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  • Aaron91
    started a topic Quick Question

    Quick Question

    Hey guys, I gotta run to the local community college to fill out an application to take a blue print class, but I had a question...

    So today I was working in this large(9 Bathroom) home, and it has 2 water heaters back to back, one's gas one's electric. The T&P valve on the gas water heater(1st of the 2 heaters) was going off and the truck I was on today did not have another one, so I was told to cap the line going out of the T&P. I didn't want to do it, and tried of thinking of a decent argument but he kepting saying if it 'got bad enough' the T&P on the electric(2nd of the 2 heaters) would go off. Remember this is only for a few days till we get a new T&P Valve. Granted, I know it only takes a second for something like this to create major problems, but who was right?

  • Aaron91
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Rick, in no way did I refer to myself as a Journeymen Plumber, nor did I mean to. I however was reffering to my 'co-worker' who is the owner's son. Basically soon as I finish this Blue Print Course at the local Community College, and get my GED, I hope to be accepted into the union and be around educated plumbers and do larger, more challenging more. In no way am I saying I've 'mastered' residential plumbing by any means, nor am I saying I'm too good for it, it's just not interesting for me any more.

    It was piped to the ground, the only thing is, the room next to it, is a finished fitness room, and it was causing damage.

    I thank you very much for letting me know to get into the Union's schooling system.

    Bob- I understand your point, but let's just say it's the builder, my co worker and myself, and he's getting ready to cut a pipe, or make a big decision right there and then, would you want me to ask the question several hours later after we've left the job, then causing us to come back another day?

    Leave a comment:


  • ToUtahNow
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Rick is correct in that water heaters do not explode on a regular basis. The majority of all T&P discharges are due to a faulty T&P rather than a problem with temperature or pressure. However, I do have a copy of Watt's video "Explosion-Danger Lurks" in my book case for anyone dumb enough to even consider capping off a T&P line.

    Aaron I don’t recall if the plumber you were working with was your boss or your journeyman. If he was your journeyman you need to discuss your concerns with your boss. If he was your boss you need to pack your tools and head out.

    I know it seems like jobs are hard to find but at 16 your mind is like a sponge. If the guy who is teaching you plumbing is doing things like this you are better off starting over with a new company then learning from a guy who has no clue.

    Mark

    Leave a comment:


  • PLUMBER RICK
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by gear junkie View Post
    Why didn't the element break when turned on with no water around it?
    i would think that the heater was not empty to that point. typically the elements alternate between the top and bottom. hard to tell exactly what happened when you find them in that condition.

    the thermostat is also one that is not typically submerged, but just pressing on the tank shell. still a guess on what really happened since the plumber was there the day before.

    keep in mind that any heater can be made dangerous. plugging or not having a relief valve is only 1 line of defense. a good line but not the only way to idiot proof a heater.

    in my opinion, a gas heater has better safety devices than an electric heater.

    rick.

    Leave a comment:


  • gear junkie
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by BAPlumber View Post
    this happened while I was working in Seattle. I was not involved.

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/33094_boom28.shtml
    Why didn't the element break when turned on with no water around it?

    Leave a comment:


  • westcoastplumber
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by Bob D. View Post
    "In My Years Of Exp. Training People I Would Not Like Them To Argue With Me On The Job. But!!! I Did Want All Their Questons
    asked Outside At The Truck Or On The Road Where Other People
    would Not Know What Was Being Said,"

    This is a good point that JerryMac makes Aaron. If you have questions about how or why something is being done do not do so in front of the client. this is not the way to conduct yourself on the job. Nothing wrong with asking Qs so you can understand the hows and whys, or offering an opinion, observation, or possible solution to a problem, that's how you learn. But don't make your coworkers look like (or accuse them of) they don't know what they are doing. This is where knowing how to ask questions w/o offending someone comes in handy. So to paraphrase an old axiom: "think twice and ask once"

    Very well said Bob D!

