How Do I Flush My Water Heater and How Often Should I Drain It?
Thank you for visiting the Direct Energy series, “Take Charge of Your Home!” While hiring a professional to do household maintenance may provide convenience and peace of mind, many of these tasks may be completed by the homeowner without the need for specific tools or knowledge. And, in the process, you’ll save money, learn more about how your house operates, and experience a sense of satisfaction from completing a well-executed DIY project! You may take your water heater for granted, but it is one of those items that is simple to overlook.
It’s possible that you only think about it when something goes wrong.
This is especially true for tankless water heaters.
The most effective strategy to safeguard your investment is to have your water heater serviced by a certified plumber on a yearly basis.
In contrast, the last step – cleansing the tank — is something you may want to do on a regular basis, perhaps once every few months, depending on the mineral level of your local water supply.
Should I Drain My Water Heater Periodically?
Flushing out the lime and other particles in the water heater tank on a regular basis helps to increase the efficiency and longevity of the heater. Sediment can build up and calcify in water heaters that have been ignored, making it difficult to clean out. Eventually, this can get so severe that the entire unit may have to be replaced. However, by flushing your tank on a regular basis, you can avoid silt from causing difficulties. – Mineral content is present in all water to varying degrees. Because limestone is abundant under the surface of the groundwater, if you live in a location with a lot of limestone beneath the groundwater will pick up calcium and magnesium deposits, resulting in “hard” water.
When using natural gas heaters, it is possible to have uneven heating on the tank, which might lead to leaks over time.
In addition, silt accumulation might jam the drain valve in any case.
When Do I Want to Flush My Hot Water Heater?
For the most part, homeowners should clean their water heaters every six months or so; however, if you have particularly hard water, you may want to flush it more frequently.
Depending on the mineral level of your local water supply, it may be essential to flush your hot water heater as frequently as every few months or even more frequently.
Before You Begin a Water Heater Flush
You must first figure out how to switch off your gas water heater before you can begin draining the tank. It’s possible that a vacation location will do the trick. It’s also a good idea to find out whether the pilot light has to be turned on manually. In this case, the original owner’s handbook is the greatest source of information, because pilot lighting processes differ from one model to another. If you don’t have a handbook, search on the water heater’s label for the manufacturer’s name and model number, and then try to get the manual online using those details.
How to Flush Your Water Heater
Following the completion of your calculations, it’s time to do the flushing procedure.
- Step 1: Shut off the cold water supply to your water heater and remove the tank from the tank. Depending on the age of your home, you may need to cut off the water where the main water supply line enters your property. A shut-off valve for the water supply should be installed between your main supply line and the water softener
- Otherwise, the water will not be softened properly. Step 2: Turn off or lower the temperature of the water heater thermostat. Some water heaters are equipped with a “vacation” setting. In order to avoid the heater turning on once all of the water has been drained out, especially for natural gas heaters, it is best to avoid doing so since heating it without water might cause damage to the tank. Additionally, before continuing, you should turn off the gas supply valve. Step 3: Connect a garden hose to the drain valve on the tank, which is located towards the bottom of the heater. The other end of the hose should be connected to a drain or to a safe location outside the house. In the event that you want to let the water drain outdoors, make certain that it is far enough away from your foundation so that it does not run into your home’s crawl area. Also, keep it away from bushes or other landscaping. In order to avoid dealing with hot water altogether, switch off the water heater at the end of each day to allow it to cool overnight before draining it, or just run your hot water tap for several minutes before getting started
- Step 4: Open all of the hot water faucets. This will allow the water to drain from the tank more quickly. Put another way, it has the same effect as placing your finger tip on the end of a soda straw and then raising out of a drink. The vacuum maintains the liquid locked within until you remove your finger from the vacuum. Step 5: Open the drain valve on the water heater and let the tank to empty. Remember to keep an eye on the water as it pours out of the hose to keep an eye on how much sediment is coming through. Check that the water is flowing in the direction you want it to, and keep any young children or curious dogs from getting too close. If you open the drain valve and no water comes out, it’s possible that sediment has clogged the valve. In this case, you’ll need to open the temperature pressure release valve to release pressure from the tank and drain any water that has accumulated in the hot water pipes downstream from the water heater. Next, use a wet/dry vacuum to remove part of the obstruction from the drain valve — at the very least enough to begin the water flowing again. Wearing gloves and being careful not to get sprayed with hot water are recommended. If the obstruction is severe enough that it will not budge, remove the temperature pressure release valve and suck out the water with the wet/dry vac before replacing the drain valve
- If the blockage is not severe enough to budge, replace the drain valve. Step 6:After the tank has been drained, switch on the cold water supply to assist rinse away any sediment that may have accumulated at the bottom of the tank during the draining process. After a few minutes, check the end of the line to make sure it’s clear and then switch off the water supply to the house. As a test, gather a glass of water from the drain hose after about one minute of flushing, and then turn off the water supply to the toilet and sink. Wait a few minutes to check whether sediment begins to settle at the bottom of the glass, and if it does, or if the water has become coloured, repeat the process once again. 7. Disconnect the hose from the drain valve and use a wet/dry vacuum to remove any silt that has accumulated around the hole. 8. As a result, it will not clog the valve when you turn it off. A little won’t hurt, but you want to make sure there’s enough space around the valve to prevent it from leaking. Reconnect the cold water supply once you’ve finished shutting down the drain valve. Step 8: Keep the hot water faucets open until the water starts to come out of them. Step 9: This will prevent any trapped air from accumulating. Don’t be startled if you notice rust or sediment coming out of the drain in the beginning. It will be safe to turn off the faucets once the water has cleared, which will normally take around a minute. Step 9: Adjust the water heater’s thermostat to the temperature you want it to be. You should also restart the pilot light on your gas water heater if it is equipped with one. To do so, reopen your gas supply valve and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to do so. The time it takes to fill the tank should be between 15 and 20 minutes, while the actual time depends on the size of your water heater, its overall efficiency and whether it’s powered by natural gas or electricity.
