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2012

Review GE Heat Pump water heater

Resources for homeowner before-and-after buying expensive water heater
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
If you have extended warranty through Lowes or Sears, then call phone number that shows on the extended warranty plan

Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician

If you have extended warranty through Lowes or Sears, then call phone number that shows on the extended warranty plan

All parts are shipped separately and are not carried by the service technician. Must have product serial number located on label on side of unit.

Installation must be done correctly with 7" clearance around unit for service technician to be able to perform service. More about installation below.

Review GE heat pump water heater  
pre-2012          2012    
Review summary

There are no service manuals posted for GE heat pump, and GE will not connect customers to tech support, so customer cannot learn about, or repair the product, without paying for service. And this means you should not buy the product. Most people don't think about repairing washing machine or refrigerator before purchasing the appliance, but this is a water heater and service calls average $400, so independent folks should demand up-front access to basic part and sensor replacement instructions before buying. Unlike ordinary tank-type electric water heater, the GE heat pump cannot be maintained to last beyond expected life of 10 years. Moreover, what will a replacement water heater cost in 2022?
Heat pump must be installed in chemical-free and dust-free 10' x 10' room at least 7" away from wall, and must have adequate incoming air supply. Preferably warm air if you want to save money. This is not ordinary electric water heater that can be tucked in small closet with clothes piled on top.
Heat pumps are noisy when running... similar to window air conditioner.
Heat pump water heaters can save energy under specific conditions, but they are more expensive to buy than typical electric water heater.
Heat pump water heaters use ambient room temperature to heat water, and release cool air into same room, so ambient room temperature is decreasing each time heat pump turns on.
Heat pumps work against the furnace in winter by using furnace-heated air to heat the water. In summer the heat pump puts off cool air and helps the air conditioner, but cool room air works against the heat pump. Locating heat pump next to refrigerator will let heat pump use warm air produced by refrigerator. 
Heat pump water heaters require specific maintenance to maintain efficiency. This maintenance is in addition to typical maintenance suggested for all electric water heaters, such as flushing each 6 months and inspecting anode rod each 1-3 years.
All costs are energy.

Heat pump water heaters save money for specific applications, including 1) Homes in warm climate or with warm incoming water temperature, 2) Homes with 1-4 people who have low hot water consumption habits 3) Homes that do not require very hot water over 130F, 4) Homes without whirlpool bath or large garden tub ....
... but Heat pumps only save money when 5) Heat pump unit does not require repairs. 
Repair GE heat pump water heater
Clean air filter at least once per year using water and soft rag

Installation requires 10' x 10' room with at least 7" space on back and sides of unit for maintenance.

Why Buy Heat Pump?

Money
1) Promotional literature says Heat Pump water heaters save $200-$300 per year net cost vrs ordinary electric water heater.
          And this can be TRUE for some applications depending on operating Mode, consumption, water temperature, ambient room temperature.
2) Research shows that heat pump water heaters save energy vrs ordinary tank-type electric water heater
3) There used to be government tax credits for energy-efficient rated water heaters with EF less than 2.0  Read more
         GE heat pump has EF2.35, but Reducing consumption is best way to save money Read more
Real world: Most people say their electric bill went down, a few report the electric bill did NOT go down. Nobody says electric bill went up.
Read information below.

Read Opinions

Opinions etc:
New GE hybrid heater has a real service problem/ pdf
Blog with comments for several years
Sears customer reviews
Pro water heater Forum compares Rheem and GE  (Rheem makes GE)
Amazon customer reviews
Buzzillions
Problems with heat pump and service
411 Plump
Whirlpool review at Lowes

Read Research

Who paid for the research?
Are replacement costs and repairs considered?
You decide.
Research:
Heat pump water heater uses heat from refrigerator/ science you can use
Laboratory evaluation of heat pump water heaters
Carbon footprint information
Battelle report on water softening
Scientific Testing that might not be paid-for by industry
Department of energy that might not be paid-for by industry
Energy-star qualified heat pumps 2012
Cool Smart qualified heat pumps 2012

Promotional info

Where are the side by side test results?
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Sources with promotional facts:
GE frequently asked questions
GE Operating modes
See product manuals
How GE Heat pump works
FAQ
American water heater company comparison pdf
GE made in USA

Heat pump modes

 
2009 and 2012 control panels
Choose operating mode, set water temperature using eye-level keypad and LCD readout
GE Operating modes pre 2009-11  pdf
GE heat pump operating modes 2012 pdf
See product manuals
Unit is shipped in default hybrid mode. This mode uses back-up heat elements only when needed to maintain water temperature, for example when incoming water is cold, or when heat pump cannot keep up with peak demand, or if thermostat is set high, or ambient room temperature is low.
eHeat is most efficient mode. eHeat mode does not use back-up heat elements, and heating recovery is slowed, but savings are maximized.
Other modes can be selected.

