Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Rob R. On: Tue Apr 15, 2014 2:42 pm

009to090 wrote:Does anyone make stainless steel or Fiberglass expansion tanks for boilers?
When our well pressure tank went, I installed a fiberglass tank. No steel to corrode :idea:
It doesn't even sweat in the summer.

So when our electric Hot water heater went, I did the same thing.... Installed a fiberglass unit. :idea:

Problems solved....


They make expansion tanks for potable water and radiant systems.
Rob R.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: EFM DF520
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hitzer 50-93
Other Heating: Dad's 1953 EFM Highboy

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Sting On: Tue Apr 15, 2014 2:59 pm

OR ; We could try to think of this from a different point of view

such as why are things rotting out - Could it be that there is too much free O2 in the energy bearing liquid??? Maybe a system analysis and a little chemical treatment will [perhaps] postpone a far more expensive and larger corrosion drama.

It depends! :oops:
Sting
 
Other Heating: BurnHAM=NG-gas

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Tue Apr 15, 2014 4:03 pm

I maintain a nitrite-borax treatment with a high pH and have done that for seven years without incident. I have purchased new test equipment to check nitrite and pH levels. The new tank failed in less than 6 months, the 7 yr old tank is fine and still in service on the same system. I use a spirovent junior and employ other techniques to remove air and oxygen. I will let you know what the nitrite and pH level are in a couple of days.

All I can think of is that a bubble got trapped but yet the hole is on the vertical side.

I know what you are saying Sting, but it ain't so. "things are not rotting out" on my system. I got a bum tank at best. They are made from bad or thinner steel at worst.
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M


Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: crazy4coal On: Tue Apr 15, 2014 5:50 pm

I work for a heating service co. and last year we were changing ex-troll tanks faster then the supply house could get them. We had 3 supply houses bringing 6-8 every other day. More than half had bladders failed and the rest were rotted out. Cheap steel, I have seen 1/8" steel with pin holes that looked like someone drilled a hole in it with the rest looking almost new. Black pipe from China is junk we had bought a bunch and we couldn't cut threads in it, just ripped the steel out or broke the dies. Now we only get pipe from USA or Canada and have had no problems. Import pipe rusts with big flakes the US pipe will have fine coating of rust. Import steel sucks :mad: This year I had to change a oil pan on a Cummins diesel, the whole side was rotted under the paint. If the car co stopped dipping car bodies, cars would rust away before they were paid off!.....Do I sound like Smitty?
crazy4coal
 
Stove/Furnace Make: buderus
Stove/Furnace Model: logana

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Sting On: Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:19 pm

Sorry -- must have missed the alert memo :)


mikeandgerry wrote:I maintain a nitrite-borax treatment with a high pH and have done that for seven years without incident. I have purchased new test equipment to check nitrite and pH levels. The new tank failed in less than 6 months, the 7 yr old tank is fine and still in service on the same system. I use a spirovent junior and employ other techniques to remove air and oxygen. I will let you know what the nitrite and pH level are in a couple of days.

All I can think of is that a bubble got trapped but yet the hole is on the vertical side.

I know what you are saying Sting, but it ain't so. "things are not rotting out" on my system. I got a bum tank at best. They are made from bad or thinner steel at worst.
Sting
 
Other Heating: BurnHAM=NG-gas

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Wed Apr 16, 2014 12:01 am

Sting:

I am not saying I am perfect or an expert. While driving tonight I realized that I opened my system this past year more than I originally thought. I remodeled two rooms and in the process I drained four radiators to lay flooring and move piping, so I did dilute my treated system water more than I first thought! I will test the nitrite and pH as soon as I have the chance but again, even if they did fall to corrosive levels, the weaker and cheaper components would fail first meaning the Extrol tank was sub par compared to my older one on the same system. I will report back.

I know that oxygen corrodes which is why I took steps to remove it both chemically and mechanically. I didn't want my $6k investment in my axeman boiler to turn into a sieve! I could not care less about the $45 pressure tank except that it is a safety control. I also don't want to replace it every 6 months for the labor or to unnecessarily line the pockets of the mfr. What I am trying to tell the mfr is that thicker, better steel on the tank at a higher, but fair price is better for everyone and all situations!

What is your experience with the Amtrol tanks and how are you treating boiler water, if at all?
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Wed Apr 16, 2014 12:16 am

crazy4coal wrote:I work for a heating service co. and last year we were changing ex-troll tanks faster then the supply house could get them. We had 3 supply houses bringing 6-8 every other day. More than half had bladders failed and the rest were rotted out. Cheap steel, I have seen 1/8" steel with pin holes that looked like someone drilled a hole in it with the rest looking almost new. Black pipe from China is junk we had bought a bunch and we couldn't cut threads in it, just ripped the steel out or broke the dies. Now we only get pipe from USA or Canada and have had no problems. Import pipe rusts with big flakes the US pipe will have fine coating of rust. Import steel sucks :mad: This year I had to change a oil pan on a Cummins diesel, the whole side was rotted under the paint. If the car co stopped dipping car bodies, cars would rust away before they were paid off!.....Do I sound like Smitty?


I don't know where the Amtrol steel comes from. They say the unit is manufactured in the US but I don't know if the components are also from the US. I know that the quality of Chinese steel is so-so. Taiwanese goods are much better. I was once told by an engineer that worked for National Hand Tool that very high quality tools can be had from Taiwan, but like elsewhere, they are more expensive. Quite often, those shopping for import goods are looking for cheap or cheapest, thus the quality goods are not requested. National Tool imported our socket and ratchet line. They carried a lifetime warranty with an immediate no-quibble replacement policy. The rate of return on them is not any higher than our former line from Danaher. The quality difference is in the finish. The Danaher look and feel much nicer.

