Home Improvement

How to Properly Maintain a Water Heater Drain Valve

Water Heater Denver warm water for washing, cooking, cleaning and other household uses. They use gas, electricity, fuel oil or solar energy to heat the water.

Most home water heaters are tank-type models. These have a large insulated tank that holds hot water until it’s needed. They can be powered by gas, electric, propane or heating oil.

A tank-type water heater has a large insulated storage tank that holds hot water until it’s needed. Cold water enters the bottom through the dip tube and heats up, either from a gas burner under the tank or electric elements suspended inside the tank. An adjustable thermostat regulates the temperature and a pressure-relief valve prevents an excessive buildup of pressure and temperature inside the tank.

The inside of the tank is lined with protective glass, and on top of that are several layers of insulating material. This helps keep your water hot, and it can reduce your energy bill by reducing the amount of gas or electricity that the heater uses to maintain the hot temperature.

If you choose to install a new water heater, consider adding an extra layer of insulation to the tank itself. This can be done with a fiberglass insulation tank jacket, and it’s usually much cheaper than replacing the whole unit.

You can also add a thermal drain pan under your water heater to further reduce the chances of corrosion or mineral deposits inside the tank, and this is especially important if you live in an area with hard water. Jake the Plumber can help you determine if you need this added protection.

The tank itself can be made of steel or aluminum, and many people prefer the latter because it doesn’t rust. You can find tanks ranging from 30 to 60 gallons, and the capacity depends on how large your household is and how often you use hot water. Some tank-type water heaters have an anode rod in the middle of the tank, which is a piece of magnesium or aluminum designed to sacrifice itself instead of the internal metal components of the tank by attracting all the corrosive minerals in your home’s water (effectively sacrificing itself for the good of your plumbing). You should replace the anode rod every three to five years, depending on how hard your water is. Water exits the tank through the hot water outlet at the top, and from there it flows into your home’s pipes and to showers, washing machines and other appliances that need it.


Thermostats are essential to the operation of your water heater, reducing energy consumption while ensuring the hot water you need at any given time. Most thermostats have dials that allow users to set a desired water temperature. Once set, the thermostat automatically activates or deactivates the heating elements to maintain that temperature. The thermostat also constantly senses the water temperature inside the tank, adjusting accordingly.

When a gas water heater is used, it includes an integrated thermostat located on the back of the Gas valve control. A thermistor in the thermostat responds to heat, increasing an electric current that turns on the gas valve. When the gas valve is turned ON, it allows gas to flow to the burner; when OFF, the thermostat prevents the gas flow. Thermostats are also found in some electric water heaters.

Electric water heater thermostats are a little more complicated than their gas counterparts. To test a thermostat for continuity, shut off the power to your unit and locate the screws that hold the access panel on the top of the water heater (for larger units you may need to remove two panels). With the breaker off, open the access panel and carefully remove the insulation covering the wires.

Once exposed, find the power wires and use a multimeter to determine whether or not electricity is flowing to the thermostat. Touch one meter lead to the thermostat common terminal and the other to the terminal that sends power to the upper heating element. The meter display should read zero if the thermostat is functioning properly.

If the reading is 1, the thermostat has no continuity and should be replaced. When replacing the thermostat, note its reference number so that you can find a replacement that is the same model as your existing water heater thermostat. If you need to, you can even match up the screw holes on the new thermostat with the screws that held the old one in place – just make sure the numbers are the same. With the new thermostat in place, reattach the access panel and insulation and turn on the power to your water heater.

Drain Valve

A water heater is an integral part of a home, providing hot water for all your household needs. However, this convenient appliance also requires regular maintenance to avoid problems. The drain valve is one such critical component that needs to be properly maintained. In this article, we will take a closer look at this valve and its function. We will also discuss how to open a plastic drain valve and choose the right model for your household.

Water heaters need to be drained regularly, especially when there is sediment buildup in the tank. However, you need to be careful when doing this, as the tank can contain very hot water. It is recommended that you wear protective gloves and eyewear when performing this task. You should also disconnect the power or gas to your water heater before proceeding. You will then need to attach a garden hose to your water heater’s drain valve and lead it away from the house to a safe receptacle.

Once you have attached the hose, you will need to open the drain valve to allow water to flow out of the tank. You can do this by using a screwdriver. It is important that you have a bucket or pan underneath the hose to catch the sediment that will be released. You should then wait for the tank to empty completely before turning off your water supply.

You may need to repeat this process several times before the tank is fully drained. Once the tank is empty, you can turn the water back on by reversing the pilot setting on your gas heater or switching on your electric breaker. Before you do this, though, it is a good idea to turn on a hot water tap in your home to flush out the remaining sediment from the pipes. This will help prevent your water heater from developing a leak or producing rusty water.

Shut-Off Valve

The shut-off valve is the last line of defense against a catastrophic water leak that can cause thousands of dollars in damage to your home. Located outside the tank, this valve can be turned off to stop water from flowing into and out of the water heater. Once it’s turned off, you can assess the situation and decide whether or not to call in a professional to help with the repair.

Water valves are usually located on the wall close to where the pipe enters the house, although they can also be found in crawl spaces or closets. In general, they work by turning a handle or knob to restrict the flow of water. When the knob is turned clockwise it will close and prevent water from entering or exiting. If the knob is turned counterclockwise it will allow water to pass. The most common types of water valves in homes are gate valves, stops and ball valves. These are available in many styles, colors and materials to match any decor or plumbing system.

Most valves are simple to operate, but some can be more complex than others. It’s a good idea to keep a wrench and pliers nearby in case the valve needs to be opened or closed for any reason. A valve that’s not easily accessible can be a major pain in the neck to get open or closed during an emergency.

Shut-off valves need to be “exercised” from time to time to ensure that they work properly. To exercise your valves, turn off the water to one fixture that’s downstream of the valve. Then, open a faucet downstream of the valve and let it bleed off for several minutes. Once the flow of water stops, turn off the faucet and check the valve to see if it’s closed.

It’s also a good idea to have your shut-off valves replaced every two years or so. This will save you money on utility bills and ensure that your home is protected against costly water damage in the event of a burst pipe.