We've just moved in and I would like to drain the water heater. It was
installed in 2000, but the owner never drained it.
What is the safest way to do this without damaging the heater? Water on
or off? Pilot light on or off? Etc, etc...
Many thanks for taking the time to respond!
I would open up the popoff valve. It lets air in, thus letting the water go
out with more force, carrying more crud. I would turn the water on and off
SEVERAL times to flush as much stuff out as you can.
Most drain valves are junk, espically the plastic ones, once opened it
may NEVER close:( You can buy a cap that fits with a washer to close
the drain when your done. be prepared to replaace the valve, like start
early AM of day off not end of day:(
Turn burner off leave pilot on.
messing with the T&P valve may cause it to leak.
your better off opening valves anywhere above the height of the tank to
assist draining by allowing airr to enter
Messing with the T&P valve is a good idea, every year. They lime up, and
when they do they can fail in the "will never open" position -- a very bad
thing. Or, they could fail in the "won't stop leaking" position, but that's
easily fixed by replacing it.
USE BALL VALVE as replacement and dont forget teflon tape!
Ball valves are best since they open completely so debris can easily
exit. Regular valves openings are small and can easily clog:(
On the T&P valve, after messing with one every spring and having it
leak every time, i use a dont ask dont tell and hope it opens in a
emergency water here is very hard, but i tired of valve replacement.
much the same occured at my moms house too, i bumped the lever and the
valve wouldnt shut completely on a 1 year old sears tank, sears covered
it under warranty.
after never getting much out of draining tank I dont disturb them till
Turn off gas to water heater.
Turn off water supply to water heater.
Open drain at bottom of unit, attach garden hose to route water to
drain or outside.
Open TPR valve at top of unit, to allow air in.
Water will come out now!
Once unit is empty, turn on water supply to unit, allow to flow through
Close drain at bottom of unit.
Close TPR at top of unit
Turn on water supply to unit.
Open a hot water faucet somewhere in your house, like in the kitchen.
When water comes out there, the heater is filled.
Turn on gas and relight pilot.
Then, go around the house and purge each faucet for air and debris.
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