How To Clean A Water Heater The Simple Way
If you maintain your water heater properly, there is no reason why it shouldn’t survive for more than a decade or more. Knowing how to clean a water heater is one of the most important skills to have in order to do this. Our goal with this essay is to provide a comprehensive walkthrough of the process of cleaning your water heater, regardless of its make or model.
How To Clean Your Water Heater: The Basics
Why Should You Do It?
- If you’ve read our article on drinking tap water in Phoenix, you’ll be aware that the water that arrives at your house in Arizona (or any other state in the United States, for that matter) includes silt, minerals, and chemicals.
- In the course of time, these impurities might accumulate in your water heater, causing it to operate inefficiently.
- Inefficiencies such as inconsistent heating, an element that fails to stay lighted, and a blocked drain valve are all examples of inefficiencies.
- All of these will result in bills that are greater than planned.
In severe circumstances, the sediment accumulation can get so extensive that it causes leaks in your water heater’s internal components.The most effective technique to avoid this is to flush the system on a regular basis.
How Often Should You Flush Your Water Heater?
- At the absolute least, you’ll want to flush the system once a year, if not more frequently.
- However, it is dependent on the composition of your local water supply as well as the equipment you have in your house.
- In order to obtain information regarding the drinking water in your area, contact the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
- If you have a high-efficiency water softener installed, your heater may not need to be flushed as frequently since the softener will lessen the amount of sediment that accumulates.
Water heaters in Phoenix have an especially difficult time dealing with sediment since the state of Arizona has some of the toughest water in the United States.As a result, if you do not have a water softener installed, you may want to flush the heater as frequently as once or twice a month or two in order to prevent problems.
Signs It’s Time To Flush Your Water Heater
Water heater flushing on a regular basis is a successful technique, but it is also beneficial to be aware of the warning signals that suggest a flush is necessary in order to avoid costly repairs later on. Here’s a brief review on what each of these indications means.
You Can’t Get Hot Water
If you are having trouble getting hot water from your heater, it is possible that sediment has accumulated within it to the point where it is either preventing the element from lighting or stopping the heat from passing to your water. Regardless of the situation, this is a hint that you need to flush the heating system.
Your Water Heater Is Making Strange Sounds
It is possible that silt can cluster together and create calcified stones that will smash against the sides of your water heater in areas where water is very harsh. This is a warning indication that you should flush the heater before the stones grow to such a size that they choke the drain line.
Your Water Smells Funny
- While sediment accumulation is often the most serious issue you should be concerned about when cleaning your water heater, germs can also form within a tank that has not been flushed in a long period of time if the tank has not been cleaned.
- This bacteria has the potential to cause a strange odor in your water.
- Not only will you need to flush the tank, but you’ll also need to sterilize it, which we’ll go over in more detail in the next section.
How To Clean Your Hot Water Heater: The Process
When cleaning your water heater, you will need to open many taps around your home and allow the water to drain entirely out of the tank. This is a necessary part of the process. Cleaning your hot water heater is actually pretty simple if you follow the correct procedures. You’ll discover that these procedures become second nature to you as time goes on.
Step1: Prepare The Heater For Flushing
- Before you do anything else, be sure that the thermostat on your water heater is turned off.
- For many tanks, merely switching to ″Pilot″ mode will suffice to get the desired results.
- As a result, you will not have to go through the hassle of reactivating the pilot light, which is a simple but time-consuming task.
- You will also avoid the need to turn off the gas if you follow this procedure.
It will be necessary to turn off the electricity to your water heater if you have one.The proper switch will be located on the device.Last but not least, turn off the cold water supply.The valve for this operation is normally found on top of the heater, which makes sense.
Step2: Open The Hot Water Faucets In Your Home
This will aid in the drainage of the tank. If you do not complete this step, a vacuum will build in your tank, which will keep the water trapped within. It’s a strange physics effect, similar to how water remains caught in a straw if you maintain your finger on the tip of the straw while drinking.
Step3: Connect A Hose To Your Tank’s Drain Valve
- The drain valve should be situated near the bottom of the tank, preferably on the side.
- In order to avoid damaging your home’s foundation, you’ll want this hose to either lead into a very large container or (ideally) to the outside and away from it.
- If you use a little bucket, you run the chance of flooding your basement or the area where the tank is located, which is not ideal.
- If your basement has a drain, you may be able to divert the water to it by placing the other end of your hose near the drain and directing it there.
Step4: Open The Drain Valve And Let The Tank Empty
Depending on how much sediment has accumulated in your tank, you may be able to see bits of sediment being discharged from it as they pass through. With increased frequency of cleaning, you’ll be able to determine whether or not you’re maintaining a high level of consistency based on the quantity of sediment that comes out.
Not Getting Any Water Out Of The Tank? Try This!
You will not see any flow if you open the drain valve when there has been an excessive buildup of silt in the tank, which has clogged the drain valve. To correct the situation, use a wet/dry shop vacuum to remove the obstruction. The majority of the time, this will enough. If it does not, the situation may necessitate the involvement of a professional.
Step5: Reactivate The Cold Water Supply
Before you unplug your hose from the drain valve, be sure the cold water supply has been reactivated. This water will aid in the dislodgmentation of any further sediment that may have accumulated in your tank. Continue to allow for a few minutes of drainage until the water escaping from the hose is clean. (Optional) After that, switch off the cold water supply one more time.
Step6: Shut The Drain Valve Off
After you have disconnected the garden hose from the drain valve, turn the valve back on before turning on the cold water supply.
Step7: Close The Faucets After A Minute Or So
During the refilling process of your water heater’s tank, you may notice that discolored water is coming out of your faucets. If you wait a minute or two, this should be resolved. Once this has occurred, you may turn off the faucets.
