Whirlpool water heater pilot goes out every few months

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  #1  
Old 10-05-18, 12:30 AM
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Whirlpool water heater pilot goes out every few months

I have a Whirlpool branded US/Craftmaster natural gas water heater (Model:40T9-40UNG 400) that is fairly new. It was installed in the garage on a pedestal and its surroundings are clear. The pilot light keeps going of without any obvious reason.
Build date: 10/27/2016
Professionally installed: 12/2/2016
1st outage: 4/24/2017 (~4 months)
2nd outage: 10/4/2017 (~5 months)
3rd outage: 8/17/2018 (~10 months)
4th outage: 10/4/2018 (~ less than 2 months)

Every time I can light it up and it starts working again. What could be the cause of this repeated failure and is there anything I can do to resolve it?
Thank you.
 
  #2  
Old 10-05-18, 07:27 AM
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Could be caused by a strong downdraft via the chimney or a strong updraft in the garage with the garage doors open. I would start by keeping the garage doors closed. If this minimizes/eliminates the issue, would install a skirt around the burner access door of the heater. If it is the chimney causing the problem, I would install a flue cap. Good luck.
 
  #3  
Old 10-05-18, 09:01 AM
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Thank you for your ideas. Because of the infrequent outages, keeping the garage door closed for months is not a viable option. I agree that it may have something to do with airflow but how does one troubleshoot if it is the downdraft from the chimney or updraft? There is a flue cap on top. Do they sell the suggested skirt at HD/Lowes or would I have to make one?
 
  #4  
Old 10-09-18, 05:57 AM
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Put a louver in the garage wall, not too close to the water heater, to provide combusion air for the water heater.

The water heater burner and possibly the pilot light orifice may need cleaning.

Do not store lots of things on top of the water heater. Check and clear away cobwebs and dirt up there. The cone shaped gizmo on top is supposed to reduce the impact of drafts coming back down the chimney and infiltrating the combustion chamber and perhaps blowing out the pilot light. (That gizmo is called a draft diverter.)
 
 

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