How to Flush a Water Heater
Time a few of hours Complexity IntermediateCost$51–100
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.
- 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.
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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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.
- The valve may be unscrewed and removed by rotating the plastic nut that is located beneath the knob while using a shop vacuum to apply suction through the TPR port
Assemble the New Valve
- In order to assemble all of the 3/4-inch fittings, you must first remove the handle from the ball valve
- A new drain valve made of a 3/4-inch full-port brass ball valve with threaded ends, a 3-inch x 3/4-inch galvanized nipple, and a 3/4-inch G.H. garden hose adapter (such as the BrassCraft/Plumbshop No. HU22-12-12TP) is an excellent solution.
- Note: As soon as you open the drain valve, the sediment will most likely plug it, preventing you from completely shutting the valve once the water has been drained out. A sediment buildup and a leaky water heater will be the result. It is not only possible for an ancient drain to get clogged, but it is also impossible to suck material via its narrow hole. Because of this, you’ll need to construct a new drain valve.
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.
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
- Disconnect and flush the tank by removing the suction hose from the TPR port
- 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 full-port valve will flush out the majority of the silt, which is a good thing to know. If there’s any remaining water, open the cold water valve at the top of the tank and blow it down the drain in quick bursts.
- The full-port valve will flush out the majority of the silt, so keep that in mind. If there’s still water left, open the cold water valve at the top of the tank and blast it toward the drain in short bursts.
Step 8: Refill the Water Heater with water.
- Fill the water heater with fresh water
- Turn on the gas or electric
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. More information on why you should flush sediment out of your tank may be found here. 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
If you have an electric water heater, make sure the power switch is turned off before continuing. Ensure that your water heater is a gas heater, such as the one seen in the photo above, by setting your thermostat to “pilot.” This shuts down the heating element in your water heater, allowing the water to cool down as a result. Ensure that no one in your home is currently attempting to take a shower, wash dishes, or do a load of laundry before beginning this home repair chore.
2. Turn the Cold Water Valve Off
Close the cold water valve and turn it off. When cold water is introduced into the tank and dispenses with the hot water, the water heater circulates the hot water around your home. You may entirely empty your tank of water if you don’t have any cold water coming into it from outside. If you skip this step, you’ll wind up with water constantly flowing into the tank and down the drain, which might result in a significant increase in your monthly water bill.
3. Let the water cool.
Close the cold water valve and turn it off completely. When cold water is introduced into the tank and dispenses with the hot water, a water heater circulates hot water around your home. You may entirely empty your tank of water if you don’t have any cold water entering into the tank. Unless you complete this step, water will continuously flow into the tank and drain, which might result in a significant increase in your monthly water bill costs.
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.
Opening faucets around your house might help to prevent a vacuum from accumulating within your plumbing system and pipes. Turn on the “hot” setting on your faucets and let them to run for a few minutes. You won’t notice a lot of water pouring out of them since you’ve switched off the cold water valve to your water heater, which means that no warm water is being displaced by the cold water.
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 Drain a Water Heater
Is it necessary to empty your water heater? Yes. To avoid scaling and silt from collecting inside the tank, you should perform this procedure once a year, or even more frequently if you have hard water. Sediment might have the appearance of sand, yet it is composed of minerals derived from your home’s water supply. As a result, these minerals do not dissolve and instead condense into little particles within your unit. Unfortunately, if left unchecked, this build-up may create substantial concerns, including time and money savings by decreasing the unit’s efficiency and functioning, as well as the possibility of the water heater failing prematurely, leading you to lose time and money.
How to Flush a Water Heater:
- To begin working on your water heater, make sure that all of the electricity to the device has been turned off, including the circuit breaker. Immediately turn off the cold water supply and wait a couple of hours for the heater to cool (this may take many hours). Locate the drain valve on your water heater, which is usually located at the bottom of the tank. It is possible to drain the water from the tank without using the floor drain by using a conventional garden hose and connecting it to the valve. The water will be directed into a bucket. Although many people may simply use gravity to drain water from the device into a bucket, following the manufacturer’s connection instructions is recommended if you wish to pump the water outdoors (which makes disposing the unwanted water easier). In order to avoid damage to your pipes, open one or two hot water taps around the home. Drain the water and look for silt by opening the drain valve. if the water is turbid or cloudy, refill the heater with fresh water and drain it once again Turn the water shut off valve on and off a couple of times to mix up any sediment that has accumulated at the bottom of the tank
- Continue to fill and empty the heater as often as required until the water flows clean. If the unit is in good condition, one flushing is usually sufficient, and you will not need to flush it again for at least one year. It may be necessary to consult with a specialist if there is an excessive quantity of sediment in your water. Once the water flows clear and the unit is completely empty, remove the hose and pump from the unit. Close the drain valve and replenish the tank before turning on the water heater’s power source. Turn on the water heater’s power source. Performance should return to normal, with the exception of a few air pockets that will be expelled via the faucets at the beginning. In most cases, the air will be expelled within a few seconds, and then full water flow will be restored to the system. Close all of the water faucets that you have previously opened.
How to Tell if Your Water Heater Has Sediment Build-Up
There are a number of symptoms that your water heater has a sediment build-up, including the following ones:
- Despite the fact that energy use has not increased, energy costs have grown. The hot water runs out before it should
- When the water heater is operating, it generates a lot of noise. Your hot water appears to be rusted or has a foul odor
- It takes an extremely long time for the hot water to come to temperature
- There is inconsistency and fluctuation in the water temperature.
Draining a water heater is a relatively simple task that most homeowners can complete on their own. However, if the water does not drain or if the heater’s performance issues persist after flushing the unit, a professional will be able to identify other potential problems that may not be apparent to the homeowner.
How to Flush Your Water Heater
Water heaters can lose their efficiency over time, resulting in greater heating costs as well as increased water bill costs. The silt that has accumulated in the tank is the source of their decreased efficiency since it is obstructing heat transfer and absorbing some heat at the same time. It is also possible that this sediment will cause harm to your water heater as well as obstructions in your water lines. An easy solution to this problem is to do a simple flush of your water heater. Most experts advocate having this done once a year at the very least.
Check with your manufacturer’s guarantee about maintenance to ensure that completing the maintenance yourself will not violate your warranty.
Steps to flush the water heater
Close or reduce the heater’s heating system or gas supply to prevent the water heater from going on and heating an empty tank of water. Setting your gas water heater’s thermostat to “off,” “pilot,” or “vacation mode” is one option; but, if you have an older system, it may be necessary to cut off the gas to the water heater as well as turn off the water heater itself. In certain older gas water heaters, if the gas has been turned off, you may need to relight the pilot light, and you should be familiar with how to do so and where it is situated before doing so.
- If there isn’t a switch or unplug option, you may have to turn it off with a circuit breaker if there isn’t another means to stop the flow of energy to the water heater.
- The main water valve to the house in some residences; in others, a shutdown valve near the water heater may be used instead.
- Connect a garden hose to the tank’s drain spigot, which is located towards the bottom of the tank.
- Place the other end of the hose in a location that is capable of handling the volume of water and the heat generated by the currently hot water in the water heater tank, if necessary.
- When you have determined that the water temperature is cold enough, repeat the previous procedure and switch off the water supply to the heater to complete the process.
- Allowing the tank to empty through the hose is accomplished by opening the drain valve.
If you don’t hear any water running and you don’t see any water draining from the end of the hose, you may have something blocking the air from flowing, such as a backflow preventer, or sediment has clogged the drain, and you will need to open the pressure release valve to allow air into the system to work properly.
Most Check the hose to make sure there isn’t any leakage along the way, and that the other end is still draining at the location you’ve picked, and that the water draining isn’t going to overflow the draining area after you’re finished.
At the end of the draining process, you want the water to be completely clear or mainly clear.
It may be necessary to turn on the water for approximately 15 seconds, then turn off the water and wait for a few minutes before repeating the process a few times to entirely remove any silt that has become lodged on the interior of the drain.
Observe the water draining to ensure that all sediment has been removed and that the water being drained is free of obstructions. When you have done flushing the system, turn off the water supply to the tank.
