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Old 03-29-2009, 09:16 AM   #21
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From looking at the pic, it dose not look like corrosion, it looks more like Calcium deposits that has got way too long. The problem with this is that it will act like an insulator between the heating eliment and the water and will cause the heater to over heat. This is the kind of thing we have to watch in our boilers at work. We generate 100 psi of steam and we have to treat the water with an acid and other chemicals to reduce calcium and other deposits. At this point in time I would replace the hot water heater as well. The anode rod is suppost to collect all of this type of junk and save the water heater, who knows maybe the first owner didn't pay it any mined. From what I understand is that the anode rod should be good up to 75% of it's use, but for $9.00, I replace mine every two years. Calcium is caused from a high PH level over 7.8 I believe, and once the water is heated it be comes fast acting. This happens alot in concret pools as well, I have to us PH minus in my pool to keep the calcium from building up due to the PH levels. The water coming in to our building is at 8.2, we use alot of chemicals to keep things balanced.
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Old 03-29-2009, 10:53 AM   #22
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One thing's for sure, if i can't get the Iowa water deposits cleaned out and i wind up replacing it, I will be using a really good water filter and an anode rod for every time we decide to fill it up. I will have to pick up one of those plastic plugs for it too so that i can "soft plug" during the winter season. When we brought it home, it had a hornets nest in there about the size of a softball behind the door and I'm positive that they were using that tank as their shelter.

The saga continues
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Old 03-29-2009, 11:01 AM   #23
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Ok after reading the posts I have to weigh in.

CLR won't kill you. I use it to clean my coffee pots. That stuff will HAMMER out the stuck on crud.

If your water heater works KEEP it. A new one is too flippin expensive if what you have works.

The funk in the water heater is probably from your self destructive anode rod. Replace it EVERY season.

Just give that thing a good cleaning. Let the CLR or Vinegar or whatever a chance to break up the deposits and rinse thoroughly.

If CLR would kill ya then I would have been dead a LONG time ago. I'm still kicking. For now.
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Old 03-29-2009, 11:36 AM   #24
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If your water heater works.....
That's the magic word, right there...IF.

We picked this Roo up in October and haven't had a chance to try some of the other features on it yet. A/C, heater, frig/freezer on both power and propane, lights, brakes, water pump and even the spare tire worked just fine. Our first outing will be to clean the hot water tank and to figure out the black & gray water tanks and get those flushed and drained. I saved the messy parts for last and I can't say that i'm looking forward to the tank stuff. I've done a lot of homework on what folks are using and the suggestions that have been given for flushin those suckers out, but it will take me a few times to dial in what works for me.

I think i'll flip a coin on the vinegar vs CLR, seems like either one would have just a good of chance of doing what i want it to do, especially pickling vinegar since it has a higher percentage of acidity.
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:48 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aintgotnun View Post

CLR won't kill you. I use it to clean my coffee pots. That stuff will HAMMER out the stuck on crud.
<snip>
Just give that thing a good cleaning. Let the CLR or Vinegar or whatever a chance to break up the deposits and rinse thoroughly.
<snip>
If CLR would kill ya then I would have been dead a LONG time ago. I'm still kicking. For now.
A parting shot and then I'm done:

1. A coffee pot is WAY easier to rinse than a water heater. I'm concerned with whatever chemical residue is left behind.
2. I have a good idea what's in vinegar and it don't scare me much.
3. I wonder if a pressure washer nozzle will fit into that little hole? THAT would churn up a lot of stuff after a vinegar/CLR soaking!

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Old 03-29-2009, 05:53 PM   #26
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Interesting fact: I was reading the CLR bottle today at the store and it actually said that it can clean coffee pots, but then you have to rinse it well by running 4 full pots through the coffee pot once it's done cleaning. I have coffee pots that i've never ran anything but water through. Every now and again, i run a paper towel across the drip deal and it comes out thick with brown residue, but that's just flavor...keep er goin til she stops drippin or starts spittin

I found a gallon bottle of vinegar that's mixed with water for an 8% acidity, but I might look around for something a little stronger. I read that i should be able to get something around the range of 13% that's found mostly for pickling type stuff, but it will do for this too. There was also a gallon bottle of ammonia there too, but not sure that i would want to deal with the smell of that in the camper. Ironically, it says to rinse everything with vinegar once you're done doing whatever it is your doing with it. For now, i think i'll leave that on the shelf.

You know...the power sprayer idea is a good idea. I have one in the garage, so I'll have to give that a whirl as well once we get it rinsed with the vinegar/CLR choice. Nice thinkin Radio!

Ok, so i'll buy a gallon bottle and pour it all into the tank...fill the bottle up with water and drop that in there on top. Drive it around for our first camping trip...let it sit and then on our way back...let it slop around some more and then drain once I get it back home. Then i'll hit it with the power sprayer to do the final rinse and let it drain out again. Let it dry, inspect, and depending on the results...fire it up while im at the house and see what happens. If that doesn't work, then i'm taking it out of the camper, driving it out to Pawnee National Grasslands, and launch it for the entertainment value of a dozen friends with 3" shotgun shells and an itchin for some shootin.