    Leave a comment:


  • Bob D.
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    "In My Years Of Exp. Training People I Would Not Like Them To Argue With Me On The Job. But!!! I Did Want All Their Questons
    asked Outside At The Truck Or On The Road Where Other People
    would Not Know What Was Being Said,"


    This is a good point that JerryMac makes Aaron. If you have questions about how or why something is being done do not do so in front of the client. this is not the way to conduct yourself on the job. Nothing wrong with asking Qs so you can understand the hows and whys, or offering an opinion, observation, or possible solution to a problem, that's how you learn. But don't make your coworkers look like (or accuse them of) they don't know what they are doing. This is where knowing how to ask questions w/o offending someone comes in handy. So to paraphrase an old axiom: "think twice and ask once"

    Leave a comment:


  • CharlieS
    replied
    Re: Leaking T&P valve on a new W heater

    Since I just experienced a smiliar situation on a new W heater the home owner attempted to install, I traced the problem to a worn out pressure reducer valve on the incoming water line to the home. The pressure was just a tad high 102psi. Once that device was changed out, the T&P valve stoped leaking.

    Leave a comment:


  • proplumb
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    my suggestion would be to find another job. i have had the same type of exoerience's in the past when i first started in the trade. there is one thing that you need to remember, your reputation will follow you for years to come. i worked with a guy who didi some really bad work when i was younger. decided to leave the company because of it and im glad i did. i have been back to a couple of the jobs i did with him and people have acctually remembered me. keep in mind i live in a city of a few million people, but its still small enough that bad work will haunt you.

    Leave a comment:


  • JERRYMAC
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    GOOD POSTS, TO ANWSER RICKS QUESTION ABOUT OTHER JOBS, THIS WAS BEFORE E. P. A. MANDATED CK. VALVE AT WATER METERS,
    ALSO AS HE SAYS I HAVE WORKED IN MANY PARTS OF L. A. WHERE THE STREET WATER PRESS. WAS 150 PSI. OR MORE BOTH ABOVE ISSUES NEGATE A PRV BYPAS,
    SPEC. NOTE; A T & P VALVE IS A EMGENCY SAFTEY BRAKE OF LAST RESORT SO GO AHEAD AND CUT THE SAFTEY BRAKE CABLES ON YOUR WIFES OR KIDS CAR AND LET THEM TAKE A RIDE DOWN A STEEP MUNTAIN ROAD AND BET THAT THE REGULAR BRAKES WILL ALWAYS HOLD,
    IT'S LIKE GAMBLING YOUR CO. BUSSNESS TITLE IN LAS VEGAS,

    JERRYMAC MASTER PLUMBER

    Leave a comment:


  • westcoastplumber
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
    the above is my original post.

    -------------------------------------------------------

    below is plumbercracks edited cut and paste post.

    Originally Posted by PLUMBER RICK
    it was not a temperature issue. it was a pressure issue. sure heat caused the thermal expansion, but not heat any higher than the setting of the thermostat. Aaron stated the relief valve was "going off" that tells me temperature issue.
    since he had no gauge to test pressure, i would think he could feel steam or hear boiling water. pretty self explanitory to me that it's a pressure issue and not a temperature issue.
    funny, but this was not addressed to arron, but to ben/ gearjunkie and plumbercrack's post. still it will apply to your remarks.

    there is no reason a relief valve will ever open except for a defective one.
    replacing a relief valve is not necessarily the answer, but typically is the solution as the majority of t&p dripping are due to bad relief valves. That couldn't be farther from the truth.
    you need to read the entire paragraph, not just an excerpt.
    a relief valve is set for 125 or 150psi on a domestic water heater. if there is no check valve in the system to block the excess pressure from being trapped in the system. if the pressure regulator has a thermal bypass, and the city pressure is lower than the relief valve setting, then there is no reason a relief valve should open except for a defective one.

    once again you left out the key words of my quote.


    how about the 1000's of heaters that i installed pre 1990(new construction, multiple commercial plumbing inspectors) that don't have a t&p on the heater, but do have it on the system? What safety device is protecting those heaters from excessive temperatures?

    the heaters have a thermostat and a non re-settable high limit cut off. not to mention that the open system with no check valves will allow cold water into the heater. these are domestic heaters.

    so i guess you're trying to outsmart all the commercial plumbing inspectors that have signed off on all the different jobs that these were installed in not to mention the different cities and jurasdictions at the time of installation.


    think about it I am and find your cavalier attitude very disturbing

    i find your lack of not having a clue even more ammusing.
    Rick are you feeling ok?

    Yea I've been called a "safety baby" on more than one occasion but don't listen to me look at some of the other posts from Bob and Woussko and others.

    Don't try and talk yourself out of this Rick. You are dead to me now. Take a seat and send in Jojo.
    __________________


    if you're going to quote me, don't cut and paste and take it out of contex. so i'll repost the entire piece to clarify for you.

    i'll post in blue so that you can read my responce. look up for my responces.

    if you quote, quote the entire part. not just bits and pieces.

    from what i read of the others, they seem to understand where i was coming from.

    there is redundency in a heaters safety system. pretty tuff to make one blow up. i just highlighted some of the issues.

    out of the 50 million heaters or so installed in the usa. how many actually blow up? not just leak, but blow up. you can do the research, i don't have time to research it. and gas leaks don't count in this project.

    sorry for the rant, but what good is a debate if we don't debate. remember i was the one who had the guts to play devils advocate and go out on a limb. glad most of you know what i was posting and where i was coming from.

    rick.

    Very nice, I'm sorry, I had to quote this just for the heck of it Add another page to the heated thread. It is a great discussion for sure.

    Leave a comment:


  • BAPlumber
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Like I said, i was working there when it happened so the research wasn't that hard. the story I heard was that there was a "plumber" there earlier, the t&p was already capped, so the water to the heater was turned off and the pressure taken off, but the power left on. A fix would be done the next day. The fix got a lot bigger.

    The basic decision was that the plumber who was there was at fault for not protecting the public. I don't know of any legal decision.

    I can't tell Aaron what to do because you have to take care of yourself, but if you have concerns about someones safety, speak up.

    Leave a comment:


  • PLUMBER RICK
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by BAPlumber View Post
    this happened while I was working in Seattle. I was not involved.

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/33094_boom28.shtml
    very good finding one. it was an electric heater that according to the article was partitially filled with water. not sure if the person who worked on it the day earlier had shut the incoming water and didn't turn off the power?

    it did say that the relief valve had been capped. turning the tank into a steam rocket.

    a good example of knowing right from wrong. therefore by having the heater still heating and no water coming in, the relief valve capped, created a senario with 3 or more problems. last one is the thermostat and high limit either failed or was also tampered with?

    had the power been turned off, it would not have exploded. or if the water turned on it probably would not have exploded. the article said water was partialy drained. therefore it was still powered on and water was off. the pressure built up and couldn't escape to the outside piping or relief valve.

    this was in 2001 and they did say it's very rare. they also mentioned a heater that exploded in minn. in 1993,with a 40 year old heater. very very rare to have a heater that old.

    good research baplumber

    rick.

    Leave a comment:


  • BAPlumber
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    this happened while I was working in Seattle. I was not involved.

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/33094_boom28.shtml

    Leave a comment:


  • PLUMBER RICK
    replied
    Re: Quick Question

    Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
    that's why i said i was going to play devils advocate.

    what sounds like has happened was an overpressure situation. the heater has a test pressure of 300psi and a working pressure of 150 psi. this being on a new heater in perfect condition.

    now if there was a check valve on the system to keep the thermal expansion from getting back out of the tank, you could easily get over 150psi. especially in a tight system when there is nobody home using the hot water.

    it was not a temperature issue. it was a pressure issue. sure heat caused the thermal expansion, but not heat any higher than the setting of the thermostat.

    i've seen basements get flooded because the relief valve was not piped out of the basement and there was no pump. the plumber didn't take into account thermal expansion and just installed another relief valve. the basement was flooded again.