Adjusting water temperature before 2012 pdf
Adjusting temperature 2012 pdf
Unit is shipped with default temperature set at 120F. Temperature setting 120F is economical. Setting temperature higher costs more money to operate.
Heat pumps are for moderate consuming homes with 1-4 people that do not require very hot temperatures.
Which temperature is best for water heater?  Standby loss vrs consumption. There is no single best answer for all situations.
Reducing temperature and reducing consumption are best way to save money.

Stop cold air function Heat pump water heaters blow cold air. If you turn it off, then water is heated by elements.
Using elements is same as ordinary electric water heater, so why buy a more expensive heat pump?

            How come GE doesn't put small electric meter on each appliance >> forget the 'energy-star' and 'energy factor' baloney that gives giant homes and appliances outstanding ratings when the real measure should be 'Kwh per person,' or KwPP rating (copyright waterheatertimer.org 2012)

How about real-world side by side tests?/ Heat pump vrs ordinary electric water heater + average service cost
You can buy electric meter and hook it up the meter for $50.
Maybe GE doesn't have money to buy a couple meters and do side-by-side.
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
How to install meter on electric water heater

When heat pump warranty is registered, GE gets the address
.
Why doesn't GE contact customers and ask for before-n-after electric bills and then post those bills on-line for all to see? Give us real-world facts instead of glossy brochures and rainbow promise of saving money!

See Larger image
Heat pump is like a refrigerator, except in reverse
Note that heat pump water heater will run much more than typical refrigerator. And put out more cool air than refrigerator puts out warm air.
Refrigerator uses refrigeration cycle to make the refrigerator cold, and then the compressor releases warm air into the room
Heat pump water heater uses refrigeration cycle to make water hot, and then compressor releases cool air into room
Both appliances work for-or-against the HVAC system depending on season.
Both appliances require periodic cleaning to keep unit efficient. Except Heat pump air filter must be cleaned once per year.
Both appliances are installed in dry locations. Neither are made for wet locations.
Refrigerator is 120 volts. Heat pump is 240 volts. Must have at least 208V-240V or unit will not operate.
Both refrigerator and heat pump appliances are reliable. However heat pump has added problems from storing water inside metal tank that is under pressure, while connected to household water system that can clog tank and cause tank to rust, etc. GE Heat pump has ordinary anode rod to protect against rusting

There is no guarantee that you will save money

Most people say their electric bill went down, a few report the electric bill did NOT go down. Nobody says electric bill went up
Average service call to repair heat pump is $400 (year 2012)
Buy cheaper tank: You can repair ordinary tank-type water heater yourself same-day using generic off-the-shelf parts for $50
How to troubleshoot electric water heater
Ordinary electric water heater can cost $500 per year to operate x 10 years = $5000.
Ordinary heater is cheaper to buy up front, and cheaper to fix and maintain. But operation cost is typically higher than heat pump water heater.

Warranty

Warranty appears in each product manual:
Read geo-spring limited 10 year warranty

See product manuals

Heat pump has 10-year limited warranty, for original-owner single-family residential installation ... for defects in workmanship when unit is installed and maintained according to product manual. Most water heater warranties are same.
Homeowner can install product. Warranty is NOT void if homeowner installs unit when installed correctly as shown in manual. See product manuals
Warranty does not appear to be transferable to another homeowner if home is sold, or transferable if unit moved to another location.
Warranty covers defects in workmanship. First year is parts and labor, assuming correct installation. After first year, the warranty is basically free replacement parts without labor, and you have to wait for parts to arrive. Average service call for technician is $400.
Warranty does not guarantee that unit will work flawlessly, or that unit will not need service and maintenance.
Read geo-spring limited 10 year warranty
Call GE 888-443-4394

Warranty

Is the 10 year warranty a good value?
Not necessarily
10% vrs 16%
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Expected lifespan of GE heat pump is 10 years.
First year warranty is full coverage parts and labor. So 10% of expected lifespan has full coverage.
Read geo-spring limited 10 year warranty

Contrast 10 year-warranty with cheaper tank that has 6 year warranty. Expected lifespan of cheaper tank is 6 years.
First year warranty is full coverage parts and labor for cheaper 6 year tank and for heat pump. So regular tank has full warranty coverage for 16% of expected lifespan while heat pump has full coverage for 10% of expected lifespan.