How Do I Drain My Tankless Water Heater?
However, tankless water heaters are equally subject to harm from mineral silt, as stated above for traditional tank water heaters. To flush tankless water heater technology, an entirely separate procedure must be followed, and a pump is necessary to circulate water throughout the system. Tankless water heater flush kits with thorough instructions can be found at most hardware stores for a reasonable price. With an electricity plan from Direct Energy, you can see how your do-it-yourself home renovation tasks may help you save money on your energy bills.
In some regions, you may even be able to obtain free power every weekend!
How Often Should I Drain My Water Heater?
Although water heater manufacturers may offer precise guidelines on how often a water heater should be emptied, the general rule of thumb is that your water heater should be drained once per year. Generally speaking, the goal of emptying your water heater is to remove any hard water or sediment that may have accumulated over the course of its operation. In addition to reducing the lifespan and effectiveness of your home’s water heater, removing deposits from the tank through water heater draining is an excellent preventative maintenance practice that is quite easy to perform.
- Remove the re-circulation pump from the system in step 1.
- Before proceeding on to the following step, be sure you hear the pump shut off completely.
- Step 2: Shut down your water heater and let it cool.
- While you are working on the water heater, this will prevent the flame from igniting accidentally.
- Shut down the water supply to the water heater in Step 3.
- While you are emptying the system, this will prevent any extra water from entering the water heater and causing it to malfunction.
- Locate the drain valve at the bottom of your water heater tank and connect a hose to it with a rubber band or zip tie.
Before you open the drain valve, double-check that the water is draining to a suitable location in your residence.
The valve opener, which should be located on the side of the valve at the bottom of your tank, should be used to open the valve.
Some water heater tanks are equipped with pressure release valves on the exterior, which make it simple to add air into the system as necessary.
In any case, you should be able to hear the water being put into the system, and the water will begin to drain shortly thereafter.
Allow ample time for the tank to drain entirely, especially if you’re using a bucket as advised.
The discoloration of the water may indicate that it is time to update your water heating system.
Whatever technique you chose in Step 6, it is now time to seal the system and prevent air from entering by closing the pressure release valve or tightening the bolts located on top of your tank.
This will allow water to flow into the tank, flushing any more deposits out of the system as it does so.
Keep in mind to verify all connections at least twice and maybe three times.
Immediately after removing your pump in step 1, open all of the hot water faucets and fixtures in your house and allow them to flush for a few minutes before reconnecting your pump.
Finally, switch your gas tank from ‘pilot’ to ‘on,’ or re-plug your electric tank into the wall, whichever is applicable.
Have you been experiencing troubles with your water heater?
It’s only one of the numerous services that we’re pleased to provide. Feel free to contact us if you need assistance with your problems; we would be pleased to assist you.
How to Maintain & Drain A Water Heater: 8 Step Guide
Date of publication: December 2019 You may take your water heater for granted until it stops working and you are forced to take a frigid shower in the middle of winter. Even worse, it might cease operating altogether, resulting in water splattered all over the floor. Fortunately, a hot water heater does not require much maintenance, although emptying it on a regular basis may assist to ensure that it continues to operate smoothly. Consider the following recommendations for maintaining your water heater.
According to The Family Handyman, silt builds up in the bottom of a water heater over time, which can cause obstructions in the system.
If you do not properly maintain your water heater, it may not operate at peak efficiency or may even fail to operate at all in some cases.
GET A HOME QUOTE.
A high level of protection for your house makes all the difference when it comes to keeping your family safe. Allstate home insurance can assist you in protecting what is important to you. Request a quote Locate a representative. When it comes to draining a water heater, the DIY Network recommends the following measures. The owner’s handbook for your water heater will provide you with particular information on your water heater. For those who are uncomfortable completing this sort of maintenance on their water heater, contact a plumber to arrange for a professional draining to be performed.
- A water line and a shutdown valve leading into the water heater may be found at the very top of the water heater’s tank.
- Step 2: Disconnect the water heater’s power supply line.
- Alternatively, if you have an electric water heater, turn off the electricity at your home’s electrical panel.
- If you have a gas water heater, according to the DIY Network, you may change the water heater’s thermostat to “pilot” to complete this procedure.
- Check your water heater’s owner’s handbook and follow the directions that are provided for your particular water heater.
- Because your water heater is running at a high temperature, it is incredibly hot.
- (According to BobVila.com, you should at the very least wait a few hours.) In addition, taking a hot shower can assist to accelerate the cooling process.) Step 4: Connect a hose to the drain valve.
Connect the other end of the hose to the drain valve located at the bottom of your water heater.
The hot water tap, such as a sink faucet, that is closest to the water heater should be opened.
According to the DIY Network, it is preferable to use a tap that is located on the floor above the water heater.
As soon as you turn on this valve, the water will begin to drain out of the storage tank.
Step 7: Reconnect the water supply to the tank and flush it with fresh, clean water to finish the job.
