Step 3: Drain the Tank and Wash Out Sediment

latex-gloved hands hold a hose attached to a water heater that is draining sediment-tinged water
Photo: Ryan Benyi
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Drain the remaining water in the tank into the bucket, then stir up the sediment on the tank's bottom by briefly opening the cold-water supply valve. Drain and repeat until clean water comes out of the hose. Close the drain cock, refill the tank, and turn its power back on.
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    Tools List

    • bucket with sponge
      Bucket
    • pipe wrench
      Pipe wrench
    • garden hose
      Garden hose
    • socket wrench
      Socket wrench with 1-1/16-inch head
    • flathead screwdriver
      Flathead screwdriver

    Shopping List

    1. Anode rod

    2. Teflon tape

    3. 3/8-inch-thick self-stick foam pipe insulation to hold heat in the pipes. Make sure you get the right diameter for your pipes 4. 1-inch-thick unfaced fiberglass pipe wrap to insulate pipes near the flue

    5. Water heater insulating blanket

    6. Foil tape to seal the insulating blanket