How To Clean Out Hot Water Heater

How to Flush Your Hot Water Heater

If you’re busy with home tasks, it’s easy to ignore the importance of flushing your hot water heater. In my own case, I had never considered doing so until Jeremy included it in his really useful house maintenance checklist. However, cleaning out your hot water heater on a regular basis is a vital duty. It is important to clean out the muck and mineral deposits that have accumulated in your hot water heater to ensure that it runs more effectively and that its life is prolonged, so saving you money in the long run.

However, fortunately, it turned out to be really simple.

I detailed the procedure as I went through, in case you find yourself in a similar situation.

Here’s how it’s done:

How Often Should You Flush Your Hot Water Heater?

While carrying out home duties, it is easy to ignore the need of flushing your hot water heater. In my own case, I had never considered doing so until Jeremy included it in his really useful house maintenance list. However, draining out your hot water heater on a regular basis is a critical duty to perform correctly. Remove the muck and mineral deposits that have accumulated in your hot water heater to make it function more efficiently and for a longer period of time, so saving you money over time.

However, it turned out to be really simple.

I chronicled the procedure as I went along in case you find yourself in a similar position.

It works like this:

How to Flush Your Hot Water Heater

Hot water heaters are available in two different configurations: gas and electric. Due to the fact that I have a gas hot water heater, following instructions will be specific to flushing a gas hot water heater. While there are some similarities between gas and electric, the most significant distinction is that with gas, you will be shutting off the gas to your appliance; with electric, you will be turning off the power to your appliance. 1. Turn the Thermostat on your hot water heater to the “Off” position.

  1. In most cases, the thermostat for a gas hot water heater may be found in the bottom of the tank.
  2. If you switch off your hot water heater and it’s an older type, you’ll have to re-light the pilot light, which might be a hassle.
  3. 2.
  4. If you have a gas hot water heater, locate the gas pipe that runs from the tank to your thermostat and pilot light and switch the valve to the “off” setting.
  5. 3.
  6. 4.
  7. Turn it all the way off.

Fill a sink or tub with hot water by turning on the faucet.

As a result, you will be less likely to have a vacuum build in the pipes while draining the hot water tank.

Connect the garden hose to the drain spigot on the wall.

Depending on whether or not your hot water heater is located in the basement, you may require a portable pump in order to pump water from the basement to the first floor of your home.

Turn on the spigot and drain the water.

If your tank is clogged with silt, you may need to thoroughly drain it.

I decided to drain it anyhow.

Flush your hot water tankTo flush your hot water tank, just switch on the cold water tap that leads into your hot water tank.

This might take some time.

Here’s a photo of the water that was flowing out of my tank when I first started flushing the toilet: As you can see, there was still some silt (which can be seen at the bottom) pouring out of the hole.

Flushing should continue until there is very little or no sediment left in your water. Turn off the cold water faucet that feeds into your hot water tank and leave it shut.

Finishing Things Up

Gas and electric hot water heaters are the two types of hot water heaters available on the market. Because I have a gas hot water heater, the following instructions will be specific to that type of unit. The most significant distinction between gas and electric is that, with gas, you will be shutting off the gas to your appliance, but with electric, you will be turning off the power to your device (see figure). 1. Depress the “Off” button on the thermostat of your hot water heater. In most cases, the thermostat for a gas hot water heater may be found towards the bottom of the tank.

  1. Being extra cautious, I opted to totally shut the system off.
  2. It is necessary to locate your home’s breaker box in order to turn off the switch that supplies electricity to your hot water heater if you have an electric hot water heater.
  3. Turn off the gas supply to the hot water heater (if applicable).
  4. The following step will not be necessary if you just set your thermostat to “pilot.” 3.
  5. It is normally located towards the top of your hot water heater, near the cold water valve.
  6. 4.
  7. Keep them turned on for the duration of the flushing cycle.

5.

First, make certain that the hose’s other end is either outdoors or at a minimum, into a bucket, before turning on the water.

6.

Drain your tank until the water flows clean and there is no more sediment in it, then refill it.

It’s easy to see in the photo above that the water was a little brown when I first started draining it, and there was a lot of sediment at the bottom of the bowl.

FlushYour hot water tank may be flushed by simply turning on the cold water tap that feeds into your tank.

The process may take a few minutes or longer.

When I initially started flushing, this is what the water looked like flowing from my tank: The silt (which you can see at the bottom) was still flowing out, as you can see.

Flushing should be done often until there is little or no silt in your water. Turn off the cold water faucet that feeds into your hot water tank and save some money.

