(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Page 3 of 4 FirstFirst 1234 LastLast
Results 31 to 45 of 53

Thread: Calcium buildup in water heater

  1. #31

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    The lab samples for iron had to be taken before the aeration/calcite filter. If not redo the tests because the aeration/filter will be the removing iron, manganese and H2S.
    Gary,

    The aerator is installed before the pressure tank so I'll have to wait until the iron filter is removed to get more samples.

    I spoke to the chemist at the water lab yesterday. They did a microscopic exam of the particles I collected from hot side of the house plumbing. He said there was some calcium but most of it was silica. The silica level was 14mg/l is that enough to cause problems like this?

  2. #32
    DIY Hillbilly Southern Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    530

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Elliott View Post
    Unfortunately the crap sticks to the sides of the tank and most of it won't come out when flushed.
    I ended up replacing my 40 gallon electric with a Bock direct oil fired unit. It was glass lined and had a decent sized hand-hole to clean it out. In four years it never accumulated much, and I assume because of the lining. That little guy was only 22 gallons but could make hot water faster than we could use it. Although it was five times the cost of an electric it paid for itself in less than two years, due to the high cost of electricity in Upstate NY. I did the install myself, and had the oil tank and chimney right there.

    I priced the same unit for here (low electric rates, no fuel oil tank and no vent nearby) and it won't pay for itself any time soon.

  3. #33

  4. #34
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Elliott View Post
    Gary,

    The aerator is installed before the pressure tank so I'll have to wait until the iron filter is removed to get more samples.

    I spoke to the chemist at the water lab yesterday. They did a microscopic exam of the particles I collected from hot side of the house plumbing. He said there was some calcium but most of it was silica. The silica level was 14mg/l is that enough to cause problems like this?
    I think I told you before but I'll repeat in case I didn't, the filter has to be on the house side of the pressure tank. Otherwise, when the pump is not running and the filter is in backwash, the water flow from the pressure tank to the filter goes into the OUTlet of the filter and that won't work well or for long. And it will mess up your water quality. Then when the pump comes on, the water to the filter goes in the filter's INlet as it always should.

    If you want a sample just after the aerator/filter, use the boiler drain valve on the pressure tank or, shut off the pump and undo the outlet plumbing connection of the filter and collect a sample from there.

    If you want a raw water sample, get one by shutting off the pump and the main water shut off valve past the pressure tank and then take the solution feeder injector out of its fitting in the plumbing and drain water out of the pipe until it quits flowing and then turn the pump on and get your sample.

    Hydroblend is another polyphosphate sequestering agent. Any of us water treatment dealers can sell you the generic version of most brands. In the same type housings.

    I don't know much about silica but you should have a test for it on a raw water sample. It is a serious problem in boilers, but I've never heard of it causing a problem in domestic water heaters; including tank less heaters where I would think it would be more than in a tank type.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  5. #35

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    I think I told you before but I'll repeat in case I didn't, the filter has to be on the house side of the pressure tank. Otherwise, when the pump is not running and the filter is in backwash, the water flow from the pressure tank to the filter goes into the OUTlet of the filter and that won't work well or for long. And it will mess up your water quality. Then when the pump comes on, the water to the filter goes in the filter's INlet as it always should.
    The filter is on the house side of the pump but the aerator is not. Starting from the well pump the main line comes into the well house and has an in-line blue plastic aerator installed. From there it connects to the retention tank, then it connects to the pressure tank and finally to the filter which connects to the house. I'll take a picture of the plumbing when I get home tonight and post it.

    PS, thanks for the help.

  6. #36
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    Then you have an air injection system, and an acid neutralizing filter and the injector and the retention tank should be on the house side of the pressure tank and then the filter and then the softener and any prefilter for a UV light and the UV.

    Pictures would be good.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  7. #37

    Default

    I didn't have a chance to take the pictures last night so I'll have to do it tonight.

    Are you familiar with Langelier saturation index?

    The Langelier Saturation Index (LSI; also called Langelier Stability Index) is a calculated number used to predict the calcium carbonate stability of water; that is, whether a water will precipitate, dissolve, or be in equilibrium with calcium carbonate. Langelier developed a method for predicting the pH at which water is saturated in calcium carbonate (called pHs). The LSI is expressed as the difference between the actual system pH and the saturation pH.

    LSI = pH - pHs

    If the actual pH of the water is below the calculated saturation pH, the LSI is negative and the water has a very limited scaling potential. If the actual pH exceeds pHs, the LSI is positive, and being supersaturated with CaCO3, the water has a tendency to form scale. At increasing positive index values, the scaling potential increases.


    There's a calculator at http://www.edstrom.com/Resources.cfm?doc_id=161
    I tried pluggin my info into the equation but I don't know what the total alkalinity is. What's interesting is increasing the pH, temperature, or alkalinity while total hardness remains constant dramatically increases the scaling potential.

    I wonder it that's why I'm seeing scale buildup in the water heater. My total hardness before the iron filter was installed was 47mg/l and pH was 7.65. After the filter was installed it went to 66mg/l and 8.1 which according to the LSI are enough to significantly raise the scaling potential. Another factormay be the air injection system increasing the amount of dissolved oxygen in the water.

  8. #38
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Elliott View Post
    Are you familiar with Langelier saturation index?

    [I]The Langelier Saturation Index (LSI; also called Langelier Stability Index) is a calculated number used to predict the calcium carbonate stability of water; that is, whether a water will precipitate, dissolve, or be in equilibrium with calcium carbonate. Langelier developed a method for predicting the pH at which water is saturated in calcium carbonate (called pHs). The LSI is expressed as the difference between the actual system pH and the saturation pH.

