Gas Water Heaters

Gas Water Heater - photo

Gas storage tank water heaters range in size from 30 to 75 gallons, depending on your needs. When you turn on a hot water faucet or use hot water in a washer or dishwasher, water pipes draw hot water from your tank. The heated water is drawn from the top of the tank and is replaced by cold water that is carried to the bottom by a tube. A gas water heater can only be installed in a home that already uses gas. Hot water heater tanks traditionally come with a 6 to 12 year leakage warranty, depending on the size, make and model of the unit selected. This leakage warranty protects the homeowner against certain water heater malfunctions during the warranty period.

As of July 1, 2003, the following trio of Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant (FVIR) technologies is included in every gas water heater sold, regardless of manufacturer. The FVIR technology is an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard, which requires water heaters to be constructed in order to prevent ignition of flammable vapors outside the combustion chamber.

  • One-way intake system to control the movement of makeup air into the combustion chamber.
  • Flame arrestor plate, the single biggest component change in the FVIR designs.
  • Sealed burner access door and burner assembly, to create a sealed junction with the combustion chamber, preventing combustion air and flammable vapors from entering the chamber through the front of the water heater.

How It Works

Gas Water Heaters by BGE HOME

Combustion air, and potentially flammable vapors, flows through the flame arrestor plate into the combustion chamber where they are ignited. The flame arrestors job is to create a one-way path. Once inside the water heater, combustion air and flammable vapors cannot reverse direction. That is, they cannot migrate back through the plate, outside the water heater and into the room. Consequently, in the event of a flammable vapor event, the flames would be contained within the water heater, protecting the surrounding area.

At BGE HOME, we carry the Rheem Guardian System water heater that exceeds the FVIR standard providing the following features:

Rheem Guardian Water Heaters by BGE HOME

Air Shut Off System
Should a spill incident occur, the Guardian System shuts off the gas supply and the air supply preventing a sustained vapor burn in the combustion chamber. Rheems one-of-a-kind, air-and-fuel shut-off device provides extra reliability and ultimate protection.


Flame Arrestor Plate
A specially designed flame arrestor prevents ignition of vapors outside the combustion chamber.

Air filtration by Rheem Water Heater

Superior Air Filtration
Preventing the flame arrestor from becoming clogged by lint, dust and oil is a challenge faced by all water heater manufacturers. The Rheem solution provides a maintenance-free way to assure an uninterrupted supply of hot water.

Filterless water heaters

Filter Free
With the Guardian water heater, there are no filters to service, replace or clean ever!

Parts for your gas water heater

Standard Replacement Parts
The Guardian uses standard water heater parts, making parts replacement worry-free.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is meant by FVIR?
    The American National Standards Institute standard for Flammable Vapor Ignition Resistant (FVIR) water heaters is the result of a voluntary, joint effort involving every major producer in the water heater industry. The previous water heater designs had long proven themselves safe and reliable when installed, used and maintained properly. Unfortunately, occasional accidents had been caused by the improper use and storage of flammable vapor producing liquids near gas-fired equipment, such as water heaters. To address this issue, the water heater manufacturers came together, in cooperation with the Consumer Products Safety Commission, to form the Joint Research and Development Consortium and developed new FVIR technology. This new design uses a sealed combustion chamber with an air inlet, where air flows through the flame arrestor plate, which is made of perforated steel. If any flammable vapors enter the combustion chamber, the flame arrestor plate controls the burning vapors and prevents flames from escaping.
  • When did the new ANSI standard go into effect?
    The effective date of the ANSI standard was July 1, 2003 for residential gas-fired water heaters.
  • What products are affected by the standard?
    All residential gas-fired water heaters both propane and natural gas with storage capacities of 30, 40 and 50 gallons must meet the new FVIR standard in 2003 and later.

Efficiency & Savings

The efficiency and operating costs of a new hot water heater installation are important factors in your purchase decision. When in the research phase of your water heater purchase process, be sure to check the energy efficiency rating that is on a sticker on all water heaters.

By making energy-focused improvements in your home, you can increase the comfort and energy efficiency of your home, while saving energy and money. Learn how much energy and money you could save by upgrading your gas water heater:

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