  • Disconnect the drainage spigot and the hose from the drain
  • Turn off the water supply to your sink or tub that you had switched on at the start of the process. To begin, turn on the cold water tap that feeds your hot water heater. To get the air out of the system, turn on the hot water faucet in a sink or bathtub for a few minutes. At this point, you should be able to get cold water out of the faucet. To turn it off, press the button. Restart your hot water heater if you have accidentally turned off the gas supply. If you have accidentally switched off your hot water heater’s thermostat, re-light the pilot light (it’s simple — I may write an article on it in the future), and then turn the thermostat back on. For electric water heaters, locate the breaker switch on your electrical panel that supplies electricity to your hot water heater and turn it off. Allow around 20 minutes for the water to warm up. Start by turning on one of your house’s hot water spigots to confirm that hot water is flowing out

Boom. You’ve taken the time to flush your hot water heater. Make a note on your calendar to repeat the process in a year.

How to Flush Sediment Out of a Water Heater

The information contained in this article is provided solely for the purpose of providing general information and does not constitute professional advice. With respect to this material, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action. LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action.

  • Every homeowner understands the need of regularly cleaning and maintaining their systems and appliances.
  • The removal of silt from a water heater can extend its lifespan and increase its efficiency.
  • By removing sediment from your water heater, you may save money while also heating your water more quickly.
  • Learn more about how a water heater works so that you can better understand how to clean out your tank.

1. Turn the Water Heater Off

THIS ARTICLE’S MATERIAL IS PROVIDED SOLELY FOR GENERAL INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES AND DOES NOT CONSTITUTE PROFESSIONAL ADVICE OF ANY KIND. With respect to this material, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action. LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY makes no claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should conduct your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances.

The need of cleaning and maintaining your systems and appliances is well-known to any house owner.

It is possible to extend the lifespan and efficiency of a water heater by flushing sediment.

When you flush your water heater, you may save money while also increasing the efficiency of the unit. Please see this page for further information on why you should clean sediment out of your tank. How a water heater functions will help you better grasp how to clean your tank.

2. Turn the Cold Water Valve Off

The information contained in this article is provided solely for the purpose of general information and does not constitute professional advice. With respect to this material, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY does not claim to be an expert in the subject matter, and you should do your own research and/or seek the advice of appropriately qualified professionals with respect to your specific circumstances before taking action. FOR YOUR USE OF ANY AND ALL INFORMATION CONTAINED HEREIN, LANDMARK HOME WARRANTY ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY AND EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ALL LIABILITY.

Many homeowners, however, are unaware that cleaning a water heater once a year can help to eliminate a buildup of sediment from the bottom of the tank.

Sediment can form a barrier between the heating components of a water heater and the water, making it more difficult to heat your home’s showers, dishwasher, and laundry.

More information on why you should flush sediment out of your tank may be found here.

3. Let the water cool.

Don’t dump scorching hot water down the drain. Allow the tank to cool after the heating components have been turned off. Some bigger water heater tanks might take up to two hours to complete the process.

4. Attach a drain or garden hose to the drain valve on the side of the tank

Drain your water heater by connecting a hose to the drain valve located on the side of the unit. Make certain that the hose is properly screwed on, otherwise you may experience leaks when you drain your water heater tank from the faucet.

5. Place the end of the hose in a bucket or drain.

Don’t let your house flood! Make sure to place the hose’s end in a heat-resistant pail or down a drain when you’re finished. Before you begin emptying the water heater, check to be sure that your drain will not overflow while doing so.

6. Turn on a faucet (or two)

The use of faucets around your house might help prevent a vacuum from accumulating inside your plumbing system. Turn on the “hot” setting on your faucets and leave them running. Due to the fact that you have shut off the cold water valve to your water heater, there will be little or no warm water displaced through them.

7. Start draining the tank by turning on the drain valve.

Turn the valve on carefully with a flathead screwdriver, making sure there are no leaks and that the bucket or drain you are emptying the water into is not going to overflow while doing so.

8. After the water heater tank has finished draining the sediment, turn the drain valve off, remove the hose, turn the cold water valve on, and turn the heating elements in the water heater back on.

You are almost through with your water heater cleanup once you have thoroughly emptied it and removed all of the debris from the tank. In order to refill your tank, close the drain valve and remove the hose from the tank. Turn the cold water valve back on and the heating elements back on by turning the knobs on the thermostat. Check to see that your faucets are still turned on, and after the water is flowing normally again, turn them off. You’ll need to wait around 30 minutes before checking for hot water.

Do you want to learn more about water heaters and why yours might not be working as effectively as it should?

When it comes to water heaters (up to 70 gallons), Landmark Home Warranty provides plans that will cover them if they fail due to regular wear and tear.

