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Old 01-08-2014, 07:15 PM   #1
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


I'm no newbie when it comes to installing water heaters. Yesterday, though, I experienced something very odd that I never experienced before.

Picture this. I turned off the main water to the house. I opened up every single hot and cold water valve throughout the house. I drained the hole system, and I drained and removed the old water heater. Old water heater is GONE; so far so good.

So now all I have in front of me is the 1/2" copper cold water line which will come into the water heater, and the 1/2" copper hot water line which will go out of the water heater.

I installed a ball valve on the cold water side. I closed that valve, and turned main water supply back on. I opened up the newly-installed ball valve on the cold water side, and water was shooting out of there into my bucket as expected. Then I closed that valve, and WATER STARTED SHOOTING OUT OF THE HOT WATER PIPE. How the heck does that happen? How the heck is any water getting into the hot water pipes when there isn't even a water heater hooked up?

I opened the cold water valve back up again and water, as expected is flowing out there, but it's still flowing out of the hot water side as well. I closed that cold water ball valve back up and turned the main water supply off again to think for a minute. I was baffled.

With the cold side ball valve shut, I opened the main water back up with a 5 gallon bucket under the hot side pipe. Water flowed out of that hot water side steadily until I filled the 5-gallon bucket. So I turned the main water supply back off.

So my question to you is WHY? Did someone cross the hot and cold water lines somewhere else in the house, and if so, why the heck would anyone do that? What else, besides that, could cause this?

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Old 01-08-2014, 07:34 PM   #2
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


I bet your hot water lines are getting back fed via a mixing valve such as at your shower.

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Old 01-08-2014, 07:58 PM   #3
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


One of your single handle valve cartridges is bad. Turn off the stops below the sink one by one until you find the leaker and replace that cartridge. If that doesn't locate it I hope you have shutoffs on your tub and shower....
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:11 PM   #4
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


Common when mixer valves are left open, or you have gaskets going bad in a mixer valve. Easy fix, go shut off the hot water feeds to all faucets, while you are working on the water heater.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:33 PM   #5
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


Common you got mix slash bypass in the systems, as mentioned by posters.
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:34 PM   #6
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyoung85 View Post
I bet your hot water lines are getting back fed via a mixing valve such as at your shower.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghostmaker View Post
One of your single handle valve cartridges is bad. Turn off the stops below the sink one by one until you find the leaker and replace that cartridge. If that doesn't locate it I hope you have shutoffs on your tub and shower....
Seen this too many times. Locate the faulty cartridge and repair it- I bet you have Moen......
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Old 01-08-2014, 11:40 PM   #7
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Weird Water Heater Issue I Bet You've Never Experienced Before


Quote:
Originally Posted by hellohello View Post
I'm no newbie when it comes to installing water heaters. Yesterday, though, I experienced something very odd that I never experienced before.

Picture this. I turned off the main water to the house. I opened up every single hot and cold water valve throughout the house. I drained the hole system, and I drained and removed the old water heater. Old water heater is GONE; so far so good.

So now all I have in front of me is the 1/2" copper cold water line which will come into the water heater, and the 1/2" copper hot water line which will go out of the water heater.

I installed a ball valve on the cold water side. I closed that valve, and turned main water supply back on. I opened up the newly-installed ball valve on the cold water side, and water was shooting out of there into my bucket as expected. Then I closed that valve, and WATER STARTED SHOOTING OUT OF THE HOT WATER PIPE. How the heck does that happen? How the heck is any water getting into the hot water pipes when there isn't even a water heater hooked up?

I opened the cold water valve back up again and water, as expected is flowing out there, but it's still flowing out of the hot water side as well. I closed that cold water ball valve back up and turned the main water supply off again to think for a minute. I was baffled.

With the cold side ball valve shut, I opened the main water back up with a 5 gallon bucket under the hot side pipe. Water flowed out of that hot water side steadily until I filled the 5-gallon bucket. So I turned the main water supply back off.

So my question to you is WHY? Did someone cross the hot and cold water lines somewhere else in the house, and if so, why the heck would anyone do that? What else, besides that, could cause this?
Could also be a 2 handle faucet left open when you drained the system.

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