Smart grid


It's more expensive than meter readers
Smart grid interface 2012
GE Smart appliance platform rollout
2012 GE heat pump is compatible with GE Smart Appliance communication module AMC
" ... allows unit to respond fully to utility signals or join a home network."
I am not sure if this is z-wave or what type signal... or capability
Chinese hack electrical grid? Chinese own electric grid?

How much money can be made controlling the smart grid?
Or ontrolling marketing that targets your electric usage patterns?
How much money can be made selling proprietary software required to operate smart grid? How much will it cost for smart meter software updates, and security, and for billing.
The smart meter is made in China. We were forced to buy meters that were not made in our own country.
Is this how the US repays debt to China? Or is this why we have debt?

1) GE Heat pump Installation

Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
If you have extended warranty through Lowes or Sears, then call phone number that shows on the extended warranty plan
All parts are shipped separately and are not carried by the service technician. Must have product serial number located on label on side of unit.
Installation must be done correctly with 7" clearance around unit for service technician to be able to perform service
water consumption bathtub
Safety grab bar
Use safety grab bar on bathtub
Safety grab bar at Amazon
Bathtub safety grab bars
GE heat pump is for modest-consumption household
Regular 5' bathtub holds 20 gallons water. Regular bath uses 12-15 gallons hot water; Shower uses 5-9 gallons hot water.
Save 10 gallons hot water each time by taking shower instead of bath.
First hour delivery: GE 50 gallon heat pump delivers 63 gallon first hour and will supply maximum 4 baths in quick succession before water is cold.
Recovery: When using most efficient eHeat mode, the recovery time is slow, for example 10 gallons per hour or less (vrs 21 gallons per hour in full heat mode) depending on incoming water temperature, ambient room temperature and water heater thermostat setting.
Recovery means how long it takes tank to reheat water after Hot is consumed. First-hour rating is how much hot water is available for peak-usage times when tank is fully heated.
Electric water heaters that use elements to heat water, recover about 21 gallons per hour. Heat pump modes offer choice to use elements and recovery is same as ordinary electric water heater, and cost of operation is same as ordinary water heater -or- choose not to use elements for more efficiency, but slower heating. Utilizing most efficient modes, Heat pump mode and eHeat mode, means slower recovery rate, but maximum savings.
If you set the thermostat higher, recovery takes longer. But first hour delivery is higher. When water is hotter, more cold water is mixed with the hot, and so available hot water lasts longer. Keeping tank hotter costs more money. Reducing water temperature, and reducing consumption are best ways to save money. How to increase amount of hot water

Save 10 gallons hot water each time by taking shower instead of bath
Household water use information

GE Heat pump not recommended for homes that use very hot water
Factory setting is 120F. Temperature range for GE heat pump is 100-140F.
All estimated savings from using heat pump are based on 120F degrees. Higher temperatures require heat elements.
135F recommended for killing bacteria when washing clothes.

Select correct size 2012 heater for household consumption using chart on left

Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Heat pump size chart
Larger image
50 gallon GE heat pump has first-hour-rating 63 gallons
First-hour rating chart is based on expected peak usage at certain times of day, beginning with fully heated tank set to 120 degrees.
Homes with less consumption per person, or consumption does not peak at certain times, or when water heater temperature is set higher, then home can have more occupants than chart.
For example if 5 people live in home, and each takes a shower in quick succession, then GE heat pump will meet peak demand.
If 5 people expect long hot bath in succession, the last folks may be disappointed with amount of available hot water
Remember, as hot water is consumed, new cold water enters tank at bottom and will slowly mix with hot, causing temperature inside tank to decline until unit turns ON again.  How electric water heaters work

50 gallon GE heat pump NOT recommended for home with large bathtub / install 80-100 gallon size
Rule of thumb for whirlpool bathtub, and large garden bathtub = minimum 80 gallons first-hour-delivery 

Installing GE Heat pump

GE heat pump installation
This installation does NOT have enough space on left side to inspect and replace anode rod
Read about GE heat pump anode
Homes with anode-related odor problems should avoid GE heat pump.
State heat pump has power anode rod, that will prevent odor problems.
Larger image

Must be full of water before applying power
Must have 208-240Volts
How 240V and 208V power comes from 3-phase electric
3/4" Hot and cold pipes must be connected to Hot and Cold sides, or water heater will not work as expected.
See product manuals
Location & Space requirement   Clearance specifications
Do NOT choose laundry room or beauty shop or craft-work area because trace chemicals and dust WILL damage heat pump. Chemicals can damage heat pump and damage any gas water heater parts, and damage any gas appliance. Read  Dust will clog Heat Pump sir filter more frequently.
Choose dry, clean and naturally warm location
Air flow is critical: Efficiency is reduced if incoming air flow is restricted.
Room size minimum 10' x 10' x 8'
Smaller room can be used when louvered door is added.
Minimum 7" service clearance from back wall and 7" from front wall for work access and air space
pre-2012 Minimum 14" headroom for removal/cleaning air filter/ overall clearance height needed 75"
(Redesigned heat pump 2012 requires 6" instead of 14" for air filter)