If your water heater stops working and you have a Landmark Home Warranty protection plan, you may be able to have it fixed or replaced for the price of a service call if the problem is covered by the conditions of your contract.

Give us a call right away or submit a service request online today! ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

How to Flush a Water Heater

Time a few of hours Complexity IntermediateCost$51–100

Introduction

Have you cleansed your water heater in the last several months? This crucial task should be completed at least once a year in order to eliminate silt that has accumulated at the bottom of the tank. This is especially true if you reside in a hard-water location, which is common in the Midwest. Because it’s out of sight, it’s easy to forget about it, but accumulated sediment affects the heating effectiveness of your water heater, which results in higher energy bills.

Tools Required

  • Female PVC trap adapter 1-1/4 in. x 1-1/2 in.
  • 2″ brass nipple
  • 24-in. piece of 1/2 in. I.D. vinyl tubing
  • 3/4 in. MIP x 1/2 in. barb fitting
  • 3/4 in. x 3-in. nipple
  • Brass ball valve
  • Brass elbow
  • Dielectric nipple
  • Garden hose adapter
  • Shop vacuum adapter
  • 1-1/4 in. x 1-1/2 in. female PVC trap adapter

If you haven’t cleansed your water heater before, or if you haven’t done so in a long time, you might be in for a nasty surprise in the shape of sediment buildup, which can limit the life of your heater significantly. A popping or rumbling sound emanating from your water heater is one symptom that you have an excessive accumulation of sediment. The sound you’re hearing is the sound of steam bubbles rising through the sludge. When sediment builds up in a gas water heater, it causes hot spots that can damage the tank and lead it to fail prematurely.

See also:  How To Strap A Water Heater

As a result, understanding how to drain and flush a water heater will pay dividends in the form of cheaper energy costs and a longer heater life.

Project step-by-step (8)

  • It’s possible that you’ve never cleaned your water heater before, or that you haven’t done so in years, and that you’re in for an unpleasant surprise in the shape of sediment build-up, which may limit the life of your heater significantly. A cracking or rumbling sound coming from your water heater might be an indication of severe sediment accumulation. Those are steam bubbles rising through the mud, and they’re making a noise. When sediment builds up in a gas water heater, it causes hot spots that can damage the tank and lead it to fail sooner than it would otherwise. An accumulation of silt on the lower heating element of an electric water heater might cause the lower heating element to fail. In other words, understanding how to drain and flush a water heater will pay dividends in the form of cheaper energy costs and a longer lifespan for the heater. What the sediment in your water heater looks like is shown below.
  • Please keep in mind that this will allow you to attach your vacuum to 3/4-inch tubing. The barbed fitting (C) attaches to vinyl tubing with an inside diameter of 1/2 inch.

Drain Water Heater Liquid

  • Shut off the water heater by turning off the gas or electricity. Make sure that the hot water faucet is running full blast for around 10 minutes to lessen the water temperature in the tank
  • Otherwise, the water will boil. Closing the cold water valve at the top of the tank and connecting a garden hose to the existing drain valve and routing it to a floor drain are the first steps.
  • Using a kitchen strainer to capture the silt will help prevent the sediment from clogging the floor drain.
  • Make sure that a hot water faucet on an upstairs floor is turned on, as well as the water heater drain valve Wait until sediment jams the valve and causes flow to be reduced before flushing. Close the hot water faucet and the water heater drain valve on the second floor. Remove the temperature-pressure release valve and replace it with the vacuum adapter
  • Then repeat the process. Connect the shop vacuum hose to the vacuum and turn it on
  • Note: This creates suction in the tank, preventing you from getting drenched when you remove the old drain valve.

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Notice that this applies suction to the tank, preventing soaking when the old drain valve is pulled out of the tank;

Remove the Old Valve

  • By rotating the plastic nut below the knob, you may unscrew and remove the valve while exerting suction via the TPR port with a shop vacuum, and then replace it.
  • Tips: If it breaks off in pieces, saw the fractured area with a hacksaw blade until you come across metallic threads. After that, chisel away at the parts using a hammer and screwdriver.

Assemble the New Valve

  • Tips: If it breaks off in pieces, saw the fractured area with a hacksaw blade until you come across metal threads. Then chip away at the fragments with a hammer and a screwdriver.
  • Pro tip: If it breaks off, saw the fractured section with a hacksaw blade until you reach metal threads. Then chisel away at the parts using a hammer and screwdriver.

Install the New Valve

  • In order to use the new full-port valve, make sure it is closed. One end of the garden hose should be connected to the valve, and the other end should be directed into a colander put over the floor drain.

