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Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Microman
Date: December 02, 2018 02:44PM
Have this 9 year old water heater that is making that gurgling noise from sediment. I thought I would give it a flush, and so I put a hose on the valve, opened up the air release valve and unscrewed to open, but nothing came out. I did take off the hose, and tried a wire (hanger), and when I was unsuccessful, I removed the hose and drained it on the street and you can see what did come out.

So when your dealing with hot water, and you have to take the valve off to get the water out, what would be the safest way to handle it.

I have read that I could turn off gas for 24 hours and let it cool.

I could take a hose and use a washer hose to connect to a water supply and push the clog away from the valve. And do that a couple or 4 times.

Anyway that is a project the next time I visit my daughters Condo....



Clogged Valve



Came out of hose



New Valve
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 02, 2018 02:49PM
I thought we all said the "sediment" thing was mostly a myth?

And may replace the valve with a full valve, rather than the small hose like spigot.



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/02/2018 02:55PM by jdc.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: btfc
Date: December 02, 2018 03:02PM
I've hooked up a water supply/hose and back flushed with good results
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: December 02, 2018 04:13PM
I don't bother with the OEM drain valve. I replace it with a brass nipple and a 1/4 turn ball valve. Much faster way to drain the tank. Plus, if I get sediment, I can push a hanger thru the ball valve.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Microman
Date: December 02, 2018 04:28PM
Could you give an example of what ball valve you might recommend. Say at Home Depot. And how far would it stick out ? I guess with nipple long enough to clear water heater body and attach said valve

Ty
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: billb
Date: December 02, 2018 04:33PM
Quote
Microman






Came out of hose

That looks like a purifying cartridge ruptured, or :
[www.youtube.com]



copper oxides can be blue but they always look more green than blue to me.



The Phorum Wall keeps us safe from illegal characters and words
The doorstep to the temple of wisdom is the knowledge of one's own ignorance. -Benjamin Franklin
BOYCOTT YOPLAIT [www.noyoplait.com]
[soundcloud.com]




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/02/2018 04:41PM by billb.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 02, 2018 08:48PM
Like this



Pick your size. You might need to go in and find the exact one, but either of the big boxes should have it.

[www.homedepot.com]



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Winston
Date: December 02, 2018 09:25PM
Quote
Microman
Have this 9 year old water heater

If you have never replaced the sacrificial anode on that hot water heater, you may be looking at a water heater replacement.

The sacrificial anodes last 5-7 years, or maybe a bit more. If you are keeping this one, do the anode change.


Good luck.


- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Mr645
Date: December 03, 2018 06:06AM
At 9 years old, I would probably just choose to repeal the hot water heater. Their expected lifespan is not much beyond that anyway
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mrlynn
Date: December 03, 2018 06:44AM
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn



"Hillbilly at Harvard"
Honky-tonk Country and Bluegrass
Founded in 1948 by Pappy Ben Minnich
Saturdays 9am - 1pm Eastern
WHRB-FM, Cambridge, MA
Streaming at [www.WHRB.org]
Be there!

The HAH weblog: [hillbillyatharvard.wordpress.com]

Topical weblog: [walkingcreekworld.wordpress.com]

On the river in Saxonville.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/03/2018 06:52AM by mrlynn.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: iamrfixit
Date: December 03, 2018 06:50AM
Sediment or scale accumulation is definitely not a myth. I've seen it build up several inches deep in unmaintained heaters. Flushing it out may cause leaks to show up, the tank gets some corrosion going under the layer of sediment. Disturbing the layer of junk exposes the corrosion and in some cases cause it to accelerate, leaks appear soon after.

That age and having problems, I'd replace it. Especially if it's located on the main floor or in a finished space. Down in an unfinished, concrete basement with a floor drain you may afford a little leeway, in finished living space a leak can be catastrophic. It will always happen right after you leave for the day or are gone for the weekend, almost guaranteed.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Bill in NC
Date: December 03, 2018 07:41AM
my in-laws have kept their electric water heater going for decades via annually removing the drain valve & using a wet/dry vac to suck out any sediment that has accumulated at the bottom of the tank.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: December 03, 2018 09:46AM
Quote
jdc
Like this



Pick your size. You might need to go in and find the exact one, but either of the big boxes should have it.

