Dumbstruck by the new computer-controlled appliances? Let the Samurai enlighten you…

Click here to check out our structured, online appliance repair training courses for rookies and experienced techs.

FAQs | Repair Videos | Academy | Newsletter | Podcast | Contact

Stay connected with us...

Samurai on Facebook - become a fan today! Sign up for our free newsletter and keep up with all things Appliantology. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for lots of appliance repair tips and help! Follow the Samurai on Twitter and get timely morsels of Appliantological Wisdom! Subscribe to our MST Radio podcast to learn secrets of the trade.
  • Announcements

    • Samurai Appliance Repair Man

      Webinar Recordings Index Page   10/03/2017

      On-demand appliance repair training videos for Professional Appliantologist members Over 30 hours (and growing!) of original, high quality appliance training webinars developed and given by yours truly are at your fingertips, on topics you won't find anywhere else. Fill in those knowledge gaps, strengthen those areas of uncertainty, and boost your skills. Watch on mobile or desktop at your convenience whenever, wherever.  Ultra Short Primer on Basic Electricity, Circuits, Ohm's Law, and Schematic Reading (Length: 1:04:48) Basic Refrigerator Troubleshooting (Length: 1:10:45) Schematic Reading Workshop, 10/2015 (Length 1:19:08) Troubleshooting Strategies for Computer-Controlled Appliances (Length: 48:34) Semiconductors and PN Junctions (Length: 1:04:37) Appliance Temperature Sensing Devices & Technology (Length: 1:27:33) Voltage Measurements, Meters, Ghost Voltages, and Triac-controlled Neutrals (Length: 1:29:32) Troubleshooting with Tech Sheets, Part 1, 4/2016 (Length: 1:09:26) Troubleshooting with Tech Sheets, Part 2, 4/2016 (Length: 1:21:11) Tech Sheet Review, 4/9/2016: Bosch Speed Cooker, Amana Refrigerator, GE Glass Cooktop Range (Length: 1:22:58) Pulse Width Modulated (PWM) Switches used in Samsung Switched Mode Power Supplies (SMPS) (Length: 27:07) PWM Computer Cooling Fan in a Whirlpool Refrigerator (Length: 14:53) Understanding AC Split-phase Household Power Supplies (Length: 52:41) Troubleshooting a Samsung Electric Dryer without Disassembly using Live Tests and the Schematic (Length: 22:47) Troubleshooting a Bosch Dishwasher No-Heat Problem using the Schematic and Live Tests (Length: 15:38) Linear Motors and Linear Compressors (Length: 55:54) Bi-directional PSC Drive Motor Systems in Whirlpool VM Washers (Length: 56:52) Appliance Service Call Structure and Troubleshooting Strategies (Length: 1:00:16) The Ten Step Troubleshooting Tango and Workshop Exercises (Length: 1:35:39) Troubleshooting Ten-Step Tango Advanced Workshop (Length: 1:32:06) Ten-Step Tango Troubleshooting Workshop: Refrigerators (Length: 1:35:57) Whirlpool Duet Washer Schematic Analysis & Whirlpool Dryer Moisture Sensor System (Length: 1:03:04) Neutral Vs. Ground, Inverter Microwave, Digital Communications, Loading Down in DC loads, and more! (Length: 1:14:45) Gas Oven Service Call After a Parts Changing Monkey (Length: 36:04) AFCI and GFCI Circuit Protection Technology (Length: 41:26) Troubleshooting Samsung Refrigerators and more (Length: 1:29:58) 3-way Valves and Dual Evaporator Refrigerators (Length: 1:15:45) Split-Phase Compressors and PTC Start Devices (Length: 1:11:57) Gas Dryer Ignition Systems (Length: 53:50) Refrigerator Sealed System Thermodynamics, Part 1 (Length: 43:07) Refrigerator Sealed System Thermodynamics, Part 2 (Length 1:09:09) To access these webinars and all the other info-goodies here at Appliantology, become a Professional Appliantologist today. If you need cost-effective, time-flexible, state-of-the-art appliance technical training, check out the Master Samurai Tech Academy.
    • Samurai Appliance Repair Man

      [Webinar] Samurai's Sealed System Sleuthing Secrets - 10/30/2017 @7PM ET   10/19/2017

      Having laid some theoretical groundwork in the last webinar, we're going to focus on practical considerations in this one. That means quick n’ dirty techniques for diagnosing sealed system problem using strategically chosen and skillfully interpreted temperature measurements.  Review homework from the first session on 10-2-2017. Home refrigerator practical design and operating rules-of-thumb useful for troubleshooting Practical application exercises Troubleshooting scenario exercise Techniques for making system temperature measurements for determining superheat and subcooling Sealed system diagnosis homework assignment (to be reviewed in the next webinar in this series) If you attended the first webinar in this series, this is your payday! We’re going to apply that keen, penetrating insight you now possess into money- and time-saving shortcuts you can use to diagnose real-world refrigeration systems on service calls. See this calendar event for more details                   
jb8103

How to drain water heaters with no drain valve?