Step8: Return Your Water Heater To Its Ready State
It entails resetting the thermostat to its default setting, relighting the pilot light if you chose to turn it off, and re-connecting the electricity if you’re using an electric heater to complete the task.
How To Clean A Hot Water Heater With Vinegar
It entails resetting the thermostat to its default setting, relighting the pilot light if you chose to turn it off, and re-connecting the electricity if you’re using an electric heater to complete the process.
Remove The Anode Rod
Please refer to your tank’s owner’s handbook for the specific procedure to be followed. In most cases, a recessed bolt will require the use of a wrench to be unfastened.
Use A Funnel To Place Vinegar Inside The Tank
When you remove the anode rod, you will see a hole in the area where it was previously located. This is the location where the funnel should be placed. Fill the tank with no more than four gallons of vinegar after passing it through this funnel.
Replace The Anode Rod And Activate The Cold Water Supply
Reinstall the anode rod and turn on the cold water supply again. This will cause the tank to fill up with water again. Make sure to let the tank remain with the vinegar-infused water for the whole 24-hour period. During that time, the acidity of the vinegar will begin to work its way through the sediment.
Go Through Steps1 through8
To completely remove the vinegar (as well as any sediment that should have dissolved) from your tank, follow the instructions in steps 1 through 8 to the letter.
How To Clean A Tankless Water Heater
- The fact that your water heater does not have a tank does not rule out the possibility of silt and minerals accumulating inside it over time.
- Essentially, a tankless heater does not store water and instead heats it on demand, as the name suggests.
- As a result, becoming familiar with the process of pumping water into the system and then directing it out is essential to knowing how to clean a tankless water heater.
- The following are the steps to follow in order to do this correctly.
Step1: Switch The Power And Gas Off
To begin, turn off the electricity and gas (if your tankless heater is powered by gas).
Step2: Remove The Unit’s Panel And Test The Electricity
It is possible to detect whether you have correctly unplugged the electricity from the tankless water heater by using a no-contact electrical tester. This is a safety measure in case you accidentally turned off the wrong switch on your circuit breaker. It will alert you if you have done so. Once you are positive that the electricity has been turned off, go to the following step.
Step3: Turn Off The Water Supply
Shut down the water supply line that runs directly into your tankless heater.
Step4: Connect The Hoses
- In contrast to a traditional water heater with a tank, you’ll have to actually bring water into your tankless heater as part of the cleansing process.
- That is why you will require two hoses.
- There are two connections: one links the unit to a pump (which pumps water into it) and another connects the unit to an isolation valve (catching the water as it expelled from the tank after making its way through).
Step5: Prepare A Five-Gallon Bucket With Your Pump And Hose
Prepare the vinegar by filling a five-gallon bucket halfway with vinegar and placing your pump and the open end of your second hose inside.
Step6: Let The Pump Run For An Hour
Turn on the pump and let it running continuously for an hour. The pump will circulate the vinegar through your tankless heater in a closed loop configuration. Hopefully, the steady flow (together with the acidity of the vinegar) will be powerful enough to wear away at any built-up sediment in your heater.
Step7: Remove The Pump And Activate The Cold Water Supply
You should now be able to leave the end of your second hose in the five-gallon bucket, which should be completely empty of any vinegar. Before turning off the cold water supply, let the cold water run through the system and into the bucket for about five minutes before turning it off.
Step8: Return Your Tankless Heater To Its Operational State
Disconnecting the hoses, replacing the panel, and reactivating the water supply valves are all steps in this process. The final step should be to re-establish electrical power to the device.
How To Clean Out Your Water Heater: Conclusion
- By the end of this article, you should have gained an understanding of the fact that knowing how to clean out your water heater does not involve any specialist knowledge of the system.
- You should be able to do this task without difficulty if you follow the procedures outlined above.
- To summarize, let’s take a look at some of the specific considerations you’ll need to make based on the sort of water heater you have.
How To Clean An Electric Water Heater: Special Considerations
The procedure for cleaning an electric water heater is much less complicated than the procedure for cleaning a gas water heater. Because everything is powered by electricity, you won’t have to relight the pilot light when you’re finished with it.
How To Clean A Gas Water Heater: Special Considerations
As far as the proper way to clean a gas water heater is concerned, there are two important aspects to keep in mind. Before beginning the operation, you must turn off the gas valves in the house. Because turning off the thermostat will deactivate it, you will also need to relight the pilot light after you are finished.
Cleaning A Tankless Water Heater: Special Considerations
The fact that your heater does not have a reservoir for fluid means that you will need to introduce water and clean it out.
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Don’t be concerned if you find all of this to be a bit overwhelming. If you live in or around the Phoenix, Arizona region, we would be delighted to assist you with the upkeep of your water heater. For additional information on our straightforward pricing and worry-free service, please contact us.
How to Clean a Tankless Water Heater [A Complete Guide]
- Tankless water heaters require less maintenance than storage systems on average, although they do require regular maintenance, such as cleaning.
- Because the hardness of the water determines how long it will take to maintain the system, there is no defined time range.
- Because mineral deposits accumulate more quickly in hard water locations than in soft water areas, systems in hard water areas will require cleaning more frequently than systems in soft water areas.
- When using a tankless system, this often takes longer since it drives minerals through the system rather than allowing them to build up at the bottom of a tank.
In most cases, when it comes to tankless water heaters, an alarm will sound when maintenance is required.
How to Clean a Tankless Water Heater
- The first step is to turn off the power source. If the tankless water heater is powered by gas, then turn off the gas supply to the unit. If the problem is electric, shut down the circuit breaker. Make a list of all of the materials that will be required. You will require the following materials: 5 gallon bucket
- 2 stainless steel washing machine hoses
- submersible pump
- 4 gallon bucket of white vinegar (food grade)
- a pair of rubber gloves
- If you don’t already have these goods, you can purchase them as part of a kit.
- Step two: Turn off the water valves on the three water lines.
- Three types of valves are used: one for cold water entering the system (typically blue), one for hot water exiting the system (usually red), and one for water delivery to the residence (usually yellow).
- Depending on the manufacturer and type of your tankless water heater, they might be either handles or knobs.
Assuming they are handles, the water is switched on when the handles come into contact with the pipe.When they are perpendicular to the pipe, the water is shut off automatically.Ensure that you have unplugged the unit from the wall socket if you haven’t already.The third step is to remove the purge port valve lids from the purge valves on both the hot and cold water lines.Because they have small handles, it is important to move them cautiously in order to alleviate any pressure that has built up and to minimize any hot water spilling.
- It is necessary to handle the caps with care in order to ensure that the rubber washer sealing discs remain in place.
- To guide the water into the bucket, step four involves connecting the housing lines to the valves.
- When connecting the hose to the hot water, use extreme caution to avoid burning yourself.
- Allowing the water to flow into the bucket requires opening the purge apertures.
- In order to test the temperature of the hot water before opening it totally, open the hot water side slightly and allow it to drip out before fully opening it.
- When the water has completed draining, leave the hoses in place and remove the water bucket from the sink.
- Approximately four gallons of food-grade white vinegar should be added to the bucket.
- Vinegar is a non-chemical cleaning solution that works well.
- Chemicals or other vinegars should not be used to clean the water system since they can be harmful to your health as well as the health of the water system itself.
- As soon as the bucket is full with vinegar, link the ends of the hoses to the submersible pump and submerge it in the vinegar before plugging it in or turning it on.
- When you turn it on, it will begin to circulate the vinegar through the system immediately.
Allow it to run for anything between forty-five and ninety minutes.Step Six: While the vinegar is being pumped through the pump, remove the face plate of the heater and the air filter from the heater.Replace it after rinsing it well and drying it.Reinstall the faceplate by screwing it in place.When the vinegar has completed pumping, disconnect the pump and carefully get it out of the bucket of vinegar.Step Eight: Remove the vinegar from the bucket and place it beneath the water heater.
Afterward, reconnect the hose to the cold water side of the faucet and put the top back on.Open the water valve and let 4 to 5 litres of water to circulate through the system before closing it.Close the valve as soon as possible.Remove the water filters from their mounting brackets and thoroughly rinse them before reinstalling them.
Step Eight: Reattach the caps and secure everything in its proper place.Once everything is properly secured, switch on the cold water valve and listen for the sound of running water.Install the hot water heater, then the gas and central circulation valves, and then complete the installation.After that, you may reconnect the system and continue using it as usual.
- These processes may differ somewhat from one manufacturer to another or from one model to another.
- Make sure you read the owner’s manual for your exact make and model before you start.
- Some models come with cleaning hoses, whilst others may not be equipped with them.
- You can get a tankless water heater cleaning kit if you feel the need to do so.
On the internet or at select places, you may get food-grade white vinegar in quantity.It is not recommended to use any other type of vinegar because it might damage or stain the system, and it is also not recommended to use chemicals since they can linger in the water and be harmful to your health.
- Never clean your tankless water heater without first shutting down the electricity and gas to the unit.
- If your tankless water heater is linked to more than one power source, unplug them all and check with a non-contact electrical tester to make sure everything is working properly.
- We strongly advise you to review and adhere to the particular cleaning instructions for your machine, which are available on the manufacturer’s website.
- Any mistreatment might result in damage that necessitates the need for servicing or repair.
Hi, Hello, my name is Luis.″TheHeatersGuide″ is written by an author.I am a Mechanical Engineering graduate with a bachelor’s degree.At the moment, I’m investigating heating technologies.However, I have learnt many different house heating approaches and am still learning about home heating technology today.
- And I like disseminating the results of my study and reviews.
How To Clean A Water Heater
- Every day, thousands of gallons of water travel through a water heater, producing minerals that make cleaning the heater difficult.
- However, if you do not maintain the cleanliness of your water heater, it might result in a variety of problems.
- Cleaning it using a trustworthy calcium, lime, and rust cleaner, often known as a CLR cleaner, may be made easy.
- This cleanser will eat away mineral deposits in areas where you can’t reach to them with your hands.
Once you’ve selected a reliable CLR cleaner, follow the instructions outlined below to get started.
Step 1 – Disconnect the Water Inlet Pipe
Remove the water heater’s power by turning it off at the breaker box and masking off the switch to prevent anyone from putting it back on while you are cleaning it. After that, unplug the water supply pipe.
Step 2 – Drain Some Water
Take a water hose and hook it to the drain valve on the bottom of the sink. Connect the hose end to a basin where you will be able to collect warm water. After unscrewing the water supply line, open the drain valve and give enough time for the water to run out of the heater and into the basin. Once the water has been evacuated from the tank, shut the valve.
Step 3 – Pour in the Cleaner
Pour one gallon of the CLR cleaner of your choice into the inflow pipe gently and steadily. Pour about one capful at a time, making sure that it enters the pipe without spilling.
Step 4 – Wait for the Cleaner to Work
- Allow five hours for the CLR cleaner to dissolve any mineral deposits that it may be able to remove with its neutralizer.
- You may check for neutralization by putting a plastic bag over the input pipe and watching to see if it inflates or not.
- If it does inflate, let it for another hour before checking again.
- When the bag does not expand, this indicates that the CLR cleaner has been completely neutralized.
Step 5 – Rinse the Heater
Then, reattach the intake line to the heater and open the valve to allow the heater dry. Prior to going on to the following step, make sure you run water through the heater for several minutes to ensure that it is well rinsed.
