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Hot Water Heater: How to Rinse Out Sediment

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Peter in California is dealing with a water-heating situation. Tell us what’s going on.

    PETER: We just recently moved into a new rental and they have really, really hard water. So, the tank sounds like it’s out there just boiling away.

    TOM: So it sounds like it’s boiling? Does it sound like it’s sort of rustling water?

    PETER: Yeah, it sounds like there’s explosions going on there.

    TOM: Yeah. That’s air in the tank and that’s actually not that uncommon. I wouldn’t get too freaked out about it as long as it’s properly installed, has the right-size pressure-relief valve on it. Usually, it’s sort of expansion and contraction of the tank that sometimes is made worse by a little bit of air that gets in there. I’ve heard that kind of sound before.

    How old is this water heater?

    PETER: I have no idea. We’ve only been here a month. And other people on – in our cul-de-sac have the same problem. They say it’s from the calcium, the sediment buildup in it.

    TOM: Yeah. Well, that’s actually possible. So, one of the things you can do is you could drain some water off the bottom of it. You’d have to hook up a garden hose to it. You have to turn it off and wait an hour or two for it to cool off and then you could drain some water off the bottom. That tends, sometimes, to rinse out any of the mineral-salt deposits that are built up at the bottom.

    PETER: OK. Because I was going to give that a go. I just wondered if that was one step to go with.

    TOM: You could try it. You could try it. But it’s usually pretty harmless, OK?

    PETER: I appreciate that. Alright. Thank you so much.

    TOM: You’re welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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