It is necessary to repeat this process until the water flows clean.
Step 8: Refill the tank with water.
Return the water supply to its original setting to begin replenishing the tank. Once the tank is full, turn on the electricity or gas supply to the water heater to re-energize it. While draining the tank, remember to turn off the faucet that you had previously turned on.
How Often Should You Drain Your Water Heater?
According to both BobVila.com and The Family Handyman, it’s a good idea to empty your water heater at least once a year in general. If you reside in a hard water area, on the other hand, according to Angie’s List, you may need to empty your water more often. Always remember to consult your owner’s manual to see what the manufacturer suggests before making any changes. Water heaters are relatively low-maintenance appliances, but it’s important to remember to drain yours on a regular basis. If you do this, you may be able to keep it working effectively and the hot water going.
Please keep in mind that a certain precaution may not be suitable or effective in every situation, and that adopting preventative steps does not ensure a positive outcome.
Water Heater Flush
Every day, from taking a shower in the morning to running the dishwasher after supper, homeowners rely on having a consistent supply of hot water available. Most of us, on the other hand, hardly give our water heaters any consideration until something goes wrong with them. Our discussion in this post will cover why this strategy has to change and why a water heater flush as well as regular maintenance of your home’s water heater are so important.
How do you flush a water heater?
The video below walks you through the process of flushing sediment from your home’s water heater step by step. If you have any problems, or if you need a plumbing specialist to assist you, don’t hesitate to contact Wagner!
Should you drain your hot water heater every year?
Yes, but it’s really just the bare minimum in terms of what has to be done. You should drain and clean your water heater at least twice a year: once in the spring and once in the fall, depending on how often you use it. The explanation for this may be traced back to the minerals and sediment that a water heater removes from the water. As tap water is pumped into your water heater tank, it transports with it the naturally occurring minerals found in hard water. These minerals sink to the bottom of the tank, where they begin to aggregate and form a deposit.
The greater the amount of sediment and mineralization that accumulates between the heating element and the water, the less efficient and effective your water heater is going to be.
When considering the quantity of silt that may accumulate in a tank in a very short period of time, you’d be amazed.
What happens if you don’t flush your water heater?
The longer your water heater is left without a drain and flush, the more sediment and minerals will collect at the bottom of the tank, reducing its efficiency. Scaling eventually arises as a result of this.
Have you ever noticed the hard, mineral buildup on the faucets and shower heads in your home? That’s what scale looks like: mineralization that has accumulated over time. If you have a large enough amount of this in your water heater’s tank, you may have several serious problems, including:
- Your water heater will gather sediment and minerals at the bottom of the tank over time if it is not drained and flushed regularly. Scaling occurs as a result of this. Has the hard, mineral buildup on your sink faucets and shower heads ever piqued your attention? What you’re seeing there is scale: mineralization that has accumulated through time. If you have a substantial amount of this in your water heater’s tank, you may experience the following problems:
Finally, here’s the bottom line: you should be draining and cleansing your water heater on a consistent basis. However, this is only the beginning.
Do hot water heaters need maintenance?
The basic conclusion is that you should be emptying and cleansing your water heater on a consistent basis. However, this is only the beginning of the process.
What is the pressure-relief valve?
It is likely that you have experienced the sensation of boiling water in a covered pot on the stove. Heating water produces steam and pressure. It is possible to observe the pot lid leap up and down as the pressure (and steam) escape from the confined region if it is not sufficiently hefty. This same fundamental activity is taking on inside of your water heater as well. The majority of the time, this extra pressure is discharged through the pipes in your home. There is no harm, no foul. Pressure relief valves (also known as T P valves) are used when the pressure in the system rises to dangerous levels, however they are not always necessary.
That’s a respectable amount of pressure, especially considering that your car’s tires are most likely filled to 30-35 psi at any one moment.
Your T P valve has most likely been opened if you detect a pool of water on the ground below its discharge pipe, which indicates that it has been opened.
Checking your T P valve
This valve may experience difficulties from time to time. It can become stuck, or, as previously described, internal scaling can cause it to become blocked. You should check the T P valve once a year to verify that it is in proper operating order. Place a bucket beneath the discharge pipe and turn the valve to the open position. Make sure you have water flowing through the valve and down into the pipe and into the bucket. If this is not the case, there is something wrong with your valve, and you should contact a plumbing specialist immediately.
What is the lifespan of a hot water heater?
How long it will last depends on the sort of water heater you have and how well you keep it in good working order. Let’s talk about the first portion, and then we’ll talk about the variations in lifetime between gas, electric, and tankless systems.
Lifespan of gas and electric water heaters
Electric water heaters, on average, survive a few years longer than their gas counterparts:
- Electric water heaters have a lifespan of 10-15 years, whereas gas water heaters have a lifespan of 8-12 years.
This difference in longevity does not always imply that electric water heaters are a superior investment in the long run! Because natural gas is generally far less expensive than electricity, if your home already has a gas connection, a gas water heater is often a better choice than an electric water heater. In most regions of the country, it is less expensive to run a gas water heater than it is to run an electric water heater—a fact that holds true for both gas and electric furnaces, for what it is worth.
Lifespan of tankless water heaters
There is another type of water heater that deserves to be discussed: tankless water heaters. These wall-mounted water heaters, often known as “demand-type” water heaters, heat water on demand by passing tap water through a succession of heating elements as it is required. Tankless systems are more energy efficient, more convenient, and have a lifespan of 20-30 years, which is almost twice as long as a regular system.
However, the trade-off is that they are more expensive to install. If, on the other hand, you’re wanting to make a long-term investment in your house, you should speak with your plumber about tankless systems and whether or not they’re a suitable fit for your particular situation.
How do I make my hot water heater last longer?
Age, as they say, is only a number. The water heater, on the other hand, is likely to finally catch up with your system because of the high quantity. If you consider what water heaters are fundamentally comprised of—water, metal, heat, and pressure—you’ll likely understand why even high-quality water heater tanks have a lifespan of only 15-20 years at the most. However, you may extend the life of your water heater by doing the following maintenance tasks:— Flushing and emptying your water heater at least once a year, if not twice a year.
- — Calling a plumber as soon as there is a problem is recommended.
- A plumbing specialist should be called out to your home immediately if you notice anything unusual, whether it’s strange sounds or leaks on the tank’s surface.
- The Wagner crew is the one to call if you live in Albuquerque or Santa Fe.
- We can assist you with the maintenance, repair, or replacement of your water heater.
- We’ll work with you to guarantee that your water heater continues to operate at peak performance for many years to come.
How Often to Drain a Hot Water Heater
In most circumstances, you will need to empty your water heater once a year, although the frequency may vary depending on the type of water you use and other variables. Get quotations from as many as three professionals! Enter your zip code below to get matched with top-rated professionals in your area. What is the recommended frequency of draining and flushing your water heater? When taking a shower, no one enjoys having to wait several minutes for hot water to come through. Keeping your water heater clean and free of obstructions on a regular basis will help to reduce the likelihood of this happening.
Do I Need to Drain and Flush My Hot Water Heater?
Yes. Water heater cleaning and draining should be done on a regular basis as part of your normal water heater maintenance program to improve the quality of the water in your house. It may also save you money in the long run because regular maintenance may help you extend the life of your tank. However, in certain cases, you may find that you need to empty or flush your hot water heater more frequently than is advised by the manufacturer. The sort of water heater you possess is important, but you also need to examine the type of water that is delivered to your home.
In terms of difficulty, cleaning and emptying your water heater is not a tough task to complete. It’ll take something in the neighborhood of an hour to finish, with much of that time spent just allowing the tank to cool and drain. (A larger tank, on the other hand, will take longer.)
Why Is It Important to Flush and Drain Your Water Heater?
Different forms of sediment, such as limestone, chalk, and gypsum, get deposited in your water heater over time. Those are naturally occurring minerals that may be found in water and that, over time, accumulate in the bottom of your tank. Heat loss, longer heating periods, and leakages are all possible consequences of sediment building in a system. This is due to silt deposits accumulating on the burner plate at the bottom of your water heater, which prevents heat from flowing through the system.
- Reduce your energy expenditures
- Prolong the life of your hot water heater (which typically lasts 12 years)
- It lowers the level of noise. Improvements in the heating speed
- Removes odorous and/or stale water from your storage tank
- Allows you to check for symptoms that your water heater is malfunctioning, and
- The possibility of leaks developing if it has been a long time since you have cleansed your water heater
How Often Should You Drain or Flush Your Hot Water Heater?
Not sure how often you should flush or dump your hot water heater? Here’s what you should know. Most water heaters should be drained once a year, or more frequently depending on the circumstances. In contrast, if you reside in a region with hard water (high mineral content), it is recommended that you do it every six months or so. The majority of the time, however, a yearly cleaning will assist to extend the life of your water heater and guarantee that hot water is distributed throughout your home.
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Finding Information About Your Water Supply
To find out how often you should clean and empty your water heaters, see your water supply report from the previous year. On or before July 1, water companies send you an annual report that contains information on your water supply. This page contains information about where it originates from, what minerals it contains, and other pertinent information. Keep in mind that if you have hard water (water with a high mineral content), your water heater should be emptied and cleansed more frequently than once a year.
What to Expect When You Flush and Drain a Water Heater
Depending on the size of your water heater, you’ll need to set aside anywhere from 20 to 60 minutes to flush and drain it. Also, if you’re not sure how big your tank is, a 50- to 60 gallon tank is often large enough to accommodate two or three individuals. You’ll also need to do the following:
- Recognize if your water heater is powered by natural gas or electricity
- You should wait at least 20 to 30 minutes for the water in your tank to cool before flushing it. Make sure you’re prepared for a rapid outflow of water when you restart the water supply—and that you do so carefully.
Wearing gloves and putting on old clothing before you begin may prevent you from becoming a bit muddy. (For the record, one of the advantages of using a tankless water heater is that they are less untidy.) a.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Pro to Drain or Flush My Water Heater?
If you’re thinking, “How frequently should I empty my water heater?” you might also be wondering how much it would cost to hire a professional to do the job for you. It will cost around $200 to have your water heater flushed and drained by a professional. However, depending on the season, you may be able to score a good price. (The fall season is a favorite period for this.) If it has been a long time since your water heater has been cleaned and drained, you might consider hiring a professional to complete the task for you.
A qualified plumber is your best choice for getting the task done correctly and safely on the first attempt. You could also ask them to perform additional water heater maintenance tasks at the same time, or you might inspect your tank yourself.
How Often Does My Hot Water Heater Tank Need Flushing?
You are aware that frequent hot water heater maintenance is essential to ensuring the long life of the device in question. In order to maximize the efficiency of your water heater while minimizing damage to the water heater, it is necessary to empty and clean the tank on a regular basis. Here’s when you should go ahead and do it.
Why Does My Water Tank Need Cleaning?
The term “hard water” is a little misleading. It’s not as if the water feels sharper as it passes through a faucet, as some believe. Hard water, on the other hand, refers to water that contains specific types of minerals. Hard water may be found virtually anywhere, although the degree to which it is hard differs from place to region. While many minerals are harmless or even beneficial to ingest, they can be detrimental to your plumbing system. Minerals from your water heater tank collect over time, coupled with sediment from the city’s water supply, resulting in a buildup of sediment.
It is certain that the sand will ultimately fill the bucket if it is not rinsed out on a regular basis.
When Do I Know My Water Heater Needs aFlush?
To your advantage, the water that goes into your hot water heater has been filtered to some extent before it gets to your house. If this were not the case, your hot water heatertank would quickly become clogged with silt. It is possible that you will not notice the accumulation because it may take years. Over time, you will notice that the amount of hot water you receive from the tank diminishes as the tank nears its capacity. The sediment pouring out of the drain valve, if you are handy, can usually be seen quite plainly, except in cases where the silt has already jammed the valve.
This helps to guarantee that your house receives the most amount of hot water possible while also preventing debris from corroding the water heater’s internal components.
How Is a Water Heater Tank Flushed?
Flushing a hot water heater tank is not very difficult, but it does need the use of a steady hand to ensure that it is done properly and correctly. You should have your Sacramento plumbers switch off the electricity and fuel to the water heater. Running water from a faucet aids in the removal of part of the water from the tank as well as the reduction of its water temperature. The drain valve, which is placed at the bottom of the tank, is used by the plumbers to drain the water that is currently in the tank.
The last procedures involve refueling the tank and restoring power and gasoline to the vehicle.
Flushing the tank at least once a year ensures that your home has more hot water and that the tank does not become clogged with silt. Contact Ace Plumbing if you need to arrange a water heater repair or maintenance appointment.
How Often Should You Flush Your Water Heater?
What is the recommended frequency of flushing your water heater? What is the recommended frequency of flushing your water heater? Water heaters, like other mechanical devices such as your automobile, require regular maintenance to function properly. Water heaters accumulate silt, calcium, and minerals on the interior of the tank over time, which eventually settles to the bottom of the tank. Because heat rises, the heating element of a water heater is positioned near the bottom of the tank by design to maximize efficiency.
It has been demonstrated that cleansing a water heater has no negative consequences.
So How Often Should You Get Your Water Heater Flushed?
It is advised that you get your water heater serviced once a year at the very least. The use of frequent flushing will aid in the prevention of the possible difficulties that silt might bring about over time.
What Happens If You Don’t Have It Flushed?
Not flushing your water heater and allowing a buildup of sediment to accumulate will not only cause it to consume more energy, but it can also lead to more expensive problems down the line. In certain cases, if the sediment accumulates to an excessive level, it may find its way into your water supply and faucets. Sediment, on the other hand, can pose much more significant problems in the long run. Water-related issues such as pipe rupture, water pressure loss, and tank collapse have all occurred in the past.
Does a Tankless Water Heater Need to Be Flushed?
Yes, although tankless water heaters do not keep nearly as much water as traditional tanks, they can still accumulate minerals and require regular cleaning and maintenance to be in good working order.
Instructions to Flush a Water Heater
- If you have a gas water heater, turn off the gas, and if you have an electric water heater, turn off the electric circuit breaker. After that, turn off the water heater for 1-2 hours to enable it to cool down. Immediately turn off the water supply to the water heater
- Pour hot water from a nearby faucet into the drain to avoid a suction as the water drains
- Using a hose, connect the drain valve at the bottom of the container to an open drain or an empty bucket. Drain the water heater tank by opening the drain valve and allowing the water to run until it comes to a complete stop, as shown (emptying the bucket each time as it fills up). If you haven’t allowed the water heater to cool down properly, the water might get quite hot at this point. Take caution
- Now, flush the tank by re-opening the cold water supply and allowing the water to run out completely. Carry on like this for a couple of times to get rid of all the silt
- Drain the water by closing the drain valve. Reopening the water supply valve will allow you to refill the water heater tank. Start the water heater by turning it on.
Draining a water heater is something that most homeowners are capable of doing, but it may be hazardous. If you are not confident in your ability to flush your water heater yourself or want to ensure that it is done correctly, contact a professional plumber to have your water heater cleansed in a matter of minutes. Remember that South End Plumbing specializes in water heater repairs and that we are only a click away. We also specialize in leak detection; please contact us for more information.
To book a visit, please call us at 704-919-1722 or complete the online form.
How Often Does My Water Heater Need to Be Drained?
When it comes to water heater maintenance, one of the most often asked questions by homeowners is, “How frequently do I need to empty my water heater?” I think this is an excellent question, and the solution will vary based on the quality of the water in your home. The reason of emptying your water heater and how frequently you should do this job on your unit will be discussed today!
What is the purpose of draining your water heater?
Calcium and magnesium ions, together referred to as “hardness minerals,” are found in tap water. As water travels in and out of your water heater, the minerals in the water settle to the bottom of the tank of your appliance. As a result of the accumulation of minerals in your water heater’s heating elements and the real water contained within the device, the heat transmission process between the two becomes slowed or completely stopped. This has the potential to significantly reduce the efficiency of your water heater.
