Why Won’T My Water Heater Drain

How to Unclog a Drain Valve: 7 Ways to Get the Water Flowing

As an Amazon Associate, we receive a commission on qualifying purchases made via our links. Find out more. When your water heater won’t drain, the most likely reason is that the drain valve has become clogged. This is usually the result of an excessive amount of silt accumulating within the tank. During the heating process, the minerals present in the water separate and settle to the bottom of the water heater. If the sediment in the tank is not removed on a regular basis, it will not only diminish the effectiveness of the device, but it can also clog the drain valve, causing the water to become trapped within the water heater.

If left ignored, it will eventually need the purchase of a new water heater since the sediment will corrode the interior of your tank and cause an unrepairable leak.

7 Methods to Unclog a Drain Valve

In order to verify if your water heater drain valve is genuinely clogged, you must first ascertain whether it is. Take the following steps:

  1. Turn off the fuel supply for your water heater (electric: turn off the power to the water heater). Turn off the circuit breaker (in the case of gas, turn the on/off control knob to the off position)
  2. Drainage should be connected to the drain valve and the valve should be OPENED. DEPRESSURE IN THE TANK: OPEN a hot water faucet inside your home (and leave it open) to allow the negative pressure to escape
  3. It is unlikely that your valve is clogged if the water drains and turns clean. Clogged valves cause the water to dribble or not drain at all
  4. This indicates that the valve is clogged.

Caution is advised since there is a strong likelihood that the water in the tank is extremely hot. To avoid being burnt in this situation, you should take appropriate safety steps before proceeding. When attempting to drain a water heater, always use work gloves and safety eyewear to keep yourself safe. Additionally, the water should be allowed to cool before being drained. There are numerous techniques for cooling the water inside the tank, which are as follows:

  • It is necessary to turn off the natural gas or electric supply to the water heater and let it sit for up to 24 hours. To check if your water heater is not entirely blocked, remove all of the water that you can from the drain valve while leaving the water inflow valve open. Cold water will be able to enter your tank and dilute the hot water as a result of this. It is necessary to cut off the fuel supply (gas or electricity). If your water heater is entirely blocked, you can draw hot water from the tank by opening the hot water taps in the kitchen and bathroom. Keep the cold water intake valve open to allow the hot water to cool down to a more comfortable temperature. It is necessary to cut off the fuel source (gas or electricity) in order to prevent the water from warming.

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How to Unclog a Water Heater Drain Valve

There are a variety of methods for draining a clogged water heater tank, and the degree of the blockage will play a significant factor in selecting which approach is most effective. Begin with the simplest item on the list and work your way down to the more difficult items. Take note that the water in the tank is most likely quite hot, so take precautions to avoid getting burned by following the safety guidelines stated above. Before you begin, make sure that the water heater’s power supply is turned off.


If your drain valve is clogged, the first thing you should do is to wait it out. Occasionally, the weight of the water within the tank will be sufficient to dislodge the blockage on its own. Here’s what you should do:

  • Continue to leave the drain valve open while the hose is connected. Close all hot water faucets in the home except for one. Continue to wait for an hour or so to observe whether the tank begins to drain.

Wire Coat Hanger

If waiting doesn’t work to unclog your drain valve, the next step is to use a wire coat hanger to clear the obstruction.

  • Close the drain valve and take the hose out of the system. Under the drain valve, a small pail or a couple towels are a good idea to keep the water from backing up. Make use of a sturdy wire, such as a wire coat hanger, for this project. Drain the tank by opening the drain valve and inserting the wire through the valve hole into the tank. Move the wire in a circular motion to try to dislodge any debris that has accumulated. If you are successful, the water will begin to flow out of the tank
  • Otherwise, nothing will happen. Once you have a steady flow of water, you may close the valve and connect a hose to allow the tank to drain completely. Before your tank is totally empty, the valve may become clogged again
  • However, you may just repeat the operation.

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Stomping on the hose may help if your drain valve is still not working properly.

  • As soon as you have connected the hose to the drain valve, stand firmly onto the hose around 2 feet away from your water heater
  • If the sediment is the source of the blockage, an air bubble will be blasted back into the tank, clearing the obstruction and unclogging the valve. You shouldn’t be surprised if the drain valve becomes clogged once more when you are attempting to drain the tank. Basically, you just have to keep repeating the process until the tank is totally emptied.

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Back Flush

If none of the procedures listed above were successful, it may be necessary to attempt back cleansing your water heater. Here’s how it’s done:

  • Fill the hose with water from a washing machine. On both ends of these hoses, there is a female connector. DON’T forget to close the drain valve and attach one end of the wash machine hose to the valve. Use a garden hose to connect the other end of the hose to a nearby washtub faucet (washtub faucets are commonly threaded) or to an outside faucet (and connect the garden hose to an outside faucet)
  • Turn the water supply to the faucet on. OPEN the water heater’s drain valve and allow the water to flow into the tank for 10 to 15 seconds
  • OPEN the water heater’s drain valve and allow the water to flow into the tank
  • In order to unclog the valve, water from the hose should be used to drive the silt away from the valve. Close the drain valve and turn OFF the water at the faucet to prevent a puddle from forming. Unplug the hose from the faucet (leave the line attached to the drain valve, or use a garden hose to drain the tank)
  • OPEN the water heater drain valve and allow the water to drain from the tank. It’s possible that your blockage is too severe or that your drain valve is malfunctioning, in which case you’ll need to replace your drain valve.