Now that the system is cleaned out, it’s time to put everything back:
- Close the drain valve and take the hose out of the system. Re-open and close the pressure valve (if you already opened it
- If not, double-check that it is still closed)
- Restart the water heater by turning the water back on. Open all of the hot water taps in the house to confirm that the water is flowing and that there is no trapped air. The water may appear cloudy at first, but wait until the silt has disappeared. The faucet should be turned off after the water is clear. Turn on the heating source, which may entail re-igniting the pilot light if the water heater is a gas model and the pilot has gone out. Make careful you only turn it on when the tank is completely full. It is dangerous to turn on an electric water heater while the tank is not completely filled because the heating element will burn out
Preserve a record of the date you conducted or had this service completed so that you may keep a record for yourself and potentially your insurance company in the event something goes wrong. This will help you remember when you completed the task last year, and if you experience any problems with your water heater before the year is up, there may be more serious issues with your water lines or water heater that should be addressed by a professional before it becomes an expensive repair with water damage.
Use These Tips to Drain a Water Heater Properly
Most water heater maintenance instructions recommend that you drain a water heater every six to twelve months, depending on how much use it gets. The reason for this is that it will aid in the removal of any sediment or buildup that may have accumulated on the bottom of the water heater tank as a result of the presence of minerals and other particles in the water. As a result of the accumulation, the water heater will have to work harder to heat the water, consuming more energy and increasing its operating costs.
Before You Begin
Before you begin, make sure you understand where the main water shutdown valve is situated in your home. While you won’t necessarily need it during this procedure, it’s always a good idea to be familiar with this valve whenever you’re dealing with any type of plumbing fixtures in your house in case something goes wrong and you need to shut off all water coming through your pipes.
When doing this procedure, you will be working with water that can be quite hot. It is possible that you will need to switch off your hot water heater many hours before you begin in order to allow the water in the tank to calm down before you begin. If you are unable to do so, use heavy-duty rubber work gloves to protect your hands from any splashes and safety glasses to protect your eyes from any hot water droplets that may fall over them.
- Drain valve (if necessary)
- Threaded hose cap (if necessary)
- Drain valve (if necessary)
Kevin Norris’s The Spruce is a novel about a young man who grows up in the woods.
Perform a Quick Flush
- Using a garden hose connected to the drain valve, attempt to clean the water heater tank a little bit while the water pressure is still on before shutting off the water supply. In order to accomplish this, first open the drain valve for a few seconds before closing it again. The pressure will blast away any silt that has become lodged in the valve, allowing the tank to empty more quickly. If a significant amount of sediment is expelled, you may need to repeat the process several times. Make certain that you’ve connected your garden hose to an outdoor place or into a bucket in order to collect the water and sediment that will be emitted from the faucet. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Turn Off the Water Heater
- Turn off the gas to your water heater, or turn off the electricity if you have an electric water heater. Remove water by shutting off the valve on the cold-water pipe above the water heater or the main water supply valve to the home, whichever is most convenient. Test the hot water faucets around the home by turning them on and checking for water to ensure that the pressure has been released. Water may flood out at first, but if the water has been cut off properly, it should rapidly decrease to a trickle and then stop. It is important to leave a hot water faucet open in the sink closest to your hot water heater in order to relieve pressure in the entire system. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Open the Drain Valve
- Open the drain valve while holding your garden hose in one hand. Normally, you may complete this task by hand, but you may need to employ your flat-head screwdriver in this instance. Once the valve is opened, water will begin to rush out of the drain, so make sure your hose is either connected to the outside or to a bucket to catch the water. You should switch off the drain valve as soon as the bucket is full so that you may empty it. Repeat the operation as many times as necessary to completely empty the tank. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Flush the Tank With Water
- Open the drain valve while holding your garden hose in your hand. The majority of the time, you can complete this task by hand, but you may need to employ your flat-head screwdriver in this situation. After you have turned the valve to the open position, water will begin to rush out of the drain, so make sure your hose is either connected to the outside or to a bucket nearby. You should switch off the drain valve as soon as the bucket is completely full so that you may empty it. The operation should be repeated as many times as necessary to completely empty the tank. Kevin Norris’s novel The Spruce
Refill the Water Heater
- Close the drain valve and remove the garden hose from the system. Make certain that all but one of your home’s hot water faucets are turned off (the one in the bathtub closest to the water heater is best). Now you may turn the water back on to the water heater. After that, keep an eye on the faucet you left open and, as soon as you notice that you are receiving nothing but water out of it, turn it off. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Relight the Water Heater
- Re-ignite the water heater’s pilot light, or if it’s an electric heater, re-energize the circuit breaker. You should be able to use hot water after an hour or so. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
Check the Drain Valve
- Check for leaks at the spout of your water heater to see if the drain on the heater has completely closed. If the outlet does not completely close, you can stop the leak by placing a threaded hose cap over the hose thread of the outlet. Alternatively, you can replace the valve entirely. The Spruce / Kevin Norris
- The Spruce / Kevin Norris
How to Maintain & Drain A Water Heater: 8 Step Guide
Date of publication: December 2019 You may take your water heater for granted until it stops working and you are forced to take a frigid shower in the middle of winter. Even worse, it might cease operating altogether, resulting in water splattered all over the floor. Fortunately, a hot water heater does not require much maintenance, although emptying it on a regular basis may assist to ensure that it continues to operate smoothly. Consider the following recommendations for maintaining your water heater.