This is an important preventative maintenance activity that will significantly increase the efficiency and lifetime of a water heater.
How often should your water heater be drained?
After all, we now understand why a water heater must be emptied, but how frequently should this be done? The hardness of your water has a significant impact on this. In general, the harder your water is, the higher the calcium and magnesium content will be, and the faster sediment will accumulate in your tank. It is recommended that you clean your water heater’s tank at least once every year. As long as you have scheduled yearly water heater tune-ups with Cabrillo, you won’t have to worry about draining your tank on your own because the service is covered as part of the package!
Install a water softener to prevent sediment buildup
Installing a water softener in your house if you have hard water will significantly reduce the amount of sediment that builds up in your water heater over time. Using a water softener to remove hardness minerals from your water can significantly enhance the efficiency of your water heater as well as reduce all of the other issues connected with hard water in your house. To find out how frequently you should drain your water heater or if you’d want your plumbing system repaired or installed in your house, call Cabrillo, your Bay Area plumber who also provides heating and air conditioning installation services.
Use These Tips to Drain a Water Heater Properly
Most water heater maintenance instructions recommend that you drain a water heater every six to twelve months, depending on how much use it gets. The reason for this is that it will aid in the removal of any sediment or buildup that may have accumulated on the bottom of the water heater tank as a result of the presence of minerals and other particles in the water. As a result of the accumulation, the water heater will have to work harder to heat the water, consuming more energy and increasing its operating costs.
Before You Begin
According to the majority of water heater maintenance instructions, it is recommended that you drain your water heater once every 6 to 12 months. As a result of the presence of minerals and other particles in the water, it is advised that you do this to help remove any sediment or buildup that has accumulated on the bottom of your tank’s bottom. When this accumulation occurs, the water heater must work harder to heat the water, consuming more energy and increasing the overall cost of operating it.
Most water heater maintenance instructions recommend that you drain a water heater every six to twelve months, depending on the model. The rationale for this is that it will aid in the removal of any sediment or buildup that may have accumulated on the bottom of the water heater tank as a result of the presence of minerals and other foreign particles in the water.
When this accumulation occurs, the water heater must work harder to heat the water, consuming more energy and increasing the overall cost of operation.
- Drain valve (if necessary)
- Threaded hose cap (if necessary)
- Drain valve (if necessary)
Kevin Norris’s The Spruce is a novel about a young man who grows up in the woods.
Perform a Quick Flush
- Using a garden hose connected to the drain valve, attempt to clean the water heater tank a little bit while the water pressure is still on before shutting off the water supply. In order to accomplish this, first open the drain valve for a few seconds before closing it again. The pressure will blast away any silt that has become lodged in the valve, allowing the tank to empty more quickly. If a significant amount of sediment is expelled, you may need to repeat the process several times. Make certain that you’ve connected your garden hose to an outdoor place or into a bucket in order to collect the water and sediment that will be emitted from the faucet. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Turn Off the Water Heater
- Turn off the gas to your water heater, or turn off the electricity if you have an electric water heater. Remove water by shutting off the valve on the cold-water pipe above the water heater or the main water supply valve to the home, whichever is most convenient. Test the hot water faucets around the home by turning them on and checking for water to ensure that the pressure has been released. Water may flood out at first, but if the water has been cut off properly, it should rapidly decrease to a trickle and then stop. It is important to leave a hot water faucet open in the sink closest to your hot water heater in order to relieve pressure in the entire system. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Open the Drain Valve
- Open the drain valve while holding your garden hose in one hand. Normally, you may complete this task by hand, but you may need to employ your flat-head screwdriver in this instance. Once the valve is opened, water will begin to rush out of the drain, so make sure your hose is either connected to the outside or to a bucket to catch the water. You should switch off the drain valve as soon as the bucket is full so that you may empty it. Repeat the operation as many times as necessary to completely empty the tank. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Flush the Tank With Water
- Once the tank has been completely drained, you may flush it with a few gallons at a time by turning on the water for a few seconds and then allowing it to drain out again until it is completely empty. When the outflow is clean, you’ll know that you’ve successfully eliminated the sediment and may proceed to the following phase in the process. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Refill the Water Heater
- Close the drain valve and remove the garden hose from the system. Make certain that all but one of your home’s hot water faucets are turned off (the one in the bathtub closest to the water heater is best). You may now re-start the water heater by turning the water back on. After that, keep an eye on the faucet you left open and, as soon as you notice that you are receiving nothing but water out of it, turn it off. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Relight the Water Heater
- Re-ignite the water heater’s pilot light, or if it’s an electric heater, re-energize the circuit breaker. You should be able to use hot water after an hour or so. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Check the Drain Valve
- Check for leaks at the spout of your water heater to see if the drain on the heater has completely closed. If the outlet does not completely close, you can stop the leak by placing a threaded hose cap over the hose thread of the outlet. Alternatively, you can replace the valve entirely. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
To Drain or Not to Drain-Your Hot Water Heater
We are officially in the midst of spring cleaning, as Phoenix residents prepare to spend the summer months hunkered down in our air-conditioned homes. “Do I really need to dump my hot water heater tank every year?” is a topic we are asked rather frequently. (The use of a whiny voice is entirely optional.) In all seriousness, it is dependent. Each hot water tank is unique, dependent on a variety of circumstances that include not just where you reside in the Valley, but also whether or not your tank is equipped with a hydro-jet to decrease silt accumulation.
- The availability and quality of these services are highly dependent on where you reside.