    LSI = pH - pHs
    Not really...

    The LSI was invented to determine IF concrete water pipe would be dissolved by water and allow the asbestos reinforcing fibers to be added to the water.

    It is a poor choice to use to determine if a water is aggressive to materials other than concrete water pipe etc.. There are other indexes that are much better. For more on that and a list of better choices, check out
    www.corrosion-doctors.org and then Search this site for LSI. Here is one link discussing the use of the LSI from my search there.
    http://corrosion-doctors.org/Cooling...orrosivity.htm

    The calcite is increasing your hardness, it is supposed to. Hardness scale is formed when water containing hardness is heated.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  9. #39

    Default

    Last edited by Elliott; 10-23-2008 at 09:12 AM.

  10. #40
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    All those galvanized fittings and nipples on the blue pressure tank are probably adding iron to your treated water.

    I don't think the tank back in the corner is a vent tank.

    I can't make any sense out of the plumbing. I only see one line going into the retention tank and one at the filter. I think the injector is behind a pipe in the picture and in the line behind the retention tank. And there's lin through the floor...

    The stuff is not plumber anything like I would have done it. And I would not use galvanized anywhere.

    There is no drain on the retention tank and I don't see any way to vent air out of it.

    Maybe you can use the Paint program to label everything.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  11. #41

    Default

    I don't think the tank back in the corner is a vent tank.
    I don't know the difference between a vent tank and retention tank. The label on the gray tank says it's a retention tank. According to the installer it's purpose is to expose the water to air in order to oxidize the iron so it can be filtered.

    I can't make any sense out of the plumbing. I only see one line going into the retention tank and one at the filter. I think the injector is behind a pipe in the picture and in the line behind the retention tank. And there's lin through the floor...
    I added some labeling, hopefully you can see how everything is connected now.

    The stuff is not plumber anything like I would have done it. And I would not use galvanized anywhere.
    I'm going to be re-plumbing after the iron filter gets removed. What should I replace the galvanized with?
    There is no drain on the retention tank and I don't see any way to vent air out of it.
    There's some kind of vent on the side of it about half way up.

  12. #42
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    Where does the aeration line to the retention tank enter the retention tank?

    IMO it should be on top where the plug is now. And there should be a diffuser so the column of aerated water entering the tank is broken up in smaller streams to expose more surface area so the air can do a better job of oxidizing the iron etc..

    The vent on the side of the ret. tank, does it actually allow air out of it? If not it's probably due to it being blocked. If it is blocked the water will be absorbing the air into it and that leads to less air to be used for oxidation. I'd want the vent on the top of the tank with a pipe going done to the water level; using a Honeywell float vent valve. That then sets the level of air and water in the tank always insuring proper aeration.

    A retention tank hold water for a period of time for proper contact time between an oxidizer and the water. A vent tank does too but it is set up as I describe above; a retention tank is not set up that way and will not work as well as a aeration vent tank will.

    The aerator injector should be 1" on 1" tubing. The oxidation process will load up the tubing past it with rust, and it can close off the ID of the tubing to like a 1/4", from the injector all the way to the ret. tank inlet. So that line should be very short and have the bare minimum of elbows in it.

    Is teh backwash line from the filter 1/2 PVC (white) or 1/2" or 3/4" Cpvc (tanish/gray/off white)? If it is CPVC, it has to be 3/4", not 1/2" and I wouldn't have used it, I would have used 1/2" ID PE tubing with no elbows. That water flow is flow controlled and we don't want any further flow restriction because it will prevent proper backwash and that will kill the mineral in the filter real quick.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  13. #43

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    Where does the aeration line to the retention tank enter the retention tank?
    It's on the back towards the bottom.
    The vent on the side of the ret. tank, does it actually allow air out of it? If not it's probably due to it being blocked. If it is blocked the water will be absorbing the air into it and that leads to less air to be used for oxidation. I'd want the vent on the top of the tank with a pipe going done to the water level; using a Honeywell float vent valve. That then sets the level of air and water in the tank always insuring proper aeration.
    I have not seen anything ccome out of it.

    The aerator injector should be 1" on 1" tubing. The oxidation process will load up the tubing past it with rust, and it can close off the ID of the tubing to like a 1/4", from the injector all the way to the ret. tank inlet. So that line should be very short and have the bare minimum of elbows in it.
    It is 1" but is several feet away and has 2 elbows.

    Is teh backwash line from the filter 1/2 PVC (white) or 1/2" or 3/4" Cpvc (tanish/gray/off white)? If it is CPVC, it has to be 3/4", not 1/2" and I wouldn't have used it, I would have used 1/2" ID PE tubing with no elbows. That water flow is flow controlled and we don't want any further flow restriction because it will prevent proper backwash and that will kill the mineral in the filter real quick.
    It's 3/4" PVC.

  14. #44
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    Posts
    6,790

    Default

    The bottom line, the guys that sold you this equipment don't know what they are doing and they are not using industry standard equipment. I'd have them take it out and then I'd start over after a water analysis of the raw water.

    I would use a brass pressure tank tee and a brass switch nipple to replace the galvanized and, I'd move the pressure tank over by the line from the well and all treatment equipment should be after it.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  15. #45

    Default

    Ok, Ill post up my raw water test results after this stuff gets taken out.

    Thanks for the help.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •