I believe in getting into hot water, it keeps you clean

October 1, 2020

Time to drain the hot water tank!

According to “This Old House” you should do this twice a year, but my plumber said I probably only need to do it once. When ever the water starts to turn brown, the tank should be drained. I try to do this in the fall, usually later than now, but with the way things are going this year, I figured I better do it sooner rather than later. If it needs it in the spring, I will do it then as well.

Reasons to have the hot water tank drained…

  • sediment build up can reduce the efficiency of the tank
  • naturally occurring minerals can settle on the bottom of the tank, including sand and grit if you are hooked up to a municipal water line
  • sediment can potentially plug up the drain and interfere with ongoing maintenance

First thing’s first…hook up the hose to the drain valve. I have to use a screwdriver to open it. Some tanks have a spicket, or you can have one put on by your plumber. When the pump kicks on, close the drain valve until the pump kicks off.

Most sites will tell you to turn the water off, but when I do this, I can’t get the water to drain out. Maybe you will have different luck.

When the pump kicks off, open the drain again. Keep doing this til the water runs clear. For me, it’s usually four or five times. This time, it only took three times, plus one for good measure. Then I waited an hour or so and drained it one more time, after the water had settled.

Water clarity after the second “drain”
not so clear…

If at all possible, use one hose! Otherwise, you will [probably] have a mess to clean up afterwards. It is just water, so no major damage done…

a wet mess

I use a twenty foot hose and a fifty foot hose, connected together so I can put the one end outside the basement door. If I had a sump pump, I would just put the end of the hose there. But this house doesn’t have one…

The hoses don’t fit together tight, so there is some water clean up to do afterwards.

clear as a bell?

Here is an image compare…

The image on the left is when I first started draining the tank, the one on the right is the final drain. And if I must be honest, I hadn’t been able to get the water that clear when draining the tank in a long time.

when to replace the hot water heater…

  • Hot water heaters (tank style) usually last eight to ten years. Mine is eight, so sometime soon it will need to be replaced.
  • if you start hearing strange noises coming from the heater
  • the water is tinted or rusty looking
    – one thing to keep in mind, if your water is rusty looking, it may not necessarily be the tank. When I had the plumber come in earlier this year, the pipe for the downspout in the bathtub was completely rusted – hence the rusty color, and the reason why I couldn’t get the faucet off). If you drain the tank, and the water is still rusty looking, time to climb the plumber.
  • water is pooling around the base of the water heater
  • if the tank is no longer heating the water

That’s about all I have for today, or at least the time being.
Hope you have a great day!
Thanks for stopping by!!

The Same Boiling Water That Softens... - Quotes for Life | Good morning  texts, Water quotes, Good life quotes
(photo source: internet)

The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg.
It’s about what you’re made of,
not the circumstances.

take care
stay safe
much love

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