    relief valves are set to either 125 or 150 psi. in an open system most pressure regulators have a thermal bypass in them. as long as there is no check valve, back flow preventer in the system and the city pressure before the regulator is less than the relief valve setting, there is no reason a relief valve will ever open except for a defective one.

    if you know the facts of the situation/ installation, you will have the knowledge to distinguish right from wrong, safe from dangerous.

    aaron had the knowledge to know right from wrong. did he have the knowledge to know safe form dangerous. did he test the heater for excess pressure or temperature. replacing a relief valve is not necessarily the answer, but typically is the solution as the majority of t&p dripping are due to bad relief valves.

    aaron posted a good question, everyone panicked without discussing all the potentials. i brought up the other side of the issue/ devils advocate.

    now i would like you to tell me how what i brought up would be bad. without knowing a cause and effect how does anyone learn?

    how about the 1000's of heaters that i installed pre 1990(new construction, multiple commercial plumbing inspectors) that don't have a t&p on the heater, but do have it on the system?

    think about it

    even aaron commented on the comments
    the above is my original post.

    -------------------------------------------------------

    below is plumbercracks edited cut and paste post.

    Originally Posted by PLUMBER RICK
    it was not a temperature issue. it was a pressure issue. sure heat caused the thermal expansion, but not heat any higher than the setting of the thermostat. Aaron stated the relief valve was "going off" that tells me temperature issue.
    since he had no gauge to test pressure, i would think he could feel steam or hear boiling water. pretty self explanitory to me that it's a pressure issue and not a temperature issue.
    funny, but this was not addressed to arron, but to ben/ gearjunkie and plumbercrack's post. still it will apply to your remarks.

    there is no reason a relief valve will ever open except for a defective one.
    replacing a relief valve is not necessarily the answer, but typically is the solution as the majority of t&p dripping are due to bad relief valves. That couldn't be farther from the truth.
    you need to read the entire paragraph, not just an excerpt.
    a relief valve is set for 125 or 150psi on a domestic water heater. if there is no check valve in the system to block the excess pressure from being trapped in the system. if the pressure regulator has a thermal bypass, and the city pressure is lower than the relief valve setting, then there is no reason a relief valve should open except for a defective one.

    once again you left out the key words of my quote.


    how about the 1000's of heaters that i installed pre 1990(new construction, multiple commercial plumbing inspectors) that don't have a t&p on the heater, but do have it on the system? What safety device is protecting those heaters from excessive temperatures?

    the heaters have a thermostat and a non re-settable high limit cut off. not to mention that the open system with no check valves will allow cold water into the heater. these are domestic heaters.

    so i guess you're trying to outsmart all the commercial plumbing inspectors that have signed off on all the different jobs that these were installed in not to mention the different cities and jurasdictions at the time of installation.


    think about it I am and find your cavalier attitude very disturbing

    i find your lack of not having a clue even more ammusing.
    Rick are you feeling ok?

    Yea I've been called a "safety baby" on more than one occasion but don't listen to me look at some of the other posts from Bob and Woussko and others.

    Don't try and talk yourself out of this Rick. You are dead to me now. Take a seat and send in Jojo.
    __________________


    if you're going to quote me, don't cut and paste and take it out of contex. so i'll repost the entire piece to clarify for you.

    i'll post in blue so that you can read my responce. look up for my responces.

    if you quote, quote the entire part. not just bits and pieces.

    from what i read of the others, they seem to understand where i was coming from.

    there is redundency in a heaters safety system. pretty tuff to make one blow up. i just highlighted some of the issues.

    out of the 50 million heaters or so installed in the usa. how many actually blow up? not just leak, but blow up. you can do the research, i don't have time to research it. and gas leaks don't count in this project.

    sorry for the rant, but what good is a debate if we don't debate. remember i was the one who had the guts to play devils advocate and go out on a limb. glad most of you know what i was posting and where i was coming from.

    rick.
    Last edited by PLUMBER RICK; 08-09-2007, 01:47 AM. Reason: re read.

    Leave a comment:

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