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Dirty Steam Water in Hot water tank (6 Posts)
Dirty Steam Water in Hot water tankToday I had a friend over to clean my glass gauge of my steam boiler.
When we drained the boiler the water was pretty dirty. I have a low
water cutoff. It refills after ten minutes, instead of waiting ten
minutes we added by by turning on the by pass valve. After he left, I
decided to clean out the water in my hot water tank, A O Smith that is
four years old. Usually, it would be only a little dirty, after half a
gallon it would run clean. This time, the water was as dirty as my
steam boiler, never seen it like this before. I connected a garden hose
to the drain and let it drain for twenty minutes. It went from dark
brown to light clear. I also let my hot water faucet run for 10
minutes. It had a little dirty water. I shut off the hot water flow to
my steam boiler for now. My question is:
How could this happen,
is it possible that the hot water heater sucked water from my boiler?
Negative pressure? Is there a way to prevent this? This is the first
time I've seen this. I added a picture of my system.
I appreciate the advice.
Cross contaminationHigh pressure leaks into low pressure side. If you flushed or refilled a hot steamer you can cause a leak in the boier, but not cross contamination. First sign of coil leak is press relief valve on boiler trips. Tank rotting? Sat for a while?Working on steam and hot-water systems isn't rocket science....it's actually much harder.
dirty waterDo you have a backflow preventer on the boiler. have you had water line repairs in the areaRJ
Dirty hot waterIf this is a home which is rarely used, and has some iron piping, then the first draws of hot water after a long period of inactivity will be brown from rust
Also do a search here for the procedure for cleaning of the gauge glass.--NBCThis post was edited by an admin on September 28, 2013 11:08 PM.
Steam Water in Hot wter TankThanks for the tips guys, Does the automatic water feed have a backflow prevent er in it? If not, then I don't have a back flow preventer. To install one, I guess I would install on the line before it goes into the auto feeder? With a shut off valve right before it.
I do remember them doing water work on the main line in my street last month, but if I had dirty water in the tank because of that, wouldn't I have seen it while using the hot water?
Thirdly, the pressure relief values for both the boiler and hot water tank seem ok, dry with no water leak.
Is my solution to this is installing a back flow preventer for half inch copper pipe? I cut off the hot water supply to my boiler and i have been draining the hot water tank every two hours to see how the water looks, it looks crystal clear so far, is this a one time thing?
See my answerin the other thread you started on this."Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
Oil & Gas Burner Service
Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.