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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

I replaced my water heater last month after months of seeing water around the base of the heater. The old heater had male threaded pipe coming out of it, the new ones are all female fittings. The old one had a brass check valve on the cold water in. I put the new heater in and never thought about the check valve. I see schematics that show a check valve, but the installation instructions said nothing about having one. What's your take: yes, no?

Dave
 

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Absolutely necessary. If I remember right, w/o the check valve you get no cold water, only hot and luke warm, as the hot water mingles w/the incoming cold.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That might explain why the hose popped off a barbed connection... it warmed up and got soft.

So I looked for one and the only thing at the local store was a plastic bilge pump check valve. Is that OK, or should I keep looking?
 

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I use a bronze check valve, available at any plumbing supple store. I'm not sure how much heat a plastic one can take.
 

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The problem I have with that check valve is in draining the hot water heater for winter storage. I was hesitate about removing that fitting thinking that I might damage the heater tank so normally I just apply air pressure and try to blow out as much water from the tank through the faucet and then add the good old pink stuff.
 

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The problem I have with that check valve is in draining the hot water heater for winter storage. I was hesitate about removing that fitting thinking that I might damage the heater tank so normally I just apply air pressure and try to blow out as much water from the tank through the faucet and then add the good old pink stuff.
Would it be difficult to add a T with a valve for draining, between the tank and the check valve?
 

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The problem I have with that check valve is in draining the hot water heater for winter storage. I was hesitate about removing that fitting thinking that I might damage the heater tank so normally I just apply air pressure and try to blow out as much water from the tank through the faucet and then add the good old pink stuff.
There should be a pressure relief valve that you could open for allowing air in to facilitate draining.
 

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If I remember right that check valve is located right at the tank so putting in a bypass T to drain the tank is not practical, not to mention that the location of the tank makes working on it difficult. The use of the relief valve to drain the tank might be workable, but I think I tried that in the past and was not successful.
 

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If I remember right that check valve is located right at the tank so putting in a bypass T to drain the tank is not practical, not to mention that the location of the tank makes working on it difficult. The use of the relief valve to drain the tank might be workable, but I think I tried that in the past and was not successful.
Not suggesting to drain thru the relief valve, but to open it to allow air in so the regular drain can function.:)
 

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Don't remember where I bought my check valve from, think it was West Marine. It is plastic and have no problems with it.
One thing to remember is that there is also a zinc diode inside the tank.:eek:
I don't drain mine, I run it out through the faucets and then add antifreeze.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Most new tanks have a temp/pressure relief valve in addition to a regular faucet drain. I'm fortunate not to have to worry about draining, winterizing etc..

I will look for a bronze check valve. Last night the water pump ran for a couple seconds every hour. Checked the water heater... sure enough the hose had got soft again and was dripping. The hot water in the tank really does work it's way upstream into the water supply line.
 

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Old as Dirt!
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Most new tanks have a temp/pressure relief valve in addition to a regular faucet drain. I'm fortunate not to have to worry about draining, winterizing etc..

I will look for a bronze check valve. Last night the water pump ran for a couple seconds every hour. Checked the water heater... sure enough the hose had got soft again and was dripping. The hot water in the tank really does work it's way upstream into the water supply line.
Check out Groco Check Valves.



Inexpensive and effective.
 

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my water heater has a bronze swing check valve. when winterizing the system i disconnect the inlet & outlet hoses. i put a screwdriver in the inlet to hold the check open till all the water drains out , then connect the two hoses with a copper pipe. i can then pump antifreeze through the system and not put any in the water heater. you don't use as much antifreeze & do not have to flush the water heater when you flush out the antifreeze in the spring
 
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Mermaid Hunter
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when winterizing the system i disconnect the inlet & outlet hoses. i put a screwdriver in the inlet to hold the check open till all the water drains out , then connect the two hoses with a copper pipe. i can then pump antifreeze through the system and not put any in the water heater. you don't use as much antifreeze & do not have to flush the water heater when you flush out the antifreeze in the spring
That's a good approach. Some people with hard to reach water heaters install bypass valves that are easier to manage than disconnecting and connecting hoses every year.
 
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