My HWH is probably a NO GO - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum

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post #1 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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My HWH is probably a NO GO

So I bought the wrench to take the elements out of the heater. Top one came out with some persuasion and the copper was covered in white buildup Just for fun I try taking the bottom one out... I finally get it unscrewed, and it wont come out... what the heck? I shine a flashlight in the open hole where the top element was, and there is so much buildup inside I cant even see the bottom element inside the tank, it's buried in sediment. MOTHER$@%#&!@

So I think this one is trash. Nothing inside is loose, it's just one solid chunk of buildup.

How are you guys finding used HWH's without any of this crud in them? The guy I got mine from warned me it would be like this, and said he hasn't ever seen one that didn't do this.





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post #2 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 02:33 PM
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A local plumbing contractor keeps used HWHs behind his building until he has enough for a dump run. Can't beat FREE!

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post #3 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:02 PM
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took me 2 hours to clean one that was used only 3 months. it was white pieces not one big clump though.

that was city water.
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post #4 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:05 PM
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why(other than price) are you looking for a used one vs a new one?

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post #5 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:12 PM
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Hit the supply houses for a dented or damaged one. Got me a brand new 40 gallon Bradford White monday that had a dent in the edge of the top. We pulled the top cap and no damage to insulation or tank. They had it on display for a year. I got it for 61 dollars plus tax. Excited the crap outa me!

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post #6 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:14 PM
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I had the exact same thing - worst city water ever. I worked for a water company and tested it once - lab couldn't give a grain/gal answer because it was off the chart... I pulled the bottom element out an inch or so with a lot of effort, then with some chipping and cutting pulled the element out in pieces. I took a shop vac and put a piece of narrow pipe on the end for chipping. I filled the vac up more than once with calcium until emptied and the HWH lived another several years.

Then I got a used old style water softener for free, hooked it up, and the next HWH ran for 5 years before I ever drained it - absolutely no calcium in the bottom after 5 years! Never replaced another faucet, shower head, clothes lasted longer from washing machine, etc. Worth its weight in gold.

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post #7 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:21 PM
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For what it's worth.
If you will remove the factory drain valve and replace it with a 3/4" X 3-4" brass nipple and a 3/4" brass ball valve with a water hose adapter.
You can easily drain your water heater 1-2 times a year and keep the sediment to a minimum.
The factory drain will usually get clogged when you try to drain the sediment.
Or you can install an inline sediment filter on the incoming water line.

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post #8 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:48 PM
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If you have a bad one, what about just cutting the top right off the HWH and dumping the crap out, can get in there and hit it with chiesel etc.....rip the baffels out, not needed anyhow....

I am curious about this, cause I was looking for an old HWH, but didn't think about the sediment deposits...

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post #9 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:56 PM
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The W/H tanks are glass lined steel. You would end up breaking the glass liner, don't know if this would be a problem or not.

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post #10 of 32 Old 07-23-2008, 06:58 PM
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Getting a used HWH is not worth the money, or the time to install it. HWH's are pretty reasonable at Home Depot and Lowes and other stores of the same.


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