Step 6 – Fill the Heater
Immediately following the closure of the drain valve, turn on a faucet to fill the water heater. You will notice soapy water coming out of the faucet. Permit the water to continue to flow from the faucet until the bubbles have vanished completely.
Step 7 – Open All Hot Water
- Turn on every hot-water faucet in the building to remove any remaining air from the water pipes.
- Allow the water to run for a few minutes before turning it off.
- At first, you may notice water bubbling out of the hole.
- Once the water is flowing freely, turn off all of the hot-water faucets in the house.
Do not be concerned if you continue to observe bubbles for a number of days.The CLR cleaner has been neutralized and diluted to the point where it will not do any harm to the environment.
Step 8 – Turn the Heater On
To restart the heater, turn the breaker switch back on after double-checking that all input and outlet connections are securely connected.
Step 9 – Perform Regular Maintenance
Flush your tank on a monthly basis to prevent having to clean it as frequently. If your water is constantly contaminated with minerals, you might consider installing a water softener. Water heaters older than seven years may develop leaks as a result of the frequent cleaning they receive. This will require a new water heater to be installed.
How To Clean and Flush a Water Heater
- Please keep in mind that this content may contain affiliate links.
- This means that, at no additional cost to you, we may gain a small profit on purchases made via our links.
- Cleaning your water heater on an annual basis is the most effective approach to ensure that it is as safe and trustworthy as possible.
- Learn how to flush a water heater by following these steps: In related news, here’s how to flush a TANKLESS water heater.
Drain the Water Heater
- Connect a garden hose to the hose bib located near the bottom of the water heater and run the hose to a floor drain or an exterior place to collect any excess water from the water heater.
- Note: If you have a drain pan beneath your sink that is properly connected to a drain, you will not need to use a hose.
- Turn off the water heater’s electricity, or turn the gas control valve to the ″Vacation″ position, whichever is appropriate.
- Close the cold water entry valve, which is normally found at the top of the tank.
This will prevent the tank from overheating.Open the drain valve and turn on the hot water faucet nearest to the tank to allow air to circulate through the tank.See also: How to Unclog a Water Heater That Won’t Drain (with Pictures).Allow for complete emptying of the tank before proceeding.Larger hot water heaters will, of course, take a little longer to drain, but it should not take more than a few minutes in most cases.
- Take the garden hose and disconnect it from the drain valve.
- If your water heater has a plastic drain valve, now is an excellent time to replace it with a brass drain valve, which will last longer and be more sturdy.
- Remove the drain valve and replace it with the brass valve, which should be done with a big adjustable wrench.
Cleaning and Flushing the Tank
- If you go to your local hardware shop, you can get a long, thin brush (like this one) that is intended for cleaning refrigerator coils but is also wonderful for cleaning water heater tanks.
- Insert the brush into the opening left by the drain valve once it has been disassembled.
- Scrape the bottom of the tank and as much of the inside walls of the tank as you can with the brush, being careful not to scratch the surface of the tank.
- In the event that your tank has not been cleaned in a while, this process may take some time.
The greater the amount of sediment that may be broken loose, the better the performance of your water heater.A short 3/4 inch plumbing nipple should be screwed into the drain hole.Drain valves are not suited for tank cleaning since they are readily blocked by the debris that will be drained out, and so are not recommended.Make sure a bucket is placed right below the plumbing nipple, or that you have a garden hose connected to the opposite end of the nipple (or let it drain into a properly installed drain pan).Make sure to place the other end of the hose (if you are using one) into a pail so that you can see the results of your cleaning efforts.
- Connect a hose to the cold water input valve and turn it on for a few minutes until the water flowing out of the hose is clear.
- Remove the nipple and repeat the operation until no more particles are rinsed out after washing with the nipple in place.
- Some material, such as rust or calcium deposits, may be present in the bucket.
- It should be noted that many contemporary water heaters include a ″self-cleaning″ option.
- Although it is beneficial, you should still physically flush and clean a water heater, but you will not have to do it on a regular basis.
- As a result, rather than cleaning once a year, it is recommended that you do it every three years or such.
Completing the Project
- Turn off the hot water faucet if it is still running.
- Rather than replacing the drain valve, you may install an inline ball valve at the end of the nipple to make future cleaning easier and more convenient.
- It will be necessary to install a second, short nipple to the valve’s outflow side.
- Wrap plumber’s tape over the threads on both sides of the nipple and tighten the nipple into the tank until it is completely secure.
Screw the ball valve into place and tighten it down completely.Open the cold water inlet valve by turning it to the on position.Activate the hot water faucet and let the water to run until all of the air has been expelled from the pipe.As soon as all of the air has been withdrawn from the tank, reconnect the electricity or turn on the gas control valve to the ″On″ position again.
How to Flush a Water Heater
- Article to be downloaded article to be downloaded According on the type and supply of water, water heaters should be cleansed every one to three years on average.
- This aids in the prevention of the accumulation of mineral deposits.
- Your water heater will work more effectively as a result, which will often result in a longer service life for the heater.
- To flush your water heater, follow the instructions on this page.
- 1 Locate the breaker/fuse box if the heater is powered by electricity, or the thermostat if the heater is powered by gas. First and foremost, you will need to locate and switch off the primary power supply for your water heater before you can begin emptying it. In most cases, the breaker box, also known as the fuse box, is a tiny, grey power panel (about the size of a shoebox) with a sliding door. In most cases, it is fastened to a wall by screws. In some homes, the thermostat for the gas heater is situated in the garage, while in others, it may be found on the exterior of the house
- the thermostat for the gas heater is often a red knob positioned on the outside of the heater near where the gas line enters the unit. There should be three settings on the knob: ″Pilot,″ ″On,″ and ″Off.″
- 2 Disable the circuit or fuse that supplies electricity to the electrical water heater, or set the gas water heater’s thermostat to ″Pilot″ position. According to the circuit or fuse you block, either the water heater or the entire house will be without electricity as a result. There should be modest on/off switches visible. These are referred to as ″branch circuit breakers,″ and they are responsible for providing protection against electrical overload to the many circuits that power your home. If you know which branch circuit breaker is responsible for powering your water heater, you can turn off that specific switch.
