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  • #16
    Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

    Originally posted by plumberscrack View Post
    Let the incoming pressure push the sediments out first. Then shut incoming water off. If it's still stopped, I pull a vacuum on the heater and pop a new drain on like Herk said. Can be risky in a condo

    that's how we do it.

    but on a plastic old school valve, you have to be carefull it doesn't unscrew all the way.

    i also use a electric transfer pump that will pump 20+ gallons a minute. this is typically when i need to move the water up as in a basement. usually i will use gravity for normal jobs. by the time i get all the stuff brought in, the heater is drained down.

    rick.
    phoebe it is

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    • #17
      Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

      I have changed elements outs with water in the tank but a ball vavle for a changeout? Every WH changeout I did was because the WH was leaking except for one. How effective is the vacuum on a leaking WH? How much water spills out in that case?
      Buy cheap, buy twice.

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      • #18
        Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

        surprisingly, unless it's a huge hole, very little water leaks out.
        sigpic

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        • #19
          Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

          westcoast....how do you keep the water from draining from the HW tank while you are unscrewing the drain valve that came with the water heater? Once you unscrew the drain valve, what holds back the water in the tank?
          there's a solution to every problem.....you just have to be willing to find it.

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          • #20
            Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

            Originally posted by FINER9998 View Post
            westcoast....how do you keep the water from draining from the HW tank while you are unscrewing the drain valve that came with the water heater? Once you unscrew the drain valve, what holds back the water in the tank?

            Vacuum locking works well, you get a bit of water leakage, but you aren't just going to let it leak, you are going to screw in that nipple and ball valve, or that element.

            I never have a problem on the plastic bibbs breaking, I just work at it really carefully, an oversized pipe wrench works, and also a large cresent wrench works.

            If the bibb is too tight, you just need to know when to stop trying. By the way,w hen you want to vacuum lock the heater, keep the flex lines on and the t&p closed, remember, you don't want to let air into the tank, that will cause it to flush
            sigpic

            Robert

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            • #21
              Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

              Originally posted by yasudaplumbing View Post

              Matt Foley , I'm sorry but this is wrong. Provided there is no blockage, the water heater will always drain down to the same exact level as the end of your hose. Usually when I stick the end of the hose into the tub drain pipe, the water heater drains nearly dry because the tub drain pipe is below finished floor height (depending on tub model).
              The water level will always equalize at both ends, kinda like a water level.

              Sometimes when the tub drain has a cross in it or if it's a toe- touch stopper, I remove the overflow plate and shove the hose in as far as it can go, then pull back a few inches.
              or
              I remove the grate from the shower drain and do the same as above.

              Thanks again guys.

              Tracy

              Are you describing a siphoning effect? I can understand that happening but I've never been lucky enough to get a hose that was water tight to the majority of plastic valves from air infiltration, killing the siphon effect.

              Shower drain would be feasible since it doesn't have to ledge over anything.

              I've been lucky, always had a place to drain in most cases...
              Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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              • #22
                Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

                Originally posted by FINER9998 View Post
                westcoast....how do you keep the water from draining from the HW tank while you are unscrewing the drain valve that came with the water heater? Once you unscrew the drain valve, what holds back the water in the tank?
                Just think of a straw with your finger on the top as you pull it from a glass. As long as your finger stays there, water can't come out. Same concept.
                Buy cheap, buy twice.

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                • #23
                  Re: Clogged Drain Valve for Water Heater

                  OK guys,

                  I hooked up one end of the hose to the the cold side of the heater, and the other end to a lav faucet using an aerator x 3/4"MHT adapter.
                  While leaving the hot sides of the other lav & kitchen faucets on, I turned on the cold water to my hose and back fed it to the point where only water was exiting the other faucets and not air.
                  Next, I shut off the faucet, disconnected the hose, and dropped it into the tub drain to start the siphoning process. It ran only for a minute before stopping. My first thought was a broken dip tube.

                  My next move, shove a 3' piece of 1/2" pex into the heater, connect it to the hose using brass adapters.
                  Reconnect the other end to the lav faucet, turn on the cold water, go back to the heater and listen for bubbles to stop.
                  Then turn of the faucet, disconnect the hose and drop it into the tub.
                  (This is the same trick to drain a large fish tank inside your house)

                  The heater drained in 15 minutes. After removing the T&P on top, I looked inside and did not see a dip tube. I also saw a layer of white crap on the bottom which was about 3/8" thick. I shoved in a 1/2" copper pipe and all you could hear was crunch, crunch.

                  After all this, I've learned not to rely on the dip tube to do the siphon method. After 10+ years, most likely it won't be there. Just go straight to the pex/siphon method. If you have a pump, even better.

                  Thanks again guys.

                  Tracy
                  sigpic.................I Love My Toto Bidet :twofinger2: :twofinger:

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