If you have been experiencing the unfortunate occurrence of showers that run out of hot water very quickly, your hot water heater is most likely in need of repair or replacement. Many find that when the temperature of their water cools fast, there is a heating element within the water heater that is no longer working effectively. Unfortunately, to swap the bottom heating element with a new one, there will be a need to drain the entire tank of water to get to the area where the element needs to be positioned. Here are some tips you can use to remove the water from your tank so you can make a successful swap of the element if testing your electric hot water heating unit signifies this part is in need of replacement.
Turn Off Your Water Heater's Power Supply
It is very important to turn off the electrical supply running to your hot water heater before you drain the tank. This will ensure you do not put yourself at the risk of any type of potential shock and you will also be able to work with water that is not at an excessive temperature should the heating element work sporadically. Unplug the unit from the electrical outlet, or turn the circuit breaker powering the water heater to an "off" setting.
Make Sure The Water Supply Is Blocked
After you turn off the power to your unit, you will want to stop the water supply from continuing to fill it up. Turn off the cold water spigot leading to your hot water heater. This is usually located near the water heating unit, along the wall behind it. Follow the pipes to the unit to find the control for the cold water if necessary.
Remove The Water From The Tank
After the water is stopped from re-entering the tank, consider flushing a toilet or using the cold water faucet on a sink in your home for a few minutes. This will help to remove water from inside of the tank so you do not need to divert as much to an area on your property. Attach a garden hose to the drain valve along the bottom of your water heater. The other end of the garden hose should be snaked through an open door or window and positioned on the ground so water that comes out of the tank is pushed away from the home. Make sure the hose is tightly secured to the valve on your water heater before you turn the control to open the valve itself. It is a good idea to place a bucket under the valve in case of an accidental leak.