- If you are unsure of which specific circuit breaker is providing electricity to your heater, look for a bigger switch labeled ″Main″ above the branch circuit breakers to find.
- The primary circuit breaker should have a greater amperage rating, such as 100, 150, or 200 amps, to protect the system.
- Smaller numbers will be assigned to the branch circuit breakers, ranging from 10-60 amps.
- Open your fuse box and you will discover round, glass-topped forms or tiny tubes with metal ends
- if you open the box and find round, glass-topped shapes or small tubes with metal ends, you have a fuse box rather than a circuit breaker box. In this situation, you will need to unscrew and remove the fuse that is supplying electricity to your water heating system (similar to turning off the branch circuit breaker). Identify a huge rectangular box with a handle/lever at the top of the panel if you are unclear about which fuse to remove. Take a firm grip on the handle and pull it straight out, but be careful since the metal pieces may be hot. The electricity to your entire home has been turned off at this point.
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- 3 The cold water supply can be turned off by twisting the water shut-off valve counterclockwise. This valve should be situated at or near the cold water inflow pipe, which should be located towards the top of the tank. Ball valves and gate valves are the two types of valves that are often used. A ball valve can be closed and opened with a single 90-degree turn, whereas a gate valve requires many revolutions.
- Some gate valves have a ″stop″ before they may be fully closed or opened, so be sure you turn the valve past that stop before closing or opening it completely.
- It is permissible to leave the gas and propane supply valves for non-electric heaters open.
- Make a note of the temperature setting on your natural gas or propane (LP) water heater, and then change the thermostat, which is the huge red dial on the front of the control, to the lowest setting, often known as ″Pilot.″
- You should turn off the heat ahead of time and allow the water to cool overnight before emptying it if you intend to utilize the water for other reasons.
4 Turn on the hot water tap in your sink or tub to get started. This will prevent a vacuum from building in the lines, which would otherwise keep the water trapped within. As an illustration, consider the case of a straw that has been partially covered to retain water.
- 5 Connect a garden hose to the drain cock, also known as a valve, which is positioned at the base of the heater. It is generally in the shape of a standard garden hose fitting, such as a garden faucet, or a circular dial with a threaded hole in the center. You may need to remove a cover to access the drain cock. If you don’t have a garden hose, you can use a bucket to collect the water and physically dump it somewhere safe. Don’t overfill the bucket since the hot water will weaken less expensive plastic buckets or even burn you if you overfill it.
- 6 Extend the garden hose to a location where the water from the heater may be discharged without danger. Either connect your hose to an exterior drain or to the driveway of your house. It is possible to drain the water into buckets and use the water for other uses once it has been allowed to cool overnight. Because of the presence of sediment, it should not be used for fragile plants or to wash your car. If you are draining hot water, you should also be cautious about the materials you use. High temperatures can cause low-quality hoses and buckets to weaken, resulting in leaks. Drain directly into a suitable basement drain or sump hole to make the operation as simple as possible.
- To avoid scorching water from blasting and spraying out of a drain cock and hose connection in the event of a pressure leak, especially if the water heater serves the second floor or is located in the basement, cover them with a cloth or rag before turning on your faucet.
- Drain the heater by opening the flow cock to enable the water to drain from the heater. Take into consideration opening the pressure-relief valve, which is often located on the unit’s top, to allow water to flow freely. The pressure-relief valve, on the other hand, should not be opened without first putting a bucket under the discharge pipe. Opening it may result in water draining onto the floor unless something is placed beneath the discharge pipe to catch the water as it drains. The pressure relief valve is often a lever that must be moved to the ″up″ position in order to be opened.
- Make certain that the water flows at a pace that can be regulated wherever the water is draining to
- Keep in mind that if you don’t allow the water to cool down before using it, it will be quite hot as it exits the tank.
- Be aware that if the drain cock is made of plastic and the heater is many years old, it may be difficult to open and, if forced, may shatter.
- 8 After a few minutes of flushing, fill a ″test″ bucket with the water that is remaining in the toilet. After allowing the water in the bucket to remain undisturbed for a minute, check to see if it is clear or if any sand-like material has settled to the bottom of the bucket. The tank should be drained until the water is clear, even if it seems to be foggy or there is sand-like material on the bottom of the bucket (free of sediment or discoloration). If the tank is completely empty but you believe sediment is still there, switch on the cold-water supply to allow additional water to enter the system. Fill the tank partly with water and then empty it completely. Continue to follow this procedure until the discharge is clear.
- If the water is clean and there is no evidence of silt, you may go to the following stage
- otherwise, stop.
1 Disconnect the garden hose from the drain cock and close the drain cock. If the pressure-relief valve has been opened, it must be closed. In addition, make sure you shut off the hot water tap in your sink or bathtub.
- 2 Reconnect the water supply and let the tank to fill.
- When the tank is completely full and the pressure has returned to normal, slowly reopen the pressure-relief valve to allow the extra air to be released.
- The water heater will not ″ping″ as cold water re-enters the system during regular operation as a result of this.
- Close the pressure-relief valve once again once all of the compressed air has been exhausted.
