TPR expiration?

I was told yesterday by several seasoned HI’s that water heater TPR valves have a 3 year life expectancy and, if older than that, should be recommended for replacement. I looked at my TPR valve and see no mfg nor expiration date on the metal tag. I can find no reference to such a thing on the Cash Acme website either. Were these old codgers pulling my leg?

I think some one is pulling your keg .
Never read that never seen it in print and I read a lot .
Next time you see them ask where is a good place to get a good price as you do not like the idea of paying what the local hard ware stor wants .
… Cookie

I’ve never heard such a thing. . .

Now this is interesting… 2 months ago I saw a failed valve that was installed 4 months ago. By failed I mean it could not be reset to stop cold water.

I don’t believe this 3 year replacement is relevant.

Hi! Michael;
I beleive they are just having some fun, Iv’e never heard of that and I have been around for quiet some time.:roll:
Regards len


Don’t let the Kentucky licensing board hear of you recommending replacement of something with no visible defects!!!:wink:

Check page 13 (checked or replaced):

I just received a Watts TPR valve installation manual and in it there is the following statement:

I believe that is where this ‘old-wive’s tale’ may have started. Big difference between inspect and replace.[/FONT]**

Reminds me of the pair of old glasses where the “subscription ran out”

This was a saying from one of my mom’s dear old country friends

Your hot water unit works hard at supplying your family with constant hot
water, yet unfortunately they tend to be neglected and taken for granted. And as a car, which if poorly maintained can cost more to run so too your hot water unit.
If you look at the safety devices that protect your tank, you will understand how preventative maintenance will go a long way to ensuring you get the maximum life expectancy and save a lot of money $$$ on running costs.
Temperature, Pressure, Relief Valve

The Temperature, Pressure, Relief valve (TPR) is there to stop the Hot Water Tank from expanding, or even exploding under pressure build up.
The TPR valve also releases water when the thermostat malfunctions and the temperature inside the tank exceeds 90 degrees Celsius.
It is the most important safety device on any Gas, Electric or Solar Hot Water Unit and should be checked for adequate performance.*** It should be replaced at intervals not exceeding 5 years or** more frequently in areas where there is a high incidence of water deposits.*
Another thing to look at is the relief valve drainpipe. It must not be blocked or restricted in any way, (wasps are notorious for building nests inside the pipe and completely blocking any overflow). The relief valve will release a small amount of water during its normal heating cycle. If the discharge is more than a bucket full over 24 hours, it will need to be checked.
The relief valve-easing lever should be activated every six months,

Anyone check those during an inspections?

Yes, required in Texas (TREC SOP) but there are numerous reasons we may have for not activating the lever and add this info to our reports.

(k) Water heaters. The inspector shall:

(1) report the energy source;

(2) inspect the unit and report as in need of repair fittings that leak or are corroded;

(3) report as in need of repair temperature and pressure relief valve piping that lacks gravity drainage, is improperly sized (no smaller than the outlet fittings), has deficiencies in material, or lacks a correct termination;

** (4) report as in need of repair a temperature and pressure relief valve that does not operate when the valve is of an operable type and operation will not cause damage to persons or property as reasonably determined by the inspector (for example, it would be reasonable not to operate the valve if there is improper or undetermined termination of the drain pipe, a corroded or damaged valve, improper installation of valve or drain pipe, the drain pipe is of inappropriate material or there is no water supply cut-off valve at the unit);**

(5) report as in need of repair any broken or missing parts, covers or controls;

(6) report as in need of repair deficiencies in the burner, flame and burner compartment, the operation of heating elements and the condition of wiring;

(7) report as in need of repair deficiencies in materials used for the gas branch line and the connection to the appliance, the absence of a gas shut-off valve, or a valve that is not properly located, is inaccessible, or leaks;

(8) if applicable, report as in need of repair deficiencies in the vent pipe, draft diverter, draft hood and their condition, draft, proximity to combustibles and vent termination point, observing for adequate combustion and draft air;

(9) report as in need of repair the lack of a safety pan and drain (including the termination of the drain line) when applicable;

(10) report as in need of repair an unsafe location or installation; and

(11) inspect garage units or units which are located in rooms or enclosures opening into a garage and report as in need of repair the following:

(A) a lack of protection for physical damage to the unit; and 

(B) burners, burner ignition devices or heating elements, switches or thermostats that are not a minimum of 18 inches above the lowest garage floor elevation.

I inspect how they’re installed, but I never test them. That’s from personal experience working on many rental properties and others. That many times, due to mineral deposit, they won’t shut-off completely and continue to drip or slowly drain. I don’t want to leave a house I inspected with water running from the discharge. And Thanks Nick.

I see alot of them fail on brand new heaters. Back when I was doing construction full time we use to carry an extra relief valve with us when we installed a new water heater. It is like carrying an extra thermocouple with the new sealed burner type Whirlpool heaters. Failures were just too common.

Yea that’s my thinking too. I’ve never done it in the past, but was wonding if maybe I should be.

Actually, Watts says operate them once per year.

The two year lifespan came from OEM water heater warranties, not Watts.

**report as in need of repair a temperature and pressure relief valve that does not operate when the valve is of an operable type and operation will not cause damage to persons or property as reasonably determined by the inspector **

So if it WILL cause damage to persons or property it’s OK? :roll:

Here is the full PDF where Mike B. posted information RE: 3-year review on the TPR. It also has information RE: 1-year test by homeowners.

Here’s another related questions.

What if the cold water intake pipe is actually hot to the touch for about 3 feet up from the tank? It cools off approximately 6-8 ft from the tank and is the same cold temperature as the rest of the cold water pipes.