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Old 15th June 2016, 17:07   #91
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Default Re: Solar water heater

I have two 200 liters Tata BP solar water heaters connected in series. The model is rated for higher water pressure as I use a pressure pump to pressurize the system.

One of the tanks has developed a leak, and the dealer has indicated that the tank will have to be replaced and could cost anywhere between 25K to 30K. The high cost is because this is a high pressure model. As Tata has closed their water heater division, I have to source the tank from a different manufacturer. Bosch also makes water heaters, but the tanks cost 40K.

The dealer says the leakage is due to corrosion. When I mentioned to him about the water softening plant, he mentioned that the tank has lasted 4 years just because of this. Otherwise, this particular model from Tata BP had higher failure rate.

I have a few questions to the Gurus.

1. Is there any way to repair the tank instead of replacing?
2. Do pressurized tanks cost this high?
3. If replacement is the only way, is there any steps I can take to prevent such failures or at least extend the life of the tank?
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Old 15th June 2016, 18:47   #92
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Default Re: Solar water heater

@graaja;I agree in a pressurized system replacing is the best. What is the material of the tank? Four years only quite intrigues me.
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Old 16th June 2016, 06:08   #93
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I agree in a pressurized system replacing is the best.
Thanks. I will go for a replacement of the tank, unless it turns out to be a simple issue like a leaky gasket etc. We are going to disconnect the tank and open it up to see the nature of damage tomorrow. I will post pictures.

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What is the material of the tank? Four years only quite intrigues me.
The material is 1.6mm stainless steel. The dealer said, he has faced many failures with this particular model of tank from Tata BP Solar, and as the company has closed, he is helpless.

What would be the average life I should expect from the tank?
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Old 16th June 2016, 09:48   #94
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Default Re: Solar water heater

1.6mm SS failing in four years due to 'corrosion'. What are you cooking, sulphuric acid? My Science is getting old, and I should relearn.

Last edited by sgiitk : 16th June 2016 at 10:00.
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Old 16th June 2016, 09:57   #95
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Originally Posted by sgiitk View Post
What are you coolking, sulphuric acid? My Science is getting old, and I should relearn.


Even I am very surprised with this failure in 4 years. I have a water softening plant, and can say we have soft water at least 70% of the time. The rest 30% it is at various levels of hardness, directly from a borewell. Maybe the hardness together with the pressure is the culprit. I will have to be more careful with the regneration hereafter.

Also, will know more on the extent of failure when we open up the tank. I will update on the details.
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Old 13th July 2016, 16:41   #96
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1.6mm SS failing in four years due to 'corrosion'. What are you cooking, sulphuric acid? My Science is getting old, and I should relearn.
After almost a month's wait, I got the solar guy to come and open up the tank (had it disconnected from the circuit long time back). We found that the leak is from the joint, not because of corrosion as we doubted.

Solar water heater-leaking-tank.jpg

I asked if this joint may be re-welded. The solar guy said for a pressurized tank, re-welding will have a very slim chance of success and there is no guarantee of the life of the joint as well. Welding would also cause pitting on the tank and may result in opening up a leak in another spot. He said it would cost around 4K to 5K to get the joint welded.

Should I take a small risk and try welding the joint or go for a replacement? Please advice.

Last edited by graaja : 13th July 2016 at 16:43.
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Old 14th July 2016, 11:03   #97
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Default Re: Solar water heater

So it is a bad weld and not the SS. Welding SS is tricky esp since in India MIG welding is almost unknown, and skills non-existent. With MIG welding it should be straight forward.
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Old 14th July 2016, 11:42   #98
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Welding SS is tricky esp since in India MIG welding is almost unknown, and skills non-existent...
Thanks. I will then go for a replacement of the tank.

Thank you once again for the advice and guidance.
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Old 9th March 2017, 13:49   #99
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I have the Evacuated Tube Collector based Solar Heater. This is less robust than the Flat plate collector type Solar water heater. BTW today an Evacuated Tube was found cracked and as usual not covered under warranty. The cost is 450 for the tube and 500 as service charges. So in the last 3-4 months, I've shelled out 2600Rs for one Solar heater.

I didn't know that there would be so many issues with the Evacuated Tube based Solar heater, otherwise we would have bought the Flat plate type at a higher cost, considering peace of mind.
Another issue, one of the 100ltr tanks is leaking. On calling the new service number of Anu Solar, I get the response saying that tanks cannot be repaired and a new one will cost Rs 11900 rs!!

Mine is 3 non pressurized 100ltr systems and 1 non pressurized 200ltrs system. Am thinking of replacing with FPC system one by one on failures. I am supplied by BWSSB, so expecting mostly soft water. All my neighbours have older FPC systems with not much complaints, so feeling confident about the same. Let me know if anyone thinks otherwise.
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