Recommended Posts

jb8103

Don't deal with these much, tending to stay away from anything that could leak water, but recently I had a call on a 10 gallon with a bad element and no drain valve. Rigged up a Rube Goldberg system with funnels, pans, and buckets and got most of it out but this is ridiculous.

 

I tried pumping out through the hot supply fitting but got nothing, I had to force the tube I was using through a 90 and suspect it kinked flat right there.

 

It occurs to me later I could have tried screwing my pump hose to the overflow valve. For future ref, would that work?

 

I checked these things out at a couple of box stores and so far I have not seen a 10 gal with a drain valve. What gives, guys?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Need appliance parts? Call 877-803-7957 now!

kdog

Might hefta pull out your "Universal" Drain Valve  :rocketwhore: 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
jb8103

Effective, yes, but poor business relations, kdog; thanks, though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Budget Appliance Repair

I've heard tell that some of the old timers change heating elements in electric water heaters without draining them.  I've never done it or seen it done so can't make any claims.

 

You would need to make sure to turn the cold water inlet to the water heater off and then maybe open a hot faucet for just a second or two to take the pressure off the tank, then make sure all hot faucets are closed tight.

 

When you pull the old element you should only get a small amount of water may come out because it is held in the tank by vaccum, be ready to swap the new one in very quickly.

 

Anyone else hear of doing it this way?

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Samurai Appliance Repair Man

Anyone else hear of doing it this way?

No, but the physics of this method is compelling. Sounds like it would work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
suampman

Yes, Willie, I have done it that way along time ago, probably in the seventies. As you say, everything has to be closed off so no air can get in. You may get a splunk of water, like when you do not have your vent open on your gas can, and the gas comes out in lunges as the air goes in the tank. That is why you must move fast. I would still try it if I cold seal off both sides (hot and cold). Hope for the best and plan for the worst.

 

jb8103,  With a ten gallon tank I would think you could rig up a shop vac with a with a reducer hose, maybe 5/8", remove the 90 and suck out the water.  Or, if it is not to much trouble, unhook it and take it outside with a dolly and dump it. Hope this helps.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
jumptrout

I change all my elements without draining.

You lose almost no water.

However,keep a towel and shop vac close by.

The only problem comes in when it is a old corroded element and the rubber gasket wants to stick in the hole.

Other times,the element is busted and hangs up coming out.

If the gasket sticks,remove the new gasket from the replacement element and re-use the old gasket.

 

NOTE: You can not drain a heater from the high temp pop valve.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
jb8103

I change all my elements without draining.

You lose almost no water.

However,keep a towel and shop vac close by.

The only problem comes in when it is a old corroded element and the rubber gasket wants to stick in the hole.

Other times,the element is busted and hangs up coming out.

If the gasket sticks,remove the new gasket from the replacement element and re-use the old gasket.

 

NOTE: You can not drain a heater from the high temp pop valve.

 

This old fellow was riddled with leaks due to his pipes having frozen a year before. There are no shut-off valves at the water heater. So I knew the static pressure would never hold. I do wish I'd thought of keeping a Sop Vac handy, that would have done the trick, mostly.

 

I did check a few cross section views of water heaters and no, there's no hope for pumping out through any of the fittings.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
certified tech group 51

I change the element with out draining the tank... Turn off the power........Shut off incoming supply line........Open the hot side of the faucet to relieve the pressure then close the valve..............Loosen the element a few turns and you should be able to see if the gasket is stuck to the tank, just use a small flat bladed screwdriver to pry loose....... have the new element in hand as you remove the old one........ when removed, just drop it and insert the new one......you are lucky if the customer has their tank sitting in a drip pan...... :thumbsup: ..........If you need to remove the water, disconnect the incoming line and the outlet side..................................Use some compressed air on the outlet side ( draw tube  high in tank )...... water level will be expelled out the incoming side to the level of the fill tube ( lowest point )..... Not all of the water will be out , BUT, it will be lighter.......

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tpoindexter

Plumbers do it all the time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bullstok

Plumbers do it all the time

yes. yes we do. oh, and the thing with the waterheaters sometimes too...

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tpoindexter

yes. yes we do. oh, and the thing with the waterheaters sometimes too...

And spoken like a true plumber.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tommytech

i change elements that way all the time,no problems at all,no leaks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
wishfultech

if you check y-- tu-- there is a guy changing an element without draining the tank and it looks pretty simple.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RegUS_PatOff

if you check y-- tu-- there is a guy changing an element without draining the tank and it looks pretty simple.

you can post the link here

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now