Mysterious Plumbing Problems After Hot Water Heater Install


I replaced an A.O. Smith 80 gallon electric water heater with a Kenmore 80 gallon electric water heater. The install itself went fine. There is also a smaller 40 gallon electric water heater in series with the 80 gallon with the hot output of the 40 gallon going into the cold input of the 80 gallon. I presently have the 40 gallon power turned off. There are a lot of lines running long lengths as the house is 8100 square feet.
After the install, these are the problems I am having with it along with some observations:
1) There are now specks of white or light-colored particles in the system. Many are large enough to be stopped by the mesh of the faucets. They appear to be plugging up some faucets. Where are these particles coming from? They did not exist before. 2) Hot water sometimes comes out in various faucets but sometimes does not. When hot water does not come out, cold water comes out *even when only the hot water tap is on*. So cold water is in the hot water system. 3) There is definitely hot water in the hot water heater and coming out of it. I can get hot water from the relieve spigot on the tank and the out pipe is hot. 4) Hot water pressure is lower than before.
My non-professional theory is the particles are in the system and plugging up some lines. I don't know where they came from or how they got in the system. I don't know how cold water gets into the hot water system if some lines are plugged.
I would appreciate any suggestions you may have. Thanks.
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I would first turn on ALL the faucets and let them run for say 20 minutes to see if the debris clear, remove aerators the screens before flushing.
then see what happens.
if you have contiuning troubles try turning off the cold supply and just flushing the hot.
interesting mystery,
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Strictly guesswork, but I think the white flakes are scale from the 40 gallon tank. It probably got "disturbed" a bit when the big tank was installed -- and if that's the case, they will eventually settle down.
Was the tank change a professional job? If so, call the installer back for a look.
HTH, Mark Sparge
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

With a house that size it must have been plumbed by professionals so my experience probably does not apply.
My house is plumbed with PVC and CPVC that I used to replace bad galvanised. I cut it with a hacksaw. If I don't flush the system after doing a job, the little 'white chunks' from the saw will plug the aerators.
I agree with someone else. It is probably scale from the 40 gal tank.
Have no idea about the 'cold water in hot line'.
Harry K
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I'm pretty sure it's just junk in the lines that got disturbed during the install. The junk is mostly getting stuck in the faucet screens which is easily cleaned out by unscrewing the screen/faucet tips and rinsing it off. There is also junk getting stuck in some of the shut-off valves in the lines and/or in the faucet handle valves, and/or in the hot/cold mixing mechanism in fixtures that have that. I'll bet that if you undo the valve stems on the various valves, and take them out, you'll see or feel the junk in there. Clean that out and I'll bet it will all work fine again.
And, yes, then run various valves wide open to clear out any remaining junk before putting the faucet screens back on.

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Are the particles plastic or lime? If they are lime they will crush easily, if plastic they will be almost impossible to crush. The cold water coming from the hot side sounds like a problem with the dip tube of the water heater that is last in series.
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wrote:

Why was the 80 gallon replaced?
--Andy Asberry recommends NewsGuy--
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