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If backflushing does not resolve the issue, it may be necessary to replace the drain valve.

It IS feasible to change the drain valve while your tank is still full with water if the procedure is followed correctly. Here’s how it’s done:

  • A replacement drain valve (preferably brass) should be purchased. Tape the threads of the replacement drain valve with Teflon tape. Check to make sure that ALL of the faucets in your home are closed. When this happens, your water heater will generate a vacuum, which will prevent the water from “pouring out.” Place a bucket and a few towels beneath the drain valve to catch the water. To open the drain valve, use an adjustable wrench to turn it. Remove the drain valve one turn at a time. Keep in mind that some water will be dripping from your tank. Even if your tank is completely blocked, you will very certainly have some water escaping from it. If, on the other hand, the problem is a defective drain valve, you will almost surely have water. Insert the replacement drain valve as soon as possible. This shouldn’t take more than a few seconds. To drain your tank, just connect it to the new drain valve using a garden hose
  • We propose that if you’re going to go to the trouble of changing your drain valve, you consider replacing it with a ball valve to save time and effort (see below). Your drain valve will never clog again, and you will never have to worry about it again.

Many water heaters are equipped with low-cost plastic drain valves. You should replace it with a high-quality brass valve, such as this one from Rheem, if you find yourself in this situation.

Replace the Drain Valve with a Ball Valve

It is substantially larger than a conventional drain valve to operate a ball valve. Replace your drain valve with a ball valve to not only clear your tank, but you’ll also prevent sediment from blocking it in the future as a result of the replacement. The following steps will show you how to replace your drain valve with a ball valve:

  • Purchase a 3/4″ abrasive ball valve as well as two 3″ dielectric nipples. (The nipples have been covered with acrylic to keep them from rusting). Each nipple will be attached to one of the ball valve’s two halves. Make use of teflon tape on the threads of the nipples that screw into the ball valve
  • And Keep in mind that the ball valve’s handle should be turned away from the tank when it is opened. Teflon tape should be applied to the second side of one of the nipples (just three of the four threads on each of the two nipples will be lined with teflon tape). Check to make sure that ALL of the faucets in the home are closed. When this happens, your water heater will generate a vacuum, which will prevent the water from “pouring out.” Place a bucket and a few towels beneath the drain valve to catch the water. Loosen the drain valve by turning it with an adjustable wrench. Remove the drain valve one turn at a time. Keep in mind that some water will be dripping from your tank. Even if your tank is completely blocked, you will very certainly have some water escaping from it. If the problem is caused by a defective drain valve, you will almost likely have water on your hands. Insert the new ball valve as soon as possible. This shouldn’t take more than a few seconds. Connect a garden hose to your tank and drain the contents
  • You should either replace the ball valve with a conventional drain valve or remove the handle for the sake of safety once your tank has been drained completely. It is possible that the handle will be accidentally opened, resulting in the draining of your tank. This has the potential to cause water damage and/or significant burns.

Due to the fact that ball valves are bigger than drain valves, they are capable of draining the most obstinate obstructions.

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In the event that you are planning on replacing your water heater and do not want to invest the time necessary to unclog your drain valve using the techniques listed above, putting your tank outdoors to drain is the best option for you. What you need to do is as follows:

  • Disconnect the water supply
  • Disconnect the power supply. Make use of a hand truck to transport your water heater outside
  • And To drain the water from the top of the tank, carefully turn your water heater on its side and allow it to drain.

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6 Ways to Unclog a Water Heater That Won’t Drain

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. This issue is far more prevalent on earlier models, which do not have many of the extra anti-sediment measures seen on the most recent top-of-the-line heaters. Clogs can be avoided by emptying the system more frequently or by adding components to the system to assist filter incoming water. There are two techniques of unclogging the drain valve in the meanwhile, depending on whether the water is still hot or cold.

Hot Water Methods

These solutions will save you time by not requiring you to cool the tank first, but they may also raise your chances of getting burnt. When experimenting with these procedures, make sure to wear protective clothes and proceed with caution.

Back Flushing

For this method, you’ll need a washer fill hose, which has female connectors on both ends and can be found at any hardware store. The drain valve should be on one end, and the other end should be connected to your washtub or another nearby faucet. Once this is completed, open the drain valve and turn on the water. It is anticipated that the water pressure will work its way up through the silt, dislodging the obstruction. After a few of minutes, turn off the water, seal the valve, and remove the hose to allow for regular draining to resume.

Forced Air

Despite the fact that you might not think of it that way, the drain is actually a two-way valve. Simply slamming your foot down on the hose can clear a clogged drain valve, whether it occurs before or during your drainage effort. This results in a blast of air entering the tank, which pushes debris to the side. The majority of the time, this is sufficient to restore water flow, and it is simple to repeat as necessary. Although this procedure may not be possible with kink-proof hoses, it can be quite useful when utilizing conventional garden hoses.


If your tank is emptying slowly, there is a good probability that your blockage will clear itself on its own. Just keep checking back every few minutes to make sure the water is still pouring out.

It might take an hour or more (or if the clog was dislodged). It is important to note that this approach is the least effective and will not work against high accumulation since more sediment can easily fall into the blockage as a result.

