Draining a Hot water tank - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
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Draining a Hot water tank

Anyone ever had an issue draining a hot water tank? This was the second year for me with hot water tank and hopefully nxt year I will remember. I plumbed my cabin complete last year after building on addition for shower. I ran pex finally made my sink wet so I put ball valves drains at lowest point due to I turn off heat after rifle season. Muzzy season I just charge commode and maybe sink but have shutoffs every where that I am able to do. I have the tank located by my shower on a pedestal so I could run garden hose in to shower to empty. I placed hose on valve turn out screw and barely a trickle. I opened and closed other places I had drains but not until I opened the one valve under my sink which was the lowest point did the water start coming out of my tank. Kind of learned a lesson but the valve under sink nothing came out it just allowed the tank to drain in shower at full stream.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 05:24 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

I have braided supply lines screwed onto my hot water tank. When I drain it I have to unscrew the supply lines from the copper or it doesn't drain. Some type of vaccuum issue, but it's not really a problem. I just leave them off until I turn water back on.
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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 05:35 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

If you've opened all the hot water faucets to allow venting and it still won't flow, the drain valve is probably clogged with goop from hard water? That stuff builds up and eventually settles to the bottom, clogging the drain valve.

Try turning the fill valve (cold) ON while the drain hose is attached and drain valve open. If the goop isn't too thick, that'll often flush the drain valve.

If that doesn't work, a double female end washing machine hose can be used to back flush it out a bit: Connect wash. mach. hose to drain valve, other end to a garden hose.

With cold water (fill) valve to water heater shut off and hot water faucets open, turn the hose on a few times to clear (back flush) drain valve, disconnect from garden hose, then see if it'll drain itself afterwards.

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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 06:00 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

I open the relief valve on my tank to vent it when draining, it really speeds things up. I have a short piece of pipe running to a bucket to catch the small amount of water that comes out when the valve is first opened.

Eh...wot?
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 06:46 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

You have to open a sink faucet up or something else to allow air to get in the tank to replace the water you are draining. Like someone else said, it's a vacuum issue.

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 07:17 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

I use an air compressor to blow the lines out at camp and use it on the 40 gal water heater as well. Really speeds things up.

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 09:42 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

Always used compressor too. If you have 220 volt heater, never energize unit when it is drained. You'll cook the heating elements instantly. I learned the hard way.
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-30-2014, 09:55 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

Was just logging on to warn of energizing a empty electric water heater. 110/220 volt, lock out that breaker or fuse. Make it as fool proof as possible. Especially if others go to your camp.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-31-2014, 02:06 AM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by G-Daddy
I use an air compressor to blow the lines out at camp and use it on the 40 gal water heater as well. Really speeds things up.

That's a good idea never thought to do that, we have 2 water heaters at our camp a 40 gal and a 50 gal it's kinda of a complicated setup. Draining the tanks is the longest part of winterizing the place (about 15 and 20 minutes). Normally we just open the valves on the faucets and that aids the draining of the tank with a hose attached to the valve on the tank.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-31-2014, 12:31 PM
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Re: Draining a Hot water tank

We leave all valves open, drain the tank, and blow them out with a compressor. Have it all down to about 30 minutes. Don't forget to pour some antifreeze in the traps!

Are we at camp yet?
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