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Old 10-28-2015, 02:11 PM   #1
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Question on winterizing water heater

A friend says that he doesn't put antifreeze into the water heater tank, figuring that the shape of the water heater tank can take a small amount of frozen water.

But I worry about water being trapped in the lower tank inlet pipe, just outside of the tank. So I add a small amount of antifreeze to the water heater tank.

I can't remember which valves to open ( or keep closed ) for the few seconds while I am adding the antifreeze. Please help…thanks in advance
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Old 10-28-2015, 04:06 PM   #2
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Ice floats. Water expands 10% when it changes to ice. Water heater shells don't. Best to get the water out or have the split shells.
I blow all the water out of my system each faucet until there's fog coming out each faucet, then blow in cheap vodka until you can taste it coming out, thens yourssss don until sprinks time. One fifths will do ya. Don't forget your toilet spray and pee traps.
Then you don't have that annoying red taste in your system until August.
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Old 10-28-2015, 04:36 PM   #3
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The shape of the tank will keep it from damage if drained. Now that said I put a 1/4 in plastic hose in the drain hole as the tank is draining. That hose siphons most of the remaining water off the bottom of the tank. It also draws off some of the sediment that has formed in the tank.

Keep in mind next spring while you are filling the tank. Fill very slowly or you will kick up sediment and most likely have clogged strainers on your faucets.
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Old 10-28-2015, 04:56 PM   #4
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Dave,



Do you use a compressor?

I've always drained the tank and blown it out thru the expansion valve. Just leave the drain valve out until only mist shows.

I modified my 'line blower' this year to make it easier. But did it with just an air line with blower nozzle for years.


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Old 10-28-2015, 06:00 PM   #5
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yeah , I siphoned almost all of the water out

AND got a mouth full of sediment

My question is What positions are the valves in for the brief moment while you are putting antifreeze into the tank.
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Old 10-28-2015, 07:03 PM   #6
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Question AF in HWT?

I've never added AF to the hot water tank. Just drained for the first 3yrs and drain & blow since. The blow helps get the crud out.

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Old 10-29-2015, 12:41 PM   #7
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[QUOTE=ROBERT CROSS;1703219]Dave,



Do you use a compressor?

I've always drained the tank and blown it out thru the expansion valve. Just leave the drain valve out until only mist shows.

I modified my 'line blower' this year to make it easier. But did it with just an air line with blower nozzle for years.

Dave, my 1997 21' Excela has this exact HW heater bypass configuration. I just winterized my 2016 25FC rear twin and to my surprise it does not have this configuration. AS, for what ever reason, has gone to a 'ONE' valve non-solution:-( There is only one so called bypass valve shutting off the cold water inlet in the HW tank. So, in theory, there really is not a real bypass anymore, at least on my 2016 model.
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Old 10-29-2015, 02:21 PM   #8
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A bit of water in the bottom of the hw heater is not a problem; the 10% expansion is a long way from the 98% of the tank that is empty. You can buy a kit that has a plastic nozzle to hook up yo your water hose to flush the sediment out of the tank, if you feel there is that much sediment in it.
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Old 10-29-2015, 04:02 PM   #9
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How does one blow out the water heater tank. I would think that the air would go right over the water and out the drain valve. I heard that some RV shops have been using pumps to clean the sediment out
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Old 10-29-2015, 05:06 PM   #10
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I use a small handheld pump similar to this one I picked up at Walmart to get the last remaining water out of the water heater.
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Old 10-29-2015, 08:30 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mandolindave View Post
How does one blow out the water heater tank. I would think that the air would go right over the water and out the drain valve. I heard that some RV shops have been using pumps to clean the sediment out
Dave

I blow the tank with an air line thru the expansion valve to help get the crud out, all the water out is a side benefit.
The first year I did it took a long time to run clear.
You can see the set-up in my link above.
Freezing a little water in the bottom of the tank won't damage it, but the crud does build up over time.

Bob
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Old 10-30-2015, 12:31 PM   #12
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[QUOTE=Plan-B;1703577]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Dave,
AS, for what ever reason, has gone to a 'ONE' valve non-solution:-( There is only one so called bypass valve shutting off the cold water inlet in the HW tank. So, in theory, there really is not a real bypass anymore, at least on my 2016 model.
My '89 Excella had a single valve. I can't remember how many lines went into it or whether it was just on the cold water inlet, but it worked just fine. I always bypassed the heater with the valve in "Winter" position and never got any antifreeze in the tank while flushing the lines with a hose from the antifreeze container to the pump.

The pros do not dry the HW tank. They drain it via the drain plug and leave it open or screwed in lightly. The "flushing attachment" in my previous post works well for flushing sediment.
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Old 10-31-2015, 08:05 AM   #13
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Question

[QUOTE=Plan-B;1703577]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Dave,



Do you use a compressor?

I've always drained the tank and blown it out thru the expansion valve. Just leave the drain valve out until only mist shows.

I modified my 'line blower' this year to make it easier. But did it with just an air line with blower nozzle for years.

Dave, my 1997 21' Excela has this exact HW heater bypass configuration. I just winterized my 2016 25FC rear twin and to my surprise it does not have this configuration. AS, for what ever reason, has gone to a 'ONE' valve non-solution:-( There is only one so called bypass valve shutting off the cold water inlet in the HW tank. So, in theory, there really is not a real bypass anymore, at least on my 2016 model.

Ahhh......that 'splains it.

The one valve solution.

Why use three two dollar valves when one two dollar valve won't do the job just as well.

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changes, let’s make only improvements" .......snip.


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Old 10-31-2015, 09:05 AM   #14
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Even though there is only one valve to operate, the three way valve. There is a second valve in play. A check valve in the hot water line preventing back flow into the hot water side of the water heater.


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