According to The Family Handyman, silt builds up in the bottom of a water heater over time, which can cause obstructions in the system.
If you do not properly maintain your water heater, it may not operate at peak efficiency or may even fail to operate at all in some cases.
GET A HOME QUOTE.
A high level of protection for your house makes all the difference when it comes to keeping your family safe. Allstate home insurance can assist you in protecting what is important to you. Request a quote Locate a representative. When it comes to draining a water heater, the DIY Network recommends the following measures. The owner’s handbook for your water heater will provide you with particular information on your water heater. For those who are uncomfortable completing this sort of maintenance on their water heater, contact a plumber to arrange for a professional draining to be performed.
- A water line and a shutdown valve leading into the water heater may be found at the very top of the water heater’s tank.
- Step 2: Disconnect the water heater’s power supply line.
- Alternatively, if you have an electric water heater, turn off the electricity at your home’s electrical panel.
- If you have a gas water heater, according to the DIY Network, you may change the water heater’s thermostat to “pilot” to complete this procedure.
- Check your water heater’s owner’s handbook and follow the directions that are provided for your particular water heater.
- Because your water heater is running at a high temperature, it is incredibly hot.
- (According to BobVila.com, you should at the very least wait a few hours.) In addition, taking a hot shower can assist to accelerate the cooling process.) Step 4: Connect a hose to the drain valve.
Connect the other end of the hose to the drain valve located at the bottom of your water heater.
The hot water tap, such as a sink faucet, that is closest to the water heater should be opened.
According to the DIY Network, it is preferable to use a tap that is located on the floor above the water heater.
As soon as you turn on this valve, the water will begin to drain out of the storage tank.
Step 7: Reconnect the water supply to the tank and flush it with fresh, clean water to finish the job.
It is necessary to repeat this process until the water flows clean.
Step 8: Refill the tank with water.
Return the water supply to its original setting to begin replenishing the tank. Once the tank is full, turn on the electricity or gas supply to the water heater to re-energize it. While draining the tank, remember to turn off the faucet that you had previously turned on.
How Often Should You Drain Your Water Heater?
According to both BobVila.com and The Family Handyman, it’s a good idea to empty your water heater at least once a year in general. If you reside in a hard water area, on the other hand, according to Angie’s List, you may need to empty your water more often. Always remember to consult your owner’s manual to see what the manufacturer suggests before making any changes. Water heaters are relatively low-maintenance appliances, but it’s important to remember to drain yours on a regular basis. If you do this, you may be able to keep it working effectively and the hot water going.
Please keep in mind that a certain precaution may not be suitable or effective in every situation, and that adopting preventative steps does not ensure a positive outcome.
Water Heater Flush: How To Do It Safely and Easily
Your water heater is responsible for delivering all of the necessary hot water to your home when you require it. You may only understand how crucial a piece of equipment is when it is not functioning properly or is backed up in some way. In order to guarantee that your water heater is operating at peak performance, you must ensure that it is thoroughly flushed and cleaned. For the purpose of assisting you in understanding the fundamentals of water heater flushing, we will first discuss why it is so important and how frequently you should perform it.
