Posting a message to the forum will remove the above advertisement

Discuss Copper water cylinder needs replacing?? in the Plumbing Forum area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

  1. paul wenman

    paul wenman New Member

    Our indirect copper water cyclinder has started leaking. Not a flood but enough to wet the whole floor in the airing cupboard. Could not find any obvious leaks from pipe joints, shower pump etc. so called in a plumber. He cut away insulation layer at bottom and found heavy corrosion. He has recomended a replacement. I was surprised because I did not know copper cylinders corroded seriously - he said it would be caused by accumulated limescale deposits - we are in a hard water area and the tank is over 20 hyears old, maybe 30 (already here when we moved in).

    I would like to be sure that this really is the tank gone, as opposed to the pipe joint at the bottom. Can anyone offer their views please? These pics are odd angles - the pipe is entering the tank bottom right.

    Thanks

    tank 1.JPG tank 2.JPG
     
  2. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Yea quite common, you've done well if it's over 20 years probably 1/8th full of rubbish since your in a hard water area
     
  3. rpm

    rpm Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    I changed mine which was probably the same age. 1 the old weighed a lot more than the new one due to the scale in the bottom and 2 it now warms up quicker so in theory saves money.
     
  4. paul wenman

    paul wenman New Member

    But what actually causes the copper to corrode??
     
  5. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Limescale / ph of the water, flux residue from when the cylinder was made etc
     
  6. jtsplumbing

    jtsplumbing Plumber GSR

    Hard water area replace it with a stainless Steel one !
     
  7. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    20 + years you have done well get it changed it will pay for its self in reduced energy costs over the next few years .kop
     
  8. paul wenman

    paul wenman New Member

    I have read that stainkess steel cylinders are not made to the same quality . ?
     
  9. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    gledhill are very good

    EnviroFoam Stainless | Gledhill
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Copper cylinders still avalible bud if thats what you want changed two recently. kop
     
  11. townfanjon

    townfanjon Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Next one wont last 20/30 years lol.

    Put a stainless one in
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. paul wenman

    paul wenman New Member

    Various reports out there analysing steel vs copper. This one is very clearly in favour of copper: Copper v Stainless Steel Hot Water Cylinders. Key extracts:

    The University of Ulster has recently published a report which compares the performance of a stainless steel hot water cylinder with a copper cylinder manufactured to the exact same specifications.

    The results of the report found that using a copper hot water cylinder on an exact like for like specification reduced the heat up time of the water by 28.8% over stainless steel.

    The University of Ulster then went on to compare a standard copper cylinder with a standard stainless steel cylinder, and found the copper cylinder showed a 62.6% increase in the power output.

    The report goes a long way to demonstrating the long term cost benefits of using copper hot water cylinders in your project, without even mentioning the copper’s superior bacteria killing properties, flexibility, long lifespan and recyclability.
     
  13. townfanjon

    townfanjon Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Yes Paul , I have read these reports and do agree with them ( mostly )
    However , in a hard water area the stainless come out on top ( in my opinion ) .
    Your HW cost of your gas bill is very small in relation to your heating.
     
  14. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    The quality is not in the cylinders like it was in the older ones so newer cylinders are been replaced more frequently
     
  15. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Yes agree but why do you think that is ?
     
  16. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    The older cylinders were a thicker grade all the newer one's are the minimum thickness they can get away with .had a few insulated cylinders perforate like a teabag under the skin away from seams or connections just bad copper ,a lot of recycled metals have been recycled so much the goodness is gone out of the metal now
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Good reply also the care and attention has gone and washing / cleaning of the flux has gone to the wind a bit also
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. zzzjim

    zzzjim Well-Known Member

    My antique cylinder had a anode pinched into the middle of the bottom dome ! ( Was weeping , drip,drip )
     
  19. Ric2013

    Ric2013 Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Report is pointless if you are trying to apply it to real-world installations. Better heat transfer on an exact like-for-like basis if cylinder is copper. Bit like saying concrete tiles on roofs are defective because if made same thickness as slate (like-for-like) they don't last. Or that MDPE water mains are defective because they don't stand the pressure if made as thin as copper ones.

    A stainless cylinder will hopefully have a longer coil to compensate for the fact that it doesn't conduct heat as well as copper so probably won't be like-for-like at all!
     