CAUTION!

After you have flushed the water heater, remove the ball valve handle, especially if the water heater is in a location where people may stroll by and accidently hit the handle. Upon opening, hot water might be released, resulting in severe burns. In order to prevent it from falling out of the handle, twist knot it to the valve. Step 6: Organize your thoughts and feelings about the situation.

Flush the Tank

  • Following a thorough flushing of the water heater, remove the ball valve handle, particularly if the water heater is in a location where people may stroll by and accidently bump the handle. Upon opening, hot water may be released, resulting in severe burns. In order to prevent it from falling out of your hand, twist knot it to the valve. Step 6: Organize your thoughts and feelings about your situation.
  • Advice from the experts: The majority of the silt will be flushed out through the full-port valve. To remove the remainder, open the cold water valve at the top of the tank in short bursts, blasting the water toward the drain until it runs clear.

The seventh step is to suction out the sediment.

  • Remove the Sediment in Step 7.

Step 8: Refill the Water Heater with water.

  • Fill the water heater with fresh water
  • Turn on the gas or electric

How To Clean and Flush a Water Heater

Please keep in mind that this content may contain affiliate links. This means that, at no additional cost to you, we may gain a small profit on purchases made via our links. Cleaning your water heater on an annual basis is the most effective approach to ensure that it is as safe and trustworthy as possible. Learn how to flush a water heater by following these steps: In related news, here’s how to clean a TANKLESS water heater.

Drain the Water Heater

Connect a garden hose to the hose bib located near the bottom of the water heater and run the hose to a floor drain or an exterior place to collect any excess water from the water heater. Note: If you have a drainpanunderneath that has been properly connected to a drain, you will not need to use a hose. Turn off the water heater’s electricity, or turn the gas control valve to the “Vacation” position, whichever is appropriate. Close the cold water entry valve, which is normally found at the top of the tank.

Open the drain valve and turn on the hot water faucet nearest to the tank to allow air to circulate through the tank.

It is true that larger hot water heater sizes will take a little longer to drain, but it should not take more than a few minutes in most cases.

The moment has come to upgrade your water heater’s drain valve from the less robust plastic version with the more durable brass version. Remove the drain valve and replace it with the brass valve, which should be done with a big adjustable wrench.

Cleaning and Flushing the Tank

If you go to your local hardware shop, you can get a long, thin brush (like this one) that is intended for cleaning refrigerator coils but is also wonderful for cleaning water heater tanks. Insert the brush into the opening left by the drain valve once it has been disassembled. Scrape the bottom of the tank and as much of the inside walls of the tank as you can with the brush, being careful not to scratch the surface of the tank. In the event that your tank has not been cleaned in a while, this process may take some time.

  • A short 3/4 inch plumbing nipple should be screwed into the drain hole.
  • Make sure a bucket is placed right below the plumbing nipple, or that you have a garden hose connected to the opposite end of the nipple (or let it drain into a properly installed drain pan).
  • Connect a hose to the cold water input valve and turn it on for a few minutes until the water flowing out of the hose is clear.
  • Some material, such as rust or calcium deposits, may be present in the bucket.
  • Although it is beneficial, you should still physically flush and clean a water heater, but you will not have to do it on a regular basis.

Completing the Project

Turn off the hot water faucet if it is still running. Rather than replacing the drain valve, you may install an inline ball valve at the end of the nipple to make future cleaning easier and more convenient. It will be necessary to install a second, short nipple to the valve’s outflow side. Wrap plumber’s tape over the threads on both sides of the nipple and tighten the nipple into the tank until it is completely secure. Screw the ball valve into place and tighten it down completely. Open the cold water inlet valve by turning it to the on position.

As soon as all of the air has been withdrawn from the tank, reconnect the electricity or turn on the gas control valve to the “On” position again.

How to Clean Out a Water Heater Tank

Greetings, Maintenance Personnel: My duplex has a water heater that holds 40 or 50 gallons. Can you tell me the technique for emptying out the tank? Because our water is somewhat hard, I’m confident that it contains silt. However, other than a drain valve, I am unable to locate a clean-out for the tank.

Frank

Respectfully, Maintenance Staff: There is a water heater in my duplex, which holds 40 to 50 gallons of water.

In order to clear out the tank, what is the procedure? We have hard water, therefore I’m certain it contains silt. Other than a drain valve, I don’t see any other way to clear out the tank.

How To Clean A Water Heater The Simple Way

If you maintain your water heater properly, there is no reason why it shouldn’t survive for more than a decade or more. Knowing how to clean a water heater is one of the most important skills to have in order to do this. Our goal with this essay is to provide a comprehensive walkthrough of the process of cleaning your water heater, regardless of its make or model.

