Easy question: I hope re water heaters

Do all water heaters have a pressure relief valve of the type with the handle to test them? Ours is an oil-fired unit, works great, I drain out hte crud approxumately monthly, give or take. I was looking at the pressure relief valve today: There is no mechanical way of opening or testing it. It doesn't look like anything has been removed or jerry-rigged; I'm pretty sure it's the original part, unmodified. But there's no handle or pin or anything to see if it works or if it's plugged, whatever. A quick check via Google didn't show me anything that looked like mine, so thought I'd see what experience here might say.
Should I be looking into this further? I can provide a picture if necessary - didn't think about taking a pic until just now.
TIA,
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relief valves can turn your heater into a bomb. Greg
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Every one I ever saw had a handle. Could it be missing?
Keep in mind though, that often when you test them they do not re-seat properly and will leak.
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: > Do all water heaters have a pressure relief valve of the type : > with the handle to test them? : > Ours is an oil-fired unit, works great, I drain out hte crud : > approxumately monthly, give or take. : > I was looking at the pressure relief valve today: There is no : > mechanical way of opening or testing it. : : Every one I ever saw had a handle. Could it be missing? : : Keep in mind though, that often when you test them they do not re-seat : properly and will leak. Understood.
I'm probably going to replace it just on principle since I started researching and can't find any such looking one and I dont' want to disassemble it, old as it is <g>.
No, there's nothing missing, I'm pretty sure. Where the handle's shaft would normally go into it, it's just a smooth metal with sort of a ridge on top. Just for GPs, I went down and shot a couple of pics of it. You can move from one pic to the other by just changing the digit "1" to a "2" or "3", and so forth.
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image1.jpg Head-on
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image2.jpg Side 3/4
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image3.jpg Overall, Tank
There are no links to those pics; you have to use these URLs above.
I acidentally did a double-jpg save on them, but ... I'm sure there is still plenty of definition there to see what I'm talking about. The stamped metal tag next to it does a great job of explaining how important the relief valve IS, and says to check it periodically, but that's all. No other instructions of any kind. Strangely enough, the instructions on the same plate for inspecting/changing the anode are very precise and detail the entire process. Strange! The box sticking out at about the mid-height of the heater is the thermostat, and below on the bottom is the oil pump/ignition parts.
We've been here since 1983, and the heater was there when we moved in, so it's not new, but it is clean inside. Our maintenance buy said everything in it looked "spectacular", including the anode, and mentioned he'd never seen a relief valve like that, but ... and that was probably about 3 years ago now. Oh, the drips down the side of the tank are from using a power-washer last spring to clean the floor/walls. They're not from leaks.
Comments welcome ... think I should make the replacement a priority?
TIA
Pop
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Actually, I would just replace a 20 year old heater. You are on borrowed time. I have one that is 23 years old, but only use it a few months a year.
