November 22, 2022
Quick Tips: How to Flush Your Water Heater
Do You Know How To Flush Your Water Heater?
Emptying your tank once a year is an important piece of water heater maintenance that you can do yourself. It will help your water heater remain efficient and lead a longer life. Why? Calcium, rust and sand collect in water heaters which means they have to work harder to heat water.
By performing an annual water heater flush, you remove these impurities from your appliance. It only takes a quick hour on a Saturday afternoon to keep your hot water from going cold the rest of the year. Watch our short video above to learn how to drain a water heater and how to return it to working order after. Detailed steps are below.
Flush Your Water Heater in 9 Steps
- Turn your thermostat to the vacation setting.
Most water heaters have a vacation setting. This turns the temperature of your water low while you don’t need it. If your water heater doesn’t have a vacation setting, simply turn the thermostat as low as it goes.
- Shut off the cold water supply valve.
Your water heater will have two pipes above it: one for the incoming cold water and one for the outgoing hot water. Turn off the valve on the incoming cold water pipe to stop more water from coming into your water heater while you flush it.
- Connect a garden hose to your water heaters drain.
You’ll find a threaded coupling for the drain at the bottom of your water heater. Simply screw your garden hose on as you would with a faucet.
- Open a hot water faucet somewhere in your home.
This vents the hot water line and allows your tank to drain more quickly.
- Place the open end of the garden hose over a floor drain.
Most basements should have a floor drain near the laundry basin. Place your hose over the drain so the water can exit without flooding your basement.
- Open your water heater’s valve.
Use a flathead screwdriver to open the valve where the hot water heater drain connects to the hose. Water should begin flowing.
- Close the valve and disconnect the hose.
Once all the water (and sediment) have emptied out of your water heater, close the valve tightly and remove the garden hose.
- Turn off the hot water faucet and open the cold water valve.
Now you can refill your water heater. This will take a few minutes and the water will automatically stop once it’s full.
- Adjust your thermostat.
Return your thermostat to whatever temperature you prefer. For most homes that is around 120 degrees. Your water heater will begin to heat the water and within an hour you should have hot water again.
Need Help with Your Water Heater?
If your water heater is old or your drain valve is faulty, your drain valve may not seal when you close it at the end of the flush. One of our licensed technicians would be happy to help with your flush and inspect your water heater. If you notice problems with your hot water or would like information on a new, energy efficient water heater for your home, give Applewood a call today.