Water heaters have changed so have the repair tools
by stewart wrozier
I have been a service tech for 20 yrs. The old gas water heaters generally never had problems. They would work for 10 to 15 yrs. start to leak and then you would replace them. If they were installed correctly and you had a problem (no hot water) it was one of two things. Easy to diagnose and most people understand about the thermocouple.
Today's water heaters are completely different and people compare them to the old style and that is were the problem starts.The new water heaters MUST be keep clean. Preventive maintenance is key to a trouble free water heater.
If the flame arrestor is not kept clean the pilot light WILL fail.The flame arrestor is located under the water heater. They make a water heater vacuum brush for this purpose. You can purchase this tool on the internet. The tool is called tightspotvacuum. It hasn't been around long and was design for the home owner, so they do not have to take apart anything. Would not recommend the home owner taking gas pipes apart. The new water heaters are not bad just different. If you understand how they work.