How To Clean Your Water Heater: The Basics

If you’ve read our article on drinking tap water in Phoenix, you’ll know that the water that arrives at your house in Arizona (or any other state in the United States, for that matter) includes silt, minerals, and chemicals. In the course of time, these impurities might accumulate in your water heater, causing it to operate inefficiently. Inefficiencies such as inconsistent heating, an element that fails to stay lighted, and a blocked drain valve are all examples of inefficiencies. All of these will result in bills that are greater than planned.

The most effective technique to avoid this is to flush the system on a regular basis.

How Often Should You Flush Your Water Heater?

Water arriving to your house in Arizona (or any U.S. state, for that matter) includes silt, minerals, and chemicals, as you’ll recall if you’ve read our piece on drinking tap water in Phoenix. As a result of the accumulation of these impurities in your water heater, it will become less efficient over time. Uneven heating, an element that fails to stay lighted, and a blocked drain valve are all examples of inefficiencies. All of these will result in bills that are greater than anticipated. Sediment accumulation can get so severe in some circumstances that it might create leaks in the water heater itself.

Signs It’s Time To Flush Your Water Heater

Water heater flushing on a regular basis is a successful technique, but it is also beneficial to be aware of the warning signals that suggest a flush is necessary in order to avoid costly repairs later on. Here’s a brief review on what each of these indications means.

You Can’t Get Hot Water

If you are having trouble getting hot water from your heater, it is possible that sediment has accumulated within it to the point where it is either preventing the element from lighting or stopping the heat from passing to your water. Regardless of the situation, this is a hint that you need to flush the heating system.

Your Water Heater Is Making Strange Sounds

It is possible that silt can cluster together and create calcified stones that will smash against the sides of your water heater in areas where water is very harsh. This is a warning indication that you should flush the heater before the stones grow to such a size that they choke the drain line.

Your Water Smells Funny

While sediment accumulation is often the most serious issue you should be concerned about when cleaning your water heater, germs can also form within a tank that has not been flushed in a long period of time if the tank has not been cleaned.

This bacteria has the potential to cause a strange odor in your water. Not only will you need to flush the tank, but you’ll also need to sterilize it, which we’ll go over in more detail in the next section.

How To Clean Your Hot Water Heater: The Process

When cleaning your water heater, you will need to open many taps around your home and allow the water to drain entirely out of the tank. This is a necessary part of the process. Cleaning your hot water heater is actually pretty simple if you follow the correct procedures. You’ll discover that these procedures become second nature to you as time goes on.

Step1: Prepare The Heater For Flushing

Before you do anything else, be sure that the thermostat on your water heater is turned off. For many tanks, merely switching to “Pilot” mode will suffice to get the desired results. As a result, you will not have to go through the hassle of reactivating the pilot light, which is a simple but time-consuming task. You will also avoid the need to turn off the gas if you follow this procedure. It will be necessary to turn off the electricity to your water heater if you have one. The proper switch will be located on the device.

The valve for this operation is normally found on top of the heater, which makes sense.

Step2: Open The Hot Water Faucets In Your Home

The thermostat on your water heater should be turned off first, before you do anything else. For many tanks, merely switching to “Pilot” mode will suffice to get it running. As a result, you will not have to go through the hassle of reactivating the pilot light, which is a simple but time-consuming procedure. Additionally, you will avoid the necessity of shutting down your natural gas. It will be necessary to turn off the electricity to your water heater if you have an electric water heater. The proper switch will be located on the device.

See also:  How To Pump Standing Water Out Of Yard

The valve for this operation is normally situated on top of the heater, where it is accessible.

Step3: Connect A Hose To Your Tank’s Drain Valve

Before you do anything else, turn off the thermostat on your water heater. You may be able to just switch your tank to “Pilot” mode, depending on your tank. As a result, you will not have to go through the hassle of reactivating the pilot light, which is a simple but time-consuming task. You will also avoid the need to turn off the gas if you do this. If you have an electric water heater, you’ll need to turn off the electricity to the device by turning on the appropriate switch on the circuit breaker.

The valve for this operation is often situated on top of the heater.

Step4: Open The Drain Valve And Let The Tank Empty

Before you do anything else, turn off the water heater’s thermostat. Depending on your tank, you may be able to just switch it to “Pilot” mode. This will spare you the pain of having to reignite the pilot light, which is a simple but time-consuming task. If you do this, you will also avoid the need to turn off the gas. If you have an electric water heater, you’ll need to turn off the electricity to the appliance using the proper switch. Last but not least, shut off the cold water supply. The valve for this operation is often found on top of the heater.