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: > : > Do all water heaters have a pressure relief valve of the type : > : > with the handle to test them? : > : > Ours is an oil-fired unit, works great, I drain out hte : > crud : > : > approxumately monthly, give or take. : > : > I was looking at the pressure relief valve today: There is : > no : > : > mechanical way of opening or testing it. : > : : > : Every one I ever saw had a handle. Could it be missing? : > : : > : Keep in mind though, that often when you test them they do not : > re-seat : > : properly and will leak. : > Understood. : > : > I'm probably going to replace it just on principle since I : > started researching and can't find any such looking one and I : > dont' want to disassemble it, old as it is <g>. : > : > No, there's nothing missing, I'm pretty sure. Where the handle's : > shaft would normally go into it, it's just a smooth metal with : > sort of a ridge on top. Just for GPs, I went down and shot a : > couple of pics of it. : > You can move from one pic to the other by just changing the : > digit "1" to a "2" or "3", and so forth. : >
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image1.jpg Head-on : >
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image2.jpg Side 3/4 : >
http://www.twaynesdomain.com/WaterHeater/image3.jpg Overall, : > Tank : > : > There are no links to those pics; you have to use these URLs : > above. : > : > I acidentally did a double-jpg save on them, but ... I'm sure : > there is still plenty of definition there to see what I'm talking : > about. : > The stamped metal tag next to it does a great job of : > explaining how important the relief valve IS, and says to check : > it periodically, but that's all. No other instructions of any : > kind. Strangely enough, the instructions on the same plate for : > inspecting/changing the anode are very precise and detail the : > entire process. Strange! : > The box sticking out at about the mid-height of the heater is : > the thermostat, and below on the bottom is the oil pump/ignition : > parts. : > : > We've been here since 1983, and the heater was there when we : > moved in, so it's not new, but it is clean inside. Our : > maintenance buy said everything in it looked "spectacular", : > including the anode, and mentioned he'd never seen a relief valve : > like that, but ... and that was probably about 3 years ago now. : > Oh, the drips down the side of the tank are from using a : > power-washer last spring to clean the floor/walls. They're not : > from leaks. : > : > Comments welcome ... think I should make the replacement a : > priority? : > : Contact the manufacturer. Ask them. PT valves aren't cheap. : : Actually, I would just replace a 20 year old heater. You are on borrowed : time. I have one that is 23 years old, but only use it a few months a year. : : I would contact them if I could find them <g>. No one around here has either not heard of them OR remember t hem from "way back". Apparently it's a good product, and a very expensive one also from what I've been told, but the closest I've come to finding them is they might be a Canadian outfit. One plumbing supply warned me to be careful if I replace the valve - the threads might not match. I do have to admit it's super-efficient, fast and works like no other heater I've ever seen. It heats faster than you can use the hot water; we've never run out.
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Not running out of hot water sounds great but draining monthly to get rid of crud sounds like more maintenence than normal and a lot of wasted water, not what I would call efficient unless you have a well with sediment problems in which any WH would need the same care.
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Here is some information about these valves...
Testing the Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve... http://ask.bairdwarner.com/content/RelatedEvent.asp?ASK=3.386.231
The Temperature/Pressure Relief Valve... http://www.myguardian.com/code/tpr/tpr.htm
Might want to consider solar if thinking of replacing the water heater... http://www.toolbase.org/techinv/techDetails.aspx?technologyID 2
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Thanks, but, the problem as I said is that there is no handle or other mechanism I can see to do those tests shown there. I posted an addition with pics yesterday to show what I have.
: Here is some information about these valves... : : Testing the Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve... : http://ask.bairdwarner.com/content/RelatedEvent.asp?ASK=3.386.231 : : The Temperature/Pressure Relief Valve... : http://www.myguardian.com/code/tpr/tpr.htm : : Might want to consider solar if thinking of replacing the water heater... : http://www.toolbase.org/techinv/techDetails.aspx?technologyID 2 : : : : : "Pop" wrote in message : > Do all water heaters have a pressure relief valve of the type : > with the handle to test them? : > Ours is an oil-fired unit, works great, I drain out hte crud : > approxumately monthly, give or take. : > I was looking at the pressure relief valve today: There is no : > mechanical way of opening or testing it. It doesn't look like : > anything has been removed or jerry-rigged; I'm pretty sure it's : > the original part, unmodified. But there's no handle or pin or : > anything to see if it works or if it's plugged, whatever. : > A quick check via Google didn't show me anything that looked : > like mine, so thought I'd see what experience here might say. : > : > Should I be looking into this further? I can provide a picture : > if necessary - didn't think about taking a pic until just now. : > : > TIA, : > : > Pop : > --- : > No one should ever have to unsubscribe : > from a list they did not intentionally : > subscribe to. : > : > : :
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If its old, at the very least, I'd replace the relief valve to be on the safe side. The older they are, the more likely they are to leak after you open them. Also, as someone else pointed out, if the water heater is nearing the end of it's life, I'd consider replacing the whole thing. That decision depends a lot on where the unit is located and how much damage a leak would create.
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