Cold Water Methods

These procedures will frequently have you being in close proximity to the drain valve. As a result, we highly advise that you turn off your hot water tank for up to 24 hours. Using the hot water faucets in the home will assist in lowering the temperature of the tank water a little faster, since the hot water that has been used will be replaced by cold.

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Coat Hanger Fishing

The ever-reliable wire coat hanger, how I love thee. This is a gadget that is almost as important as duct tape in any tool box. As a first step, lay down some towels because this might become a bit dirty. After that, open the drain valve and insert the wire, rotating it in a circular motion to remove any material that has accumulated. Once the water begins to flow, turn off the drain valve for a short period of time to connect your hose. if the blockage reappears before you’ve completed draining, you may simply repeat the operation until it is completely gone.

Drain Valve Replacement

Sometimes the problem isn’t a blocked water heater at all, but rather a faulty valve that has to be replaced. Even though the tank is still full, you may resolve this condition by changing the drain valve. During your job, you’ll want to make sure that all of the faucets in the home are turned off to prevent air from getting into the tank. The ensuing vacuum may be sufficient to prevent the tank from leaking all over the ground. Thread the new drain valve with some teflon tape to keep it from leaking.

After that, carefully unscrew the faulty valve, keeping an eye out for any leaks.

After that, you can flush the toilet as you normally would.

Open Flushing

It is possible to simply unscrew the drain valve from the floor drain next to your water heater and let the water to flood through it. While it is not the perfect option, it does allow you to have easier access to the clog, allowing you to make a more effective fishing effort with your coat hanger. Keep in mind that this approach is rather untidy, but it has the potential to be one of the most successful.

How to Flush or Drain a Water Heater

Remove mineral sediment and scale from your water heater tank twice a year by flushing it out. Your water heater will heat more effectively and last longer as a result of this improvement. This professional advise demonstrates how to flush and drain a water heater through the use of videos, pictures, and easy-to-understand language. What is the significance of flushing or partially emptying a water heater? For the simple reason that it reduces the accumulation of mineral deposits within the water heater.

  • A very thick, crusty layer can grow at the base of a gas water heater, and the heating components of an electric water heater can be completely covered by these sediments.
  • It eventually results in rusting as well.
  • They can also block the valve that is used to flush or drain a water heater tank, causing it to not function properly.
  • The hypothesis goes like follows: A small crack in the base may have filled with silt, which can assist prevent leaks, especially in a gas water heater where the flame has been roasting the steel bottom.
  • In the event that your water heater has not been cleaned in several years, it would behoove you to consult with a few of plumbers in your neighborhood for their recommendations.
  • Flushing or partly draining a water heater at least once a year from the time it was initially installed is the most prudent approach to follow in this situation.
  • If you decide not to undertake the repair yourself, you could expect to pay a plumber between $80 and $100.
  • Diagrams of Electric and Natural Gas Water Heaters It is necessary to drain a water heater tank in order to replace or repair it, as well as to remove mineral deposits from the tank, through the drain valve located at the bottom of the water heater.

The drain valve looks like a little outdoor faucet. If you use this valve, keep in mind that the water will be hot until the water has had time to cool before the water is released. In a nutshell, here’s how to flush or empty a water heater on your own:

  1. The water heater’s gas or electricity should be turned off. Close the cold water intake valve and turn it off. Connect a hose to the water heater’s drain valve and route it to the location where the water will be drained
  2. Open a hot water faucet in a convenient location around the house. Open the water heater drain valve (caution: hot water will be released! )
  3. Close the valve after flushing 3 to 4 gallons (if emptying, continue until the tank is empty)

Please continue reading for additional information on these processes.

How to Flush or Drain a Water Heater Tank

Listed below are the procedures to be followed while flushing or emptying a water heater. This video provides a wonderful summary of the subject: To turn off the gas or electrical power to the water heater, depending on whether it is a gas or an electric water heater, follow these steps: The “Pilot” setting on a gas water heater is as simple as turning the gas control to “Pilot.” 2 Turn off the cold water inlet valve, which is responsible for regulating the supply of water into the tank.

  • Make certain that this is the incoming cold water valve and not a valve for the outgoing hot water supply (the pipe should be cold).
  • The supply to this water heater is controlled by a lever valve.
  • 3 Using a hose, connect it to the tank drain valve, which is located in the bottom of the water heater, and direct it to a drain, the outdoors, or a large bucket.
  • Fill the tank with water by connecting a hose to the water heater’s drain valve.
  • As the water drains, this prevents a vacuum from building in the system.
  • To avoid scorching, exercise extreme caution.
  • 5Depress the drain valve on the water heater.

Once this is done, close both the drain valve and the PT valve.

In the event that you are totally draining the water heater, leave the drain valve open until the tank is completely empty.

7Refill the water heater with fresh water.

Return the water supply valve to its original position to re-fill the tank.

Then, reopen the hot water faucet to allow any remaining air to escape from the tank and pipes.

Allow the water to clear for a few minutes before turning off the faucet. 8Restart the water heater if necessary. If you have a gas water heater, relight the pilot light, or switch on the electric circuit if you have an electric water heater.