Drain valve: Leave space so garden hose can be attached to drain valve
Older models, drain valve on back of unit and only 2-1/2" above floor. Newer model, drain on front.
GE Heat pump Anode rod is sacrificial, and is located on left side of tank see anode. Work space must be available on left side of water heater to access anode using socket wrench and long cheater bar.
Product manuals say anode will last 10 years. But water softeners can shorten life of anode rod. Read about anodes
Homes with anode-relate odor problems can avoid GE heat pump, and buy State heat pump with power anode rod that does not cause odor reaction .

Wiring:
Dedicated 10 gauge wire and 30 amp breaker. USE whole house surge protector to protect all appliances.
Use proper grounding. Use conduit if required by local code.
240Volt only: Connecting to 120V AC may damage compressor and/or other electrical components.
Read spec sheet to see if your model can use 208 VAC service. Other brands cannot be connected to 208V.

TP overflow tube cannot be downsized into smaller pipe, tube must travel downward at all times, and cannot terminate closer than 6" above drain or pool of water, maximum 30 feet length, maximum 4 elbow joints, overflow can be directed through outside wall, end of overflow tube cannot be threaded. 2009-2011 TP valve located on backside of tank. 2012 TP valve has been re-located to front of water heater.

TP and condensate drain cannot be combined
Condensate line attaches on back of unit or side of unit depending on model, and is not shown in illustration.
6' condensate line supplied with unit. Must run downward into drain or bucket.
Heat pump can produce up to 1 gallon condensate per day, depending on location, humidity etc
Heat pump water heater Heat pump water heater integrated with refrigerator

Real science at work that you can apply.
Heat from refrigerator re-used in water heater
Modest home has 88 cent energy bill
Water heater uses refrigerator heat
Low-energy home uses heat pump integrated with heat from kitchen refrigerator pg9
Locating heat pump in naturally warm location is best plan

1) Same room as Freezer or refrigerator: For example refrigerators and freezers give off warm air.
This warm air can be used by heat pump to heat water.
In return, the heat pump gives off cool air that assists efficiency of refrigeration unit.
This type installation does not work against household HVAC

2) Warm garage in Florida: Locating heat pump water heater in unheated-uncooled garage in Florida will not work against HVAC unit.
Heat pump uses ambient Florida temperature to assist heat pump efficiency, and releases cool air to help moderate garage temperatures.
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Heat pump and refrigerator
Heat pump will put out more cool air than refrigerator puts out warm air.
Use warm air inside home
Note that heat pump water heater will run much more than typical refrigerator. And heat pump will put out more cool air than refrigerator puts out warm air.
GE heat pump draws ambient room air across evaporator and blows cold air from vent located on back of unit
This action works against furnace in cold climates, and means furnace is heating hot water.
The heat pump condenser unit works in reverse of typical refrigerator. Heat pump blows cold air. Refrigerator blows warm air
Using warm air from refrigerator and freezer in conjunction with heat pump water heater is good way to recycle air byproduct from each appliance
Water heater uses refrigerator heat
Low-energy home uses heat pump integrated with heat from kitchen refrigerator pg9
Heat pump in attic Heat pump in attic
Ambient room temperatures up to 120F degrees are acceptable, but exposure to direct sun and high temperatures over 109F will shorten life of compressor and wiring.
Compressor will generally be too hot to touch, but very hot temperatures will damage any electrical device.

Many water heaters in Texas, Fla etc are located in attic. Heat pump needs space for air filter and anode rod, plus condensate drain.
Always protect water heater from freezing, and flood. 
Water heater must be installed in Vertical position. If water heater was laying down, then stand water heater upright position for 12-24 hours to allow refrigerant and lubricating oils to to properly distribute themselves.
Unit weight 200 lbs, Total weight 470 lbs filled with water. Locate water heater over load-bearing wall.
Use 3/4" plywood over 16" OC joist. Use minimum 2x8 joist.
Heavy weight in middle of 2x6 and 2x8 joist will cause ceiling to sag over time if joist span is too long.

How to lift heavy water heater into attic
Heat pump water heater zone chart
Estimated: heat pump regional map 2012
Obviously mid-Illinois is not same regional temperature as South Texas
Larger image
Cold temperatures mean less efficiency
Heat pump water heaters are most useful in hot-or-warm climates.
In cold climates, heat pump efficiency drops when back-up heat elements are used to heat water
During winter, the furnace is heating the air that heat pump uses to heat water.
So you are heating water using the furnace, which is not efficient, and cancels estimated savings predicted by GE and other heat pump companies.

