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How to Flush Out Your Hot Water Tank and Why You Should

May 1, 2022
 Santana Bros Plumbing

A toolbox next to a hot water tank. Turn on screen reader support

It is important to flush your hot water tank once a year in order to prevent too much sediment buildup. As sediment accumulates, it causes blockages in your hot water tank that make it function less effectively. Hot water tanks that are flushed out annually are likely to last a few years longer than those that are not.


1. Turn off Power/Gas

If you have a gas water heater, turn the thermostat to the “pilot” setting. If you have an electric water heater, shut off the breaker at your home’s electrical panel.


2. Turn off the Cold Water Supply Valve

This is usually located at the top of the water heater and will be connected to a pipe that feels cold to the touch. 


3. Attach a Hose to the Drain Valve

The drain valve is located near the bottom of the tank. Attach a garden hose to the drain valve so that you can control where the water goes as you drain the tank.


4. Place the Hose End Where it can Drain Safely

Run the hose so the end is somewhere water can drain safely, such as in a large bucket or on your driveway.


5. Turn on a Hot Water Tap

Turn on a hot water tap that is relatively close to the water tank. This helps to relieve pressure on the system and makes the water drain more quickly. 


6. Open the Drain Valve

Open the drain valve to allow water to begin draining from the tank. Let it drain until it is empty.


7. Close the Drain Valve & Remove the Hose

Once the tank has been completely drained, close the valve drain and remove the hose. 


8. Turn the Cold Water Supply and Power/Gas Back on

Turn the cold water supply back on as well as the gas or power. You’re all done!

Draining your hot water tank once a year helps to maintain it and lengthen its lifespan, but problems still happen from time to time. If you need any water tank repairs done or are ready to upgrade to a new water heater, get in touch with Santana Bros Plumbing today!


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Alexa Seleno
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