Water Heater Won’t Drain

If your water heater is draining slowly or not at all when you open the drain valve, you should try opening the pressure-relief valve to see if it helps (see the illustration at the top of this page). This has the potential to dislodge the vacuum that is keeping the water from leaving. In most cases, if the water heater won’t drain or drains slowly, the problem is most likely due to an excessive amount of sediment building up in the water heater. The drain valve of a water heater can become clogged with sediment.

First Steps in Breaking a Drain Valve Clog

1Detach the water heater from the mains. Depending on whether the water heater is gas or electric, switch off the gas valve or the circuit breaker that supplies electricity to the water heater. Secondly, connect an outside hose to the drain valve and run it outside, making sure that the hose’s end is below the level of the water heater. Turn on a hot water faucet someplace in the home or open the pressure-relief valve on the water heater to dislodge the vacuum that has built up inside the tank.

If the water flows freely, the valve is functional.

4 In the event you believe that the drain valve has become clogged, you can attempt to shoot water and air bubbles back into the tank by repeatedly walking on the hose a few feet away from the tank.

If it does not, continue reading.

How to Back-Flush a Water Heater

A hose is connected between the drain valve and an outdoor faucet, and water is squirted back into the water heater through the drain valve in order to backflush it. For this project, you’ll need two male threads connected together with a double-female garden hose coupler (which can be purchased online for approximately $8).

How to Flush a Water Heater Video

Take a look at this video, which demonstrates the procedure of cleansing your hot water heater.

Back-Flushing a Water Heater Step-by-Step

1First, perform the steps outlined above for preparation. 2Close the drain valve on the water heater by twisting it in the clockwise direction. 3Connect the male end of the garden hose to an outdoor hose faucet or a washtub faucet by means of the female hose coupler that was previously installed. Hose Coupler with a Double Female EndBosch4 Turn on the faucet to fill the hose with water pressure and fill the hose with water. 5Depress the drain valve on the water heater. A torrent of water should be forced into the water heater, forcing deposits away from the water heater’s valve.

7Remove the hose from the water faucet and attempt cleansing the tank once again with the hose. If the water heater’s drain valve is still not functioning properly, the next step is to either replace the drain valve or to replace the water heater.

How to Replace a Water Heater Drain Valve

As previously noted, flushing a water heater is a vital element of doing basic DIY water heater maintenance. Unfortunately, the drain valve on a water heater can get blocked with mineral deposits to the point where it must be completely replaced. Step-by-step instructions on how to replace it may be found here. Valve for the drain of a water heaterB K Water heater drain valves are available for purchase at most hardware stores and on the internet for around $8 per valve, depending on the model.

  1. Water heaters have a drain valve that is positioned at the bottom of the tank.
  2. Having a helper use buckets to collect and dump water that is flowing from the water heater while you remove and replace the valve will be the norm in most circumstances, but it may be necessary in other cases.
  3. Expect to be drenched as a result.
  4. This will take some time.
  5. To do this, switch off the cold-water supply to the water heater and ensure sure no one comes into contact with any of the hot water fixtures or appliances in the house while the valve is being changed.
  6. After that, turn off the circuit breaker on an electric water heater or the gas valve on a gas water heater to prevent the water from reheating further.
  7. Allow for the water in the water heater to drop down to a safe temperature before using it once more.

Before you begin the task, make sure you have two buckets, a pipe wrench, a screwdriver, and the new valve on hand to make the job easier.

Wear leather-palm gloves and have a helper as well as lots of rags on hand before you begin.

The water will begin to seep as the seal loosens, then spray, and ultimately pour warm (or hot) water!

Remove the valve completely from the system.

Insert a screwdriver into the hole and move it around to break up any deposits that have accumulated.



Disconnect the tank’s water supply with a hose until the water begins to flow clean of sediments.

In addition, if you’ve opened the water heater’s pressure-release valve or any hot water taps, make sure you close those as well.

8 In order to restart an electric water heater, turn the circuit breaker back on, or open the gas valve and ignite the pilot (or use the electronic ignition) in order to restart a gas water heater, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

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Water Heater Maintenance: Why Won’t My Water Heater Drain?

It is clear that you understand the necessity of water heater maintenance and that you are prepared to do one of the most critical tasks – emptying the tank. It is our pleasure to commend you on being an excellent homeowner and for staying on top of important chores. However, when you attempted to drain the tank, you discovered that it just wouldn’t seem to drain! What may be the source of the problem? See what I mean in the video below!

How To Drain A Water Heater

When everything is in working order, emptying a water heater tank is a rather straightforward procedure. It is usually sufficient to simply switch off the electricity to the system, turn on the cold water supply by opening the valve, connect a garden hose to the tank to transport the water and sediment away from the tank, and then open the drain valve and pressure relief valve to relieve the pressure buildup. Once the tank is completely emptied and fresh cold water is pouring through it, the operation is nearly complete.

Then, if you have a gas system, relight the pilotlight, or switch on the power if you have an electric system, and you’re done!

