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bfan781 08-13-2010 09:13 PM

Water Heater valve question
 
Hi,
I have a leaking shut off valve going into my hot water heater. It is not the drain valve, but the main cold water pipe going in. There is a shut off valve before it hits the tank and I just noticed it dripping. Really old. Just want to completely change it out. Changed many valves before but never going into the a water tank.

Questions, Do you have to drain the tank before replacing? Is it pressurized? Or can I just shut off the main water, cut the pipe, solder new valve and then turn the water back on.

Also what about gas? Can I just turn the gas off or do I need to fully disconnect it.

Lastly, for this application do you guys use a standard valve that keeps turning around or would one of those half turn ball valves be better?
thanks in advance.

Gabriel24 08-13-2010 10:11 PM

water heater valve question
 
Hello. To change the shut-valve for the water heater:
1. You do not have to drain the water from the tank.
2. The water coming in - into the water heater is under pressure.
You shut off the main for a while .
Some professionals do not turn the gas off because they feel
confident and to avoid lighting all the pilots for the entire house;
you can turn the gas off if you want to but you do not have to.
3. Many people use the standard valve the type that keeps
turning. There is very little room, so the ball valve with the
handle requires more room. Both work , but many people
put the old fashioned type.Best of luck

AllanJ 08-14-2010 12:03 PM

Turn the control knob of a gas water heater from run to pilot, or switch off the breaker for an electric water heater.

Open some hot and cold faucets upstairs. Drain several gallons of water from the water heater, or turn on both faucets of a laundry sink whose spout is lower than the top of the water heater. This will get rid of most of the water in the upstairs pipes that would otherwise fall down and out the pipe above the heater as soon as you cut it to replace the valve.

bfan781 08-14-2010 08:53 PM

Great thanks for the tips. Glad I don't have to fully drain it. Have all the stuff and I am going to tackle it in the morning. Have room for a ball valve so gonna use one of them. I like them a lot better seem like they last longer too.

I have a shut off valve for the gas right before it goes into the water heater can I just shut that off?

LateralConcepts 08-14-2010 09:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AllanJ (Post 485615)
Turn the control knob of a gas water heater from run to pilot, or switch off the breaker for an electric water heater.

Open some hot and cold faucets upstairs. Drain several gallons of water from the water heater, or turn on both faucets of a laundry sink whose spout is lower than the top of the water heater. This will get rid of most of the water in the upstairs pipes that would otherwise fall down and out the pipe above the heater as soon as you cut it to replace the valve.

That's the safe way to go. You can do it live and should vapor lock, but if you have any bad cartridges you'd know it as soon as you cut into the copper.

After you've drained some water off, make sure to close all the faucets again.

Yes you can just shut off the gas valve nearest the heater, not necessary and you'll have to re-light it when you're done.

When you're finished installing the new ball valve; obviously, turn the water back on to the house (slowly), then open your new ball valve to re-fill the tank. Once you hear it stop filling, check for leaks, open all the faucets in the house until you bleed all the air out of the lines.

Thurman 08-15-2010 11:45 AM

"bfan" is there a possibility that you may only need to tighten the packing gland around the stem to stop the leak? This may prevent you from having to go through the valve change procedure. Unlessen ya 'ont to. David


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