  20. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    Any of you lads remember drilling and fitting the coil yourself back in the old days ..lol
     
  21. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    seen the old man do it and a immersion boss
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  22. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    You must be talking about the old immersion kit done it about twice a big brass flange cut it out and two notches into cylinder to slide the under flange into it ,done a few off the coils alright use to dread them I was the youngest and always got that job lol fecked up the odd cylinder as well lol done my first cylinder as a bet in 87 with an uncle who was the plumber I was only 16 told him I could do that off with you so he sad lol and it was perfect he gave up doing them then lol
     
  23. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    yea thats the ones
     
    • Like Like x 1
  24. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Yea, Yorkshire 22mm Conversion coils that you had to drill 2 holes - bottom one tight fit and top one a large hole for coil to be screwed through. Large split copper washer inside, copper washer with rubber washer outside. All held with a black plastic tube supplied with each coil.
    They lasted often 20 years or more sometimes until the rubber washer needed a replacement kit to fix weeping
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Useful Useful x 1
  25. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Would have been quicker replacing the old cylinder and also away to the scrap with it
     
    • Like Like x 1
  26. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    Yeah that's them we had the Irish version you could buy them in copper craft
     
  27. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    That was when the hot water was heated through a direct cylinder coming from the copper box boiler in the fire cradle .them copper boxes were great for scrapping very thick copper plenty of weight in them a direct cylinder is unheard of nowadays
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  28. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Funny how some job tasks have now disappeared from plumbing work.
    And other new tasks are with modern plumbing.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  29. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    Yes, nearly every house years ago that was getting a heating system installed, only had a direct cylinder linked to a solid fuel little back boiler, or some had a glass fronted room heater that only had small back boiler. Rayburn 70B I think was a very common glass fronted fire
     
    • Like Like x 1
  30. ShaunCorbs

    ShaunCorbs S. Mod Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    anyone know when the immersion coil heaters off the heating came out (with the big bakerlight housing) ?
     
  31. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    Old ways are tried and trusted a good copper job beats anything , soon apprentice's are not getting the proper training in good copper work the nickname some are getting is plastic plumbers had a lad just out of his time tell me there is no need for a safety valve on a solid fuel boiler his instructor in their course told the class this only needed an expansion .. Told him why didn't he ask why they made safety valves in the first place self explanatory I told him the clue is in the name SAFETY lol
     
  32. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    We were told the immersions came out in the 70,s Shaun
     
  33. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    To be honest I never have installed a safety valve on solid fuel systems. If proper done and sized vent and feed pipes are installed and no pipes are vulnerable to freezing, then really no need for a PRV. But if the vent and feed in a loft froze, then a PRV close to the boiler would be definitely worth having. I don't really see the point in a PRV in a loft.
    Obviously if MIs state it must be installed, then I would fit one.
     
  34. Dkdc71

    Dkdc71 Member

    Think your taking up what I said wrong best . I would never put a prv valve in a loft always at the boiler. I wouldn't fit any boiler without one solid fuel is always an open system feed and expansion but always a prv is required at boiler off 28 mm as near to the boiler as possible got called to a job not too long ago no safety valve boiler making a lot of noise piped wrong no safety valve guy that fitted it couldn't stop it pitching into f and e tank so the genius capped it . he is giving the rest of is a bad name doing work like that a potential bomb he left not saying you are wrong but we were always taught any boiler requires a safety valve except the old direct hot water gravity system that expanded through cylinder expansion if needed
     
  35. Best

    Best Trusted Plumber Top Contributor!!

    No, I wasn't thinking you had suggested about putting PRV on solid fuel systems in lofts. I was just speaking generally about my thoughts on using PRVs and mentioned their position was important to be close to the boiler, if they are to be a proper safety belt and braces addition.
    I still think PRVs are unnecessary on a properly done solid fuel system, but they will do absolutely no harm to have that additional safety, providing obviously the discharge is put to a safe exit and I would be happy to fit one on a cold leg. It will never function though, unless someone allows a house to totally freeze in severe weather and then go in and light the solid fuel boiler. More likely the PRV will seize or begin to pass water due to the heat damage and need replacing.
    The solid fuel on direct cylinders ironically are actually more dangerous because the connections can block eventually, whereas indirect systems will not block, so should be safe and always open to the vent and feed.
    I guess it is just whoever teaches you, or what system diagrams you copy, as to our methods.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
Loading...
Similar Threads - Copper water cylinder Forum Date
Copper cross 15mm for light project Fittings & Pipes Friday at 8:40 PM
Copper pipe corrosion Plumbing Forum Wednesday at 4:40 PM