Life in progress

Something fishy may cause disease – the saga continues


On Friday, I wrote about my hot water tank and how it’s not living up to snuff. The rental company sent an iffy contractor over… rather than tell the whole story again, you can click here to read about it. Since then, I’ve been doing a tankload of research, (see what I did there?) and I’ve come up with a few interesting facts. First, there’s a knob on the mixing valve to adjust the temperature of the water coming out of it. The contractor who came to see me didn’t mention that. Fishy? Yes. BUT I’ve also discovered that these mixing valve thingies that seem to be popping up on top of water tanks without people knowing about them do in fact have a very short lifespan. It seems, (and I could be wrong, but this is what I’ve been led to believe) that the Ontario government decided that all the water coming out of the taps in all the homes shouldn’t be any higher than 49 degrees C, to prevent scalding. To combat Legionnaires disease however, the water in the tank needs to be 60C. So, the happy compromise was the mixing valves installed directly on the tank, which regulate the entire living space.

What all that means is, it’s probably going to cost me $200 to get a hot water tank fixed that I don’t know if I want. I’ve been thinking about going tankless for years. So today I called the company that installed my boiler to see what they can do and they gave me an alternative – an indirect water heater that runs right off my boiler, which, at least in the winter, I’m using anyway.

And it’s a good thing I got them in too – the run-off from my boiler was leaking and I had a puddle on the floor. A couple of boxes got wet and I’m going to have to throw out a few pillows, but nothing earthshattering was ruined. They came back and replaced the pipe for $100. And they didn’t insist on cash! What a concept!

I haven’t called the water heater rental company yet because I want to get all the information I can to make a decision whether to buy or rent, which will depend on how much it all costs. That cost will also include getting out of the contract with the rental company. When I call them, I’m still going to complain about the contractor’s lack of professionalism. I’ll keep you posted.

Author: Linda G. Hill

There's a writer in here, clawing her way out.

36 thoughts on “Something fishy may cause disease – the saga continues

  1. Ugh! Good luck with it all!


  2. Good thing you did the research, just for the halibut! Cod, you mackerel do it yourself! Keep us tuna into the saga. (Definitely a book in this one — but I’ve run out of fish jokes, but you might have haddock with them after Mackerel Michael.


  3. Tanks for the update ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. hmmm my tank is also a rental, but I do not have that valve on mine , actually to be honest i have never seen that valve on any tank in any home I have lived in over the years , this must be an Ontario thing , my tank has separate hot and cold shut off taps, has an adjustable thermostat (sucker will bring the water up over 150 degrees I keep it around 70 degrees ) and has an emergency release valve that has a hose attached to it , in the event something goes south with my tank and the pressure builds the emergency release will vent the hot water and pressure all over my floor and the gas will be automatically shut off , better to have my floor destroyed than have the tank launch into a low orbit ( they really do blow huge holes in houses and fly hundreds of feet into the air ) I have had my tank going on 9 years and never had an issue, the rental company comes out once per year and services it ,free of charge , they change the emergency valve and hose, and change the rods in the heater if needed .


  5. Why is everything so complicated? Companies need to be more straight forward.


  6. Hang in there! Sounds like a real pain.


  7. One thing about hot water off the boiler you need to know. Your boiler will have to be at a hot water temperature in the summer months. I’m not sure if it is a higher temperature than just the summer maintenence. (All boilers have to be at a certain temp) Good luck on this.


  8. I think there is a novel in this Linda….


  9. Is this what your valve looks like?


    • Kind of, except it’s sideways.


      • You can do it yourself, not a tough job.


      • Okay, so here is the part from Amazon, just match to what you have.

        All you need is the proper size wrench and teflon tape:

        You can probably get everything from a local hardware store. Simply note the letters on the valve so you put it back in the same order (Hot, Cold, Mix). Find your water shutoff valve (closest to the inflow pipe to the water heater), turn it off. Next, use the wrench to loosen and remove the three nuts on the valve. Wrap the teflon tape onto the threads of the new valve (three warps should do). Finger-tighten each nut onto the valve, then use the wrench and fully tighten them (hold the pipe with your other hand to keep from stressing it). Usually 3/4 to 1 turn is enough. Now turn the water back on. If you see any leaks then just tighten the nut until the leak stops. Voila! Done!


        • Thanks for the links. Unfortunately out of that I didn’t find anything cheaper that looks the same for less than the plumber quoted me including labour. I’ll keep at it though. Thanks for the suggestion. ๐Ÿ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

  10. Good luck Linda. Mixing valves don’t last long. We have had many replacements. No contractor should require cash.


  11. Hmmm,yep that is a new development since the last time I dealt with water heaters. Ratbastards! Makes a twisted sense though – it’s not part of the heater therefore is not covered – mandated by the gov’t – no one likes warrantying what the gov’t mandates.


  12. Thanks for the update. That first guy did sound fishy. Best of luck with getting it all straightened out!


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