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How To Replace a Water Heater

Continued from page 2

Installing a New Water Heater

Position the new water heater, ideally with the help of an assistant, to align the connection points on the water heater with the connections in your water heater space.

Connect the cold water supply to the cold water connection on the water heater. Connecting the the wrong connection will result in poor water heater performance. Connect the hot water output to your home's hot water line.

If your connections don't already use flexible hoses, we strongly recommend switching to burst proof hoses now. Rather than hard plumbing the unit, flexible hoses are easy to connect and disconnect. To do so, remove pipes back to a logical point and install a fitting that transitions from the existing pipes to a flexible hose.

If you use copper pipes, do all the sweating together of fittings BEFORE connecting to the water heater to reduce the risk of damaging the water heater connections.

Once the plumbing connections are made, turn the water supply back on. Wait as the water heater fills with water. The hot water taps should all still be open to allow air to bleed out. Once water flows from all taps, allow the water to run for an additional minute, before closing the taps.

Inspect the connections you made to the water heater for leaks. If everything checks out, proceed to reconnecting the gas or electricity.

Follow the the manufacturer's instructions for connecting power to the water heater and powering up. Use the photograph you took earlier to assist with reconnection.

If reconnecting a gas line, it is usually recommend to replace the flexible hose. Old hoses can become damaged by the bending of the hose and internal corrosion can further weaken it. Wrap the male nipple of the connection with gas rated PTFE tape or apply pipe dope before fastening the gas line to the water heater.

Once the gas connection made, turn on the gas supply valve and inspect for gas leaks by spraying a mixture of dish soap and water along the hose and all fittings and connections. Watch for the formation of bubbles. If bubbles form, shut off the gas immediately and correct the connections. If problems persist, hire a plumber to complete this step, do not turn the gas on until this problem has been resolved.

Follow the manufacturer's instructions for relighting the pilot light.

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