Ambient air temperature must be above 45F  If ambient air temperature falls below the limit, then electrical elements will activate to meet the hot water demand. This reduces expected savings.

Attic/ High heat: avoid exposing water heater to temperatures over 120 degrees F

Also consider earthquakes
Use earthquake straps to protect property from damage
Earthquake straps at Amazon

Larger image
Drip pan
Drip pan saves damage
See drip pan installation
Water heater drip pans at Amazon
Drip pan saves damage from water leaks
Install GE Heat pump water heater in drip pan to prevent water damage from condensate or leak.
Prevent leaking tank by checking and replacing anode rod see GE heat pump anode
Make sure hose can still attach to water heater drain valve.
Drain valve located on front or water heater 2012
See drip pan installation
Leaking water heater
Installation Notes:
Drain valve is only 2-1/2" from bottom of heater.
Can be difficult to attach hose
Water heater must be installed in Vertical position

Ambient room temperature must not fall below 45 degrees F.
Remember: In winter, your furnace is being used to heat the water
Add expansion tank to extend service life of water heater and plumbing fixtures
Add pressure reducing valve if water pressure exceeds 80 psi
Check pressure using BTG100 pressure gauge attached to water heater drain valve
Flooring and weight
200 lbs + 5.4 lbs x 50 gallons = total weight 470 lbs = about same as 3 people
Water Temperature setting range 100 to 140 degrees F
Factory default 120 degrees
Do not duct air from a garage or other space where potentially harmful fumes from solvents, chemicals or exhaust from automobiles are present. Install Gas and carbon monoxide detector.
Standby power consumption 2 watts. How to maintain typical water heaters
Heat pump makes noise Heat pump makes noise
People are aware of the noise. Most people can hear it from other room.
Some say it sounds like clothes dryer. Others report less noise.
Do not buy heat pump if noise bothers you, or if you expect to play tunes in same room.
At least the thing doesn't put off bad odor.

Promo brochure says: Operating Sound Level 58 DBA Average
58 DBA is from glossy promotion brochure, and will likely underestimate annoyance for some people.
Locate heater where noise will not interfere with daily routine

Promo brochure says: "Most electrical appliances, even when new, make some sound when in operation. If the hissing or singing sound level increases excessively, the electric heating element may require cleaning." Remove element and clean with white vinegar, but don't expect to see illustrated instructions in product manual, and Do not count on this solution to fix noise problem. 
Repair GE heat pump water heater Avoid dusty environments such as laundry room and shop

Excessive dust and lint affect operation of unit and require more frequent cleaning
See maintenance section in product manual and maintenance section below.
Lift and clean filter once per year using water and soft rag. Let filter dry before re-installation.

If filter is clogged, unit will give error code, and switch from hybrid mode to using heat elements

Flammable and corrosive vapors
Site location must be free from corrosive chemicals in the atmosphere such as sulfur, fluorine, and chlorine. These elements are found in aerosol sprays, detergents, bleaches, cleaning solvents, air fresheners, paint, and varnish removers, refrigerants, and many other commercial and household products.
Same is true for all gas-burming appliances, such as gas water heater

Heat pump can ignite flammable vapors, just like open fireplace or toaster oven.
Turn unit off when using gasoline, shellac, varnish, flammable paints, solvents, thinners, contact cement etc.
Same is true for all gas-burning appliances, such as gas water heater
Intermatic IG1240RC3 Heat pump water heaters are not protected from surge
Most appliances today have electronics. Few of these appliances are protected from surge
Homeowner insurance might have appliance exclusion. Read policy
Water heater warranty does not cover surge event.
Protect 120V and 240V circuits with whole house surge protector
How to wire whole house surge protector
Intermatic IG1240RC3 whole house surge protector/ pdf
flooded water heater Set water heater high enough to avoid flood
Do NOT touch Flooded water heater or water heater that is wet or was wet/ electrocution danger.

When water heater gets wet, the parts can short.
Water heater must be dry before put back into operation.
If whole water heater went under water, then replace water heater

Flooded water heater
Emergency steps to turn off water heater
Leaking water heater
Do not install Heat pump in damp or wet location

Electronics are not suited to wetness
Do NOT touch water heater that is wet or was wet/ electrocution danger.