How To Unclog A Water Heater Drain Valve

If you’re not so lucky, and you’re having problems with your tank not draining, there’s a considerable probability the drain valve is clogged or otherwise stopped. As a consequence of calcium accumulation on or aroundthe drain valve, or silt from within the tank clogging the valve, this is a common occurrence. So, what can you do to clear the blockage in your drain? There are a variety of alternative tactics you may take based on your specific scenario, including:

  • Give It Some Time: If the clog is slight, you may only need to wait a short period of time for the pressure generated by the water and sediment exiting the tank to clear the blockage. You’ll most likely have a more major blockage on your hands if the tank isn’t emptying adequately within an hour. Use A Coat Hanger: While wire coat hangers are intended for the purpose of hanging clothes, they are also excellent instruments for dislodging clogs. Drain the tank by opening the drain valve and inserting the wire into the tank. Reposition it slightly to dislodge any debris or silt that may have accumulated around the drain opening. Back-flushing the drain is a technique in which water is used to drive debris away from the drain valves, allowing your tank to drain freely again. Using a wash machine fill hose with female connectors on both ends will be necessary for this project. Close the drain valve and connect one end of the hose to a nearby sink faucet, then connect the other end to another nearby sink faucet. For roughly ten seconds, turn on the faucet and open the drain valve, enabling water to pour into the tank from both ends. After that, turn off the faucet, close the drain valve, and remove the hose from the sink. After that, use the standard draining procedures.
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However, if this does not resolve the problem, it may necessitate the skillsand expertise of an experienced plumbing professional, or it may simply be the case that the drainvalve is broken and has to be repaired or replaced. Don’t give up, no matter what the situation is. Failure to remove the sediment from the tank on a regular basis might result in a variety of serious concerns, including increased wear and strain on the tank itself. All of this might result in the need for a completely new water heater much before you really need to replace the one you now have!

Your water heater is a critical component of your home’s infrastructure.

At Aztec PlumbingDrains, we’re delighted to provide water heater repair services that are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Furthermore, you will not be charged an additional fee if your water heater repair or installation is completed at night, on weekends, or on holidays.

How To Drain A Clogged Water Heater

Knowing how to unclog a drain valve might come in handy when you have more than 50 gallons of hot water in your tank and it refuses to drain! The most typical cause for a drain valve to become clogged is an accumulation of silt. Flushing sediment out of your water heater should be part of your normal water heater maintenance routine to ensure that it lasts as long as possible. This article will demonstrate a number of different techniques for unclogging a drain valve. Start at the beginning of the list and go on to the next way if the first one doesn’t work out for you.

Your water heater’s drain valve will be clogged to a varying degree, which will define the severity of the treatment you’ll need to perform. The vast majority of the time, you’ll be able to unclog your drain valve at some point in time.

Is Your Drain Valve Clogged?

As a result of the incoming water supply, sediment might accumulate in your tank. It can also be left over from the interior of your tank, such as rust. Minerals separate and settle at the bottom of the tank as a result of heating water, resulting in lime scale over time. Sediment buildup is detrimental to the performance of water heaters. It affects the efficiency of the unit, breaks down the inside of the tank, and has the potential to build up to the point where it clogs the drain valve, among other things.

If you do not discover a means to drain your tank, you will ultimately have to purchase a new water heater because the interior of the tank will begin to deteriorate and an unrepairable leak will occur.

  1. Before you do anything else, switch off the fuel to your water heater. Turn the circuit breaker off for electric units, and the control knob to pilot OFF for gas units if applicable. Connect a garden hose to the drain valve and run the other end of the hose outdoors to collect the water (or to a drain). then turn the water heater’s drainage valve to “off.” Air must be allowed to enter the tank from a nearby hot water faucet. As the water drains from your tank, take note of any unusual odors. If it is clear, the valve is not clogged
  2. Otherwise, it is. You will need to unclog your drain valve if the water is not draining or is just partially draining
  3. Otherwise, you will need to replace your drain valve.

How to Cool Water within a Hot Water Heater Tank

You should always use caution while handling hot water from your hot water heater tank since the water will be quite hot in most circumstances, and you will want to avoid getting burned. When attempting to drain the tank, you should always use safety goggles and work gloves to help prevent your eyes and hands from being injured. Always let the water within your tank to cool before attempting to empty it. Here are three options:

  1. Allow up to 24 hours after turning off the electricity for the water heater to cool before using it. Drain as much water down the drain valve as you possibly can. When the power is turned off, leave the water inlet valve open. Cool water will enter the tank when the water drains from it, diluting the hot water that was previously present. This procedure will only work if your drain valve is not fully clogged
  2. Otherwise, it will not work. When the drain valve is entirely jammed, turn on multiple hot water faucets throughout the home to flush the system. Cut power to the unit, but keep the cold water intake valve open to allow cold water to dilute the hot water.

How to Unclog a Drain Valve

The severity of the obstruction will decide which remedy is most effective for you. The first approach on this list is the simplest to implement. We propose that you start at the top and work your way down until you find a solution that is effective. Before you begin, keep in mind that anytime you empty your water heater, you should always switch off the electricity and shut off the incoming water supply. Check with your local plumber and get FREE estimates today.

Give it Time

Many mild blockages will clear themselves on their own. If the pressure from the water is high enough, the debris will be forced through the open drain valve if the chance presents itself. Take the following steps:

  • Glue the other end of a garden hose to the drain valve and route the other end outside or to an interior drainage system. Close all hot water taps in the house. Drain the water by opening the drain valve. Wait to see if the water’s pressure will be enough to force through the obstruction. Allow for a couple of hours.

Use a Stiff Wire

It may be highly successful to use the “stiff wire” approach, especially if there is a little amount of debris stopping your tank from emptying, which may be causing your water heater to make strange noises. The way it works is as follows:

  • Close the drain valve and remove the hose that connects to it before starting the job. Place a couple towels below the drain valve or a bucket beneath the valve to catch any leaking water. Open the drain valve and put a stiff wire or a wire coat hanger into the entrance of the drain valve to stop it from backing up. Rotate the wire in a circular motion to make it more flexible. This will aid in the loosening of the debris. If you were successful in unclogging the drain valve, water should begin to flow through the valve. Continue to insert the wire until you get a steady stream of water. After that, close the valve and connect the hose to it. During the process of draining the tank, it is not unusual for the drain valve to become clogged on many occasions. Continue until the tank is completely depleted.

Watch the Video

The ” stomp on the hose ” approach should be tried first if neither of the other two ways work.

Here’s What to Do:

  • Stomping on the hose approximately 2-feet away from the water heater with the line attached and the drain valve open will cause an air bubble to be blown into the tank. This will frequently be sufficient to clear the drain valve. Prepare to repeat the operation because the seiment within the tank will most likely settle and block the valve once more
  • Else, call for assistance.

Check with your local plumber and get FREE estimates today.

Reverse Flow

It is generally always necessary to use the ” reverse flow ” approach to unclog a drain valve; however, when the blockage is severe or when the drain valve no longer functions, you will need to resort to one of the other methods instead.

Here’s What to Do:

  • Connect one end of a washing machine hose to the drain valve and the other end to a garden hose when the drain valve is closed
  • This will prevent the water from backing up. Reconnect the garden hose’s other end to a threaded faucet, such as a wash tub or an exterior faucet
  • Turn on the water supply to the faucet and open the drain valve for about 10 to 15 seconds to flush the toilet. As water pours into the tank through the valve, it should unclog the drain valve
  • Otherwise, the tank would overflow. Close the drain valve and turn off the water supply at the faucet if necessary. Disconnect the hose from the faucet and turn on the drain valve if necessary. The water should be able to drain. However, if it does not, it is most likely because the drain valve is malfunctioning or because the obstruction is too severe.

Hose from the washing machineConnecting a washing machine hose to your drain valve together with a garden hose will help you to clear any obstruction that has formed in your drain valve.

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Unless you are able to unclog the drain valve using one of the methods listed above, it may be necessary to replace the valve.

It is feasible to do this task with a full tank of water, believe it or not.

Here’s What to Do:

  • Teflon tape should be used to seal the threads of your new drain valve. We recommend that you purchase an abrasive drain valve. All of the hot water taps around the home should be turned off. Creating a vacuum while the faucets are closed will prevent the water from leaking out
  • This will prevent the water from leaking out. Place towels and a pan under the drain valve to catch any leaks. Unscrew the drain valve using an adjustable wrench and rapidly replace it with your new valve
  • While the operation is underway, some water will be released from your tank. Consider switching valves as quickly as possible and having towels on hand to quickly wipe up any water that may have gotten into the house. Installing the replacement valve is as simple as connecting a garden hose and draining the storage tank.

Drain Valve Made of Brass It is strongly recommended that you replace your drain valve with a high-quality brass one if you find yourself in this situation. Consult with a Professional Plumber in Your Area Get FREE Estimates Right Now!

Replace the Valve with a Ball Valve

Replacing your drain valve with a ball valve will not only solve your immediate problem, but it will also serve as a preventative measure, preventing your water heater from being clogged in the future as well. Ball valves are far bigger than normal drain valves, and as a result, they are more difficult to clog. Purchase a 3/4″ ball valve as well as two 3/4″ dielectric nipples for this project.

Here’s What to Do:

  • Wrap teflon tape around one end of the dielectric nipple to keep it in place. Then screw the wrapped end into the ball valve
  • This completes the process. Wrap both ends of the second nipple around the first nipple (3 of the 4 threaded ends of the nipples will be lined with Teflon tape). Decide which one will be wrapped around the wall valve handle. Wrap the nipple around the handle so that it opens away from the tank If you want to prevent water from spilling out of the drain valve hole, you should turn off all of the faucets in your house. Place towels and a pan or bucket beneath the drain valve to catch any water that comes out. Remove the drain valve with a wrench and replace it with your new ball valve as soon as possible. Prepare yourself since some water will be poured from the tank. Pour water into the tank by connecting a garden hose and turning on the ball valve. When the ball valve is not in use, it is a good idea to remove the handle from the valve. The majority of ball valves are equipped with a lengthy lever-style handle that can be accidentally opened. If this occurs, your tank may begin to leak without your notice. This has the potential to damage the tank, cause water damage, and even result in serious burns.

Ball Valve is a type of valve that has a ball in it. The majority of the time, replacing your drain valve with a ball valve will resolve your problem. Dielectric NipplesYou’ll need two nipples to replace the drain valve with a ball valve when replacing the drain valve with a ball valve.

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It’s quite reasonable to bring your tank outside and allow it to drain from the top from time to time. In the event that you intend on upgrading your water heater, you may not want to go through the bother of replacing your drain valve with a ball valve, and you may not be concerned about the state of your tank after it has already been emptied. It seems reasonable to move your tank outside in this situation. However, you must use caution because your tank will be incredibly hefty. It is strongly recommended that you chill the water first.

Here’s What to Do:

  • Unplug the power source (gas line or electrical connection) from the house. Ensure that all water lines, including incoming and outgoing, are disconnected. Then, using a hand truck, transport your water heater outside
  • As soon as you are outdoors, carefully flip the heater on its side. Allow the water to flow out of the tank’s top, if possible.
See also:  Why Is My Water Heater Popping

Check with your local plumber and get FREE estimates today.

Water Heater Won’t Stop Draining? Here’s 4 Tricks to Try

The following are some suggestions on what to do if your water heater won’t stop draining. Please read this post for four tips that will assist you in preventing the unit from dumping water and money down the drain. If your water heater won’t stop draining, here are four things you may do.

  1. Check for any leaks in the unit. If there are any, make sure they are repaired. Wrap the heater with insulating wrap to keep it warm. Drain your tank to get rid of any silt that has accumulated
  2. Replace the tank with a new one.

If your water heater would not stop draining, this indicates that it is not functioning correctly. Are you prepared to make repairs to yours? Then read on to learn more about these four strategies in greater depth. You can fix your water heater by following the steps outlined below.

4 Ways to Stop Your Water Heater From Draining

Some sounds provide the background music for a typical day at home. The refrigerator is operating quietly, emitting a low hum. As the heating system cycles on, you may hear a faint grumble. Even the high-pitched squeak of the door hinges rotating was a pleasant distraction. One sound, though, that causes us to be a bit anxious is the persistent draining of a water heater, which may be heard all day long. In addition, let’s be honest, it’s not unreasonable to feel a bit worried if you notice your water heater emptying non-stop.

As a result, the next portion of this article will assist you in identifying and correcting the problem with your equipment.

1 Check the Water Heater For Leaks

An unresolved leak in a water heater is one of the most prevalent causes of a water heater that drains continually.

If your water heater is leaking, it will have to continuously draining in order to compensate for the loss of hot water that has occurred. In this instance, you should take urgent action to resolve the issue. Here are just a couple of the reasons why.

  • A leak, no matter how tiny, can do significant damage to your house. It has the potential to discolor your flooring, ceiling, and even seep through your drywall. When leaks are left unattended for an extended period of time, they become expensive to fix and attract mold
  • If your water heater is continually draining, it will raise your energy bill

So, what is the best way to inspect your water heater for leaks? Here is a list of the locations you should check for leaks, as well as what you should do if you find any.

Where to check for a leak What you should do if you find a leak
The temperature relief valve hose Replace the temperature relief valve
The temperature relief valve thread Seal the thread with plumber’s tape
The drain valve If the drain valve is plastic, replace it with a brass valve. If the thread is leaking, seal it withplumber’s tape.
The thread connections from the hot and cold pipes leading to the tank Call a plumber to repair the problem
The inner tank, inside the door cover Replace the tank

Do you want to take a closer look at those stages in greater depth? Then have a look at this training video for further information.

2 Insulate the Water Heater Better

Another method of preventing your water heater from emptying is to insulate it more effectively. But why is it vital to have proper insulation on a water heater? Here are a few of the reasons why.

  • The insufficient insulation of your water heater will result in an increase in your monthly energy expenditure. This is due to the fact that the unit will not shut off when it should, and if it is not correctly insulated, it will not be able to keep the proper water temperature temperature. This implies that it will have to run continuously in order to stay warm.

As a result, we now understand why your heater should be well insulated. But how can you tell whether yours is in need of more insulation? The following are two steps you may take to find out.

  1. Make contact with the heater. Whenever it seems warm, it is because it is losing heat to the outside air. In other words, it is a waste of energy. As a result, it will be able to run for longer periods of time. Check the R-value printed on the sticker attached to your tank. If the R-value of the tank is less than 24, it may be necessary to insulate it in order for it to operate more effectively. Even though the tank does not appear to be hot to the touch, you should perform this procedure.

So, we’ve explored the reasons for this. But let’s get down to business and figure out how. This is the proper way to insulate your water heater. You will require the following items in order to complete this task. You Will Require The following are the steps that you will need to follow in order to install an insulating blanket.

  1. Apply tape to the insulating blanket and wrap it around the water heater to keep it in place. Make a circle around the burners, valves, and pipes with the marker
  2. This will serve as a guide. Remove the blanket and use scissors to cut out the gaps. As a result, they will be easily accessible for any future maintenance work. Wrap the insulating blanket over the water tank and tape it in place to keep it from shifting.

IMPORTANT: If you have a gas water heater, you should not use the insulating blanket to cover the top of the heater. Would you want to see an example of those steps being carried out? Then you should watch this instructional video.

3 Drain the Water Heater to Remove Sediment

Okay, so here’s the third and last tip. Draining the water from your water heater. And I understand what you’re thinking.hasn’t it already accomplished a great deal in that regard? Despite the fact that your water heater is already half emptying, it has to be entirely drained. This will assist it in getting rid of any items that may be preventing it from functioning properly. This contains some of the items listed below. How can you be certain that emptying your water heater is the best course of action for your situation?

  • When you look inside the tank, you may hear air popping noises. It is difficult for the unit to heat the water to a satisfactory temperature. The water will not be able to cease draining
  • This is the first time you’ve emptied the heater in more than 6 months.

Prepare to empty your water heater if you haven’t done so already. Following that, you’ll require the following equipment:You’ll Need Listed below is the procedure for draining your water heater.