Not Getting Any Water Out Of The Tank? Try This!

You will not see any flow if you open the drain valve when there has been an excessive buildup of silt in the tank, which has clogged the drain valve.

To correct the situation, use a wet/dry shop vacuum to remove the obstruction. The majority of the time, this will enough. If it does not, the situation may necessitate the involvement of a professional.

Step5: Reactivate The Cold Water Supply

Before you unplug your hose from the drain valve, be sure the cold water supply has been reactivated. This water will aid in the dislodgmentation of any further sediment that may have accumulated in your tank. Continue to allow for a few minutes of drainage until the water escaping from the hose is clean. (Optional) After that, switch off the cold water supply one more time.

Step6: Shut The Drain Valve Off

After you have disconnected the garden hose from the drain valve, turn the valve back on before turning on the cold water supply.

Step7: Close The Faucets After A Minute Or So

During the refilling process of your water heater’s tank, you may notice that discolored water is coming out of your faucets. If you wait a minute or two, this should be resolved. Once this has occurred, you may turn off the faucets.

Step8: Return Your Water Heater To Its Ready State

It entails resetting the thermostat to its default setting, relighting the pilot light if you chose to turn it off, and re-connecting the electricity if you’re using an electric heater to complete the task.

How To Clean A Hot Water Heater With Vinegar

You may need to use vinegar to cut through sediment accumulation if you suspect that your water heater has become seriously clogged with sediment. As far as how to clean a hot water heater with vinegar is concerned, the procedure is simply a few steps longer than what we previously described in detail. Before you proceed with the actions outlined above, do the following.

Remove The Anode Rod

Please refer to your tank’s owner’s handbook for the specific procedure to be followed. In most cases, a recessed bolt will require the use of a wrench to be unfastened.

Use A Funnel To Place Vinegar Inside The Tank

When you remove the anode rod, you will see a hole in the area where it was previously located. This is the location where the funnel should be placed. Fill the tank with no more than four gallons of vinegar after passing it through this funnel.

Replace The Anode Rod And Activate The Cold Water Supply

Reinstall the anode rod and turn on the cold water supply again. This will cause the tank to fill up with water again. Make sure to let the tank remain with the vinegar-infused water for the whole 24-hour period. During that time, the acidity of the vinegar will begin to work its way through the sediment.

Go Through Steps1 through8

To completely remove the vinegar (as well as any sediment that should have dissolved) from your tank, follow the instructions in steps 1 through 8 to the letter.

How To Clean A Tankless Water Heater

The fact that your water heater does not have a tank does not rule out the possibility of silt and minerals accumulating inside it over time. Essentially, a tankless heater does not store water and instead heats it on demand, as the name suggests. As a result, becoming familiar with the process of pumping water into the system and then directing it out is essential to knowing how to clean a tankless water heater. The following are the steps to follow in order to do this correctly.

Step1: Switch The Power And Gas Off

To begin, turn off the electricity and gas (if your tankless heater is powered by gas).

Step2: Remove The Unit’s Panel And Test The Electricity

It is possible to detect whether you have correctly unplugged the electricity from the tankless water heater by using a no-contact electrical tester.

This is a safety measure in case you accidentally turned off the wrong switch on your circuit breaker. It will alert you if you have done so. Once you are positive that the electricity has been turned off, go to the following step.

Step3: Turn Off The Water Supply

Shut down the water supply line that runs directly into your tankless heater.

Step4: Connect The Hoses

In contrast to a traditional water heater with a tank, you’ll have to actually bring water into your tankless heater as part of the cleansing process. That is why you will require two hoses. There are two connections: one links the unit to a pump (which pumps water into it) and another connects the unit to an isolation valve (catching the water as it expelled from the tank after making its way through).

Step5: Prepare A Five-Gallon Bucket With Your Pump And Hose

Prepare the vinegar by filling a five-gallon bucket halfway with vinegar and placing your pump and the open end of your second hose inside.

Step6: Let The Pump Run For An Hour

Turn on the pump and let it running continuously for an hour. The pump will circulate the vinegar through your tankless heater in a closed loop configuration. Hopefully, the steady flow (together with the acidity of the vinegar) will be powerful enough to wear away at any built-up sediment in your heater.

Step7: Remove The Pump And Activate The Cold Water Supply

You should now be able to leave the end of your second hose in the five-gallon bucket, which should be completely empty of any vinegar. Before turning off the cold water supply, let the cold water run through the system and into the bucket for about five minutes before turning it off.