2) GE Heat pump Maintenance

Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
If you have extended warranty through Lowes or Sears, then call phone number that shows on the extended warranty plan
All parts are shipped separately and are not carried by the service technician. Must have product serial number located on label on side of unit.
Installation must be done correctly with 7" clearance around unit for service technician to be able to perform service

How-to-clean-GE-heat-pump-air-filter.pdf

Lift filter evenly with both hands

Air Filter

Do not locate Heat pump water heater in dusty location: for example laundry room or shop.
Condenser fan pulls cubic feet of air from surrounding room.
Room temperature air enters front of unit, and cold air exits back of unit.
Dust and particulate is trapped by filter that protects evaporator from getting clogged.

Clean air filter at least once per year.
Unit has error code to remind that filter needs cleaning
If filter is dirty, the efficiency of unit will drop.
If filter becomes clogged, the unit will automatically switch heat elements ON to compensate for loss of heat pump efficiency.
Do not run heat pump without filter, or the evaporator will clog with debris and efficiency will drop

How to clean Heat pump air filter:
Leave power ON.
Switch unit to vacation mode so unit will not operate while filter is out.
Lift filter evenly with both hands. Wash filter outdoors gently using water and soft rag.
Do not use brushes or scraper.

Illustration shows concept
GE heat pump has brass drain valve.
Brass is preferred by plumbers since it will not break when removed.
Dripping drain valve can be repaired with garden hose cap.

Flush water heater


Flush water heater once each 6 months
Recommended for all water heaters, gas and electric
How to flush water heater

Older GE models, drain valve on back of unit. Newer model, drain located on front.
Drain valve located 2-1/2" above floor. Drain located close to floor, it is more difficult to attach garden hose.
Remember, the water heater has to be drained some day. Leave room when installing water heater.
GE heat pump condensate drain
2012 Condensate lines located on right side of tank
2009-2011 condensate lines on back of unit. Remove back cover to reach tray.
Blue color added for illustrative purpose

Condensate lines need to be kept clean to prevent damage to home

How it works:
Air filter sits directly in front of Evaporator. Fan pulls air from room into evaporator
Warm moist air passing through evaporator can cause water to condensate on the coils and drip down into condensate tray. Water empties out of tray into primary condensate drain line and flows to bottom of water heater.

If primary drain is clogged, water will flow out secondary

If both primary and secondary are clogged, water will drip down side of water heater.
Different brands of heat pump have different diameter condensate line. GE has a smaller line. Other brands use ” condensate line.

Condensate line should drop down side of tank and terminate 3-6” above a floor drain.
Some people use a bucket and then dump bucket periodically. Don’t let water in bucket get higher than drain line. Other people use a pump to evacuate condensate water into household drain.

Check and clean condensate drain lines periodically

Clean heat pump condensate line How to clean condensate line:

1) Remove condensate line, take outdoors, use wire to make sure ends are open, swing line around over head to clean tubing, and then rinse outdoors.
Water inside tube is not clean and contains bacteria.

2) Use turkey baster to squirt clorox or hydrogen peroxide into primary or secondary drain openings to help remove algae or debris

Gallo gun and CO2 cartridge
Buy a tool, and blow out the clog all over room
Clean heat pump evaporator
See another image
Clean evaporator fins
All water heaters need periodic maintenance.
Heat pump water heater requires more maintenance than ordinary electric water heater.
Ordinary electric water heater needs less maintenance than heat pump.
Evaporator may not be easy to access because of compressor, fan blade and housing.
Typical Water heater maintenance

Maintaining full output might require occasional professional cleaning of evaporator.
Undo screws and remove water heater cover.
Remove air filter as needed.
Carefully clean evaporator fins.
Only use water and a soft brush. Tape a soft-bristle toothbrush to a stick.
Never use acidic or alkaline cleaning agents

If evaporator has not been wet, then use compressed air to blow out dust.
Do not expect detailed instructions or illustrations in product manual.
GE heat pump anode rod location
2012 parts: color added for illustration
State hybrid has non-sacrificial powered anode rod
Larger image
Large Image from 2009

Anode rod

GE heat pump has sacrificial anode rod
GE heat pump anode rod is located on top of tank
Anode should be inspected within 12 months of installation.
Remove front hood to access anode rod
Should be able to remove anode rod without moving compressor or evaporator.

Remove and inspect anode rod each 1-3 years
Be careful not to damage evaporator coil or air filter housing; set piece of masonite in front of other parts if needed. Cut new anode rod to 42" length.
Replace with standard 1-1/6" hex head magnesium rod

Anode rod keeps tank from rusting.
Once anode depletes, the steel tank will rust.
Anode rods

Do not expect anode illustration in product manual
Ge Heat pump anode rod
GE has sacrificial magnesium anode rod that needs to be inspected each 1-3 years.
Water softener will cause anode rod to deplete sooner.
GE manuals says anode will last 10 years.

State heat pump has powered anode rod that will not deplete and will not cause odor.

