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Old 11-01-2007, 09:47 AM   #1
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Had to search a little for all the parts...I have an Atwood 10 gallon water heater, and wanted to add a drain valve as I had done before. They don't recommend a metal fitting into the aluminum tank, so finding the plastic nipple and 90 degree bend was more difficult.

Found the plastic nipple and 90 degree bend at West Marine, and the 1/2" boiler valve at an Ace hardware store. (Ace also had the nipple)

Parts required:

1/2" plastic IPT close nipple (replaces plug)
1/2" plastic IPT Female/Female 90 degree bend
1/2" brass boiler drain (has 1/2" IPT male end & a 3/4" std. male hose thread drain end 90 degrees offset)

Total parts cost, around $11.00

Install 1/2" plastic (iron pipe thread) close nipple in tank drain opening (where plug resided)

Install 1/2" 90 degree bend facing right (in my case - looking at the water heater) with a slight downward tilt for flow

Install 1/2" boiler drain into 90 degree bend end and tighten with hose connection facing outward

When tank is bypassed and needs to be drained, just open the boiler valve...you can connect a short garden hose to the hose connection facing outward to get the water away from the RV if desired.
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Old 11-01-2007, 09:47 AM   #2
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Had to search a little for all the parts...I have an Atwood 10 gallon water heater, and wanted to add a drain valve as I had done before. They don't recommend a metal fitting into the aluminum tank, so finding the plastic nipple and 90 degree bend was more difficult.

Found the plastic nipple and 90 degree bend at West Marine, and the 1/2" boiler valve at an Ace hardware store. (Ace also had the nipple)

Parts required:

1/2" plastic IPT close nipple (replaces plug)
1/2" plastic IPT Female/Female 90 degree bend
1/2" brass boiler drain (has 1/2" IPT male end & a 3/4" std. male hose thread drain end 90 degrees offset)

Total parts cost, around $11.00

Install 1/2" plastic (iron pipe thread) close nipple in tank drain opening (where plug resided)

Install 1/2" 90 degree bend facing right (in my case - looking at the water heater) with a slight downward tilt for flow

Install 1/2" boiler drain into 90 degree bend end and tighten with hose connection facing outward

When tank is bypassed and needs to be drained, just open the boiler valve...you can connect a short garden hose to the hose connection facing outward to get the water away from the RV if desired.
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Old 11-01-2007, 10:15 AM   #3
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Now that you have gone to all that trouble, don't forget that they recommend that you flush the bottom of the tank out twice a year to remove the sediment and mineral deposits that collect there. To do this you will still have to take it all out!
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Old 11-01-2007, 05:19 PM   #4
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I bypass and drain my water heater tank as soon as I return home from a trip, as well as my fresh water tank, so I tend to flush my water heater tank out at least twenty or so times a year.

With the hose fitting on the boiler valve, I can actually backflush/fill the bypassed tank thru the newly installed valve/drain opening with the relief valve also open...when water comes out the relief valve, I close the boiler valve, remove the water hose, open the boiler valve and drain again.
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Old 11-02-2007, 07:35 AM   #5
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Sorry but that won't get the heavy mineral deposits that accumulate at the bottom of the tank below the drain plug. They don't float. The only way to get them loose is to open the hole at the tank and push in the tool that is made for that purpose. It has a bent end so that it can be directed at the debris. Try it once and see what comes out. especially if you have only drained and "Back flushed" for a few seasons.
OBTW, CW has the tools in stock.
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:46 AM   #6
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:49 AM   #7
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by JerryForwood:
Sorry but that won't get the heavy mineral deposits that accumulate at the bottom of the tank below the drain plug. They don't float. The only way to get them loose is to open the hole at the tank and push in the tool that is made for that purpose. It has a bent end so that it can be directed at the debris. Try it once and see what comes out. especially if you have only drained and "Back flushed" for a few seasons.
OBTW, CW has the tools in stock. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>I don't know about your rig, but my whole house filter will remove all the stuff you are talking about before it gets to the water heater...but I've only been doing this (RVing) for almost 30 years...I probably don't know much...
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Old 11-02-2007, 10:55 AM   #8
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I like it, I've been thinking of doing something like that. I don't have the same heater as yours but I think I can do the same thing. I also drain my heater each time as I have had the unpleasant experience of having the water go skunky in as little as a week. Also had the unpleasant experience of twisting off a plastic plug in the heater !!!! Not fun. thanks for the info
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Old 11-02-2007, 05:08 PM   #9
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I like the idea of a drain valve, but I think if I do that I will use a ball valve or a gate valve.
would opt for the ball valve .

good pics.
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Old 11-03-2007, 06:15 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I don't know about your rig, but my whole house filter will remove all the stuff you are talking about before it gets to the water heater...but I've only been doing this (RVing) for almost 30 years...I probably don't know much... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
The whole house filter won't stop the deposits on the bottom of the water heater since they are due to minerals in the water. I suppose there are some filters that take out minerals but I haven't seen them on MHs.
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:53 AM   #11
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I was hoping that someone else would point that out!! It seams I got on the wrong side of the OP.
This is a common belief / problem where people do not really flush out their water heaters. You will be OK until you travel through an area where there is real hard water. Water filters do not remove mineral deposits only water softeners will do that. Few MH's are equipped with water softeners!
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Old 11-03-2007, 03:13 PM   #12
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I guess I been lucky, in the past 6 years I never encountered hard water to give us problems. I hardly ever clean out our water heater, and the last time I did after reading about the trouble other campers are having, it was clean. Now, saying that, I have been camping with good water sources. I guess having a water softener doesn't hurt.

I have a water softener at home and we live in the city. I like soft water. You use less soap, clothes last longer, and the appearance of the appliances and sinks stay cleaner. It works for me and in the long run it is cheaper to have one.

In addition, I don't have any trouble with the black/gray tank as orders or sludge building up. The surface tension of the water doesn't let it build up. So again, in the end, it is cheaper to have a water softener..............
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Old 11-03-2007, 03:49 PM   #13
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I have an anoode so permanent drain won't work!!!
I like the idea of a water softener!!! Where did you put it???

Rick
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:18 PM   #14
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I was fortunate that I had enough room in my city/water compartment. I set it up where it is out of the way, but available when I need for regeneration.
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