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Gellatinous mess in WH

kcopp
kcopp Member Posts: 3,820
I was replacing a water heater today and was unable to drain out the tank w/o some messy intervention w a wire in the drain. The bottom of the tank clogged up w this clear viscous ooze. Any idea what this junk is?

Comments

  • gschallert
    gschallert Member Posts: 170
    anode slime? had that years ago with one of my early electric tanks when I had to replace the bottom element. took the anode out of all the tanks after that one. now I have indirect stainless, no anodes required! :D
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    edited December 2016
    kcopp said:

    I was replacing a water heater today and was unable to drain out the tank w/o some messy intervention w a wire in the drain. The bottom of the tank clogged up w this clear viscous ooze. Any idea what this junk is?

    Was it electric?

  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,974
    Did cold hurt it? Like a CO2 extinguisher? You could tell Dave you need CO2 if that's the case.



    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    kcoppCanucker
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 15,033
    kcopp said:

    I was replacing a water heater today and was unable to drain out the tank w/o some messy intervention w a wire in the drain. The bottom of the tank clogged up w this clear viscous ooze. Any idea what this junk is?

    It's the various minerals "salts" in your water. Check the TDS.

    Some minerals precipitate out when water is heated, think tea kettle. Others stay in solution as water is heated. These show up on your faucets and glasses from your dishwasher.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    kcopp
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 3,820
    Power vent Nat gas.
    I was wearing gloves and did not want to get it on my hands in the case it was bacterial.....
    Funny, is is city water and generally speaking the was here is really pretty good.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,974
    Just in case no one got my comment, it's from the movie The Blob with Steve McQueen.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    kcopp
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,518
    ChrisJ said:

    Just in case no one got my comment, it's from the movie The Blob with Steve McQueen.

    I wondered what the hell that was about, @ChrisJ . Now I know.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,974
    Fred said:

    ChrisJ said:

    Just in case no one got my comment, it's from the movie The Blob with Steve McQueen.

    I wondered what the hell that was about, @ChrisJ . Now I know.
    I know.
    If I'm going to try and be funny with movie quotes I should pick something newer than 1958.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    Try is the keyword.......
    HatterasguyCanucker
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 15,033
    kcopp said:

    Power vent Nat gas.
    I was wearing gloves and did not want to get it on my hands in the case it was bacterial.....
    Funny, is is city water and generally speaking the was here is really pretty good.


    Let some of it dry out on a plate. I'll bet it turns into a crunchy white deposit. Calcium, magnesium, etc the common hardness minerals.

    Do you have a water hardness test kit?

    Google water hardness testing, there are some DIYer test procedures with drops of soap.

    The city should have info available on hardness, TDS, maybe other data.

    I'd be interested in seeing what the chloride levels are if they offer that info.

    I've been doing a lot of research on chloride levels in all the cities I visit. In areas where they do a lot of road deicing with chloride blends, the levels in the aquifers are skyrocketing.

    Paul Smiths college in upstate NY did some studies on chlorides in the rivers and streams in the Adirondacks. Interesting read, on how it effects everything from the water, plants, road surfaces and vehicle corrosion.

    http://www.lakegeorgeassociation.org/What-We-Do/Lake-friendly-Living/documents/Saltstudy-adkaction.pdf


    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    kcopp
  • Canucker
    Canucker Member Posts: 702
    > @ChrisJ said:
    > Just in case no one got my comment, it's from the movie The Blob with Steve McQueen.
    >
    > I wondered what the hell that was about, @ChrisJ . Now I know.
    >
    > I know.
    > If I'm going to try and be funny with movie quotes I should pick something newer than 1958.

    Don't feel bad, I got it @ChrisJ lol
    You can have it good, fast or cheap. Pick two
    ChrisJ
  • MilanD
    MilanD Member Posts: 1,159
    For what it's worth, I've had a GE whole house water filter for a while now (9 years, maybe). It removes a lot of sediment and other stuff above 25 microns and is good for about 30,000 gallons. I still flush my hwh, but only once a year, as here was no sediment at the bottom of it for years now... faucets also don't calcify, nor do I have sand or any other issues with the dish washer or washing machine. Only thing is to install a bypass for your outside hose, or your lawn and plants will get some filtered water. :smile: I highly recommend it to anyone. I'm actually about to install a small 5 micron version of it on the boiler feeder at work.

    And here's a pic of what the filter looks like after about a year (I replace it when water pressure starts dropping). This thing was extra-heavy, too.


  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,284
    Hello, If the gelatinous goo is slightly bluish in color, it's likely from an aluminum anode rod. It dries to a white powder. It's not bacterial, but it is somewhat toxic. I almost always make sure I have only magnesium anodes in tanks I work on, because of the health consideration. B)

    Yours, Larry
    kcoppChrisJGordy
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 3,820
    When you say toxic... to touch or ingest?
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,284
    Hi, I meant to ingest. I'm in California where the State EPA has a limit of one PPM aluminum in the water (physics shouldn't vary with location ;) ). I measured twice that from the center of a tank with an aluminum anode in it. For those who have a recirc line that has a malfunctioning check valve, the concentration can be MUCH higher.

    Yours, Larry
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,974

    Hi, I meant to ingest. I'm in California where the State EPA has a limit of one PPM aluminum in the water (physics shouldn't vary with location ;) ). I measured twice that from the center of a tank with an aluminum anode in it. For those who have a recirc line that has a malfunctioning check valve, the concentration can be MUCH higher.

    Yours, Larry

    I thought aluminum rods were necessary with some water due to a bad reaction with magnesium?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • kcopp
    kcopp Member Posts: 3,820
    So needless to say you should not drink hot tap water....
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,974
    kcopp said:

    So needless to say you should not drink hot tap water....

    You're never supposed to drink or cook with water from a water heater. This is because the tank holds all kinds of junk and hot water is more likely to leach lead from old solder joints.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,284
    Hello, I've never run across a "bad reaction" to magnesium, but I haven't dealt with all types of water. In general, aluminum is cheaper, so it gets used. Also, you may have heard of the aluminum-zinc rod, which is used when odor is a problem. It works in mild cases. Aluminum is less reactive than magnesium, so tends to reduce odor.

    I don't mind using hot water for cooking etc. as long as I know there has always been a magnesium rod in the tank.... but then I haven't had a good hair day in decades! :p

    Yours, Larry
    kcoppChrisJ
  • flat_twin
    flat_twin Member Posts: 292
    ChrisJ said:

    Did cold hurt it? Like a CO2 extinguisher? You could tell Dave you need CO2 if that's the case.



    Yep, Dave was the police officer. Not sure why Helen Crump left Steve for Andy, but she did!
    ChrisJ
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,949
    I recall one of the last comments at the end of the movie.."The Blob will remain frozen and not threat us as long as the polar cap remains frozen..." When is the sequel coming out?? ;)
    kcoppChrisJ
  • happydave
    happydave Member Posts: 79
    Anode or water softener can do it, we use air compressor to blow tanks out using the vacuum breaker port
    kcopp
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 15,033
    The spin cleanable filters are another nice choice to extend filter life. Lakos is one brand

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream