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Old 11-02-2006, 06:28 PM   #1
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What a Moron!

I was winterizing my AS the other night and I must have had a disconnect in my brain...

I blew out the lines in the trailer and thought I was done. When I turned the water off in the trailer I could hear gurgling and when I turned it back on more water would come out.

I did this a couple times being pretty sure it was just some residual water in the lines. After a few tries I realized I hadn't drained the hot water tank yet and it wasn't going to blow out using air.

I went outside and unscrewed the drain on the hot water tank (notice I didn't say that I disconnected the air compressor). I did notice that the drain wasn't coming out nice and easy like normal.

Well... A few turns on the drain plug and whooosh, all the remaining water in the tank came spraying out onto my pants and into my shoes. It was so comical I couldn't even get upset.

Funny thing, when I went back into the trailer, the faucets drained themselves quite readily.

-Alden
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Old 11-02-2006, 06:37 PM   #2
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Your Momma said you'd have days like this....
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Old 11-02-2006, 06:41 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alden Miller
.... all the remaining water in the tank came spraying out onto my pants and into my shoes.
-Alden
Yep, sure... a likely story. Good one!

(note to self.. remember the old "my water heater sprayed my pants" excuse)
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Old 11-02-2006, 06:49 PM   #4
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whoa!!

funny, but you could die. like dead. if there is air in the system, that plug could come out like a bullet. OK, maybe not, since it's threaded and there's not much 'canon barrel' to shoot it out with.

but when you test plumbing systems, you fill them with water (incompressible, so very little energy is stored even under high pressure) then you put a little bit of air in to pressurize the system (the small air bubble can't store much energy). When you open the system, the pressure goes to zero with only a small release of water.

If a plumbing system is full of air, on the other hand, you have a cocked and very big 'pellet gun' ready to fire the first plug that is loosened.
...
you may ask why I know this--I knew the right thing to do and forgot and almost ate a 1-1/2" plug one day.

Zep
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Old 11-02-2006, 07:36 PM   #5
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Old 11-02-2006, 08:23 PM   #6
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Winterize?? What's that?
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Old 11-02-2006, 08:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeppelinium
whoa!!

funny, but you could die. like dead. if there is air in the system, that plug could come out like a bullet. OK, maybe not, since it's threaded and there's not much 'canon barrel' to shoot it out with.

but when you test plumbing systems, you fill them with water (incompressible, so very little energy is stored even under high pressure) then you put a little bit of air in to pressurize the system (the small air bubble can't store much energy). When you open the system, the pressure goes to zero with only a small release of water.

If a plumbing system is full of air, on the other hand, you have a cocked and very big 'pellet gun' ready to fire the first plug that is loosened.
...
you may ask why I know this--I knew the right thing to do and forgot and almost ate a 1-1/2" plug one day.

Zep
Not to get too technical with you ZEP, BUT water is compressible under great force - but none that you and I could create at sea level. You are correct in your answer - I just wanted to relate a story. One of the pieces of equipment I use has a titanium pressure bottle rated to full ocean depth about 18" in diameter. Let us just say that it had an O-ring failure at depth and leave it at that. Brought it to the surface (6000+ meters later) and one of my guys went to remove the end cap. Since it seals under pressure (in the water as pressure builds it forces the end cap on tighter) the holding ring is just for surface use. Once disturbed the end cap (40lbs of titanium) shot across the deck at rocket speed and slammed into a bulkhead. Much to the surprise of 15 people on the deck. There was no down range drop in the trajectory - it went horizontal for 40+ feet. Compressed water - no air - the bottles are vacuumed drawn to remove all air. At great depth - water compresses.
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Old 11-02-2006, 09:44 PM   #8
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Tip for getting water out of the heater

You found a great way to get most of the water out - and in a hurry I bet! I made a checklist for myself, made a bunch of copies, and now each fall I just take one and make myself follow the steps - cuts down on the adventure!

There is always some water that doesn't drain. The manuals say it's OK, since there is room for the remaining water to freeze and expand without hurting anything. I drain the heater the last trip of the system, and leave the plug out for the drive home. I'm amazed at the amount of water that still slohses out on the trip home, and by the time I get home there is very little water left in the bottom.

Just a helpful tip! Thanks for sharing your exciting way to winterize!
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Old 11-02-2006, 10:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alden Miller
I was winterizing my AS the other night and I must have had a disconnect in my brain...

I blew out the lines in the trailer and thought I was done. When I turned the water off in the trailer I could hear gurgling and when I turned it back on more water would come out.

I did this a couple times being pretty sure it was just some residual water in the lines. After a few tries I realized I hadn't drained the hot water tank yet and it wasn't going to blow out using air.

I went outside and unscrewed the drain on the hot water tank (notice I didn't say that I disconnected the air compressor). I did notice that the drain wasn't coming out nice and easy like normal.

Well... A few turns on the drain plug and whooosh, all the remaining water in the tank came spraying out onto my pants and into my shoes. It was so comical I couldn't even get upset.

Funny thing, when I went back into the trailer, the faucets drained themselves quite readily.

-Alden
Well, chalk it up to old age....you are old aren't you? OH! I just remembered my AARP dues are due...Thanks. Now what did you do.....
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Old 11-02-2006, 10:34 PM   #10
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Similar story. Son-in-law borrowed my pressure washer. When he finished, he couldn't get the hose disconnected. Went looking for a pipe wrench.

While he was in the shop, I pulled the trigger to release the pressure on the hose. When he came back, I easily took the hose off with two fingers.

He still thinks I have superhuman powers.
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:43 PM   #11
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Anyone but me.. want to bet that not ALL the "water" on his pants came from the Water header.. when you think of where the drain vlave is.. where the door opening is.. and the normal height of a man....

Yup.. that would make me add some of my own water to that mess..

DH
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:48 PM   #12
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Guess if we all confessed to our dumb moves, we'd have enough volumes filled to rival Encyclopedia Britannica.
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:58 PM   #13
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Yep, we're working on it. There is a whole thread here dedicated to "dumb" mistakes. Great reading if you get the blues because your A/S project is taking longer than you want.
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