Why Do You Need to Do a Hot Water Heater Flush?
This device is responsible for supplying your home with all of the necessary hot water whenever you require it. Most of the time, it’s when something isn’t working or is backed up that you realize how crucial it is. To guarantee that your water heater is operating at peak performance, it is necessary to clean it out on a regular basis. For the purpose of assisting you in comprehending the fundamentals of water heater flushing, we will first discuss why it is so necessary and how frequently you should perform this task.
Water Heater Flush Cost
As you’ll see, a water heater flush is really inexpensive when you consider that it can be completed in a matter of minutes by following a few simple procedures.
How Frequently Should You Do a Hot Water Heater Flush?
If you consider how important your water heater is, you should not put off cleansing your system for an extended period of time. Every water heater has a varied lifespan, but making sure you clean out your water heater on a regular basis can help it last as long as it was designed to.
A flushing of your heater should be done every couple years or so, on average. In order to guarantee the optimum performance from your unit, flushing it once a year is recommended, and the following instructions will demonstrate how simple it is to do.
Steps for Performing a Water Heater Cleanout/Flush
You shouldn’t put off cleansing your water heater for an extended period of time, considering how important it is. Every water heater has a varied lifespan, but making sure you clean out your water heater on a regular basis can help it last as long as it is supposed to. Every few years, on average, you should consider flushing your heater. For optimal performance from your unit, flushing it once a year is recommended, and the following instructions will demonstrate how simple it may be to accomplish this goal.
Open a Hot Water Faucet
This is accomplished by tricking your system into believing it is required to be running, which requires you to open a hot water tap in your home. Despite the fact that water will flow out, it will not be heated at the time of the process. In addition, this procedure is critical because it prevents a vacuum from accumulating in the pipes, which might result in the formation of undesired air bubbles in your water system.
Turn Off the Cold Water Valve
Your water heater will have a supply valve that will connect to the unit and be used to feed cold water to the unit. You will want to turn off this valve while you are completing the flush. It should be positioned on or near your unit, and it will usually be towards the top of the unit’s interior. It will have the appearance of a typical faucet valve, with the possibility of being dyed blue to indicate cold water. It is important to turn this valve off during the flush process to avoid water running into the unit, which would make the whole procedure a lot messier.
Connect a Hose to the Heater
Find the location of your spigot as the next step. This will be located at the bottom of the unit and will seem to be a standard hose faucet in appearance. You may want to set a bucket below this before proceeding with the rest of the project because it may begin to drip as soon as the lid is removed. It is necessary to locate a garden hose that can be screwed onto this spigot since this is the most convenient method of draining the system. If your water heater is located higher up in your home, gravity should be able to facilitate the flow of water.
Make certain that the hose’s end is placed in some form of pail or containment area to prevent it from spilling everywhere.
Water Heater Flush for Sediment: Drain the Tank
It is at this point that you may begin draining the unit by turning the faucet to which the hose has been connected. It is possible to see the circumstances that your heater may be encountering when the water drains out of the tank during this period of time. If the water is largely clear and typical in appearance, it is likely that your water heater is in good working order. Water that is deeper in color and that contains silt, on the other hand, might be a much greater problem. The inside of the tank might be in far worse shape than you can remedy with a simple water heater flush for sediment if you are emptying the tank and a large amount of solid material is coming out of the tank.
This is the point at which you will most likely want to consult with a professional to evaluate the tank for more significant problems and accumulation. This step will be skipped if you are flushing a tankless electric water heater, which is the most common scenario.
Flush the System
Now that the water has been removed from the system, you will begin the process of flushing the unit. Keep in mind that you already switched off the cold-water spigot. This is what you will be turning back on in order to allow the new water to clean out the system properly. It is recommended that you drain the old bucket and thoroughly inspect it for sediment before refilling it with the fresh cleansed water. Remove the tank’s fill valve and flush it for a few minutes until the water pouring out seems clean and typical.
Always remember to switch off the cold-water supply before unhooking the hose and removing the bucket from the sink.
Reactivate Power and Gas
Now that the flushing has been completed, it is time to clean up. The first step is to cut off the drain to which the hose was attached in order to prevent any water from escaping through it. Also, remember to turn off the hot water tap in your house that you opened at the beginning of this process as well. Replace the cold water supply valve and let the tank to re-fill with cold water. When your tank is full, you’ll want to open the pressure valve on the tank to allow the air to leave for the machine to function properly.