Step8: Return Your Tankless Heater To Its Operational State

Leave the other end of your second hose in the five-gallon bucket, which you should have emptied of any vinegar by now, and close the bucket. Before turning off the cold water supply, allow it to flow through the system and into the bucket for approximately five minutes.

How To Clean Out Your Water Heater: Conclusion

By the end of this article, you should have gained an understanding of the fact that knowing how to clean out your water heater does not involve any specialist knowledge of the system. You should be able to do this task without difficulty if you follow the procedures outlined above. To summarize, let’s take a look at some of the specific considerations you’ll need to make based on the sort of water heater you have.

How To Clean An Electric Water Heater: Special Considerations

We hope that this article has demonstrated that understanding how to clean out your water heater does not need extensive technical knowledge of the device. You should be able to do this task without any difficulty if you follow the procedures outlined above. So, let’s go through some of the specific considerations you’ll need to make based on the sort of water heater you’re using.

How To Clean A Gas Water Heater: Special Considerations

As far as the proper way to clean a gas water heater is concerned, there are two important aspects to keep in mind. Before beginning the operation, you must turn off the gas valves in the house. Because turning off the thermostat will deactivate it, you will also need to relight the pilot light after you are finished.

Cleaning A Tankless Water Heater: Special Considerations

The fact that your heater does not have a reservoir for fluid means that you will need to introduce water and clean it out.

Feel Like This Is Above Your Pay Grade? Trust American Home Water and Air

Don’t be concerned if you find all of this to be a bit overwhelming.

If you live in or around the Phoenix, Arizona region, we would be delighted to assist you with the upkeep of your water heater. For additional information on our straightforward pricing and worry-free service, please contact us.

How to Clean an Electric Water Heater

Did you know that, on average, a water heater may last you up to a decade in your household? Electric heaters have an even longer usable service life, with some models having a beneficial service life of more than 15 years. However, these are only applicable to systems that have been correctly installed and are subjected to regular maintenance. Those who do not achieve these requirements are more likely to experience early breakdowns and failure. Units that treat water that has a high concentration of dissolved minerals are more prone to failure.

Cleaning it on a regular basis will assist to extend the life of your water heater.

So be sure to keep reading because we’ll go over everything in further depth below.

Safety First: Turn Off Your Water Heater

Prior to cleaning your electric water heater, make sure that you turn off the power supply to the unit first. Especially given the fact that at least 30,000 non-fatal shock episodes occur in the United States each year, this is for your own protection. In addition, you should put on a pair of rubber insulating gloves to increase your protection against arcs and shocks. Check the tank itself for a power button if you want to turn off your heater completely. In certain cases, the “OFF” setting on the thermostat may be appropriate for your particular heater brand.

Examine your electrical panel for the switch that supplies your electric water heater.

The water heater switch should be clearly labeled on the interior of the panel, and the label should be easy to read.

This should cause the electricity to your water heater to be disconnected.

1. Clean the Exterior Side of the Hot Water Tank

Make use of your vacuum cleaner to clear the heavy layers of dust and filth that have accumulated on the outside of the water heater tank. Cleaning the bottom of the tank using a crevice attachment will be easier with this attachment. Also, remember to vacuum the area behind the heater and around any pipes that may be there. After that, clean and dry the heater with a clean, dry towel to finish it up. This will aid in the removal of as much dry dirt as possible from the environment. Then, using a moist towel, wipe off the outer surfaces of your water heater to clean them.

Finish up this step of your electric water heater maintenance by cleaning off the tank with a dry cloth.

Although you may believe that your high water costs are typical, it is possible that they are the result of tank leaks.

Once your tank and its pipes have been thoroughly cleaned, it will be much simpler to discover problems like as holes and cracks.

If there are none, that’s fantastic. If this is the case, it is recommended to contact a plumber to book an appointment to have your electric water heater repaired. If the leaks are severe enough, a plumbing professional may still be able to save your tank from being destroyed.

2. Drain the Tank

One of the most important tasks in doing good water heater maintenance is flushing away sediment that has accumulated in the tank. Because of this, it is recommended that you empty your water heater at least twice a year. Flushing it will aid in the removal of sediments that can build up inside your tank and cause limescale to develop. Starting with the cold-water valve, which may be found at the very top of the tank, turn it off to get started. Then, towards the bottom of the tank, check for the drain valve, which looks a little like a faucet in appearance.

Connect one end of a garden hose to the valve and the other end to the valve.

To empty the tank’s contents, turn the valve to the open position.

This will allow air to enter your tank, which will then force the water out of the drain valve as a result of the air.