- Conclusion: You will not know how often to drain your hot water tank unless you actually do it in order to determine how much sediment has accumulated in the meantime.
- In the same period of time, other tanks can build several inches of silt, which is sufficient to clog the spigot.
- Some hot water heater manufacturers advocate removing just approximately a gallon of water once a month, while others recommend draining it more frequently.
- What exactly happens?
- It might be a small amount or a large amount.
- The following is a broad outline of how to go about it.
- Get yourself a hose. It is preferable to have one with a rubber gasket in it, since this will aid to prevent leakage at the hose connection. Turn off the electricity to the hot water heater if it is not already off. The fact that you must turn off your hot water heater is not optional since you risk destroying your hot water heater. The water supply to the hot water heater should be shut off. Otherwise, it will have to be refilled on a regular basis as it drains. Allow time for the tank to cool. Your tank’s size, insulation level, and water temperature when you first started all influence how long it will take to complete this process. Some people simply need to wait a few hours while others require many days. Others will have to wait until the next day. Connect the hose to the drain valve, which is a spigot located at the bottom of the hot water tank, and run the other end to a location where it is appropriate to allow the water to flow out. You would be better off not emptying the water into your garden or any other area where you could have plant material that is sensitive to calcium because the water will contain sediment. Start by turning on a hot water tap anywhere in your residence. It will serve as a relief valve, allowing the water to flow more quickly from the drain spigot
- And Open the drain spigot by turning it on. Allow it to run until the tank is completely depleted. It’s important to note that the hot water tank manufacturers, who are far more concerned with sales than with proper hot water heater maintenance, built the majority of these spigots to be angled and poorly constructed to remove the silt. Turn the water back on to the tank while keeping the drain spigot open to remove any leftover silt from the system. It is OK to close the valve to enable for the tank to heat up once all water has been removed from its end of the line. Removing your hands from the hot water faucet (the one you opened in your home)
- The water heater should be turned back on after the tank is completely filled.
This easy procedure can extend the life of your hot water heater by several years. If you find a leak or any other sort of problem while draining your hot water heater, please let us know. Alternatively, if you’d like a professional to drain the tank for you, please contact us. We’ll be pleased to set a time to meet with you. If you enjoyed this content, please share it by clicking the the3 button below!
Flushing a Water Heater: Why Should I Flush My Water Heater?
Regular maintenance is required for your water heater, just as it is for other devices such as your automobile. Water heaters accumulate sediment, calcium, and minerals over time, which settles to the bottom of the tank and causes it to get clogged. It is at the bottom of the tank where the water heater’s heating element is located. The water heater will have to work harder to heat the water if the heat is being blocked by silt and other foreign objects.
There aren’t any negative consequences to flushing a water heater. Sediment buildup causes harm, and leaving it in place is more expensive than just flushing it out on a regular basis.
How Often Should I get My Water Heater Flushed?
It is advised that you clean your water heater at least once a year to keep it running efficiently. This will aid in the prevention of the possible difficulties that silt might cause over time if left unchecked.
What Happens if I don’t Flush My Water Heater?
It is possible that leaving sediment buildup in your water heater would not only make it work harder, but it may also result in some major complications. For example, if the sediment builds up to a significant level, you may see it coming out of your faucets and drains. Sediment, on the other hand, can produce much more significant problems over time. Things like a ruptured pipe, a lack of water pressure, or even the failure of the tank itself are all possibilities. These issues often manifest themselves over a period of two to five years.
Do I Need to Flush a Tankless Water Heater?
Yes. Tankless water heaters, despite the fact that they do not store as much water as traditional tanks, can nevertheless accumulate sediment, necessitating regular cleaning and maintenance.
How do I Flush My Water Heater?
- Shut down the gas or electricity if you have a gas water heater, or the electricity if you have an electric water heater. Allow the water heater to cool for a short period of time
- Turn off the water supply. Start by turning on the hot water from a nearby faucet to avoid a vacuum from building and to make it easier for the tank to drain
- To drain the water, connect an empty bucket or drain hose to the valve and run the hose down to the drain. During this procedure, you may need to empty a bucket numerous times. Drain the water heater tank by opening the drain valve and allowing the water to run until the tank is completely drained. If you haven’t allowed the water heater to cool down properly, the water can get quite hot at this point
- Proceed with caution. Remove any remaining sediment by restoring the cold water supply and allowing it to drain. Carry on like this for a couple of times to get rid of all the silt
- Drain the water by closing the drain valve. Reopening the water supply valve will allow you to refill the water heater tank. Start the water heater by turning it on.
In the home, removing the water heater’s tank is possible, but it might be hazardous. If you are unsure about flushing your water heater yourself or want to ensure that it is done correctly, call a professional expert to have your water heater cleansed in no time at all.
How to Drain Your Hot Water Tank (And Why You Should!) — Multi Trade Building Services
The capacity of hot water tanks is meant to last for many years, but cleaning them should be included in your normal home maintenance program. Following our step-by-step directions outlined below, this is an easy DIY project that you can complete on your own.
Why should I flush my water tank?
The majority of hot water tanks feature a large holding tank, which guarantees that there is always sufficient of hot water available when it is needed. Nonetheless, because the water is left to stay in the tank on a continuous basis for an extended period of time, naturally occurring minerals in the water, as well as sand and grit discharged from municipal water pipes, can accumulate in the tank’s bottom. The accumulation of silt in your hot water tank may make it more difficult for it to perform its function.