Finally, re-start the gas and water lines heading to the storage tank.
Congratulations! This means that you have done all of the necessary procedures to cleanse your water heater in a reasonably short period of time. Now that you have a better understanding of the procedure, you will be better prepared the next time your heater requires flushing. The time spent flushing your heater will guarantee that it operates at peak performance and that it serves you for many years to come. If you enjoy what you’re reading, you may be interested in reading more of our posts, such as ” Choosing an HVAC Company in Maricopa ” and ” Must-See Historical Sites in Scottsdale ”
Frequently Asked Questions
It is recommended that you flush your water heater at least once a year, especially if you reside in a region with hard water and do not have a water softener. If your softener is in good working order, you can get away with flushing it once every couple of years, but flushing it more regularly won’t hurt.
How much does it cost to flush a water heater?
If you’re not sure in your ability to complete the task yourself, plan to pay around $100. When you consider how detrimental sediment may be to your water heater, this is a relatively insignificant expenditure.
What happens if you don’t flush your water heater?
If you fail to clean your water heater on a regular basis, sediment can accumulate in the tank and cause problems such as clogged drain lines.
How long does it take to flush a water heater?
While your first flush may take a little longer than usual, you’ll soon be able to complete the entire procedure in under an hour and a half.
How To Flush Your Water Heater The Right Way
You’ll eventually be able to complete the entire procedure in less than an hour, even if it takes a little longer on your first flush.
First Things First
While your initial flush may take a little longer than usual, you’ll soon be able to complete the entire operation in under an hour.
Connect Up To The Drain Valve
After that, you’ll need to connect a garden hose to the drain valve located at the bottom of the hot water heater. Be advised that certain models may have a protective cover over the drain valve that you will need to remove before you can use the drain valve. Run the hose directly into a drain, a large bucket, or even onto your driveway so that it may securely drain away from your home.
Drain Your Water Heater
Step three involves opening the drain valve and allowing the water to drain. Because the water will be quite hot, take care not to burn yourself. It is possible that you may notice that the water begins to drain more slowly near the finish. An indication that silt has accumulated in the tank and needs to be flushed from the system is this symptom. This may be accomplished by turning on the cold-water input that serves as a conduit to your hot-water tank. The influx of cold water will dislodge any sediment in the water heater and allow it to drain out of the system.
If the water in the tank is clear and not brownish in color, you should be satisfied with the results.
You should always consult with a professional plumbing and electric firm before flushing and maintaining your water heater.
Finishing Things Up
As soon as the water heater has been rinsed out, turn off the drain valve and then disconnect the drain line from the water heater. Keep in mind to turn off the pressure release valve. After that, you may switch on the cold-water input and wait for the tank to fill completely. When the tank is completely full, it is necessary to open the pressure relief valve in order to remove any remaining air from the tank. If you have a gas heater, you’ll need to re-ignite the pilot light and reconnect the gas line to the heater.
It is also critical to carefully adjust the thermostat in order to maintain the ideal temperature for your water heater.
It might be a difficult process to thoroughly clean out your water heater.
When it comes to flushing out your water heater, you should leave it to the professionals.
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.
Learning how to flush a water heater on your own may save you a significant amount of money over the course of your lifetime.
Should I Drain My Water Heater Periodically?
Greetings and welcome to Direct Energy’s Take Charge of Your Home series! It may be more convenient and stress-free to hire a professional to handle household maintenance, but you don’t need any specific tools or knowledge to complete a lot of these tasks. Moreover, you will save money, gain knowledge about your home’s operation, and get a feeling of success from a well-done DIY project. If you’re like most people, you don’t think about your water heater very often. Invisible and maintenance-free for years at a time, this machine may perform flawlessly without any attention.
In order to enhance energy efficiency and increase the lifespan of the unit, water heaters, like most appliances, require routine maintenance to ensure that they operate at peak performance.
An yearly water heater servicing performed by a certified plumber is the most effective approach to safeguard your investment.
