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How to Drain a Water Heater Safely

How to Drain a Water Heater Safely

Sediment buildup in your water heater tank is one of the most common causes of hot water heater breakdown. To spare yourself the expense of costly repairs, learning how to drain a water heater regularly can help a lot. Draining your water heater tank can also help you save money on heating costs because sediment buildup compromises the efficiency of your water heater. The proper way how to drain a water heater means you need to ensure you empty out the contents of your water tank completely.

Regular water heater tank draining is essential for routine water heater maintenance to prevent sediment build-up. The water draining process is straightforward and more manageable than water heater repair if it reaches that point. You can do this maintenance task yourself or with the help of a family handyman. Here are four simple steps for draining a water heater regardless if you are using a gas water heater or an electric water heater.

Step 1: Check Your Pressure Relief Valve First

The pressure relief valve is a safety device that keeps your tank from bursting because of excessive pressure. To ensure that your pressure relief valve works properly, do these few simple steps:

  1. Switch off the power to the water heater. If you use an electric water heater, simply switch off the power or the circuit breaker.
  2. If you are using a gas water heater, switch the heater to pilot mode.
  3. Position a bucket under the pressure relief valve, then trip the cold water supply line lever.
  4. Listen for any hissing sound signifying the presence of air or water once you open the valve. If neither a hissing sound nor water dripping happens, you probably need to replace your pressure relief valve.

Step 2: Run A Garden Hose Into Your Drain Line

For this process, you will need a garden hose. Attach a garden hose from the water heater drain to your home’s exterior or a floor drain. If your water heater tank is in the basement, you will need a portable pump located at the ground level to assist in running the water. If the location of your water heater tank is above ground level, you won’t need a portable pump. Before you open the water heater drain valve, allow the water temperature to cool down for several hours to prevent the possibility of extremely hot water from scalding you.

Step 3: Proceed With To Flush Your Tank

Open all your hot water tap and hot water faucets in your home before opening the water heater drain valve. If you are using a portable pump, activate it after opening the hot water faucets. Let the tank drain entirely first before turning the cold water valve in short bursts. These short bursts of water can help dislodge the sediment buildup. The sediments may impede the water flow during this process. In this case, you need to remove the drain valve to allow a more significant water drain for the sediments to run off. You can remove the remaining sediment using a long screwdriver to dislodge them.

Step 4: Return The Water Heater To Its Normal Settings

Turn off the cold water supply once the water runs clear from your water tank. Turn on the cold water supply once you close the water heater drain valve. Before you shut off the hot water faucets, return the pressure relief valve to its initial position. Once everything is in place, turn on your water heater.

Takeaways: Draining The Water Tank To Remove Sediment Can Extend Your Water Heater’s Lifespan

Hard water can take its toll on your water heater. Providing additional countermeasures such as a good filtration system for your cold water supply can help keep sediment builds from compromising your hot water heater. A professional plumber helping you with regular maintenance, such as draining your water heater and making regular system checks, can point out to you. Not only can regular maintenance and regular water heater tank draining extend your water heater’s lifespan, but you can also ensure that your water heater will be running efficiently for a longer time. At P&L Plumbing, we offer fast, reliable, and quality water heater maintenance service. We also provide commercial or residential plumbing services at the best price. For any inquiries, contact us at (480) 649-4400. You can also visit our website at P&L Plumbing to set an appointment schedule.

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