How To Drain A Water Heater Without Drain Valve?

In the winter season, the water heater is the most wanted home appliance ever. If you live in the earth’s freezing regions, then you need water heaters for all the year.

Water heaters have been a source of comfort for many households for decades. It’s only until it stops working that you realize how important it is. It will never be the same again after a good shower. It is both the most used and neglected household appliance.

Its purpose may seem insignificant until it fails. Do you get nervous when you notice particles in your hot water and already know you have a broken drain valve?

If you know how to empty a water heater without a drain valve, you can keep your device in good working order.

Learn how to combat stubborn calcium buildup in your water heater with our comprehensive guide on How to Remove Calcium Buildup in your Water Heater, ensuring optimal performance and longevity for your appliance.

What Is A Drain Valve of A Water Heater?

Drain valves play an important role in maintaining your water heater and its draining process. You can empty your tank using the drain valve for routine maintenance and cleaning. Drain valves, unfortunately, rust over time.

Even if your drain valve is broken, you can still empty your water heater’s tank. To remove water from your tank, follow these simple steps.

In a water heater, the drain valve is positioned at the bottom of the heater. Draining or rinsing the system removes water from the entire system.

For those seeking efficient maintenance, learn how to drain a water heater without a drain valve using our step-by-step guide, and explore the convenience of the Best Tankless Water Heater Flush Kit for optimal performance.

What Things Do You Need To Drain Water Without Drain Valve?

The draining system should maintain properly. There are some things there are some essentials that you must have in the process of draining water from the water heater. Following is the list of these items. Let’s check them out one by one:

Huge bucket:

You’ll need a bucket if you don’t have a soil drain or your pipe isn’t long enough to reach it. You can drain more water at once with a larger bucket.


A flat-tipped screwdriver is required when unscrewing improvised grooves on a brass drain valve. It can also be used to remove cut plastic from the broken plastic drain valve.


A funnel with a wide opening collects and drains water from the tank to the drain or a large bucket.


You will need a mat to absorb the water from the tank. You don’t want to flood your floor when you empty your water heater.

Self-tape serrated inserts:

If you have a plastic drain valve, you will need this material. Self-tapping serrated inserts make it easier to remove the drain valve by creating a fixed thread in the plastic.

Drill and bit:

Using a portable non-electric drill with the right bit is safer because you won’t get an electric shock when water flows into the instrument.

Hacksaw blade:

This tool can be used to make grooves in a brass drain valve. It can also use to break a broken plastic drain valve.


A long garden hose drains water into the bucket or soil drain.

Learn about the key differences between Short and Tall Water Heaters in our comprehensive guide, and find the right option for your needs.

Steps Of How To Drain A Water Heater Without Drain Valve

Here are some easy steps to answer the question, “How to drain a water heater without a drain valve?”

Step 1: Turning off the power supply

Start by turning off the water heater’s power source. If you have an electric heater, you must turn off the circuit breaker that powers your water heater. If you have a gas water heater, locate the pilot button and place it in the pilot position.

Switching your water heater to pilot mode prevents the burners from igniting while the system remains operational. When you turn off the gas valve, the gas supply to your water heater is also cut off.

Step 2: Turn off the water of the heater

See if you can find the cold water hose in your water heater’s tank. A valve shall be visible towards the top of the tank along the line. Remove the defective drain valve and turn off the part of the heater that supplies it with water.

Also, make sure that the hot water valve is closed. If your heater is equipped with a plastic drain valve, block the nipple with a self-tapping wavy insert and remove it.

Better yet, you can use a manual drill to drill a hole in the drain valve. Do not use an electric drill to avoid an electric shock caused by water droplets when drilling the hole.

Step 3: Remove the drain valve

A broken plastic drain valve can be removed from your tank in two ways. To block the nipple, first, insert a self-tapping serrated screw through it. Remove the entire assembly with the screwdriver. Secondly, you can use a non-electric drill to drill a hole in the plastic drain valve.

If water accidentally drips into your equipment, you can avoid electric shocks by using a manual drill. If your water heater has a brass drain valve, you can use a hacksaw blade to cut a cross-shaped groove in it. Be careful not to cut the thread completely.

Then use a screwdriver to drill a hole in the cut and turn the screwdriver clockwise. Turn the drain valve unlocked by inserting your screwdriver head into the grooves and turning counterclockwise.

After that, you can start draining by inserting the garden hose into the opening and placing the other end of the hose on your bucket. The carpet helps not to spill water on the floor.

Step 4: Drain the water

Empty the hot water tap while leaving the T and P valves on so that the air can purify the water from the inside. To avoid flooding your floor, place the carpet under the drain valve. Place your garden hose through the funnel outlet.

To start emptying the tank, place one end of the pipe in the huge bucket and the other end in the drain valve. The pipe’s other end can be placed in your drain to drain water away from the ground.

Ask someone to turn on a hot water tap in your home to get rid of the air. If your water heater’s drain valve breaks down, you should replace it immediately after emptying the tank.

Learn how to tackle a common issue with your Zero Water filter not draining by following our comprehensive guide, ensuring pure and refreshing water for your household.


A water softener and a water heater have now become necessities of our home. There is no rocket science to drain the water from the water heater even without the drain valve. The drain valve of the water heater may break or damage; therefore, in this article, I’ve discussed all the easy steps that are helpful to drain the water.

That’s all from our side; if you have any further questions or confusion, then you can freely contact us. Contact details are mentioned on our contact us page.

Moreover, if you guys have suggestions for us, you can also tell us frankly and be friendly.

Leave a Comment