In contrast, the final step – cleansing the tank — is something you may want to do on a regular basis, perhaps every few months, depending on the mineral level of your local water supply.
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
You must first determine how to switch off your gas water heater before you can begin draining the tank. The environment of a vacation might be ideal. If the pilot light is manually operated, you should also figure out how to do so. Because pilot lighting processes differ from model to model, the original owner’s handbook is the most reliable source of information.
If you don’t have a manual, 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 information. Pilot lighting instructions may also be placed on a label attached to the tank.
- 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!
A Step-by-Step Guide for Draining a Water Heater
It is important to drain and flush your hot water heater on a regular basis in order to maintain the life of your equipment, keep your energy expenses low, and guarantee that your system is operating at peak performance. Get quotations from as many as three professionals! Enter your zip code below to get matched with top-rated professionals in your area. It is possible that the hot water heater is the most difficult to maintain item in your home, but it is also the device that you give the least thought to.
To be sure, you should not wait until there are indicators of difficulty before giving your home’s hot water heater some attention.
One of the most effective methods of promoting water heater health?
When to Drain and Flush Your Hot Water Heater
The frequency with which you drain and flush your hot water heater is determined by a variety of factors, including the age of your water heater and pipes, as well as the presence of metals and other materials in your water supply. Once or twice a year, you should drain and cleanse your hot water heater to keep it operating at peak efficiency. However, if you reside in a region where the groundwater supply contains significant amounts of iron or other particles, you may need to do this more frequently.
It is possible that your tank is gathering mineral deposits such as lime, magnesium, and calcium if you observe discoloration or sedimentation in your water.
To make this comparison simpler, gather water from both the hot and cold taps in transparent glasses and place them side by side in a large mixing bowl.
Why You Should Drain and Flush Your Hot Water Heater
It is not only important to drain and flush your hot water heater, but it is also important to ensure that your hot water is clear and particle-free. As an added bonus, it will assist to keep your heater and pipes from rusting on the inside. Draining and cleansing your water heater on a regular basis will help it work more effectively, resulting in considerable savings in energy expenses every year. Not only that, but if you allow mineral deposits to build up in your water heater, you will most likely lose water pressure and face broken pipes.
Sedimentation and corrosion can cause significant harm to your water heater over time. It is possible to end up paying as much as $1,000 to replace your hot water heater far sooner than was originally planned.
How to Drain and Flush a Water Heater
While it is critical to drain and cleanse your hot water heater, the good news is that it is a reasonably quick and simple do-it-yourself project. Here’s how to go about it: 1.Review the owner’s handbook for your water heater, as well as the directions placed on the side of the tank. These will assist you in identifying the locations of all of the relevant drains and valves. 2. Disconnect the heater’s power source from the wall outlet. If you have an electric water heater, locate the circuit breaker for your heater in your home’s electrical panel and turn it down.
In order to use a gas water heater, you must first turn the gas supply valve to the “Pilot” position.
Shut down the water supply to your water heater.
However, if there is no valve, you will need to cut off the water supply at the water meter in your house.
Additionally, you’ll want to keep youngsters and pets away from the faucets and drains while working.
This will relieve pressure in the line and avoid the formation of a vacuum, which would prevent your system from entirely draining and flushing.
Drain water from the closed drain valve by attaching a garden hose to it and placing the other end in a drain bucket, sink, or outside.
Again, take care to keep children and pets away from the discharge area because the water may still be hot at this point.
It is possible to rent these pumps from home improvement businesses for a reasonable fee if you cannot afford to purchase them outright.
Completely open the drain valve by twisting it in the counter-clockwise direction.
The water should flow clear and free of sediment when the hose is disconnected.
Turn off the water supply valve and seal the drain valve, making sure the drain is completely closed and free of leaks.
Reconnect the water supply line and check the faucets in the sink and shower that you had previously shut off.
If this is not the case, continue the drain and flush process until the water flowing from the faucets is clean.
It is now time to connect and turn on your water heater once more.
Turn on the gas supply line if you’re using a gas water heater.
Set the temperature of your water heater to 1400 degrees Fahrenheit to assist maximum energy efficiency while also preventing bacterial development. That’s all there is to it! You’re all prepared for another year of hot showers and freshly laundered clothes.