In an emergency your hot water heater can be a great source for water. In that case you need to make sure the hot water heater is clean and taken care of. It might be easier than you expected to clean out your water heater. There are some conditions like sediment in your water that can cause your heater problem and regular cleaning will prevent that. Take a look at how you should clean it out for both electric and gas water heaters. This should typically be done every one to three years and can help extend the life of your heater unit.
If it is electric be sure you unplug the unit before you go in. This will help prevent any accidents with shock. For gas units be sure you notice what temperature it is set on and then reduce it to the lowest setting or place it on Pilot. This will help you from causing yourself harm or damage to the unit. You may also need to flip the breaker off to insure there is no power running to the electric units. The water should cool down some too.
Once the power is all off you are ready to start the flushing process for your water heater. Grab your garden hose and connect it to your water heater by using the drain valve. Make sure the end of your water hose is in a safe place for the water to come out. Do not use this water on fragile plants but you can save it to use on your lawn. Once you have your hose secured you can loosen the valve to allow the water to flow out. You do not want it to flow out to fast as this can stir up sediment in the tank and cause the cleaning to be harder. After flushing for a few minutes take a bucket and drain some of the water into it.
Once the water has settled down then check to see if there is sediment still in the water coming out. If it is not clear then you still need to flush the system. Continue this process until the water is coming out clean and clear of all sediment deposits.
If the water comes out clean you can turn off the valve and turn the water supply back on for the heater. Once your unit has filled back with water and stabilized you should turn on the hot water in the tub. Once you are gaining a full stream it is safe to turn back on the breaker. This will start heating your water back up.
This flushing process can help you when you are in an emergency and need water. Just be sure to run it for a while to clear the sediment. These easy steps will help you to clean out your water heater and extend the life of your unit. This is a simple process that performed regularly can really help your water heater work great.