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do I need a glass lined tank? (2 different IBC indirects have failed within a year)

I currently have an IBC boiler and an IBC 65 gal indirect. The first one failed in about 4 months with a leak towards the bottom of the tank. it was replaced and now, about 6 months later, the second one is also failing with a small leak on the bottom. my supplier tells me that he called IBC and they're suggesting that maybe i have high chloride in the water and that i should get a glass-lined tank.
I'm looking for more opinions and recommendations.
What are some other options? do you think it's really a chloride issue (wouldn't the boiler then also be in a bad spot?), are there better units or more reliable ones? looking to keep it about the same size and same price

thanks

Comments

  • Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Member Posts: 1,824
    Hi, Two questions; what water pressures is the tank seeing? And has the water been tested?

    Yours, Larry
    kcoppCBRob
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    I"ll have to look up pressure when I get home and no, the water wasn't tested in any significant way. I have a report from previous owner (bought this house a year ago) but it's very bare
  • bob eckbob eck Member Posts: 915
    Check your water. High chlorides can make SS tanks less fast.
    You can uses a glass lined IDWH or Vaughn makes a stone lined IDWH plus they also have plastic I believe fiberglass IDWH called the Featherweight.
    Get your water checked.
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    how high would my chlorides have to be to eat through 2 tanks in a matter of a couple of months? seems weird. How do i test for chlorides?
    here's the pressure to it...
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    How did the tanks fail? Weld leaks, pinholes, threaded connection?
    Send your water to a lab to see exactly what is in it and the levels.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
  • BrewbeerBrewbeer Member Posts: 611
    Does your water come from a well or from a municipal system? Water quality info can sometimes be gleaned from existing sources. Municipal info is frequently online. Location information and well construction details sometimes help. For example, shallow wells along highways frequently see sodium chloride from winter road salt in northeastern states where we salt the bejeezesus out of everything.
    Hydronics inspired homeowner with self-designed high efficiency low temperature baseboard system and professionally installed mod-con boiler with indirect DHW. My system design thread: http://forum.heatinghelp.com/discussion/154385
    System Photo: https://us.v-cdn.net/5021738/uploads/FileUpload/79/451e1f19a1e5b345e0951fbe1ff6ca.jpg
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    @hot_rod - not sure exactly how they fail. leak is VERY slow and is towards bottom of the unit..
    @Brewbeer - well water and I don't know much about its construction. got the house within last year. it's in northeastern NJ
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,956
    Do get your water tested by a lab. You are looking particularly for chlorides, but the lab. will usually have a full suite of tests -- metals, hardness, chlorides, etc. for very little additional cost and it's worth it.

    And on corrosion and leaks. High chlorides can cause very rapid corrosion under certain conditions.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    those are the tests that are like $600 or whatever? it's hard to swallow that cost.. can you recommend a lab that doesnt cost a crazy amount for these tests?
  • TomSTomS Member Posts: 50
    Try your county health department. The county I live in offers two type of tests one for bacteria and one for water quality. For a nominal charge of $25 or so I get a whole lot of test results of just about everything in the water.
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    The analysis cost is related to how much info you need. Most of the boiler chemical companies will test for around 100 bucks.

    https://www.rhomarwater.com/pdf/Water-Test-Request-Form.pdf
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
  • bob eckbob eck Member Posts: 915
    I was told Burnham boiler company (US Boiler) at one time was selling a SS indirect water heater and in the northeast states that had so many SS tanks leaking that were under warranty they changed to using a stone line driver IDWH built for them by Vaughn. Now Vaughn has come out with a new IDWH
  • bob eckbob eck Member Posts: 915
    Thermoplastic IDWH
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    I'm hesitant to use plastic lined idwh (just personal bias against plastics in contact with hot water). Can you guys recommend a solid glass / stone / ceramic lined 50-65gal tank that won't be more than my IBC (which was around $1200)?
    CBRob
  • bob eckbob eck Member Posts: 915
    Vaughn has a stone lined IDWH
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    Doesn't that weigh a ton and is prone to cracks? How does it compare with glass lined?
  • BrewbeerBrewbeer Member Posts: 611
    A water test would be a good next step. Test for the parameters that if exceeded, would void the manufacturer's warranty. Review potential replacement unit requirements listed in the specifications and compare to your water results. There should be a lab nearby if you live in an area dominated by private wells.
    Hydronics inspired homeowner with self-designed high efficiency low temperature baseboard system and professionally installed mod-con boiler with indirect DHW. My system design thread: http://forum.heatinghelp.com/discussion/154385
    System Photo: https://us.v-cdn.net/5021738/uploads/FileUpload/79/451e1f19a1e5b345e0951fbe1ff6ca.jpg
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    Is there a specific set of tests that I need?
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    The test you need depends on what you want to know about the water. Most tests for potable water are concerned mostly with bacteria and health issues with the water, not so much specific to a certain metal. The county I live in does bacteria tests for 15 bucks.

