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Old 04-03-2015, 09:50 PM   #1
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Bad T&P valve or something more?


I believe what is happening is more than a coincidence, but Id like your opinion also.

Yesterday, the water department started working on our water meter in the front yard. They came to the door and advised the water would be turned off for a while to make repairs. About 3 hours later the repairs where complete and water turned back on. My wife started her routine of running dishwasher and washing machine which caused the water heater to turn on. Before the water heater turned off a surge of water released from the T&P valve onto garage floor. At first I thought that the T&P valve went bad, but I believe the repairs the water company made could have been a back flow prevention device, since problems started same day.

To ensure that I wasnt received high pressure of water, I bought a water gauge tester and I am getting 60-65 lbs of water at both exterior hose bibs. The water heater is natural gas and temperature setpoint is set to standard 120 degrees. The T&P valve is not leaking until we are using hot water and will release about 4-5 cups of water before turning off. I now have 1 gallon milk jug to collect water instead of being dumped on garage floor. I can measure the amount being discharged if it helps. I thought sediment could be stuck to T&P valve so I opened the valve about 5 times allowing half gallon of water to be collected each time. Using meat thermometer the water temperature is exactly 120 degrees so the water heater thermostat is correct.

Should I go ahead and install a small expansion tank or replace the T&P valve and continue to monitor?
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Old 04-03-2015, 10:45 PM   #2
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You need to install a hot water tank expansion tank on the cold to your hot water heater. I'm surprised they did not bother to tell you that.

Pick up a T&P also they tend to leak once they go off.
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Old 04-03-2015, 10:53 PM   #3
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If you leave the gauge on the line what does the pressure go to after the heater has been heating for a while with no water usage? If it rises then your suspicions are probably correct. A pressure tank may be needed now to absorb the expansion of the heating water.
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Old 04-03-2015, 11:26 PM   #4
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[QUOTE=Ghostmaker;1907609] I'm surprised they did not bother to tell you that. QUOTE]

I'm not sure what repair was completed but they were here about 8 hours. I knew something was going to happen since mine and the neighbors yard was marked by locating company about a week prior.

Looks like an expansion tank will be getting installed.
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Old 04-03-2015, 11:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joed View Post
If you leave the gauge on the line what does the pressure go to after the heater has been heating for a while with no water usage? If it rises then your suspicions are probably correct. A pressure tank may be needed now to absorb the expansion of the heating water.
Great idea! I never read about doing this test. I will try this to confirm if the pressure is rising but have sinking feeling it is. I knew that something had changed but I wish I knew what the city installed/modified to the meter.
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Old 04-04-2015, 01:22 AM   #6
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While shopping for an expansion tank online with HD, I came across a shark bite product that seems to be made for this type of application. It's the 3/4 in. Brass Push-to-Connect x Push-to-Connect x Female Pipe Thread Slip Tee.

Are these kind of connectors as secure as solder connections? Last time I soldered was helping a friend install a electric water heater (the joints were ugly but did not leak).
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Old 04-04-2015, 07:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marriedmanw View Post
While shopping for an expansion tank online with HD, I came across a shark bite product that seems to be made for this type of application. It's the 3/4 in. Brass Push-to-Connect x Push-to-Connect x Female Pipe Thread Slip Tee.

Are these kind of connectors as secure as solder connections? Last time I soldered was helping a friend install a electric water heater (the joints were ugly but did not leak).
If they are installed correctly, imo, they will last as long as a soldered connection. That said, some plumbers don't like them for long term use.
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Old 04-05-2015, 06:58 PM   #8
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UPDATE: Problem fixed


The expansion tank solved the problem with rising water pressure after county water company made changes to our meter. I don't do alot of soldering but luckly no issues after cooling connection down and turning on water. The most time consuming part was getting all the water out of the line prior to soldering. I know with an older house I need practice soldering for other projects. I did not install a cut off valve inline with tank due to having one about 6' away on main line. I used scrap 14/2 ground wire to support joint prior to installing tank. The tank was pumped up to 62 lbs last night and I checked before installing and no issues with the bladder leaking.

I wonder if my water bill will change any? If the water was expanding and going back through meter then once cooling coming back into the house, the same water passed the meter twice. Just my way of thinking..

Thanks for all the help!
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Old 04-05-2015, 07:07 PM   #9
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Nice job. Glad everything worked out for you. Thanks for the update.
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Old 04-05-2015, 11:05 PM   #10
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Quote:
I did not install a cut off valve inline with tank due to having one about 6' away on main line.
Glad you didn't. You do not want a valve there- if someone closes it then the tank is useless.
Glad this solved your problem
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