FAQs on Particulate Debris in the Building Water Supply & Piping
Recent questions & answers about debris in the building water supply: flush out water heater, pipes, etc.
On 2017-02-09 17:22:00.087681 by (mod) - plastic dip tube deterioriation leaves particles that clog building pipes & faucets
Thank you for your comments. I agree the disintegrating plastic or rubber Parts LS problems with both water heaters and Plumbing Systems, including clogging.
However you might want to have your water chemistry tested.
For example if the water is particularly aggressive or corrosive or acidic you may want to treat it in order to protect the rest of your plumbing system.
On 2017-02-09 12:57:32.378884 by LM
About 20 or more years ago there was a massive recall of the fill tube in hot water heaters. This was a plastic pipe inside that the fill water goes into and is taken to the bottom of the heater so the cold water is not sucked out the top of the tank.
Got ours replace thru the recall, a plumber takes the intake tube loose and the fill tube inside can be replaced.
There was nothing left of the old one, it totally dis-intrigrated as shown by pictures in this article. I just yesterday replaced the hoses that go into and our of the top of water heater.
The old one were braided outside but with a black rubber tube inside. The black tube disintergrated and first stopped up a shower valve, then more small black pieces were come out of the hot water lines around the house.
I had them replaced with stainless steel flexible hoses, no liners, just a flexible steel hose. House is about 22 years old and the old line failed and disintergrated.
Builders put cheep junk into all parts of a house, saving a few dollars, and don't care about future problems of homeowners.
On 2017-01-26 18:23:19.753467 by kkd
I figured all this out myself and cleared the faucets, my problem is, I suspect, a piece of dip tube wedged in the mixer for the shower.
My question: is there anything that I can do to dissolve this piece? This faucet was installed as part of a total redo and can't be reached thru the access panel and is also sweated in. I have replaced the cartridge and tried everything from the front.
On 2017-01-11 05:38:54.980630 by (mod)
You can use the page top or bottom contact link to send photos.
I suspect you may be seeing a bacterial contamination. Have you tried having a sample from your water or water heater or this gooey slime tested by a water test lab?
On 2017-01-10 21:49:49.750528 by totsin74
Clear slime like substance found in the tap and shower filters in he hot water aspect only of an internal house. Water board found no contamination but this build up keeps occurring. Cylinder replaced 4/5 years ago. New bathroom installed 6 weeks ago.
This problem has only happened from the installation. What is this. I have pictures but unsure how to upload them onto this site.
On 2016-12-18 14:13:58.269766 by Darryl
A plumber found this plastic chips in our hot water supply when he let the water run into a bucket from under one of our sinks.
He speculated that this was the cause of the lack of hot water in another shower. He didn't want to change the filter/cartridge under the source of the plastic was found.
He speculated it was from the hot water tank as you said. However, when our natural gas provider checked the drop tube, it was totally fine. (I have photos.)
Here's my question: the hot water tank was replaced about three years ago.
Could the plastic chips have still been in the house pipes over that time? What's my next step?
On 2016-07-29 16:21:58.705911 by (mod)
Could be rust, dirt and debris in the water supply, resin from a water softener. The white particulate debris in the article above was a bit unusual: fragments of a plastic water heater dip tube.
On 2016-07-29 16:14:27.310689 by Joni
What is black or brown crud,(rock-like)in the kitchen aerator -- definitely not white.
On 2016-01-09 16:21:21.626811 by (mod)
Sometimes the soldering during plumbing causes debris that shows up at faucet strainers etc. Remove and clean them, flush the line with the strainer off, and the problem shoudl be solved unless there is a persistent source - we can tackle that next if needed.
On 2016-01-09 16:09:37.883268 by Stan Christman
I installed a brand new hot water heater and now there are fine tan particles clogging the kitchen sink aerator and the hot water strainer on the washing machine. I filled a clear glass with the hot water going to the washing machine and it had a yellow tint. How can this be with a brand new hot water heater? Thanks for any insight you may have!
On 2015-12-31 22:34:39.837238 by (mod)
Yes, Pat, depending on plastic type there are several causes of and types of leaks that occur. I'd start at PLASTIC PIPE LEAK CAUSES - at https://InspectAPedia.com/plumbing/Plastic_Pipe_Leaks.php
On 2015-12-13 23:02:18.698626 by Pat
Our Cold water PVC pipe started leaking today and when we exposed the 20" of pipe (from garage wall to joint right before entering hot water heater), we found two lateral cracks along the pipe. Any idea how such cracks can form? Again, this was the PVC pipe carrying cold water to the heater to be heated) thank you!!!
On 2015-08-28 20:21:45.891674 by Nancy Herman
We just installed a new electric water heater yesterday. All of the faucets and shower heads work except for one--the hot water spiget only trickles a small stream of water. Does anyone know why this is the case? The shut off valves underneath the sink are on.