    If you want to use a specific tank, stainless for example, they list in the manual the water parameters. So those are what you need to test for.

    All the stainless tanks I am familiar with have chloride levels indicated on the tank and in the manual. Attached is Lochinvar list of potable water specs.

    Any company in your area that sells water softeners or water treatment should have a test available or steer you to one. Universities often have labs, Farm Bureau, county govt, pool suppliers, aquarium suppliers, mail in tests. I posted a link to a basic test above.

    I like the Caleffi or Bock brand for a good quality glass lined steel, thick metal tank, heavy glass coating, large diameter coils. I believe they manufacture the coils and tanks for other brands.

    Different tanks work best in different areas, local suppliers should know which type of tank they see lasting longest.
    No doubt high chlorides are not a good match for stainless tanks. You can find the manuals online for most any tank you are considering and read their water requirement and warranty requirements before you buy.

    Fix the water or find a tank more compatible. It's not the tank as much as your water that is probably causing you and your tank headaches :)
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    I found a report online listing my town's chloride levels averaging around 250ppm.. IBC recommends 80 .. so that solves that...
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    @hot_rod - caleffi and bock don't seem to have a coil in the tank for actual heating or am I missing something? Caleffi does have some units with heat exchangers but they seem aimed at solar so not sure if that's the same thing.
  • flat_twinflat_twin Member Posts: 260
    Bock 40-SK "sidekick" is their 40 gallon model, actually 38 gallons. It's a regular single coil indirect. Going on three years with ours.
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    I ended up with a 50 gal HTP that i'm gonna run with a mixing valve just to make sure I don't run out
    Henry
  • kcoppkcopp Member Posts: 3,514
    Which HTP? They have 3 models... 2 are Stainless steel. 1 glass lined.
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    Glass lined 50 gal
    kcopp
  • kcoppkcopp Member Posts: 3,514
    If you check the anode rod on a regular basis you should get that to last a good while.
    fiddlermd
  • Jean-David BeyerJean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,663
    My water company has a web sit with lots of information. Unless you live near me, this will not help you, but it does show the kind of information you can likely get free.

    http://www.amwater.com/ccr/coastalnorth.pdf
  • flat_twinflat_twin Member Posts: 260
    We have similar information available from the water company. I didn't see Chlorides in the report and when I called them they couldn't tell me but they did suggest a place to and have it tested.
  • tim smithtim smith Member Posts: 2,317
    You mentioned a town water report of 250ppm? Didn’t you say your on a well, private or town well? If private well, the report really means nothing. You need your own water tested.
  • clammyclammy Member Posts: 2,505
    I live in north east jersey and if on well water you should have it tested . Being your on well water is your welltroll tank metal or fiberglass ? I have had customers well that have gone acidic and eaten welltroll tanks and pin holes copper water lines . Aside from those issue I have also had customers whos wells have become contaminated and had to be abandoned and city water lines ran to their house thank god the state picked up the tab . You should send your water to get tested . Are your water lines copper or plastic ? Do you have a portable expansion tank on your cold water line being you have a check valve on your welltroll tank outlet usually you should have one on your system your tank may have failed due to thermal expansion , from not having one Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • fiddlermdfiddlermd Member Posts: 59
    @clammy , i don't know many details about my well setup as I moved into the house recently. however, could you recommend a water testing places near us and what type of tests i should be doing? thanks!
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