3 Close the drain on the water heater. To drain air from the bathroom, turn on the hot water faucet. Do not switch on the electricity just yet. You run the risk of damaging the heating element if you switch on the electricity without filling the tank. Start by turning on the hot water tap in the bathtub or washbasin and waiting for a steady stream of water to come out.
- Reconnect the water supply and wait until the hot water line begins to run consistently after it has been turned back on. It is safe to turn on the circuit breaker or fuse box after the hot water tap has been flowing at maximum volume for a while.
- 5 Turn off the water supply to the tub. Once you’ve waited around 20 minutes, check for hot water in the bathtub. To evaluate whether or not the water heater is operational, pay close attention to its sound.
- Question Add a new question Question Is it ever necessary to use any additives, such as distilled vinegar, during the flushing and draining process? However, this is a professional-level work, and the type of acid needed will depend on the design of the heater.
- Question Would it be permissible for me to switch off the cold water valve at the tank and take a shower in order to drain a little amount of hot water from the tank before connecting the hose to the drain valve? I really don’t want to waste all that hot water by flushing it down the toilet! That is not going to work. It will not be possible to use hot water if you close the cold water valve at the top of the faucet. Turning off the heating (gas or electric) and taking a shower is the best option. As the hot water is used up and replaced by cold water, the water will gradually get colder.
- Concerning the Question What should I do if the water is hot when I turn it on but becomes chilly after a few minutes? There are several possibilities for what it may be. It is necessary to replace at least one of the components 90% of the time (normally the lower one). Additionally, the thermostat, dip tube, sediment, and other components are included.
- More information can be found in the following answers: Advertisement When a pressure relief valve is opened, it is possible that it may be damaged and will need to be replaced. In order to avoid harming this safety component, open the highest faucet/sink on the home to bleed air out of the heater and lines before re-connecting the water supply lines.
- The frequency at which heaters are flushed varies. If yours is more than a few years old or if you have recently moved into a new home, it should be flushed. How much sediment you detect will assist you decide how frequently it is necessary to cleanse that heater.
- If the heater is powered by gas, do not turn off the gas supply to the heater.
- Draining your water heater should be done using a garden hose.
- If your home has a salt-based water softener, flush it once a year or every six months.
- Be sure to cut off the power at the circuit box before emptying an electric appliance.
- If you want to recycle water, make sure to prepare ahead of time.
- If you want to avoid sediment accumulation, consider installing a whole-house filtration system. Also, remember to remove your aerators from your faucets while your tank is clean and full and to run a little clean water through each before reinstalling.
- Thank you for submitting a suggestion for consideration! Advertisement Be cautious, since the water might be quite hot.
- Do not turn on the water without entirely filling the reservoir. This will result in damage to the heating element.
- You must take care not to break the drain cock.
- Performing regular flushing will help to maintain your heater clear of dirt, but most plumbers advise that if the valve hasn’t been opened in more than five years, it’s better not to try to move the handle since the valve may fail.
- You should seek the services of a qualified plumber if you do not feel comfortable performing this task yourself.
- Do not turn off the gas or the pilot light on the water heater
- instead, turn it to the lowest possible setting. You will not have to go through the relighting steps
- instead, you will only need to crank up the gas control valve.
Things You’ll Need
- Garden hose that will last
- huge bucket that will last
- drainage area that will work
a pair of gloves
About This Article
- The following is an overview of how to flush a water heater.
- To begin, switch off the water heater’s power supply using a breaker or thermostat.
- Turn the water shut-off valve on your heater clockwise to turn off the cold water supply, and then turn the heater off.
- Afterwards, switch on a hot water faucet in one of your sinks or bathtubs to avoid a vacuum from accumulating in the pipes.
After you’ve completed this step, connect a garden hose to the drain valve on the bottom of your heater and direct the water outdoors or into a bucket as needed.Last but not least, open the drain valve to allow the water to flow from the heater.Please continue reading to find out how to get your heater back up and running when you’re finished!Did you find this overview to be helpful?The writers of this page have together authored a page that has been read 1,037,492 times.
How to Clean a Hot Water Heater Burner
- Maintain the cleanliness of your water heater’s gas burner on a regular basis to ensure trouble-free water heater functioning.
- Although a gas-fired water heater is only susceptible to a small number of performance issues, routine cleaning helps to extend the life of the appliance and ensures that it operates at top efficiency.
- Flush the water heater’s tank out once a year to maximize heat transmission.
- This will remove insulating silt from between the combustion chamber and the contents of the tank, allowing more heat to be transferred.
Remove soot and ash from the combustion chamber every three to four months and clean the main burner head after each cleaning.This will help to encourage cleaner burning while also keeping your gas expenditures to a bare minimum.
Extinguish any sources of ignition that may be in the proximity of the water heater. Ventilation should be provided by opening doors and windows. It is not permitted to smoke while performing maintenance on your water heater.
Turn the gas burner control knob to the ″off″ position, and then turn off the cutoff valve on the gas supply line that enters the wall or floor where the burner is located. Allow plenty of time for the combustion chamber to cool completely before continuing.
- Turning the three different-size hex-head brass connectors fastening the thermocouple, manifold tube, and pilot tube from the bottom of the gas valve counterclockwise with an adjustable wrench will free them from their mountings on the gas valve.
- A little amount of trapped gas will be released as a result of this.
- This little amount of gas will disperse and will not pose a threat to the environment or people.
- If the odor of gas remains, contact the utility company.
Caution should be exercised while pressing or bending the tubes to prevent them from being permanently damaged.
- By removing the outside door from the water heater’s base, you can see the burner tubing and ignition system beneath it.
- Unless the gas valve has been identified as ″White Rogers,″ there will be an orange wire connecting it to the piezo ignition system.
- Remove the igniter by sliding it back toward the tank; the orange wire should remain in the door assembly throughout this process.
