Immersion Heater Cylinder Tiny Leak

Discussion in 'Plumbing and Drains' started by SWmate, Sep 14, 2013.

  1. SWmate

    SWmate

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2013
    Messages:
    3
    This is an old-style 27 gallon copper cylinder electric immersion heater.

    The hot water exits at the top apex, and the cold water pipe runs vertically down by the side of the cylinder, and enters at the bottom edge, via the type of right-angle junction fitting sold in all plumber's supplies shops.

    The cold water pipe inlet bottom junction is dripping slowly after I replaced the verdigris corroded copper pipe to it.

    Having been warned, I was gentle tightening the new bottom right-angle junction nut (pipe to cylinder), but nevertheless I have slightly cracked the soldered joint where the cylinder copper meets the threaded pipe connector.

    One end of the new right-angle connector has a 22mm olive compression joint, the other end is about 30mm diameter hexagonal nut whose thread is sealed with PTFE tape. No sealants were used, only the tape.

    I tied up the attic header tank ball-cock, drained the cylinder out, and tried soldering over the tiny leak using a chunky soldering iron (heated to dull red on a gas-stove flame), but the molten solder dripped downwards, and didn't stick or seal it.

    I was working on the cylinder in situ so couldn't lie the cylinder flat.

    Would a small gas torch flame be any better? I suspect it would simply melt, then blow out all the existing solder around the joint.

    The visible 0.5mm leak is just at the meeting of the copper and solder on the cylinder body, right on the curve of the depression the threaded junction pokes from.

    Tricky to patch with a shaped thin metal plate.

    Any possibility of a modern epoxy resin sealing such a pin-hole leak?

    It is a simple, 20-30 years old system, on mains water pressure only.

    I'm reluctant to get a new style gas "Combi-boiler" system as they seems to malfunction often.

    I'd prefer to get this old cylinder patched up, if I can.

    Helpful suggestions please.
     
    SWmate, Sep 14, 2013
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  2. SWmate

    SWmate

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    I considered epoxying a shaped patch of thin aluminium over the area, would this be effective?
     
    SWmate, Sep 14, 2013
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  3. SWmate

    JohnKay

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    Messages:
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    Surrey
    Hi SWmate

    Please do not attempt a repair, it's just not worth it. think of the damage if it leaked when you were not there.
    Replace the cylinder with a new one, these days they are very well insulated. There will be small alterations in the pipework, watch out, the pipes may be 3/4 rather than 22mm, and adapters may be needed.
     
    JohnKay, Sep 14, 2013
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