State heat pump has power anode rod for homes with anode-related odor problems
Homes with hot-water odor problems should avoid GE heat pump
Consider buying State heat pump with power anode rod
Or buy ordinary tank-type water heater and install power anode rod
Anode rods
State heat pump manual
State heat pump parts
Powered anode rod page 15 manual
***************DOES NOT FIT GE***********Made for American and State hybrids

Duct kit for State heat pump water heaters
State heat pump has kit to bring air from different room

Duct kit for State heat pump water heaters
State heat pump manual
Confined space installation page 5
Diagnostic codes page 18
Understanding the Parts
Do not expect parts list or parts infortmation in GE product manual
If you buy window air conditioner or refrigerator, most people are not concerned about the parts. Some people are.
2009 design showing GE air intake on front of unit. Blower moved behind evaporator in recent models.
Air intake duct line can be run to outside wall.
Do not put air intake duct line inside garage where CO fumes can enter home.
HTP heat pump manual with parts diagram
Stiebel Eltron manuals with parts diagram
Sanyo Heat Pump service manual
Rheem heat pump parts

Larger image of HTP parts sheet

Heat pump is NOT protected from power surge

Water heater electronics

GE electronics are not protected from surge.
Damage from surge is not covered under warranty.
All household electronics are succeptiple to surge
New washing machine, kitchen appliances etc are not protected
Homes today should have whole-house surge protection
Do not expect surge advisory in GE product manual

Ordinary tank-type electric water heater is not succeptible to surge, and if lightning strike disables ordinary heater, it can generally be fixed same day using generic off-the-shelf parts for less than $50
Intermatic IG1240RC3
Whole house surge
Larger image
Connect surge protector to 20 amp double-pole circuit breaker
Intermatic IG1240RC3 whole house surge protector/ pdf
How to wire whole house surge protector

3) GE Heat pump error codes, manuals, service manuals, troubleshooting, parts

Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
Call GE 888-443-4394 for warranty and basic troubleshoot and to find GE-certified local technician
If you have extended warranty through Lowes or Sears, then call phone number that shows on the extended warranty plan
All parts are shipped separately and are not carried by the service technician. Must have product serial number located on label on side of unit.
Installation must be done correctly with 7" clearance around unit for service technician to be able to perform service

GE Heat pump product manuals

Manuals have installation, maintnenace and troubleshooting steps, but no repair information or parts sheet
Product manuals by date
See all manuals by date
Read product manuals for troubleshoot steps.
GE Heat pump Product manual 10-2009
GE Heat pump Produuct manual 5-2011
GE Heat pump Produuct manual 2-2012

GE heat pump specification manuals

Spec sheets by date
GE heat pump features 2009
Spec sheet 2009
Specification sheet 3-2010
Specification sheet 2-2012

GE heat pump Service manual?

GE does not post current service manuals for heat pump water heaters
There is 1 GE heat pump service manual brief from 2009 when product was first introduced
GE heat pump service manual brief from 2009
Shows sensors, 2009 error codes, ohm readings, and basic part replacement.
The 2010 and 2012 product are different, and no service manual is posted for later models

No current service manual

Average service call to repair GE heat pump is $400  GE wants a service technician sitting in front of unit

This is a problem for many folks.
 You can't fix the GE heat pump yourself. You have to pay for service.
It means you shouldn't buy the product.
What does it mean to the customer? You cannot fix it yourself. Delay, expense, and possibly less-than-successful service.
When GE heat pump stops working, product manual has basic troubleshooting, but manual says to call GE.
GE representatives will NOT connect customers to tech support. Only 'qualified' service technicians get information from GE tech support. Rheem/GE refuse to post service manuals for any water heater. This is bad for customer confidence and independence.
Think about this for a moment: Customers are most familar with environmental and usage habits that affect heat pump operation. Yet customers cannot read a service manual to better avoid unique problems. 
Nor can customers exchange information with GE tech support to better understand product specifics.
Nor can a young person read the inner workings of a heat pump and spark un-invented innovation.
Service technician that visits home [for $400] cannot read the service manual either, or exchange information with other service technicians based on technical reading.  All innovation and thinking is done at GE. There is no exchange of repair information via the internet. Maybe this action protects livelihood of local technicians, or protects GE from patent lawsuit, but this is also why you should not buy the GE heat pump.