[www.homedepot.com]

Exactly. If memory serves, I used a 3/4 inch ball valve and a 1-1/2 or 2 inch long piece of 3/4 inch diameter brass nipple. I also bought an adapter to attach a garden hose to the valve.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: davester
Date: December 03, 2018 11:08AM
Quote
Mr645
At 9 years old, I would probably just choose to repeal the hot water heater. Their expected lifespan is not much beyond that anyway

The expected lifespan is the lifespan of the anode. The second the anode is used up, corrosion attacks the tank. The difference between a 6-year-warrantied water heater and a 12-year-warrantied one is one anode versus two. If you replace anodes regularly (i.e. every six years) a water heater can last indefinitely. Sediment removal is just one part of the equation. The anode is a bigger part. [www.waterheaterrescue.com]



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Winston
Date: December 03, 2018 11:37AM
Quote
davester
Quote
Mr645
At 9 years old, I would probably just choose to repeal the hot water heater. Their expected lifespan is not much beyond that anyway

The expected lifespan is the lifespan of the anode. The second the anode is used up, corrosion attacks the tank. The difference between a 6-year-warrantied water heater and a 12-year-warrantied one is one anode versus two. If you replace anodes regularly (i.e. every six years) a water heater can last indefinitely. Sediment removal is just one part of the equation. The anode is a bigger part. [www.waterheaterrescue.com]


My goal is to check/replace the anode every five years. As our HVAC contractor is willing to do it, I get it done during a regular HVAC service.


Good luck.

- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Winston
Date: December 03, 2018 11:38AM
Quote
mrlynn
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn


Yes, and yes, or at least have it checked. But if the water heater is a few years old, probably should go ahead and replace it.


Good luck.

- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mrlynn
Date: December 03, 2018 12:52PM
Quote
Winston
Quote
mrlynn
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn


Yes, and yes, or at least have it checked. But if the water heater is a few years old, probably should go ahead and replace it.


Good luck.

- Winston

I just looked at the document pocket on the side of the water heater. Yes, there are instructions for checking/replacing the anode(s). And a paid bill from the plumber from. . . 2005! This is a 50-gal. gas w.h. with a 10-year warranty. So it's now 13 years old. Looks brand new—outside, of course. Works fine.

If I want to check the anodes, I'll have to drain the tank. There is no drain in our basement. That would be a lot of buckets. . .

/Mr Lynn
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mikebw
Date: December 03, 2018 12:57PM
Quote
mrlynn
Quote
Winston
Quote
mrlynn
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn

Yes, and yes, or at least have it checked. But if the water heater is a few years old, probably should go ahead and replace it.


Good luck.

- Winston

I just looked at the document pocket on the side of the water heater. Yes, there are instructions for checking/replacing the anode(s). And a paid bill from the plumber from. . . 2005! This is a 50-gal. gas w.h. with a 10-year warranty. So it's now 13 years old. Looks brand new—outside, of course. Works fine.

If I want to check the anodes, I'll have to drain the tank. There is no drain in our basement. That would be a lot of buckets. . .

/Mr Lynn

Are you sure? I thought anodes were accessible from the top of the tank.

If you need to replace the whole thing then you're gonna have to drain it anyway!
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mrlynn
Date: December 03, 2018 01:25PM
Quote
mikebw
Quote
mrlynn
Quote
Winston
Quote
mrlynn
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn

Yes, and yes, or at least have it checked. But if the water heater is a few years old, probably should go ahead and replace it.


Good luck.

- Winston

I just looked at the document pocket on the side of the water heater. Yes, there are instructions for checking/replacing the anode(s). And a paid bill from the plumber from. . . 2005! This is a 50-gal. gas w.h. with a 10-year warranty. So it's now 13 years old. Looks brand new—outside, of course. Works fine.

If I want to check the anodes, I'll have to drain the tank. There is no drain in our basement. That would be a lot of buckets. . .

/Mr Lynn

Are you sure? I thought anodes were accessible from the top of the tank.

If you need to replace the whole thing then you're gonna have to drain it anyway!

Well, you're right, of course. I should RTFM before speaking. The anode (apparently only one) is accessible from the top. I was assuming a little short one as in my trailer. This one is real long.

Not sure I should even mess with it at this age. If it ain't broke. . .

/Mr Lynn
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mikebw
Date: December 03, 2018 02:22PM
I had a ~30 year old electric water heater at my old place, I tried to inspect the anode (single) but could not for the life of me get the sucker to unscrew. Best I could do was to start rotating the whole unit with my wrench. It failed a few months later with a very slow leak. Not sure how it lasted that long, but perhaps a previous owner had it maintained. At least now I own the giant 1-1/16" socket for next time!
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Microman
Date: December 03, 2018 02:33PM
Bought a 1/4 run ball valve and two Nipples of various lengths. I would think I would want a hose connection to be the last thing out of the water heater. Would that be the same as another short Nipple. Is a 3/4" nipple the same thread as garden hose?

