Filling water lines and tanks for the first time

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Paul Blakely

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Thanks to much assistance on this board almost a year ago, especially to Wayne Whitney. I'm about ready to move into our new house. I've held off filling the waterlines until now, tho I did do an air pressure test on the lines maybe 8 months ago and it looked good prior to installing the bathroom and kitchen fixtures.

I began filling the waterlines yesterday and immediately ran into a couple of problems. I opened the valve from the city to my system. Shortly after it started filling, I heard a clunk and it stopped filling. That's when I realized I had installed the sharkbite PRV upside down. Later I saw that there was water around the expansion tank.

My questions:
1. If I remove the PRV, and reinstall it in the correct orientation, will that solve the problem of the city inflow stopping?
2. Have I damaged either the PRV or the expansion tank by trying to fill the system with the PRV installed upside down?
3. I have several shutoffs throughout the system. Is it recommended to fill the system in sections? or to fill the cold water lines before proceeding to open the hot water lines?
4. I've removed most of the faucet aerators to flush the system of any possible debris in the dry lines before re-inserting them after the system is filled. Are there any other tips or procedures I should follow in activating all the lines?
5. Should I disconnect the refrigerator line to flush it before reconnecting it?

Thanks for any assistance to get me over this final hurdle.
 

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WorthFlorida

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Position should not be a problem, but it appears it was installed reversed? The picture shows the arrow pointing down, which usually is from the source. Not sure if the PRV itself was damaged if the water flow was reversed. Depending on how careful the installation was done, Any debris or stones getting into the pipe before or during installation could get jammed up at a valve or elbow.

The expansion tank leak, if it is at the threads, you need to remove the fitting and use a little pipe dope on the threads. Do not load it up. Only about a pea size drop of dope on the male threads only. Place it a thread or two from the edge. You do not want the pipe dope to touch the water. Wrapping a little more teflon tape will also help. The expansion tank is nothing more than a bladder inside the tank. If the tank was not charged with air the bladder could blow like a ballon but most are shipped from the factory at 40 PSI. Where is the leak?

Be sure the water heater is full and water is flowing from ALL hot water taps before turning on the WH, either gas or electric. . Turning on section at a time is OK. No harm in that.
 
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Tuttles Revenge

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One of our guys installed a PRV backwards at a customers home.. they still had water, but at a very reduced volume.. it should be fine. But you could blow the diaphram. Just verify that you have reduced pressure and that by adjusting the PRV you can dial in the pressure. Should be good once you verify.
 

Paul Blakely

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I've removed the upside down PRV and will install it with the proper orientation, after cutting back a bit of the pex on each end so the sharkbite can bite into new tube. I'm still mystified by the water from the city shutting off while I'm trying to fill the system. If that isn't caused by the upside down PRV, is it some kind of airlock issue?

BTW, thanks for the cautionary note on not firing up the HW tanks before everything is filled. I was aware of that, but if anybody else happens to follow this thread, THAT is probably the biggest caution in the initial fill of the system.
 

Reach4

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Airlock in pressure piping is not a thing.
 
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