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Old 12-10-2014, 01:52 AM   #1
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Water tanks

A previous thread regarding bleach in water tanks reminded of a water tank issue I was forced to deal with on my Canoe Cove 53 a few years ago. In short, the OEM water tank (~25 years old at the time) began leaking. Investigation revealed a tank that, by the nature of the original build, was simply not inspectable, nor certainly repairable in-situ. So, out it came, with considerable effort and expense, and in went a replacement.

The original tank material was aluminum (alloy unknown), and nicely fabricated (quality welds, proper baffling, etc.). After removing the tank, investigation revealed numerous "crusticles" coating the interior of the tank, each generating a corrosion pit underneath. One of these corrosion pits eventually made its way through the tank wall, leading to the failure. The crusticles were hard, white, calcium-like in appearance, and looked all the world like ossified buggers on the walls of the boy's gym in Jr. High School. I didn't attempt to have a sample chemically analyzed, but they appeared to this somewhat-knowledgeable guy as the byproduct of a chemical reaction between the chemicals and/or minerals in the water and the aluminum alloying elements that made up the tank.

I'm attaching (hopefully (sucessfully) a couple of pictures of the interior of the tank. Anybody else seen such a thing?
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:01 AM   #2
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[QUOTE=jungpeter;289862] The crusticles were hard, white, calcium-like in appearance, and looked all the world like ossified buggers on the walls of the boy's gym.

Buggers?

I am assuming the American idiom for 'buggers' is different from the English version(at least I hope so).
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:26 AM   #3
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I am assuming the American idiom for 'buggers' is different from the English version(at least I hope so).


I think he meant boogers, as in snot, or crusty dried chunks of mucoid nasal drippings...
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:33 AM   #4
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Looks to me like Al203 or an Al hydroxide which are decomposition materials remaining as your tank ate away. Faulty wiring and plumbing are the nemesis of Al tanks and hulls.
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Old 12-10-2014, 07:59 AM   #5
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The original tank material was aluminum (alloy unknown), and nicely fabricated (quality welds, proper baffling, etc.). After removing the tank, investigation revealed numerous "crusticles" coating the interior of the tank, each generating a corrosion pit underneath. One of these corrosion pits eventually made its way through the tank wall, leading to the failure. The crusticles were hard, white, calcium-like in appearance, and looked all the world like ossified buggers on the walls of the boy's gym in Jr. High School. I didn't attempt to have a sample chemically analyzed, but they appeared to this somewhat-knowledgeable guy as the byproduct of a chemical reaction between the chemicals and/or minerals in the water and the aluminum alloying elements that made up the tank.

I'm attaching (hopefully (sucessfully) a couple of pictures of the interior of the tank. Anybody else seen such a thing?
I get a buildup like that under my pool waterfall where water falls over some tiles. It might be a little more white. Often wondered why it only built up on tile around the waterfall. I assume it is calcium. Acid will remove it but not something you want to put in your water tank. Does your water supply have a high amount of calcium?
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:22 AM   #6
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Lots of contradictory stuff on the web about aluminum and Alzheimers but drinking water with that crud in it can't be healthy.
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Old 12-10-2014, 12:19 PM   #7
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Andy G, Yup, boogers it is. My bad. I think I rely on Google spellchecker too often. Who'd a thunk my stupid computer couldn't tell a bugger from a booger?

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Old 12-10-2014, 12:34 PM   #8
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Donsan,

I tried scraping and both muriatic and phosphoric acid washes with little affect. Even if the boogers would have been successfully removed from the walls and floor of the tank, the corrosion pits would have remained. Given the baffling and poor access, few opportunities to coat the tank interior to mitigate these pits, nor to repair the leak itself were apparent. Trust me on this-I searched long and hard to find a viable in-situ repair for this tank. I was left (as mentioned in the original post) with the inevitability of a remove and replace operation.

In hindsight, not a terribly difficult or overwhelmingly costly replacement operation. For any Canoe Cove 53 owners that might be lurking and/or interested, I posted a detailed description of my fix, including pictures, on the Canoe Cove owner's association website.

Regards,

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Old 12-10-2014, 02:07 PM   #9
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Andy G, Yup, boogers it is. My bad. I think I rely on Google spellchecker too often. Who'd a thunk my stupid computer couldn't tell a bugger from a booger?

Pete
As a short term inmate at an all boys school in the UK. I can attest to that difference
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:21 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=jungpeter;289940]Andy G, Who'd a thunk my stupid computer couldn't tell a bugger from a booger?

Maybe it has led a sheltered life.
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