Plumber Tips for Flushing Your Water Heater

In order for your plumbing system to function at its best, it is important to keep it clean. Flushing your water heater is really simple, however, it is effective and will extend its life and help it operate at maximum efficiency.

Over time, sediment builds up in your water heater, and it can block the drain, causing it to stop working efficiently. If you live in an area with hard water, accumulation will be worse. When minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron build-up at the bottom of your water heater, your water will become discolored and can cause your hot water taps to become rusty. It can clog your fittings and cause spurting, sputtering, and even restriction to your water flow.

When gas water heaters with burners at the bottom start accumulating deposits, that sediment starts acting as an insulation blanket that cuts down the efficiency of the burner. This causes increased energy costs and can cause the tank to fail. When the sediment is stirred up with the incoming water, and it is carried to the faucet aerators, washing machine filters, and showerheads, it can clog the fittings.

When your hot water system is not functioning at full efficiency, or if you notice dirty water, restricted water flow or splattering and stuttering, it is time to flush your water heater. Be sure to read the steps below and understand them fully before you proceed, otherwise, it would be best to call your local Toronto plumber for assistance.

Flushing Your Water Heater - Step-by-Step

Today, our Toronto master plumber shares his best tips for flushing your water heater.

1. If you have an electric tank, turn it off. Alternatively, if you have a gas water heater, turn it down to the lowest setting or on the pilot.

Plumber Tips for Flushing Your Water Heater
2. Switch off the water heater's cold water supply, which you will usually find at the top of your water heater.

3. Attach a garden hose to the water heater's drain valve.

4. Open all the hot water faucets in the house to allow the tank to drain quickly.

Plumber Tips for Flushing Your Water Heater
5. Open the water heater's drain valve, allowing it to drain completely. It could take time, especially if sediment is causing it to drain quickly. Be careful not to use too much force when you open up the drain, as it will break the drain valve.

6. Once the water has drained completely, shut off the drain valve and open the hosepipe's cold water supply. Allow the water heater to fill to the halfway mark before turning the water supply off. Repeat the previous step again until the water comes out clean.

7. When the water drains clear from the water cleaner, you can close the drain valve and open the cold water to let the heater fill up again.

8. While the water heater fills up, you should open all the hot water faucets to allow air to escape from the system.

9. Turn the electricity back on, if it is electric, or turn the gas to the original setting if you have a gas heater.

Once you have completed these steps, you're done. By taking these simple steps, years can be added to your water heater and its efficiency to your water heater.

If flushing your hot water heater does not improve its functioning, it may need to be replaced, or there could be a different issue. Call a find an honest plumber, who has a gas and electric permit and who works according to the city codes.

Written by Tanya Klien

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