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I better go drain my water heater...

Post in 'The Gear' started by Jay H, Jan 29, 2007.

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  1. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Ever since christmas when I got my little LL Bean steamer for my stove top, I will put water in it to turn to steam whenever the humidity drops to the mid 40s... I've noticed a bit o accumulation of sediment at the bottom, almost like beach sand... makes me think I better go drain my water heater soon thinking how much must be in there. I've lived here for 1 year, and I don't know how well the previous owner kept up the water heater so I guess it is about time to go see... :)

    A public service message from a water steamer user... :)

    Jay

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  2. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    it was my understanding to drain a water heater every year. ( turn off heater before so )

    In the Spring when the A/C gets cleaned the water heater get drained.
    good topic to bring up.
  3. wahoowad

    wahoowad Minister of Fire

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    Virginia
    Ahhhh, I knew I forgot to do something this weekend! I had planned on draining it Sunday. Cut and split a load of oak instead :)
  4. colsmith

    colsmith New Member

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    near Milwaukee, WI
    Oddly enough, hubby and I were talking about draining water heaters just yesterday. He said that if you do it every year, that is great. But if you are someplace with a waterheater that hasn't been drained in many years, it is best to leave it alone. Evidently so much crud builds us that when you do drain it after many years, big hunkers of stuff fall down, too big to drain out, and can clog things up and cause trouble. So if you have never drained your water heater in 10 years, don't bother, you might lead to its demise.

    Disclaimer, I am not a plumber and don't play one on TV.
  5. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Well, I've only lived here for 1 year... I think the water heater is somewhere near the end of it's life. I know the water around NJ is pretty hard and one can expect only 5-10 years max with them. My parents who live about 5 miles away go through water heaters every 6-8 years but they NEVER drain their water tank.... I am going to do a partial drain someday. My gut tells me I should wait til spring, my brain tells me to do it now!!!

    Jay
  6. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
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    Central NYS
    I drain a couple gallons off the bottom of mine about once a week. I have a gravity-fed heat exchanger branching off my wood boiler that heats our DHW, and it works best if the scale and other crap is flushed out of the bottom of the tank periodically.
  7. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    C'mon hunting season!
    I just changed out my water heater from 1995 and it was like moving a giant bucket of wet sand...I dumped it in my yard and 2 days later picked it up and you could hear the sediment in it. The amazing part is that I owned the house for the last 7 years and do drain it yearly. The old one pounded when the burner kicked in. Good luck.
  8. nshif

    nshif New Member

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    If it has one check the anode rod as well.
  9. WarmGuy

    WarmGuy Feeling the Heat

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    Far Northern Calif. Coast
    I recommend an on-demand water heater. Ours paid for itself ($1700) in a few years. No draining necessary.
  10. TMonter

    TMonter Minister of Fire

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    Hayden, ID
    The best thing you can do for any kind of tank-type water heater is check tha anode rod and add a second rod if it has a spot for it.

    As for tankless types, they are nice, but you'll never recoup the cost on a gas one in less than 10 years, even at $11/MM Btu. The biggest benefit to tankless types is you never run out of hot water.
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