Mystery use of electric water heater tank

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Why would someone hook up an electric water heater to a boiler system, but keep the electricity to it disconnected? This boiler already had an indirect water heater tank connected to it on the left side of the mechanical room. The electric water heater tank has piping that goes down the back, behind a stair case, and to the boiler system components. No hot water was observed going to or from the electric water heater when I felt the pipes on the top of the tank.

Morning, Adam.
Hope this post finds you well.

Never guess. Note what was observed, Observation: Abandoned water heater. Never operated. List the Manufacture, MN,- SN, Capacity. Note hot water from faucets. Note temperature if you record that.
Refer disclosure form the vender.
Move on to the next section of in plumbing.

Hope that helps.


Maybe they used it as a ambient pre-warmer before the water heater?


did you check for timer(s)?

with due respect
wh is NOT Abandoned & Never operated.
it’s plumbed into the system & still subject to usage damages
polly being used as storage tank (st)

Never guess. is good advice
this was not your inspection, nor your report, no need to attempt at narratives, we all have our own methods of conveying info to our clientele

based on you small image did you get id data of the foreground red possibly grundfos & background blue possibly watts recirculation pumps
had you followed the loop between the boiler, (st) and recirc-pumps you may have gotten the bigger picture & figured this out on-site, we are all learning & these systems get confusing until you’ve walked through as many as needed to get past wtf
now if you want your narrative critiqued post it here there may be some that can assist


It does not appear to be abandoned, as it is plumbed to the boiler, and hot water is being produced at the fixtures upon demand.

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It very well could be an ambient pre-warmer.

Why would the presence of a timer be relevant in this system?

Yes, there was a red recirculation pump for the boiler to distribute the water to baseboard heaters and radiators. The blue thing in the back is a water usage meter.

if the timer was cycled to OFF at the time of inspection the recirculation to the st may not be HOT to the piping you said you felt at the top of the elec wh
more will or won’t be revealed based on what you observed onsite
it’s obviously hard for me to feel & track that configuration from the land-of-gar
i already blew the usage meter id
i’m fired but will contend a wh that is not energized is nothing more than an st

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Indirect-Fired Hot Water Heater.

Thanks for sharing your perspective, Barry.

Thank you, Robert.


Early morning brain fart, Barry. Sorry buddy.