The cost of the Ball valve and 2 nipples are more than 3x the cost of the original type I pictured above.

But I get the idea with the ball valve, you turn it 1/4 and the hole thing is open for straight thru dumping of water.
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: davester
Date: December 03, 2018 02:45PM
Quote
mrlynn
Not sure I should even mess with it at this age. If it ain't broke. .

The problem with that approach is that the anode eventually WILL become consumed and shortly after that the tank will self-destruct and empty itself catastrophically onto your basement floor. You have no idea when that will happen since it is dependent on water chemistry...worst case is about 6 years which is why single-anode heaters have 6-year warranties and dual-anode heaters have 12-year warranties. Best case with really non-reactive water can be 20 years or so.

That said, it can sometimes be difficult to replace an anode because the threads have started to corrode and it is stuck. Generally the best tool for the job is an impact wrench. You have two chances at this: 1) Try to get the regular anode out; 2) If that fails, try to get the dip tube out (the reason for this is that you can buy a combo dip tube/anode. Also note that if you have a low ceiling over the water heater you will need to bend the anode as it comes out. Don't worry, they sell articulated anodes that will fit even with low ceilings...just straighten as you insert.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: billb
Date: December 03, 2018 03:17PM
Quote
mrlynn
Quote
Winston
Quote
mrlynn
Re Winston's post about the anode:

I was not aware that gas water heaters had anodes! My trailer water heater has one, but it can run on gas (propane) or electricity.

Would an old, corroded anode contribute to a sediment problem?

Wonder if I should change the one in my gas home water heater. . .

/Mr Lynn





Yes, and yes, or at least have it checked. But if the water heater is a few years old, probably should go ahead and replace it.


Good luck.

- Winston

I just looked at the document pocket on the side of the water heater. Yes, there are instructions for checking/replacing the anode(s). And a paid bill from the plumber from. . . 2005! This is a 50-gal. gas w.h. with a 10-year warranty. So it's now 13 years old. Looks brand new—outside, of course. Works fine.

If I want to check the anodes, I'll have to drain the tank. There is no drain in our basement. That would be a lot of buckets. . .

/Mr Lynn


[www.homedepot.com]

Or, if you respect your drill too much to abuse it like that spend 50 bucks and get a garden hose
transfer pump about 1/10 HP. Or a 12VDC version



The Phorum Wall keeps us safe from illegal characters and words
The doorstep to the temple of wisdom is the knowledge of one's own ignorance. -Benjamin Franklin
BOYCOTT YOPLAIT [www.noyoplait.com]
[soundcloud.com]
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: mrlynn
Date: December 03, 2018 08:04PM
Well, I was really wrong about the age of my water heater. It was nagging me, because I remembered a recent installation. But I was looking at a bill in the document pocket on the heater from 2005. Then I looked at the Build Date on the plate, and that was. . . August 2015! Turns out I did replace the heater in 2005, and then again in January 2016. So the current heater is not quite four years old.

I'm going to order a flexible anode (not enough ceiling height for a standard 42" one), and once I have it, I'll find a good time and swap it for the one that's in there (looks like just one, though it is a 10-year warranty unit).

Thanks all, for the education.

Bill, they say you only need to drain a gallon or two from the tank before swapping anodes, so I can probably just attach a piece of hose and run it into a bucket. Higher water level should force it over the lip of the bucket.

Sorry, Microman for hijacking the thread.

/Mr Lynn
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: btfc
Date: December 03, 2018 09:35PM
PSA; Consider a leak detector/shut off, it can save you a bunch of $$$


One example:

Water Heater Leak Alarm and Shut-Off System

[reliancedetection.com]
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Re: Need tips for replacing Hot Water Heater Drain Valve that is clogged
Posted by: Winston
Date: December 04, 2018 10:08AM
Quote
btfc
PSA; Consider a leak detector/shut off, it can save you a bunch of $$$


One example:

Water Heater Leak Alarm and Shut-Off System

[reliancedetection.com]


You also might get a small break on homeowner's insurance if you have a leak detector. Has been on my "to do" list.


Good luck.

- Winston



------------------------
Be seeing you.
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