PTR valve opened and blue sediment

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Hotdogwater

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We are in strict lockdown due to Covid, so I’d appreciate any help as I try to navigate this on our own for the 1st time. We have had to get a new water heater every 2-3 years for the past 12 years because our TPR valve will open and completely flood our basement(never closes back off..EVER). Each plumber has always said that since the water heater is under warranty, we should just pay for the labor and get a new heater because if something made the TPR valve open, then we should play on the safe side. Anyways, it just happened again and this unit is right at 2 years old. After trying to educate myself online, I decided to have the warranty company send me out a TPR valve and to flush the unit(my thinking is that I do remember thinking that the water felt hotter than usual right before this happened and thought sediment could explain why the TPR opened in the 1st place). I will admit that I never knew that you are supposed to flush your water tank as maintenance(no one ever told me that...maybe plumbers assumed it was common sense and I should’ve known that?). So, the drain plug was clogged and then I started getting all of this bluish crap coming out(some looked like granules and other formed into slime sludge). I have city water. I plan on using a thermometer to keep checking water temp coming out of faucets when I fire it back up, but I don’t have a pressure gauge to check water pressure. I don’t want my unit to explode, so is there anything else I should be watching out for? Is this blue stuff normal? I had so much that my water hose also 17E38810-62BE-48CE-AD32-F2AF9366E184.jpegclogged up and I had to use containers to drain unit until the amount of sediment reduced.
 

CT18

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What is the pressure of the city water into your house. That valve pops at temp or pressure. You should not have to replace a heater every couple years. Like John said you may need an expansion tank and possibly a PRV to drop the city pressure coming in. A good plumbing company should be able to set you up, not just say replace tank and it will be fine. Something is causing the T and P to open. I am a Industrial/Commercial plumber so i dont have a lot of residential service experience.
 

Geofd

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We are in strict lockdown due to Covid, so I’d appreciate any help as I try to navigate this on our own for the 1st time. We have had to get a new water heater every 2-3 years for the past 12 years because our TPR valve will open and completely flood our basement(never closes back off..EVER). Each plumber has always said that since the water heater is under warranty, we should just pay for the labor and get a new heater because if something made the TPR valve open, then we should play on the safe side. Anyways, it just happened again and this unit is right at 2 years old. After trying to educate myself online, I decided to have the warranty company send me out a TPR valve and to flush the unit(my thinking is that I do remember thinking that the water felt hotter than usual right before this happened and thought sediment could explain why the TPR opened in the 1st place). I will admit that I never knew that you are supposed to flush your water tank as maintenance(no one ever told me that...maybe plumbers assumed it was common sense and I should’ve known that?). So, the drain plug was clogged and then I started getting all of this bluish crap coming out(some looked like granules and other formed into slime sludge). I have city water. I plan on using a thermometer to keep checking water temp coming out of faucets when I fire it back up, but I don’t have a pressure gauge to check water pressure. I don’t want my unit to explode, so is there anything else I should be watching out for? Is this blue stuff normal? I had so much that my water hose also View attachment 24768clogged up and I had to use containers to drain unit until the amount of sediment reduced.
I think that’s calcium build up, we had the same thing in one of our dorms at work, we installed and maintain a large filtering system no we don’t see any of that, if it’s city water take a water sample and get it tested that would be a start
As other poster have ask, what is the pressure entering your house
What is the temp set at on your hot water heaterI forget. What is the age of your heater
Ok it’s 2 years old
 

SHEPLMBR

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I have to ask, why wouldn't you have replaced the TPV instead of the heater every 2-3 years? And yes, do you have a thermal expansion tank?
 

Hotdogwater

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I do not have a thermal expansion tank. I do need to invest in a pressure guard as I doubt the water heaters themselves are failing so quickly. However, I’m leaning more towards needing to flush system every 6 months after seeing all of that gunk come out of the tank, but then again, I couldn’t find anything online that said that sediment on bottom could open the valve. It’s been back on for 24 hours and temp is spot on so far.
 

havasu

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You need to spend about $12 and first determine how much incoming water pressure you have. You simply screw it on your external hose spigot. That will tell everyone alot.
 

johnjh2o

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If you don't have a thermal expansion tank when the heater comes on the water expands with nowhere to go. Causing the pressure in the tank to rise to the point that opens the PRV.
 

havasu

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John, although I somewhat agree with you, I have only seen one thermal expansion tank in all my 30 years of maintenance in California. Can you explain why for me?
 

Jeff Handy

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If he has no prv or backflow device on the incoming water line, the heated water should be able to expand back out towards the street.

So maybe he has one and does not know it?
 

johnjh2o

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If he has no prv or backflow device on the incoming water line, the heated water should be able to expand back out towards the street.

So maybe he has one and does not know it?
That is true but today many water service companies are replacing their meters with check valves to protect their systems from backflow.
 
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