- If the heater is equipped with a ″Robert Shaw″ gas valve, unscrew the igniter valve terminal from the base of the igniter button using a screwdriver to release the gas valve.
Using a nut driver, unscrew the two nuts that are located on either side of the manifold door. It’s important not to harm the white gasket that sits between the door and the manifold when removing it.
Slowly and gently remove the burner assembly and burner tube from the combustion chamber by sliding them outwards. Make every effort not to dislodge any scale or dirt, and take special care not to harm the white gasket while doing so.
- Remove any loose dirt from the burner ports by brushing it out with an old toothbrush.
- Attach a brush attachment to the vacuum cleaner hose and thoroughly clean the whole assembly, including the inside of the combustion chamber and the exposed area of the circular flame arrestor located below the burner, using the vacuum cleaner.
- Make use of the flame arrestor cleaning attachment that was included with the water heater to thoroughly clean the space that exists between the burner and the flame arrestor.
- Using a moist towel, wipe the underside of the flame arrestor to remove any residue.
- The fan-shaped radiation barrier between the burner and the flame arrestor should be inspected from both sides.
- Airflow will be disrupted if the side of the radiation shield rests on the base of the structure.
- Install three 1/4-inch-high ″feet″ between the flame arrestor and the base of the burner to ensure that the burner receives enough combustion air.
- These spacers can be obtained from the manufacturer at no cost to the customer.
Remove the clip-on perforated air intake screen from the heater’s base and place it somewhere safe. Remove any dust and dirt from behind the burner with a vacuum cleaner…………………………………… Replace the screen with a new one.
Replace the burner assembly in the heater by sliding it back into place. While doing so, make sure the burner tube is properly seated in its placement bracket.
Examine the condition of the white inner door gasket. If it becomes required, it will be replaced. Place the inner door over the two studs and press it down so that it is flush with the gasket on the inside. Replace the two nuts in a relaxed manner.
Repair and tighten the couplings on the thermocouple, manifold tube, and pilot tube using an adjustable wrench once they have been removed. Replace the terminal wire that connects the piezo igniter or the igniter valve. Using a nut driver, tighten the two inner door nuts until they are snug. Replace the outer door with a new one.
Re-open the main gas shutdown valve if it has been closed. Using the owner’s instructions as a guide, light the pilot flame by turning the knob to the right. It is necessary to turn on the gas burner by turning it to the ″on″ position on the burner control.
How to Flush Your Hot Water Heater
- In: Featured, How To, Skills, and Techniques The 5th of May, 2016 The most recent update was made on September 3, 2021.
- If you’re busy with home tasks, it’s easy to ignore the importance of flushing your hot water heater.
- I know I had never considered it until Jeremy included it in his really useful house maintenance checklist, which I found to be quite helpful.
- However, cleaning out your hot water heater on a regular basis is a vital duty.
It is important to clean out the muck and mineral deposits that have accumulated in your hot water heater to ensure that it runs more effectively and that its life is prolonged, so saving you money in the long run.After several years of living in my house, I realized that my hot water heater was in need of a flush and chose to take on the task of replacing it.Fortunately, it turned out to be really simple.With the exception of the time I spent waiting for the water in the tank to cool, it only took me about 20 minutes total.I detailed the procedure as I went through, in case you find yourself in a similar situation.
- Perhaps this post will provide you with the motivation you need to finally complete this task this weekend.
- Here’s how it’s done:
How Often Should You Flush Your Hot Water Heater?
It is recommended that you cleanse your hot water heater every one to three years, depending on your model. Really, it’s such a simple job that it wouldn’t be a hassle to complete it at least once a year.
How to Flush Your Hot Water Heater
- Hot water heaters are available in two different configurations: gas and electric.
- Due to the fact that I have a gas hot water heater, following instructions will be specific to flushing a gas hot water heater.
- While there are some similarities between gas and electric, the most significant distinction is that with gas, you will be shutting off the gas to your appliance; with electric, you will be turning off the power to your appliance.
Turn the Thermostat on your hot water heater to the ″Off″ position.2.In most cases, the thermostat for a gas hot water heater may be found in the bottom of the tank.In addition, several publications I found suggested that you may get away with simply putting your thermostat to ″Pilot.″ I made the decision to be extra cautious and turned it off entirely.If you switch off your hot water heater and it’s an older type, you’ll have to re-light the pilot light, which might be a hassle.
- It is necessary to locate your home’s breaker box in order to turn off the switch that supplies power to your hot water heater if you have an electric hot water heater.
- Turn off the gas supply to the hot water heater.
- If you have a gas hot water heater, locate the gas pipe that runs from the tank to your thermostat and pilot light and switch the valve to the ″off″ setting.
- If you want to just set your thermostat to ″pilot,″ you will not be required to complete this step.
- Disconnect the cold water supply to the hot water heater.
- The cold water valve is located towards the top of your hot water heater, generally on the right side.
- Turn it all the way off.
Fill a sink or tub with hot water by turning on the faucet.Keep them turned on during the whole flushing procedure.As a result, you will be less likely to have a vacuum build in the pipes while draining the hot water tank.5.Connect the garden hose to the drain spigot on the wall.Before you turn on the spigot, double-check that the other end of the hose is connected to the outside or at the very least to a bucket.
Depending on whether or not your hot water heater is located in the basement, you may require a portable pump in order to pump water from the basement to the first floor of your home.6.Turn on the spigot and drain the water.Empty the tank until the water flows clean and there is no longer any silt in it.
If your tank is clogged with silt, you may need to thoroughly drain it.As you can see in the photo above, the water was a touch brown when I initially started draining it, and there was a lot of sediment at the bottom of the bowl.I decided to drain it anyhow.8.
