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Thread: heater leaking

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    heater leaking

    Good morning.
    Finally got some weather warm enough for swimming, so I attempted to start the heater. On my setup, the heater can be bypassed, or you can turn valves to have water flow through.
    When I let water flow through the heater today, water started leaking out pretty quickly from the connection between the pvc and the heater. From the lower of the two connections. I think that's the outflow from the heater. I tried tightening things and it actually seemed a little worse, so I bypassed the heater. Doesn't drip when bypassed.
    Heater was new in fall 2010. Never had any problems. Pool was winterized by my pool builder and opened as usual this spring.
    I put in a call to the pb but I was wondering what you guys thought the problem might be? Is it fixable for a very UNhandy homeowner?

    Type slowly, I'm really not very diy
    Thank you
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    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: heater leaking

    There should be o-rings behind those union halve nuts (white ring thingy's). Probably need to unscrew them and replace the o-rings. You're lucky that you can completely bypass the heater. That makes it easy to work on in a situation like this.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: heater leaking

    It's very likely you have a split O-ring behind those big knurled nuts. Tightening it just forced it further out of the groove which made it leak worse.

    It should be about a ten minute repair for the technician if I'm right.

    If you want to try, loosen those two big nuts and wiggle the two pipes out of the heater. Around the stubby pipes hidden behind the nuts should be two O-rings, one apiece. If they're not there, look inside the mating pipes. Take them to either the pool store or a decent hardware store (probably not a big box store) and get replacements and a tube of silicon grease. Get them gooey with grease, slide them over the pipes, push the pipes back in, and tighten those big knurled nuts up as tight as you can by hand. It is not unusual for clutzy people to have trouble getting the nuts to go on straight.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: heater leaking

    Thanks for the quick reply! Will get on it!
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Re: heater leaking

    The o-rings fit into a groove on the union, the white nut that screws onto the back portion, header. Once you put the silicone grease on, set them into the groove and then pull the heater towards the nuts so you can tighten them. Do not over tighten as you could possible crack the nut. O-rings should last far longer than the heater itself unless you are unscrewing the unions all the time for some reason. Very rarely do these ever need replacing.

    I wonder if your pool company actually drained the water out of the unit when they closed the pool down. If not and you live in area where it freezes, water could have frozen and cracked the PVC header. If this is the case, you might want to discuss this with your pool company.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

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    Re: heater leaking

    yes, it does freeze here. They have always done my opening/closing every season so I'm hoping they are doing things correctly!
    pb and I talked, he suggested getting a pipe wrench and carefully tightening the nut.
    I'm going to give this a try, but do not want to crack anything.
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Re: heater leaking

    oops, didn't read all the above posts. May already be time for a technician. That way I don't make anything worse than it already is!
    I'm pretty unhandy, unfortunately.
    Thanks for the input.
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Re: heater leaking

    Good morning!
    A little follow up:
    I was too chicken to mess with the heater, so I called a local PB (not my builder, which is 2 hours away)
    While poking around the heater, I found an o ring on the ground! The technician opened the leaking union, and sure enough, no o ring. He showed me how to put silicone on the ring and set it in place. Voila, no more leaks.
    I learned a lot by watching, so I won't be so hesitant to work on the heater in the future.
    Thank you for your guideance.
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: heater leaking

    Quote Originally Posted by tltmom
    Good morning!
    A little follow up:
    I was too chicken to mess with the heater, so I called a local PB (not my builder, which is 2 hours away)
    While poking around the heater, I found an o ring on the ground! The technician opened the leaking union, and sure enough, no o ring. He showed me how to put silicone on the ring and set it in place. Voila, no more leaks.
    I learned a lot by watching, so I won't be so hesitant to work on the heater in the future.
    Thank you for your guideance.
    Good thing you didn't listen to pb and crank on that fitting with a pipe wrench, huh? It wouldn't have done anything but damage threads.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: heater leaking

    You're right! For once my namby pambiness paid off!
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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    Re: heater leaking

    The million dollar question(s) is, how and why was it out of place? Do you remove and store your heater for the winter or something?
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

  12. Back To Top    #12
    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: heater leaking

    Quote Originally Posted by ps0303
    The million dollar question(s) is, how and why was it out of place? Do you remove and store your heater for the winter or something?
    From the initial post:
    "Pool was winterized by my pool builder and opened as usual this spring."
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: heater leaking

    Thanks Richard320 but I can read. I am just trying to determine why the o-ring wasn't in place. So in order to winterize the system, do they disconnect t the pool heater entirely and you store it indoors? If not, then why are they disconnecting the unions? There is a drain plug under the bottom union and they can drain any water left in the heater from there. Sure would save you trouble next season.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

  14. Back To Top    #14

    Re: heater leaking

    It's a very good question as to why the o ring was on the ground, as opposed to in the heater, where it belongs! Since the heater never leaked before, I have to assume the pb employees opened the union this spring for some reason and didn't put it back together correctly. The heater stays out all winter, with antifreeze in it. To the best of my knowledge, the antifreeze gets drained from a plug at the bottom of the heater in the spring, so as was said in a post above, should not have ever had to open the union.

    If I got really ambitious I could call my pb and ask for a refund on the service call that the local store charged me, but I don't think I will. I'm chalking this one up to "lesson learned, watch carefully when getting pool work done.". It's probably time for me to learn how to winterize/open my pool anyway.
    Happy swimming, thanks for the input! You folks are an amazing resource!
    30000 gallon inground gunite pool
    Intelliflo ic-60 SWG, pentair tagelus sand filter, 1.5 hp whisperflo pump, tf 100 test kit,
    2 kids(tl), 1 mini-dachshund/lab mix(t),
    Central Illinois

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