3. Refill the Tank

Take this step seriously, especially if you live in one of the nine-in-ten households in the United States that has hard water. Hard water has a high concentration of dissolved minerals, which are responsible for the formation of the previously stated limescale. Another possible cause of low water pressure is hard water. In any event, it is necessary to replace the tank with cold water many times during the tank emptying procedure. This will aid in the removal of even more loose sediments.

4. Brush the Insides of Your Tank

Take this step seriously, especially if you reside in one of the nine-in-ten houses in the United States that receive hard water. Due to the presence of several dissolved minerals, which contribute to the formation of limescale, hard water is preferred. Hard water is also a possible source of your low water pressure issues. If at all possible, periodically top out the tank with cold water while the tank is being emptied. Consequently, more loose sediments will be removed.

See also:  How Much Is It To Install A Water Heater
5. Flush It One Last Time

If you believe you have eliminated all of the sediments, flush the tank one again. Do not change anything about the hole — do not attach the valve or the garden hose at this time since their openings may be too tiny. Make careful to place an empty bucket beneath the opening to capture any flushed water, though. In theory, the water should be able to flush the shattered bits of hardened minerals from the tank. If you’ve been able to remove a significant amount of debris, you may need to empty your bucket several further times.

It’s just a matter of reassembling the drain valve components in their right locations.

Set Your Electric Water Heater Thermostat to 120 Degrees

If you accidentally turned off the thermostat at the beginning, turn it back on to 120 degrees. Make sure the thermostat is set to 140 degrees if you haven’t changed the setting when you first turned it on to clean it. Most electric water heaters are set at this temperature as their default. One of the primary reasons for lowering the temperature is to minimize the amount of energy consumed by your heater. You may save between 3 and 5 percent on your water heating rates for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit you lower the temperature of your water heater.

Please keep in mind that there is a “very tiny danger” of stimulating the growth of legionellae bacteria.

However, according to the Department of Energy’s specialists, 120 degrees is still considered safe for the majority of individuals. Unless you or a member of your family has worries about their immune systems, you may set your thermostat to 140 degrees.

Keep Your Water Heater’s Pressure Relief Valve in Good Condition

If you accidentally turned off the thermostat in the beginning, turn it back on to 120 degrees. Make sure the thermostat is set at 140 degrees if you haven’t changed the setting since you first turned it on. In most electric water heaters, this is the default setting. Reduced energy usage is one of the primary reasons for lowering your thermostat settings. Water heating expenditures can be reduced by 3 to 5 percent for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit if you lower the thermostat setting. This means you may save even more money with a 20-degree temperature drop!

The Department of Energy’s scientists, on the other hand, maintain that 120 degrees is still safe for the majority of the population.

Know When to Replace the Anode Rod

The anode rod is a mechanism that “sacrifices” itself in order to protect the lining of the interior of your water heater. Its aim is to divert corrosive materials away from your tank and onto itself instead. Consider it as a magnet, attracting mineral and metal ions that produce oxidation and rust as they pass through it. Your tank’s liner will disintegrate prematurely if this sacrificial rod is not used. However, it is also because of this “sacrifice” that anode rods have a lifespan of between three and five years.

  • You are not required to replace it on a yearly basis, but you should examine it at least once a year at the absolute least.
  • One end of the anode rod is attached to the top of your heater, while the other end is attached to the bottom of your heater.
  • In order to check the rod’s condition, you’d have to take it apart and examine it closely.
  • If you see this and you are aware that you have not replaced the rod in several years, it is time to replace it.

Prevent Hard Water From Cutting Your Heater’s Life Short

Hard water does not pose a significant hazard to health and safety, but it can limit the service life of your water heater. Additionally, it has an impact on the efficiency and performance of water heaters. In fact, according to one research, water heaters that utilize hard water consume significantly more energy than those that use soft water. Homes with soft water also have cheaper expenditures for cleaning supplies since they use less of the items. In addition, scientists determined that extended contact to hard water might cause pipe corrosion.

Corroded pipes can leak metals over time, which can pollute your drinking water as a result.

The savings on your water heating and domestic cleaning bills will be significant at the same time. The performance of your other water-using appliances will also benefit as a result of this change.

Follow This Guide on How to Clean an Electric Water Heater Now

The above information is the last and only tutorial you will require on how to clean an electric water heater. As you might guess, following these water heater maintenance recommendations will take time and work. They are, however, well worth the investment because they may help you save money on energy while also extending the life of your heater. So, as soon as you get the opportunity, give your busy water heater some much-needed TLC! You should be aware that if you notice leaks or other problems when cleaning your water heater, we are here to help.

If you want emergency plumbing services, you may also contact us immediately via phone.

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. When it comes to electric heaters, scaling might cause the bottom heating element to burn out. 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!

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