ED Magedson – Founder
G.E. / Home DepotNationwide USA
G.E. / Home Depot Rancho Cucamonga Nationwide
We purchased a GE Ultra Low NOx12 year Water heater / Model No. SG50T12TXK00 / in 2009. Two days ago it stopped heating the water. I tried re-lighting it to no avail. I smelled gas so I called Southern California Gas. The gas company tech checked it out and there was no leak. He said the thermocoupler was probably bad but with these GE models it is not as easy as it used to be in replacing the part. He said I would have to check with Home Depot to see if they had the part. The next day I took pictures of the water heater assembly devices and I went to Home Depot. The guy in plumbing department acted as if he knew nothing about these types of water heaters needing a special assembly package. He handed me the off the shelf thermocoupler and said it should do the trick. I went to the front desk and asked them about my warranty on the water heater. I was told that since it was five years old the Home Depot warranty was no longer in place and I would need to speak with GE. They gave me the 800 number for GE which is on Mountain Standard Time and too late for me to call. I called them first thing the next day and the customer service guy quickly diagnosed my problem and said he would send me the needed parts to include the thermocoupler. I complained that a 12 year water heater only lasted five years when my previous no brainer water heater lasted 18 years. He claimed that California passed laws several years ago that required water heater manufacturers to only sell energy efficient burners with their units. That is why an off the shelf thermocoupler will not work. Obviously GE put out an inferior product and is blaming it on California law makers. I will put equal blame on lawmakers who think they know what is best for us. Those knuckleheads will never have to replace a thermocoupler in their lives. They will pay big bucks to Joe the plumber to come out and fix their water heater the same day it breaks down. Do you think they will take one cold shower. Heck no, they will have Joe the plumber put in a new water heater rather than wait for the delivery of the specialized thermocoupler device. So now I am at the mercy of FedEx to deliver this in two business days. Seeing as I ordered it on Friday morning it will probably not come until Monday. So the family gets to take cold showers for three more days. It is my understanding that GE knew the thermocoupler would not last very long when they first manufactured it. Why they do not have them stocked at Home Depot is a big mystery. The gas company technician runs across seven to eight people every week with the same thermocoupler problem on GE / Rheem water heaters. Do I want my pound of flesh from GE for making me take cold showers for five days? You bet! The only way to do that from a consumer's perspective is to vow to never purchase any GE device ever again. I would not be hurting American jobs because the water heaters are made in Mexico and most of their other products are made outside the country. Wish me luck as I will try to tackle this replacement job on my own.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/25/2014 09:52 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/ge-home-depot/nationwide/ge-home-depotnbsp-rancho-cucamonga-nationwide-1141681. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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