Need advice for annual water heater draining


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Old 03-03-23, 01:47 AM
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Need advice for annual water heater draining

I placed a 12 gallon tank type water heater in the attic of my detached garage. Since it is subject to freezing I plan to drain the tank each Fall. I had planned on piping the drainage out, but could not do that. My fall back was to hook up a garden hose. My only issue with this is the sheer weight of a 100' garden hose. I had considered those expandable garden hose, but they don't reach their full length unless pressurized. Is there any alternative?

Also, I tried several searches to see if this question was asked before. The search function seems to be messed up. Rather than taking me to relevant post it keeps taking me to articles that having nothing to do with the search terms. What am I doing wrong?
 
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Old 03-03-23, 02:00 AM
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Any special reason you couldn't pipe out the drain?
I'd just hook the hose on a temporary basis.
I've had issues with the search feature also so you might not be doing anything wrong.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 02:07 AM
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I could pipe it down to the interior of the garage, but there simply is no convenient way to pipe the drain to the outside of the garage.

BTW- You are in TN. Me too. Just north of Nashville.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 02:46 AM
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You don't have to lift the full weight of a 100' hose. You only need to lift the end to get up to the water heater. Or, you can connect multiple, shorter hoses.

If you are considering permanently attaching drain piping I would first replace the stock drain valve with a quarter turn ball valve. The stock valve won't accept standard plumbing fittings and they clog very easily. The ball valve is much more resistant to clogging and are available in different configurations making attaching plumbing easier.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 04:03 AM
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Let me back up a few steps and give you the entire story. Maybe you can offer alternative solutions.
The garage has a mini-split heat pump. The walls are insulated, but I think still subject to freezing. The plumbing is all in the exterior walls. 100% PEX. In total, there are 2 hose bibs and water lines down to a utility sink (hence the water heater).

With the exception of the water heater I made it easy to drain the rest of the garage plumbing. The options I am thinking of are:
  1. Drain the water heater each Fall with a hose as discussed
  2. Move the water heater to the interior of the heated garage
  3. Seal off the water in the water heater, but leave it heating to avoid freezing
  4. Get rid of the water heater and install a point of use mini tank water heater in the utility sink.

Any ideas are appreciated
 
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Old 03-03-23, 05:08 AM
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Pipe it down to the first floor, then use hose!
 
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Old 03-03-23, 05:26 AM
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I am considering it.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 06:51 AM
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Why run outside? Run a pipe or hose to the sink. A permanent pipe should end about an inch or more above the sink overflow level.

Or a pipe stubbed out through the wall. 12 gallons once-a-year dumping on the ground shouldn't be a problem.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 06:57 AM
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Good idea. The utility sink is virtually directly below the water heater.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 07:01 AM
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Upvoting is screwing up the sequence of posts. (I posted a rant about that a couple weeks ago.)

Your upvote of my reply (thanks) has moved it up so your response does not follow my post directly. Try removing the upvote to see if the sequence is restored.
 
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Old 03-03-23, 09:51 AM
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They say they are working on the upvote mess, hopefully the fix will come soon!
 
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Old 03-04-23, 01:24 AM
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I hope they fix whatever is going on with the search function. I search for forum threads on a topic and it sends me to articles. Is this redirect intentional?
 
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Old 03-09-23, 11:30 AM
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A question regarding changing out the drain valve. The one in it is plastic. I tried taking it out without success. I am afraid if I put more force on it that it will break off.

Any suggestions?
 
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Old 03-09-23, 12:08 PM
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I am afraid if I put more force on it that it will break off.
I had a similar situation on one of my water heaters and I don't remember the outcome. I know it did not break, but I do not remember if it came out or if I left it.

You could use a hose-thread to NPT fitting to install a valve and pipe on the existing drain spigot and just leave the existing one open. Or no additional valve and just the fitting and pipe. Or just a hose through an opening to the sink below. Or a short piece of hose inserted into a pipe open on both ends. The pipe won't be pressurized so a solid joint is not needed.

I did install a nipple-tee-drain on one of my water heaters to accommodate a recirculation return line but I do not remember if it was the one with the original plastic drain.
 
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Old 03-09-23, 12:33 PM
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I am confused. My plastic factory drain is new. Nothing wrong with it except it was recommended that it be replaced because I will be draining at the end of each season and the factory valves flow slowly and tend to clog. It was recommended to replace it with a full flow brass ball valve.

 
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Old 03-09-23, 01:02 PM
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The plastic valves can get finicky. I wouldn't bother replacing it until it becomes an issue. They fail more often than brass valves but they don't always fail. I drain the sediment out of my water heater 3 times a year. It still has the cheap plastic valve, no issues so far. My tank is in the neighborhood of 7-8 yrs old.
 
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Old 03-09-23, 01:06 PM
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You don't have to say that twice. I will leave it until it becomes a problem. One other water heater question. I am a bad homeowner. I have never taken out and inspected a water heater anode rod. Since I will be draining this water heater at the end of each year I thought I would check the anode rod each time. I have read they can get pretty stuck over time. Would it behoove me to take it out now and reinstall it will some teflon tape?
 
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Old 03-09-23, 01:34 PM
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Hopefully one of the others can answer that for you, I've never removed/replaced mine.
 
 

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