  1. Shut off the water heater by turning off the power or gas. If you’re using an electric heater, you should utilize the circuit breaker. Turn the thermostat to the pilot setting if you’re using gas. Allow enough time for the water to cool down after turning off the heater at night. To drain the tank, connect a garden hose to the drain located at the bottom of the tank. Incorporate the other end of the hose into a floor drain located outside the house. Open the hot-water faucet that is closest to you. Drain the water by opening the drain valve.

Please use caution when completing this step since hot water will be discharged from the tank.

  1. Once the tank is completely depleted, open the cold water faucet for a brief period of time. Allow it to run for a few minutes to drain out any leftover sediment in the tank
  2. Then turn it off. Close all of the faucets. Close the drain valve and wait a few minutes. Afterwards, disconnect the garden hose and restart the water heater.

Connect a hose to a water heater to allow it to drain.

4 Replace the Water Heater

What is the age of your water heater? It is normal for a water heater to survive between 6 and 13 years in most cases. However, to be really honest, once you reach the double digits, everything becomes a bit of a lottery. If your water heater is more than 13 years old, it may be more cost effective to replace it rather than attempt to repair it. The reason behind this is as follows.

  • A typical water heater has a guarantee of around 5 to 6 years in length. So if you require any repair work beyond that period, you will be responsible for covering the costs. The cost of replacement components and maintenance work is too costly. It is possible that replacement components for older water heaters will be difficult to locate. It doesn’t take long for the issues that arise when an outdated water heater ceases operating correctly to snowball. It will be one item after another until you have almost changed the entire system

As I’ve mentioned before, replacing a water heater is a costly endeavor. However, it is preferable to replace it than than continue to spend money on expensive mini-repairs on an old machine that will eventually fail. Consider taking a look at this video, which discusses how to determine if it is time to replace your water heater in further detail.


If your water heater won’t stop draining, you may need to replace it. Then you’re probably concerned that this problem will cause your energy bill to skyrocket and that it will eventually result in a major leak. I’m confident that this post has demonstrated to you four steps you can take to resolve your water heater problem.

Has this article been of assistance to you? If this is the case, we recommend that you read some of our other articles and free tips. You may even join up for our email list if you wanted to. Have a wonderful day! -Craig

How to Drain a Water Heater With a Clogged Drain Valve

A drain valve on a water heater is a convenience feature that makes life easier. This product will only be used when draining for repairs, when it is being disposed of, or when flushing the lime scale out with a hose, among other things. A lack of lime, calcium, or iron accumulation in the water heater will result in easy drainage of the water through the drain valve. However, if there is a buildup of debris, pieces of material can become lodged in the hole and obstruct the flow of water to the point where it will no longer drain.


Check to see if the valve is genuinely obstructed before proceeding. Disconnect the water heater from the circuit breaker panel. Alternative: Turn the gas valve till it is perpendicular to the gas line and then release the pressure. If the drain valve is not located in close proximity to a drain, a drain hose should be attached. Drain the tank by opening the drain valve and starting the draining process. Activate the pressure-relief valve located on the water heater’s exterior. Instead, switch on the hot water tap in your home.

As soon as the drain begins to run clean and clear, it indicates that the problem has been resolved.


Step firmly onto the drain hose, which should be about 2 feet away from the water storage tank. The air bubble created by this will be forced back into the tank, and it will help to temporarily unblock the valve if there is a clog caused by lime scale or other debris. If the tank is clogged with debris, the obstruction may reappear within a few minutes if the tank is empty. Draining the tank by repeatedly stomping on the hose and forcing air back into the tank after each clogging incident can eventually drain the tank, but it may take more effort than it is worth in the short term.


Reverse the flow of water via the water heater. Close the valve and attach a faucet to the drain hose to stop the flow of water. For this purpose, a two-sided female coupling washer hose should be used. A washer hose can be threaded onto the end of a drain hose, as well as onto the nozzle of a regular garden faucet or the faucet of a washtub. Once the washing hose has been connected to a faucet and a drain hose, turn on the faucet and let pressure to build up in the hose before turning off the faucet.

Remove the hose from the drain by turning off the valve and unscrewing it.

If the water does not drain, it is possible that the lime buildup is too severe or that the valve is damaged.


Drain the water heater by removing the drain valve from the water heater. Allow 24 hours for the tank to cool before doing this. Turn off the drain valve by inserting a pipe wrench into the valve body and turning carefully. It’s possible that the fixture may begin to leak abundantly as you remove it, but the leaks will rapidly become clogged with lime particles. You should expect a torrent of water to burst out the opening after the valve has been entirely shut off.

It is possible that the water tank will continue to empty effectively in this manner. However, if the lime deposits are extensive and plug the drain hole, the draining may come to a grinding halt very soon.


A screwdriver should be inserted into the drain hole that has been created by removing the valve. Pull the screwdriver out of the hole by swirling it around. The water will begin to drain, but it is possible that it could block up again shortly. Insert the screwdriver into the opening as many times as required to break up the obstruction before the tank has entirely drained.

Things You Will Need

  • Wrench for removing pipes
  • Hose for washing machines
  • Leather-palm gloves
  • Screwdriver


When disconnecting the drain valve, put on a pair of leather-palm gloves to protect your hands from the hot water.

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