I will be installing a Chinese or Taiwanese made Watts pressure tank. I will report on its quality.

I appreciate the report. Thank you.
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Sting On: Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:00 am

mikeandgerry wrote:Sting
What is your experience with the Amtrol tanks and how are you treating boiler water, if at all?


Don;t use em - don't go on those calls - don't pay attention

Water = there is a water guy who sells excellent customer service - he takes a sample and quickly delivers the necessary potion to inject into the water- and I walk away fat dumb satisfied ---and paid :D
Sting
 
Other Heating: BurnHAM=NG-gas

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:41 pm

Oh come ON! You are so knowledgeable about boilers! :!: I was counting on you!
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Sting On: Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:49 am

Sting
 
Other Heating: BurnHAM=NG-gas

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:49 pm

Funny! My favorite show as a kid!

The saga of my Amtrol tank continues. As I have been waiting for my Watts replacement tank to arrive, my pin-holed Amtrol was temporarily repaired with a boiler plug since the leak was on high on the water side of the tank, which has held nicely. Since I have an isolation valve on that tank I only have the valve open when I am around and awake because I don't trust the plug but I was curious if other pinholes would develop. Last night as I sat at the computer I hear the upstairs loop call for heat and a huge air bubble gurgle through the system! I go to the boiler and the pressure had dropped to zero. I checked the schrader valves on the two tanks: old tank spits air, new (pin-holed) tank spits water! The bladder failed also.

Received my new water testing equipment and the new Watts tank yesterday. I will test over the weekend and install the new expansion tank.
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Sun Apr 20, 2014 12:31 pm

I received and used my new nitrite test kit which thankfully seems idiot proof. The nitrite test is a tablet drop test. The pH tester is a digital Hannah immersion meter.

Upon closer inspection, my boiler water was NOT black with magnetite. I had observed what I collected in a dark red five gallon pail and it looked blackened. When I retrieved a sample for testing directly from the boiler, it was a clear light beige color.

My boiler water is very low on nitrites (140ppm) which is way under the lowest end of the maintenance range of 600-1000ppm. The pH is 10.1 which is acceptable by some guidelines for nitrite borax treatment (some allow up to 11) though the air force recommended 8.5 to 9.5.

So the system water could have induced corrosion but I have no evidence of possible corrosion besides the newer amtrol tank. The older tank is still functioning. My Watts automatic air vent was weeping indicating a possible air leak. I removed it. It was waterlogged and the manual bleeder plug threads were stripped. I drained and re-plugged it and that is holding. It will be replaced. The system is holding pressure and I don't keep my make up water valve open so I have to assume no leaks of any particular magnitude. To be sure, I am going to replace, with plugs, all the schrader valves I have on the system which seem to be my weaker points. Also going to research Sting's R6 bars leaks trick to tighten the system. I have to do some research to see if it will react with my treatment. I have sodium nitrite on order to treat the system as no one around here carries it. I will re-treat this week to get the nitrite levels back to where they should be and recheck the pH and nitrites after a week of circulation.

While I must admit I failed in the monitoring of my water treatment to a possible condition where the water could have become corrosive, the quality of the steel and the bladder of the amtrol tank is still in question as they both failed after six months while their older version did not.

The only sure way to check for corrosion is to do an internal pipe inspection which is a pain. I probably can just remove the primary loop circulator before I treat the water which is also a transition point on my system between black iron and copper. There I can probably inspect both types of pipe. I can also cut open the old tank, which I will eventually do when I get some time. As always, I will report back.
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: mikeandgerry On: Sun Apr 20, 2014 12:49 pm

BTW the Watts ETX-30 expansion tank visibly seems to be of a good quality as the Amtrol did. Unlike the Amtrol, the Watts is made in Taiwan. The major visible difference was that the schrader valve was offset on the bottom, presumably to avoid damage in shipping. The installation instructions were not as nitpicky as Amtrol's but they have a paper leaflet with the usual warnings and inspection requirements that has a punched hole in it that must be captive on the schrader valve cap at all times or it voids the warranty!
mikeandgerry
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman-Anderson Anthratube 130-M

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: Sting On: Mon May 05, 2014 7:02 am

While it isn't safe to Drink R-6 --- and I am not a chemist [ just a figment of the public internet] There should be no conflict
I usually only see a positive result but if you put too much in - Why do I write 'usually' [ don't ask me how I know] :D

Well lets just say its not so 'Positive'
Sting
 
Other Heating: BurnHAM=NG-gas

Re: Failed Amtrol Extrol EX-30 < 6 mos!

PostBy: blrman07 On: Mon May 05, 2014 7:13 am

This stuff is good for emergency use only but REMEMBER.....it doesn't know the difference between a crack, a small hole or a small pipe connection to a pressure control, or an air vent, or a steam trap....

I think you get the "picture"

Rev. Larry
New Beginning Church
Ashland Pa.
blrman07
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Bucket a Day
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vigilant Casting 2310
Baseburners & Antiques: rebuilding a 1906 March Brownback Double Heater, using a UMCO 1920's Pot Belly stove in the church
Coal Size/Type: Pea/Nut/Wood in the VC and anything that will fit in the Bucket a Day. It's not fussy.