Would you look for a serial #?

First thing I noticed, scalding hot water in the bathroom. found this way in the back of a closet. Called it a “Very Old Copper Tank”, “consult with a knowledgable plumber”. House is 60+ years old, could be original tank? Called for an electrician to close up the junction boxes, while he’s doing the rest of the house. :stuck_out_tongue: Would you call for a new HW tank?

John Kogel

Short answer: No. If it’s producing hot water and not leaking - no.

Long answer: If it is leaking water, I would recommend replacement.
If it is not leaking water and not producing hot water, then I would recommend “further evaluation of the water heater system by a plumber,” and state the reason(s) why.
If there are safety hazards, installation defects, or components of the water heater system that are not properly installed by modern standards and requirements, I would recommend “correction and further evaluation by a plumber,” and state the reason(s) why.

On old tanks covered with an additional insulation wrap, I use language such as “additional insulation wrap is an inspection restriction,” “can’t determine age,” “the tank is not accessible as defined in my report,” “there are signs of previous active water leaking from the tank evidenced by the rusty water marks and streaks… may leak water after this inspection… as owner about performance history…a plumber may recommend immediate replacement,” “could fail tomorrow”… etc.

I made an on-line course about inspecting hot water tanks. It doesn’t go over just the basics - it’s advanced. Check it out. Tell me what you think. http://www.nachi.tv/ppv

I would recommend a plumber remove the insulation and evaluate the tank. But if it was my house, It looks like something I would replace.

What is the open line (top center) of the picture? I think I would state that the HWH has reached the end of it’s serviceable life and should be budgeted for replacement.
Forgot to add that not being on-site is a limiting factor, but from the pictures this is my opinion. (Think I’ll add that to all my posts now)

Did you find a TPR valve? :shock:

What is that insulation made from?

What is the cut off pipe in the back ground?

My reaction to this is seen in the field, would be as already mentioned.

Budgeting for replacement in the near future would be prudent. It appears that this appliance fixture has reached it’s optimum life expectancy.

Marcel :slight_smile: :smiley:

There you go.Good verbage from the mentor.
Marcel, would you have any concerns about that insulation?


:slight_smile: :smiley:

I guess as bestos you can guess , there is no telling what it is made from.

Not until it is tested.


Hiding true condition of the tank.

R-value protection of the tank.

Marcel :slight_smile: :smiley:

I thot it looked like fiberglass or rockwool, but who knows, as you say? I just reached my camera in there and fired off some blind shots. :cool::cool:
(That extra plumbing is extra plumbing - it’s obviously not in use, except by creepy crawlys !! )

Looking over my report, I have lots of contradictory info for my client::roll:
Very Old Copper tank, 25 gal?
Older unit may have limited life,
Failure probability is high
Tank appears functional
Pressure Valve - unable to locate
Consult with a knowledgable plumber
No evidence of failure (Wrong, there is evidence of past failure at the elements probably)
Exposed electrical connections on HW Tank
Electrician - add junction box covers
Consider replacing tank

Think I could have added this comment - Replace tank or have an Alarm System installed -discuss with a plumbing contractor.
Anyone familiar with these alarm systems?

John Kogel

Just give them the straight dope.

If they spend all that to fix it up, they might as well get a new one.