Service manual, Troubleshoot, error codes from different companies

GE heat pump service manual brief from 2009
GE heat pump wiring diagram 2009
Sanyo Heat Pump service manual
State Heat pump troubleshooting guide
Bosch heat pump error codes
HTP heat pump troubleshoot and error codes

Image from 2009 GE heat pump
F9 and F10 code means element failure.
How to replace GE heat pump elements from 2009 manual
T2 temperature sensor
Temperature range detects freezing temperatures and overheating event

GE heat pump has 2 reset buttons

Reset button or TCO or Thermal cut off trips in event of overheating.
Both thermal cutouts require manual reset
Over heating can be caused by failed TCO, cracked element shorted to ground, bad T2 tank-temperature-sensor located just above TCO reset buttons, loose wire near the TCO, or any high heat event.
Read more about sensors page-30 in 2009 pdf
GE heat pump Troubleshoot and fault codes 2012

GE elements are replaceable using generic elements from hardware

The control will record a heating element fault if the current is less than 10 amps when the element relay on the board is energized.
How to test water heater elements

L1 and L2 refer to the power lines from circuit breaker
240Volt power has two hot lines, and they are called L1 and L2
When L1 and L2 are both cut off, the unit has NO power. When L1 is cut, then all 240Volt circuits are inoperable, but unit has live electricity.
Read about 120Volts vrs 240Volts
GE heat pump sensors
GE heat pump sensors 2009

T2 Tank sensor also shown in photo above
Heat pump sensors 2009
Read more about sensors page-30 in 2009 pdf
All GE Heat pump .pdf manuals

Each heat pump unit has several sensors that track performance.
Each time a sensor detects performance outside typical operating parameters, an error is registered.
When enough errors accumulate, or a specific group of errors accumulate, an error code message is issued.
Information below about error codes and diagnostics is not guaranteed 100% accurate / this product is evolving. Manufactured by Rheem. Rheem does not post service manuals for any product.

GE Heat pump Error Codes

From various sources
Might not be current

GE heat pump Troubleshoot and fault codes 2012
GE heat pump Fault codes 2009

GE hybrid warranty 2012
Call GE 888-443-43954
F-10 Is check upper element and wiring
F-9 is check lower element and wiring
F-D is check filter sensor and wiring
F-B Is check sensor wiring resistance, check expansion valve and check charge pressure
F-C service code stands for "Failed Compressor"
F3 Compressor failure
F4 through F8 heat pump failure 
F9 water system failure lower element fault
F10 water system failure upper heating element fault
SF system failure F2 means T2 tank sensor fault
SF System failure F1 means TCO tripped
GE heat pump service manual from 2009
All GE Heat pump .pdf manuals
Run Cond C fault code
Each heat pump unit has several sensors that track performance.
Each time a sensor detects performance outside typical operating parameters, an error is registered.
When enough errors accumulate, or a specific group of errors accumulate, an error code message is issued.

Access to GE heat pump diagnostics menu requires access code

How to access GE heat pump diagnostics pre 2012:
Several selections within the diagnostics menu require an access code
Scroll to the diagnostic mode and select it.
The access code is FILTER, LOCK, and VACATION pads pressed sequentially within 3 seconds of each other
Use arrow code to scroll through selections
2009 Heat pump: Each sensor will will show with range and ohm reading in real time, Each component will show status
Some people report this does not work. This product is evolving. Heat pump water heaters are changing. Technology does not wait.
Don't buy expensive complicated water heaters that cannot be repaired by consumer, and no service manuals are available.

How to reset GE heat pump error codes

With the heater powered up, scroll diagnostics mode. and select it.
The unit will ask you for a code
Press FILTER, LOCK, and VACATION pads pressed sequentially within 3 seconds of each other
This should bring up a screen that shows the fault codes. Scroll to the "clear all fault codes" with the arrow keys. When thats highlighted, repeat the code Filter, Lock, Vacation

Larger image
Photos of repair 2012 Parts:
Condenser and fan
Top cover and control
Body parts
Condensate drain
Anode rod location
Anode rod location 2
Heat pump sensors 2009

Parts at Sears

Fan pulls air through filter and then through evaporator coil, and then cool air exits back of unit

811 wire tie
737 grommet
736 clip compressor mount
390 Comp process tube 5/16
389 Tube discharge formed
388 Filter dryer asm
385 Accumulator asm
380 Evaporator kit
374 Fan blade asm
373 Nut: fan blade to motor
372 Wahser
371 Spring washer
370 Fan blade
    367 8-32 screw

362 Seal foam evaporator
361 Seal foam barrier
360 Fan shroud asm
354 Fan motor asm
351 Flange fan
350 Motor fan

348 Wire grd compressor
341 Drier & eev valve asm
340 Eev coil
333 Mastic thermal sensor
327 Relay start compressor
326 Overload, compressor
325 Compressor kit
    315 10-32 screw
313 Condensate drain


312 Cap mounting bracket
310 Bkt capacitor mounting
311 clip capicitor mount
306 Cover electric comp
305 Capicitor start
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