It Finally Happened, Breaker Tripped

jseyfert3

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So after reading so many threads on spa breakers tripping it didn’t come as a huge shock when my wife informed me the hot tub was off and to turn it on so she could use it. Obviously I hadn’t turned it off, so I immediately headed downstairs where I saw the breaker had tripped. Tried a reset and as expected it immediately tripped. Since the tub is a 2008 I suspect like a lot of these I’ve read it’s likely the heater has reached the end of its life.

I’ll poke around at it some more when I have a chance, doing the typical troubleshooting items by disconnecting one thing at a time until I can re-engage the breaker without it tripping immediately. I’ll start with the heater.

This may also be a good time for me to finally track down and fix that leak it’s had since we got this with our house in the spring of last year…
 
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Mdragger88

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Hope it’s a quick fix & you’re back up running in no time. As It sure is hot tub weather!
 
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jseyfert3

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As expected, it was the heater. Disconnected the heater and turned on the power and spa started booting normally. Reconnected heater as a double check, turned on power and breaker immediately tripped again.
full


So now I need to find a replacement heater for this.
full


full
 

jseyfert3

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Also I remembered one of the valves that would let me remove the heater doesn’t close, so I’m draining the tub now. It was a fresh fill too…

I’ve got all the parts to redo all the valves so I’ll probably do some plumbing while I'm replacing the heater.
 
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jseyfert3

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Update: Finally pulled the heater yesterday, and I’ve located a replacement heater for $130. I couldn’t pull off one of the fittings on the heater, I think it got glued in place when the fitting was glued in. So I need to order that too. But I plan to order parts today to get this back up and running.

 
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JoyfulNoise

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Update: Finally pulled the heater yesterday, and I’ve located a replacement heater for $130. I couldn’t pull off one of the fittings on the heater, I think it got glued in place when the fitting was glued in. So I need to order that too. But I plan to order parts today to get this back up and running.


Incoloy? Steel? Titanium?

Titanium elements are the best in terms of long term chemical stability. Teflon coated steel is low end. Incoloy is better than steel but not by a whole lot.
 

RDspaguy

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Incoloy? Steel? Titanium?

Titanium elements are the best in terms of long term chemical stability. Teflon coated steel is low end. Incoloy is better than steel but not by a whole lot.
Those cal spa "no-fault" heaters actually have the element wrapped around the outside of the heater tube under the insulation wrap. No physical contact with the water. It doesn't stop them from going bad, it just keeps it from being water chemistry related when it does. So, no inclony or titanium available.
 

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jseyfert3

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Those cal spa "no-fault" heaters actually have the element wrapped around the outside of the heater tube under the insulation wrap. No physical contact with the water. It doesn't stop them from going bad, it just keeps it from being water chemistry related when it does. So, no inclony or titanium available.
Yeah but the SpaDepot replacement is not the same, it has a heater element in contact with the water. I'm unsure what the element is made of. Probably steel, as the replacement elements are $25. On the flipside, the replacement elements are only $25, so... 🤷‍♂️
 
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JoyfulNoise

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Yeah but the SpaDepot replacement is not the same, it has a heater element in contact with the water. I'm unsure what the element is made of. Probably steel, as the replacement elements are $25. On the flipside, the replacement elements are only $25, so... 🤷‍♂️

But you could redo the plumbing and add an external connection to a 400kBTU/hr gas heater and you can get the water up to full temperature in about 30 seconds!!! Now that would be awesome!!
 

jseyfert3

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Went ahead and got that heater from SpaCare, plus a replacement element right away and a replacement pump union fitting since the OEM one got glued to the heater fitting. Should be very fast to get this back up and running. Which is good because the cold weather has arrived, it's slowing today.

I don't know if I'm going to redo all my valves right now, the weather has turned cold so probably not. But I'd like to at least redo the one valve above the primary pump motor that won't shut, so if I need to remove the heater in the future I can without draining. That's also the easiest valve to access. If I wanted to redo the plumbing on the rear pump I'd likely have to pull the entire control/heater assembly, so I'll wait for that pump to die to redo the valves on it since I'll have to pull the heater/control assembly to replace that pump.
 

jseyfert3

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it's slowing today.
Snowing, wow. :ROFLMAO:

Shop vac heater … just sayin’ …

diy flamethrower GIF
The problem there is they used gasoline. Had they used kerosene the aerosolized jet would have been great fun, but without the whole light themselves on fire thing*

*You can still light yourself on fire with a kerosene flamethrower almost as easily as gasoline. Or your house. This message is not intended to be instructional in nature, and no liability is assumed for anyone who attempts to use it as such.
 

JamesW

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The problem there is they used gasoline. Had they used kerosene the aerosolized jet would have been great fun, but without the whole light themselves on fire thing*

*You can still light yourself on fire with a kerosene flamethrower almost as easily as gasoline. Or your house. This message is not intended to be instructional in nature, and no liability is assumed for anyone who attempts to use it as such.
There are more than 100 substances that can be use in a flamethrower including things like natural gas, propane, gasoline, kerosene, diesel fuel, napalm, pure grain alcohol (96% ethanol) etc.

The setup requires specialized knowledge of design and operation.

One of the most important rules is don’t get soaked in the fuel that you are using.

Most likely, these three gentlemen are on a first name basis with everyone at the local emergency room and the local police department.
 

JoyfulNoise

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I think what they failed to realize was that the shop vac air intake was right next to the gasoline line so as soon as the gas started to aerosolize the shop vac starting sucking in an air/gas mixture. That could have caused the entire shop vac to go off like a bomb. Clearly they need to do a better job of isolating their fuel and air mixtures better 🙄
 
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JamesW

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I think what they failed to realize was that the shop vac air intake was right next to the gasoline line so as soon as the gas started to aerosolize the shop vac starting sucking in an air/gas mixture. That could have caused the entire shop vac to go off like a bomb. Clearly they need to do a better job of isolating their fuel and air mixtures better 🙄
I’m surprised that such a professional looking crew made such a rookie mistake.

It’s my understanding that they are the new pyrotechnical advisors to the movie production of Rust.
 

JamesW

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If they had just read the manual for the Shop Vac.

Note: When using this Shop-Vac as a flamethrower, please use caution not to allow the fuel to be ingested by the Shop-Vac’s air intake port as this will create a hazardous explosion risk!
 

Rattus Suffocatus

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I think my heater, set in the low 90s when I am not using the tub, is just starting to kick in every other day or so now here. :) I would have to agree that using a hot tub anytime in the summer in the Midwest would be probably not fun, but it's pretty useable here in the desert SW at night once the temperature drops with low humidity, even on hot days.

There are so many problems with that Shop Vac video I think I will need to refrain from commenting... :)
 

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