MotorHome Tech Tips
Flushing (Winterizing) RV Hot Water Heater
Winterizing your RV Water Heater
The hot water heater should be flushed out at least two to three times per year and more frequently if travel is through the Southwest where the water tends to be harder and contain more minerals. The procedure for flushing is as follows:
1. Turn off main water supply at the pump or at the water hook up source.
2. Drain water heater inner tank. Due to the location of the drain plug, approximately two quarts of water will remain in the bottom of the tank. This water contains most of the harmful corrosive particles. While draining the unit, if water flows sporadically or trickles instead of flowing steadily, it is recommended one of two things. First open the relief valve to allow air into the tank and secondly, take a small gauge wire or coat hanger and poke through drain opening to eliminate any obstructions.
3. After thoroughly draining tank, flush with air pressure or fresh water. If you use air pressure, it may be applied either through the inlet or outlet on the rear of the tank. It may also be applied through the pressure temperature relief valve, but first remove the pressure temperature relief valve support flange. With drain valve open, air pressure will force the remaining water along with corrosive particles out of the unit. If you use fresh water, it may be pumped into the tank with the assistance of an on-board pump or external water through the inlet with the use of the RV Water Heater Flushing Tool or outlet found on the rear of the tank. It may also be applied through pressure temperature relief valve support located on the front of the unit. Continue this flushing process for approximately five minutes to allow ample time for fresh water to agitate stagnant water on bottom of tank and force deposits through drain opening.
4. Close off drain valve as well as pressure temperature relief valve.
5. After this procedure, there will be approximately two quarts of water left at the bottom of the inner tank. Should this water freeze it will not cause any damage to the tank.
If this procedure is followed at least two to three times per year, it may prolong the life of your tank and allow the use of a full 6 / 10 gallons of hot water, depending on which model hot water heater is in your RV.
Caution: The maintenance recommendations on this page are meant as general guidelines only. Always consult with a professional RV mechanic, your owner's manual, and/or your authorized RV dealer BEFORE performing any maintenance procedures. See 'Legal Disclaimer' below.
Legal Disclaimer & Caution: Before using any advice, and/or performing any maintenance procedures recommended on this website you should consult with your RV dealer, and/or a professional Motorhome or RV mechanic. The recommendations and advice given on this website are intended as general guidelines ONLY, and may not pertain to your particular make and/or model of RV or Motorhome. Use these suggestions, repair tips, and/or maintenance advice AT YOUR OWN RISK. Under no circumstances will this website, or any of its officers or employees be liable for any consequential, incidental, special or exemplary damages even if appraised of the likelihood of such damages occurring. The owners of this website do not warrant the information against errors, omissions or deficiencies of any kind.
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