Your water heater may be one of the appliances in your home you take for granted—until it stops working and you wind up in a cold shower. To make sure you don't get a chilly and possibly expensive surprise, it's a good idea to perform regular maintenance on your water heater.
A home water heater needs to be drained as part of regular home maintenance.
Shut off the water and attach a hose to the spigot on the bottom of your water heater to drain.
- Shut off the water to your water heater. Look at the top of the water heater. You will see a water pipe and a water shutoff valve coming into the heater. Turn this valve clockwise to shut off the water to the heater.
- You also need to shut off the power to the water heater. If the heater is electric, shut the power off from the circuit breaker box. The correct fuse should be labeled as belonging to the water heater. It's important to know that if you fail to shut off the power to your electric water heater, you risk burning out the element. If it's a gas-powered water heater, shut off the gas by turning the valve on the gas supply line that runs to the tank.
- Now, attach the hose. Make sure to use a good-quality hose that's not worn out, as the hot water can make an old or worn-out hose leak—and you don't want all that hot water to damage your home or belongings.
- Place one end of the hose into a stationary tub, a basement floor drain or, if it'll reach, directly outside. Attach the other end onto the spigot at the bottom of the water heater.
- Turn on the spigot by turning it counter-clockwise.
Be very careful when you drain the tank! The water in your water heater is extremely hot. It's a good idea to give the water some time to cool before you drain it from the tank, to prevent injury.
If you are unsure about anything regarding your water heater, be sure to call a professional plumber.
Have a hard time remembering to maintain your water heater? Sign up for the Allstate Maintenance Reminder.