now everybody should be happy, so enjpoy your closing. HTH
Joe
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produce
the
Don't do this.
See my reply to water heater exhaust problem for the correct way to check for back draft.
Colbyt
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Well of course next wll be the AC.
Tell em to shove it
Unless a Co meter ran high Screw em, they are screwing you
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slight
"buyer requests this to be repaired" It is a request. If your feel like you should replace the unit then do so. You could decide to ignore the request. You could decide to lower your price a tad.
Becareful of giving in to requests. I sold my home to a couple that was making requests up until the last minute.
The BS from the inspector is just that. Most are hacks, my experience only. If it is a code issue then by all means negotiate the issue.
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Home inspectors standard, computer generated BS used to help the buyers negotiate a better price.
At each and every "request" explain: "Yes, we know that and took that into consideration to arrive at our asking price. Would you like me to fix it and add those costs to the sale, or would you like to do it more to your probable likeing after purchase?"
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that
the
and
probable
Exactly right approach. When I sold my house, the buyer wanted this that and the other. My standard answer was "This is the house I am selling. If you want a new house, go see a builder."
Charlie
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A few guesses, since I can't see that clearly from here: Assuming it's a gas heater.
"back draft" (downflow in flue) with pilot-only simply indicates negative gauge pressure in house- maybe from exhaust fan(s), or chimney-effect in whole-house. With burner on, exhaust is not vented- a major safety problem. I'd suggest you call the gas company, and make sure.
"poor rate of rise"? Ask him what he means by this. (Did he use a thermometer and stop-watch? Not bloody likely.) Ask the gas company what your recovery rate should be, given the water capacity and input rate. Ask gas co rep how that compares with "rate of rise", in writing if possible.
More important, most water heaters are guesstimated to have 10-year lifetime, so you might be best off to just replace heater- what else could the buyer be angling for? Better efficiency, peace-of-mind, happy buyer, better safety in case of combustible fumes, etc., etc. And check on stack draft, besides.
Heater and installation are so inexpensive, it's a waste of time to quibble in the context of a house sale.
Tack on a few bucks to the selling price, and everyone's happy. Or ... knock off a couple against purchase/installation, and let her/him do it later.
John

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