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Old 09-08-2016, 06:52 PM   #1
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Smart Hot Water Heater Tank Drain

This is maybe a rehash of how to simplify the draining of the hot water heater's tank without having to remove the difficult to get to plastic 1/2" NPT drain plug every time. Every year in November and sometimes at the end of March for an early return trip home to Canada (could still have snow up there), I am faced with the job to drain the hot water heater tank.
It is a pain in the neck, period! But it has to be done, we do not want to bust the water heater in freezing temperatures.
I have made up a smart drain assembly using a PEX mini ball valve, a small piece of 1/2" PEX tubing and 1/2" PEX x 1/2" NPT male adapter, easy to get from Home Depot or Lowes to speed up the draining task. Please look for a how to at our travel blog:

Marlene and Benno's Odysseys on Land and Water
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:17 PM   #2
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That's a nice piece of work! Do you have any concerns about galvanic reaction between the aluminum and brass (I'm assuming you have an Atwood)? A PVC adapter into the tank and then the brass would separate the metals but I can't say that any reaction would happen anyway.
Just wondering.
Really nice idea!
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:52 PM   #3
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Here is another version using the nylon plastic so there is no galvanic reaction between the aluminum and brass
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Old 09-09-2016, 03:57 AM   #4
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Good post RedHorse1 and NVGun40, I was looking for a nylon version of the 1/2" NPTxPEX adapter or even in SS, but could not dig one up here in our area. The brass should do it, it would be different if the water is saline. Salt water would speed up a galvanic or electrolysis reaction, between the aluminum and brass for sure. My aluminum trawler gave me the heeble jeebies once awhile in trying to figure out the best fittings into aluminum during the construction time. But even a few brass fitting into aluminum tanks ports did not create any electrolysis. Took the trawler around Cape Horn. Hell of a trip!
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Old 09-09-2016, 06:54 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benno View Post
Good post RedHorse1 and NVGun40, I was looking for a nylon version of the 1/2" NPTxPEX adapter or even in SS, but could not dig one up here in our area. The brass should do it, it would be different if the water is saline. Salt water would speed up a galvanic or electrolysis reaction, between the aluminum and brass for sure. My aluminum trawler gave me the heeble jeebies once awhile in trying to figure out the best fittings into aluminum during the construction time. But even a few brass fitting into aluminum tanks ports did not create any electrolysis. Took the trawler around Cape Horn. Hell of a trip!
I did something similar with my H2O tank. I used brass, after talking to our metallurgist at work. He had no concerns with brass and aluminum in this application.
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