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Musical Hot Water tank!

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  • Musical Hot Water tank!

    I've been hooking up the in-floor heat in my new shop. I layed out Kytec piping before the floor was poured last summer and now I've hooked up a circulating pump and a 10 gal. electric hot water tank as a heat source. I removed the original 3000w element and replaced it with a 4500w element I picked up at Cdn. Tire. Fired it up today and the element is noisy. Not hiss/crackle like you would expect though, it's making a high pitched flute-like sound. It's pretty loud too. Sounds like I've got a sick Beluga whale in my shop. The sound is constant as long as the element is powered up. This is weird. Any ideas? Murray

  • #2
    Hi Murray.
    High watt density elements will very often cause excessive noise in water heaters. Often the only way of curing this is to replace it with a low watt density element. Since this is a new element I will not suggest that it is scale build-up, really the only other cause of noisy element problems.
    Sorry I can't be of further help in this. All the in-floor heating I've installed or participated in were off boilers.
    D.M.

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    • #3
      David, I e-mailed GSW (the manufacturer). They suggested the copper element was reacting to the compounds within the liquid being heated. They suggested I try their incoloy element and gave me a part no. Hopefully it's not expensive. I probably won't get around to trying it until next fall. Murray

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      • #4
        Interesting. Compounds in the liquid? Do you mean you are running glycol in the system?
        Anyway, good luck.
        D.M.

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        • #5
          I am running propylene glycol 4parts, and 6 parts water. A couple of local guys just used RV antifreeze which is way cheaper but I have my doubts that it is as good.

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          • #6
            I personally would'nt replace glycol with RV anti-freeze, just on general principle.
            Interesting that the element reacts that way to the glycol. Again, I'm sorry I can't add much further to it, since I've only run in- floor Pex heating with oil or gas fired boilers. Thanks for the heads up though! Good luck again.
            D.M.

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            • #7
              No more noise! It was just too annoying to wait until fall to change it. No one in town had the incoloy element in stock that GSW recommended. I just got a new copper one, a different make. It's longer than the GSW element, folded over once, so it should heat better with the larger heating surface area. The musical element must have been the right length to cause some sort of weird harmonic. Damn strangest thing I ever heard.

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              • #8
                Well, you could have set up a large aquarium with a poster of a beluga in it and imagined you have your very own personal Sea World.

                Glad you got it straightened out!
                D.M.

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