That's the plan...
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Old 03-30-2009, 12:15 AM   #27
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Ok to use vinegar. Go to Sam's club or costco - get white vinegar. you should use a couple gallons or more. Do it full strength no dilution. Vinegar is dilute acetic acid. It is a solvent for scale that forms from hard water minerals left behind in your heater as you heat water. Its easy to use. Just get a funnel and pour it into either the relief valve bung or the hot water outlet at the top rear of the tank if accessable. I guess you could even use your water pump to pump it into the whole system or fill your fresh tank with it. As stated earlier it is safe and rinses out easy. It can be disposed of down the drain. Fill up, let stand a couple days, rinse with clean water. Vinegar is safe in food, safe in plumbing and won't burn your skin (rinse skin if you do get it on you asap). I think that covers it.
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Old 03-31-2009, 08:51 PM   #28
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Plan modified. Sounds like either you've had experience with this or are a plumber of some kind...hmmm, Joe Plumber?

Thanks Turbo and all that supplied the hints and tips for a successful year. I'm getting excited, it's almost ready to roll.
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Old 04-01-2009, 04:35 AM   #29
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May I recommend a test first, before you add anything to the hot water system. If you have a long pair of needle nose plyers, reach in the heater and try to break of a piece and place it in a ceramic cup then add the chemical you think will work to see what kind of reaction you get. If you have a public water supply coming into your house, you will most likely have similar deposits in the water heater in your house. Hot water heaters in a home should be flush once in a while to clean them out but rarely chemically cleaned.
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Old 04-01-2009, 05:34 AM   #30
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Clr msds

Here is the MSDS on CLR, we use this product in our display fountain at work due do calcium build up. Very good product and safe, but read the MSDS sheet first.....Please. http://www.jelmar.com/msds.htm You can but this product at Home depot.
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Old 04-01-2009, 08:41 PM   #31
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good advise rockwood06. I'll do the test prior to dumping into the tank and see how it goes. It's still cold, snowing, and windy here these days, so i have some time to play around with it. As far as the CLR idea, i think i've finally decided that I won't use it at this point. It's not so much the short term effects, but rather it's the long term effects of any chemical that changed my mind. So if vinegar doesn't work, off to the store i go to pick up the gas/electric combo setup. The tank is 9 years old at this point anyway, so better to be safe then sorry in the end. Know what i mean?

I'll hit the store and pickup some white vinegar and test it out on some pieces first and then if it's a go, i'll hit sams this weekend. I'll take some more photos and show the results from all the ideas everyone gave me and post them in here once it's all done with. Maybe someone else will benefit from this thread too.

Cheers!
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Old 04-02-2009, 12:13 PM   #32
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When I'm ready to rinse the tank I use a home made wand similar to the Toilet / Black Tank Hose wand with a valve. The difference is I made it out of 1/2" copper pipe with a cap on the end. I purchased and assembled the following.

1- 1/2" Sweat Gate Valve
1- 1/2" Copper Male Adapter
1- 1/2" Copper Cap
1- 2ft length of 1/2" Copper Pipe
1- 1/2" MPT to Female Hose Adapter

I cut a 6" piece off the end of the pipe and soldered it between the 1/2" male adapter and the gate valve. Soldered the cap on the 18" piece of pipe and soldered the other end to the gate valve. Do check the flow arrow on the valve!. I then screwed the hose adapter on with teflon tape on the threads. I then took a battery drill with a 1/16" drill bit and drilled 3 holes staggered in the end of the cap, 2 more at a 45 degree angle through the solder joint where the cap meets the pipe. Then I just drilled 6 holes around the pipe back to 6" from the cap and staggered them. Hook your hose up and you'd be amazed the pressure of the water coming out. Watch out for those 45 degree holes because if done correctly they shoot back towards you. This wand will fit in any water heater tank drain. Just insert in the hole in the tank then turn it on. move it around, back and forth and the residue rinses right out.

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Old 04-03-2009, 05:10 PM   #33
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Nice!
That last post would be great as a sticky with directions and photos of the wand. Sounds like you put quite a bit of thought into it and came up with a very useful tool. Ever think about patenting and selling? Bet you'd have some buyers
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Old 04-04-2009, 06:22 AM   #34
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Nice!
That last post would be great as a sticky with directions and photos of the wand. Sounds like you put quite a bit of thought into it and came up with a very useful tool. Ever think about patenting and selling? Bet you'd have some buyers
I've posted some pictures in an album of the wand. Directions are in the previous posting. It's not very difficult to do.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...php?albumid=34

The wand could also be made out of 1/2" CPVC materials. I already had some of the copper items so I figured I use them rather then buying everything in CPVC.

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Old 04-04-2009, 07:02 AM   #35
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I posted A link for the MSDS sheet back on page #3 thread #30 on CLR, is there any body able to pull it up, I can from work but not on my home computer?
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:18 AM   #36
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Post #15 on page 2. See link to Material Safety Data Sheets on CLR products.
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:25 AM   #37
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Post #15 on page 2. See link to Material Safety Data Sheets on CLR products.

Thanks milzat, I didn't see that before I posted. It's the same one I posted from our MSDS book.
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Old 04-04-2009, 01:54 PM   #38
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I've posted some pictures in an album of the wand. Directions are in the previuos posting. It's not very difficult to do.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...php?albumid=34

The wand could also be made out of 1/2" CPVC materials. I already had some of the copper items so I figured I use them rather then buying everything in CPVC.


Awesome, thank you. I wanted to see what you were explaining with the holes that were drilled in it. Those are good pics and it looks very easy to put together. well done
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:18 AM   #39
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Awesome, thank you. I wanted to see what you were explaining with the holes that were drilled in it. Those are good pics and it looks very easy to put together. well done
No problem. It does make it real simple to rinse the water heater. If added pressure is needed the holes are small enough that they can be soldered over to reduce the number of outlets.

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Old 04-05-2009, 10:35 AM   #40
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Has anyone considered what it would cost to buy 6 gallons of CLR to fill your water heater in order to soak it?
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