Flush your hot water tankTo flush your hot water tank, just switch on the cold water tap that leads into your hot water tank.Allow it to run for a few minutes, or until the water coming out of your hose is completely clean.This might take some time.Even though the water is clear and does not appear to be brown, it is possible that there is some sediment present.
- Here’s a photo of the water that was flowing out of my tank when I first started flushing the toilet: As you can see, there was still some silt (which can be seen at the bottom) pouring out of the hole.
- Flushing should continue until there is very little or no sediment left in your water.
- Turn off the cold water faucet that feeds into your hot water tank and leave it shut.
Finishing Things Up
- Following your satisfaction with the purity of your water, it’s time to return everything to their original state. Disconnect the drainage spigot and the hose from the drain
- Turn off the water supply to your sink or tub that you had switched on at the start of the process.
- To begin, turn on the cold water tap that feeds your hot water heater.
- To get the air out of the system, turn on the hot water faucet in a sink or bathtub for a few minutes. At this point, you should be able to get cold water out of the faucet. To turn it off, press the button.
- If you have turned off the gas to your hot water heater, you must turn it back on again.
- If you have accidentally switched off your hot water heater’s thermostat, re-light the pilot light (it’s simple — I may write an article on it in the future), and then turn the thermostat back on.
- For electric water heaters, locate the breaker switch on your electrical panel that supplies electricity to your hot water heater and turn it off.
- Allow around 20 minutes for the water to warm up. Start by turning on one of your house’s hot water spigots to confirm that hot water is flowing out
Boom. You’ve taken the time to flush your hot water heater. Make a note on your calendar to repeat the process in a year.
How to Flush Sediment Out of a Water Heater
- The information contained in this article is provided solely for the purpose of providing general information and does not constitute professional advice.
- With respect to this material, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action.
- LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action.
- IN THE EVENT THAT YOU USE ANY AND ALL OF THE INFORMATION CONTAINED ON THIS WEBSITE, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY, AND EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ALL LIABILITY.
Every homeowner understands the need of regularly cleaning and maintaining their systems and appliances.Many homeowners, on the other hand, are unaware that cleaning a water heater once a year will effectively eliminate a buildup of silt from the bottom of the tank.The removal of silt from a water heater can extend its lifespan and increase its efficiency.Sediment can act as a barrier between the heating elements of a water heater and the water, making it more difficult to heat your home’s showers, dishwasher, and clothes washing machine effectively.By removing sediment from your water heater, you may save money while also heating your water more quickly.
- Find out more about why you should flush sediment out of your tank by visiting this page.
- Find out how a water heater functions so that you can better understand how to clean your tank.
1. Turn the Water Heater Off
- If you have an electric water heater, make sure the power switch is turned off before continuing.
- Ensure that your water heater is a gas heater, such as the one seen in the photo above, by setting your thermostat to ″pilot.″ This shuts down the heating element in your water heater, allowing the water to cool down as a result.
- Ensure that no one in your home is currently attempting to take a shower, wash dishes, or do a load of laundry before beginning this home repair chore.
2. Turn the Cold Water Valve Off
- Close the cold water valve and turn it off.
- When cold water is introduced into the tank and dispenses with the hot water, the water heater circulates the hot water around your home.
- You may entirely empty your tank of water if you don’t have any cold water coming into it from outside.
- If you skip this step, you’ll wind up with water constantly flowing into the tank and down the drain, which might result in a significant increase in your monthly water bill.
3. Let the water cool.
Don’t dump scorching hot water down the drain. Allow the tank to cool after the heating components have been turned off. Some bigger water heater tanks might take up to two hours to complete the process.
4. Attach a drain or garden hose to the drain valve on the side of the tank
Drain your water heater by connecting a hose to the drain valve located on the side of the unit. Make certain that the hose is properly screwed on, otherwise you may experience leaks when you drain your water heater tank from the faucet.
5. Place the end of the hose in a bucket or drain.
Don’t let your house flood! Make sure to place the hose’s end in a heat-resistant pail or down a drain when you’re finished. Before you begin emptying the water heater, check to be sure that your drain will not overflow while doing so.
6. Turn on a faucet (or two)
The use of faucets around your house might help prevent a vacuum from accumulating inside your plumbing system. Turn on the ″hot″ setting on your faucets and leave them running. Due to the fact that you have shut off the cold water valve to your water heater, there will be little or no warm water displaced through them.
7. Start draining the tank by turning on the drain valve.
Turn the valve on carefully with a flathead screwdriver, making sure there are no leaks and that the bucket or drain you are emptying the water into is not going to overflow while doing so.
8. After the water heater tank has finished draining the sediment, turn the drain valve off, remove the hose, turn the cold water valve on, and turn the heating elements in the water heater back on.
- You are almost through with your water heater cleanup once you have thoroughly emptied it and removed all of the debris from the tank.
- In order to refill your tank, close the drain valve and remove the hose from the tank.
- Turn the cold water valve back on and the heating elements back on by turning the knobs on the thermostat.
- Check to see that your faucets are still turned on, and after the water is flowing normally again, turn them off.
You’ll need to wait around 30 minutes before checking for hot water.The water heater should have reheated the liters of water contained within the tank once more, this time without sediment!Do you want to learn more about water heaters and why yours might not be working as effectively as it should?Make use of our article on the most frequent water heater issues and how to identify and solve them!When it comes to water heaters (up to 70 gallons), Landmark Home Warranty provides plans that will cover them if they fail due to regular wear and tear.
- Some insurance policies even provide coverage for sediment damage!
- If your water heater stops working and you have a Landmark Home Warranty protection plan, you may be able to have it fixed or replaced for the price of a service call if the problem is covered by the conditions of your contract.
- Give us a call right away or submit a service request online today!
- If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at [email protected] or [phone number].