On 2015-05-10 14:12:59.400130 by (mod)
Fill a large clear tumbler or pitcher with hot water and observe the cloudiness you describe.
Let the water stand a few minutes. If the cloudiness disappears I suspect it's fine air bubbles entrained in the water, not debris.
On 2015-05-09 22:52:55.545560 by Jim Pilling
I have a two week old A.O. Smith 40 gallon electric water heater. When I turn on the hot water, I get a white film that is in the water for about a minute and then it goes away. It also happened to a Bradford-White water heater that was in for a week.
Local plumbers can't solve the problem.
My neighbors had new water heaters installed without the problem and we all use the same water lines. I need help. Thank you.
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Ruth Ricahrson & Marc dwards, "Vinyl Chloride and Organotin Stabilizers in Water Contacting New and Aged PVC Pipes", Web Report 2991, 2009, Water Research Foundation, 6666 West Quincy Avenue, Denver, CO 80235-3098, Excerpting from the findings of this study:
Segments of one sample of older Schedule 80 PVC pipe (15 years in-use) showed
significantly higher apparent accumulation rates of VC than younger Schedule 40 PVC
pipe (2 years in-use) or new pipe.
In the dynamic study, contact time (up to 8 hours) and water temperature (up to 40ºC)
both elevated the levels of MMT and DMT in the water leaving the PVC loop. VC was
below detection limits during all flow experiments.
Of the 15 home taps sampled, VC was detected in 3 cases (all three of these homes
employed small diameter cPVC pipes and were on chlorinated municipal water supplies).
In all cases VC levels were below the MCL of 0.002 mg/L but above the MCLG (MCL
Goal) of 0 mg/L.
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John Cranor is an ASHI member and a home inspector (The House Whisperer) is located in Glen Allen, VA 23060. He is also a contributor to InspectApedia.com in several technical areas such as plumbing and appliances (dryer vents). Contact Mr. Cranor at 804-747-7747 or by Email: email@example.com
Thanks to researcher Robyn Goldstein, Rush Manager, Information Express, 650-812-3585, email: firstname.lastname@example.org,for researching the Purdue bulletin No. 74 original citation 03/2010
. Information Express supplies "... institutional document delivery needs - A full service company specializing in the fast, accurate and competitively priced delivery of published articles for all industries"
Pounds of lime deposited vs. temperature and hot water usage: see Purdue Bulletin #74 (also provided by A.O. Smith in the article below). Purdue's chart shows the number of pounds of lime deposited per year as a function of the water usage in gallons per day, with an assumed 10 grains of water hardness.
"When, Why, and How to Remove Water Scale from Tank Type Glass-Lined Water Heaters (for non glass-lined tanks, consult water heater manufacturer)" PDF provided by A.O. Smith Water Products Company - hotwater.com/lit/training/4800r9.pdf 800-433-2545 - 01/07/2009.
A.O. Smith's Form No. 4800 Rev. 8 Why? When? & How? /UN•LIME Specific Deliming Instructions for use with Up-N-Down Transfer
Kit for Tank Type Heaters. (Normally supplied in UN-LIME shipping cartons),
Supersedes Form Nos. 4800 Rev. 7 and 4813-100.
A.O. Smith's Form No. 4778* All about Deliming Coil-Type/Tube-Type Commercial Water Heaters and Hydronic Boilers *Normally supplied when ordering Part No. 4930 Motorized Deliming Pump Kit
Rheem Electric Water Heater "Owners Guide and Installation Instructions", (Australian models) rheem.com.au/images/pdf/owners_dom-elec_121996C_0707.pdf
"Scale formation in water heaters and methods of prevention", Krappe,
Justus Maximilian, Engineering experiment station. Gas engineering
bulletin; no. 6; Research series; no. 74; On cover: Engineering
bulletin, Purdue university. Vol. xxiv, no.
3a. June, 1940 (Layfayette Indiana) commonly referred to in some references as "Purdue University Bulletin No. 74" - thanks to researcher Robyn Goldstein for the full citation. LCCN: 40028844 & OCLC: 1038544 - Water analysis, water softening, hot-water supply. 27pages. You can obtain this document through your local library.
(full copy file at InspectAPedia 3/31/2010)
Purdue B074 can be hard to locate online.
Also Bradford White Corporation (a manufacturer of water heaters) has published excerpts from that document, available at Purdue_B074_BradfordW.pdf
Other sources of information on calculating the rate of lime deposition from hard and hot water:
Wilkes University Center for Environmental Quality Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences Hardwater, Water Hardness "Hard Water Hardness Calcium Magnesium Water Corrosion Mineral Scale" http://www.water-research.net/hardness.htm
Chemical Engineering, Joseph D. Hagerty Editor, McGraw-Hill, 1989,
ISBN 0685270831, 9780685270837
"To calculate the amount of material that will be deposited in 1000 gal. of water per day, take the number of grains per gallon of each as shown by the ..." also difficult to obtain except as a used copy.
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