Hot water tanks should have a life lifetime of at least 10-12 years, however failing to remove the sediment from the tank on a regular basis can dramatically shorten that life term.
What about my gas hot water tank?
In addition, sediment can reduce the effectiveness of the burner in a gas water heater. Have you ever experienced cracking and popping noises when your furnace was heating up? This is due to the silt that has accumulated in your tank. Sediment builds up in a gas hot water tank, forming a thick, crusty layer on the surface. This reduces the amount of heat that is transferred from the burner to the water in the tank. This is a waste of energy and, more importantly, of your money! In the long run, this can create corrosion in the tank, which may produce a major problem if your tank begins to leak all over your floor.
Both gas and electric water heaters should be cleaned of sediment every 6 months to once a year, depending on your water supply and the mineral content. This will guarantee that your water heater performs at its best.
Can sediment affect my plumbing pipes or water?
Fortunately, the quick answer is “yes!” The sediment or crusty stuff that collects at the bottom of your tank has the potential to break loose and become caught in the pipes that distribute water throughout your home. This might cause the flow of water via your pipes and faucets to become more difficult to control. It also has the potential to clog the drain valve on your hot water tank, making it hard to drain the tank without a major plumbing repair job.
An important word of advice:
Yes, in a nutshell, it is! The sediment or crusty stuff that collects at the bottom of your tank has the potential to break loose and become caught in the pipes that supply water to the rest of your residence. Your pipes and faucets may become less responsive as a result of this. It also has the potential to clog the drain valve on your hot water tank, making it hard to drain the tank without a major plumbing repair.
Speaking from experience.
The reason I warn you with the word of advise above is that we had exactly that scenario occur with a client of ours and we wanted to share our experience with you. Approximately 7 years ago, I published a simple advice to draining your hot water tank in a newsletter that I had written. After eight years in his house, my client realized that he had never drained the tank and decided that it would be a good idea to do so now that the weather was getting warmer. He diligently followed all of my directions before calling me in a panic because there was water coming out into his basement floor and he needed me to come immediately.
He, on the other hand, had not anticipated such a problem as a result of following my detailed directions.
It was clear that they had been there for a long time, and the sediment itself was preventing the leak from occurring again.
Our customer ended up needing to purchase a new hot water tank, but he ended up saving a significant amount of money over the long run since his new tank was far more energy efficient.
One important first step
The first step is to identify where the drain valve is located on your tank. It has the appearance of a little outside faucet. Before draining your hot water tank, we highly advise that you cut off the gas or electricity to the tank and let the water drop to room temperature before draining it. It will take several hours to complete this task. This is not required in order to drain your tank, however it is recommended as a safety measure.
If you do not want to wait the appropriate amount of time for all of the water in your water heater to cool, just keep in mind that the water that comes out of the drain valve will be extremely hot when it does.
Steps to Draining Your Hot Water Tank
- Turn off the gas or electrical power to your hot water tank if it is connected. The “pilot” setting on a gas water heater is what you’ll want to use. If the water heater is electric, turn off the breaker or unplug the fuse located at the electrical panel
- Turn off the cold water supply valve located at the top of the water heater
- And turn off the gas supply valve located at the water heater. When you touch this pipe, it should be ice cold. If the valve feels warm to the touch, you’ve got the incorrect valve. Locate the tank drain valve, which should be towards the bottom of the tank, and connect a regular garden hose to the drain valve. Keep in mind that certain models may have a cover over the valve opening
- The other end of the hose should be placed in a floor drain or on a driveway where it may safely drain. Buckets can be used if required, but take care not to be burnt by the hot water while you’re doing your task. To prevent this from happening, make sure the hose’s end is lower than the water tank’s valve. Locate the hottest water tap that is closest to the water heater, preferably on the second or third story above. Opening the drain valve and allowing the water to flow from the tank can relieve pressure in the system, similar to withdrawing your finger from the top of a drinking straw loaded with liquid
- Close the drain valve and let the water to drain from the tank. Once again, if you haven’t allowed the water to cool before using it, proceed with caution. Once all of the water has been emptied from the tank, switch on the cold water supply to the tank for a limited period of time. This will help to stir up any silt that has accumulated. It is necessary to repeat this procedure until the water flows clean
- Disconnect the drain line and switch on the cold water supply valve after closing the drain valve. The tank will begin to fill as soon as possible. Return to the hot water faucet that was previously opened. Once cold water begins to flow from the faucet, cut off the water supply. Return the gas valve to the on position from the pilot position, or reconnect the power to the tank. It is important to double-check the valve opening once it has been closed to ensure there are no water leaks.
What if my tank won’t drain?
If your hot water tank is draining slowly or not at all, open the temperature and pressure relief (TPR) valve on the hot water tank to see if it helps. In the hot water tank, it’s at the top where you’ll find it. A pipe goes from the top of the tank to the bottom of the tank, and it’s normally operated by a lever that may be raised or lowered as needed. Opening the TPR valve may allow water to drain from the tank if there is a possible vacuum inside the tank that has been preventing it from doing so.
The most prudent course of action is to contact a Licensed Plumber in this situation.
To sum things up.
Despite the fact that it is one of the most often used items in your home, the hot water tank is also one of the most ignored. If you follow the methods outlined above, maintaining your hot water tank will be a simple chore. If you prefer that our Licensed Plumbers handle the maintenance on your hot water tank, please contact us at 905-259-3344 to make arrangements.