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  1. #1
    Jon mackay's Avatar
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    Default What is this tank for?

    Came across this tank next to a water heater and was not able to identify what it was for. Has anyone seen this before?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    If on the cold side, Water treatment system.

    Last edited by John Kogel; 08-19-2010 at 08:20 PM. Reason: Correction of terms, thanx, Bruce.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Looks like a filter to me too. Is this house on a well?


  4. #4
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Be careful, I would not call it a water filter, it may be only a water softner. The correct term is "water treatment equipment". Just report that it is present and not inspected.

    Bruce King, B.A. King Home Inspections, LLC
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  5. #5
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Did the house have a hot water heating system?


  6. #6
    Jon mackay's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Quote Originally Posted by James Duffin View Post
    Did the house have a hot water heating system?
    No, forced air.

    The only thing I could think of was maybe to temper the water prior to entering the water heater..


  7. #7
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Looks like someone took the inside tank from a gas fired unit, painted it, and is using it for who knows what (maybe some of the things mentioned in the posts above).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    This is just a guess, but could be something along the lines of an "in-between" storage tank for WH's in tandem?? Looks like there are 2.

    I ran across a "Output Side Solar Pre Heater Storage Tank"

    I looked at a tank next to a standard Gas Fired WH...I was puzzled.... I had seen a number of Solar Pre-Heat types... BUT

    Here's the *neat* part. It was on the OUTPUT side of the Water Heater The flow went from the heated side of the water heater... to the "Solar Storage Tank" and then.... on to the roof. I chuckled as I typed this.

    Last edited by Tim Spargo; 08-18-2010 at 06:26 PM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    People on well water use these mineral tank treatment systems, with or without the brine tank.

    "The heart of a water softener is a mineral tank. It's filled with small polystyrene beads, also known as resin or zeolite. The beads carry a negative charge.

    Calcium and magnesium in water both carry positive charges. This means that these minerals will cling to the beads as the hard water passes through the mineral tank. Sodium ions also have positive charges, albeit not as strong as the charge on the calcium and magnesium. When a very strong brine solution is flushed through a tank that has beads already saturated with calcium and magnesium, the sheer volume of the sodium ions is enough to drive the calcium and magnesium ions off the beads. Water softeners have a separate brine tank that uses common salt to create this brine solution."

    But it doesn't look like a treatment tank, does it? It looks, like Jerry said, jury-rigged. Could be a heater, using furnace heat to preheat the agua?

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    Last edited by John Kogel; 08-19-2010 at 09:28 PM. Reason: relooked the pic
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Spargo View Post
    The flow went from the heated side of the water heater... to the "Solar Storage Tank" and then.... on to the roof.
    Sounds like the dyslexic plumber's place, where you find hot water in the toilet tank. Good thing there was solar backup.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
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  11. #11
    Jon mackay's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    I know that it is not a filter system, it appears to be just a storage tank of sorts. There is a hole right down the middle just like a water heater but there is no burn chamber.Perhaps it is the innards of a water heater.

    I just reported as unknown purpose. Who knows what it was put there for.

    It is city water, no well.

    Thanks for the info everyone.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon mackay View Post
    I know that it is not a filter system, it appears to be just a storage tank of sorts. There is a hole right down the middle just like a water heater but there is no burn chamber.Perhaps it is the innards of a water heater.

    I just reported as unknown purpose. Who knows what it was put there for.

    It is city water, no well.

    Thanks for the info everyone.
    Obviously we can't see the connections but if it is plumbed into the water supply ahead of the water heater(s) it is likely just a tempering tank. Picking up heat from the room to boost the water heaters output buy raising the incoming water temperature it would be cheaper to install and operate than a larger or multiple heater arrangement. Of course if you are paying to heat the area there would be little to no energy benefit overall but it could be argued to save some energy if the basement is un-insulated and unheated (just picking up heat from the ground and waste heat from the house.)

    Jim Luttrall
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  13. #13
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    I was thinking water pressure booster. Is the pressure low in your area?

    Tom Rees / A Closer Look Home Inspection / Salt Lake City, Utah

  14. #14
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    How would a tank boost water pressure?

    Jim Luttrall
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Tell us how it is plumbed.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    The tank can increase water pressure when it is connected to a pump. See the pressure gauge on top of tank, we can't see what is is connected to.

    Tom Rees / A Closer Look Home Inspection / Salt Lake City, Utah

  17. #17
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Its all about how it is plumbed which we can not see. Without that, we could guess all day; and with it we might still be guessing.

    In the end the OP could probably only do what he did as far as reporting.

    I've seen people leave an old broken water heater in place and install a new one next to it thinking the old one will be a place for the water to warm up a bit. Of course the tank is insulated so this won't function as well as intended. The idea they stripped the tank to allow for heat gain makes sense. Did the bottom of the tank look engineered to stand up or is it rigged because it has been stripped on it's casing and therefore proper footing. That still raises the question of what looks like a pressure gauge on top...but that could have been the closest thing around to plug an opening too.....Lord knows we've seen weirder things.


  18. #18
    Phil Harris's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Could be an iron filter - I had one to help treat my well water in my old house. High iron content in the water in your area?


  19. #19
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    There is a water heater behind a water heater on the right side of the pic. Hmmmm... The tank in question seems to have a rather large valve in a line just out of sight at the bottom of the photo. The tank style and the valve are consistent with older type water well system storage tanks and equipment. Perhaps the tank is a "junction box" between city water, well water, and the house and serves as a "tempering" tank as suggested earlier.

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  20. #20
    David Bell's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Maybe a sediment tank. Lower valve could be used to drain off periodically.


  21. #21
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Water treatment systems have timers for back washing. There would also be a discharge drain line for the back washing. There would need to be a salt holding tank for adding the brine to the beads. I would eliminate the notion that it's a treatment system. I have neutralizer and iron removing system and they look nothing like that setup.

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  22. #22
    George Edwards's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    IT LOOKS LIKE A PRESSURE TANK TO ME


  23. #23
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    Super sized hammer arrestor

    Mike Schulz License 393
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  24. #24

    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    John,
    Are you sure this Tank was connected to the potable water system?

    Look at these "Cleaned" up pictures.
    What are those valves/contraptions in the line in front of the furnace? Looks to me like the "Pressure" gauge is "capping" the hot exit line. The Flow actually comes from the bottom left side of the tank up through the galvanized line and then to the right through those valves. Looks like all kinds of cutoff valves also in those lines.
    Could this be a pressurized sprinkler system?
    I would have to see it in person to see how it is "connected" to the system.

    Ralph

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  25. #25
    Timothy M. Barr's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    duh ask the owner I do things like that I get a lot of anwsers from them


  26. #26
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    Default Re: What is this tank for?

    I'm still curious as to what it looks like down into that vent coming up through the center of the tank ...

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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