Replacing a Gas Water Heater

by April Reinhardt
(last updated December 30, 2015)

Since water heaters tend to last about ten years, chances are that you will need to replace your water heater at least a few times in your lifetime. While you could call a professional to install your water heater, you might be surprised to know how simple it is to do the job yourself. If you have telltale signs that your gas water heater needs to be replaced—such as no hot water in the tap and water leaking from the water heater—then follow these steps to replace your gas water heater:

  1. Turn off both the gas and water supplies at the main valves. Then, turn on a hot water faucet at a tap to allow air into the water lines, attach a garden hose to the drain valve and completely empty the tank.
  2. Disconnect the gas and water lines using a wrench, and then detach the gas exhaust from the flue hat. Have someone help you remove the old water heater and set the new one into place, making sure that it is level, and then connect the flue hat to the exhaust vent.
  3. Following the instructions that came with your new water heater, install the heat trap fittings. The fittings are directional, and usually have arrows showing the correct direction for installation. Blue fittings are for cold water, and red fittings are for hot water.
  4. Install the water line connections and then connect the gas supply line. Turn on the gas and water supply valves, turn on the water tank, and then turn on more hot water faucets to bleed air from the system.
  5. Light the pilot light and turn the control knob until you hear the burner ignite. Set the temperature of the water heater.

Don't forget to turn off the hot water faucets that you turned on earlier. You might need to have Teflon pipe tape and pipe joint compound to help make solid fittings and prevent leaks, so make sure that you have those items and all of your tools on hand before you begin. It's also wise to cover the floor with a tarp since, when draining the old tank, you might get water all over the floor.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...

MORE FROM APRIL

Removing Oil Stains from Marble

Since marble is a porous stone, it can easily soak up oil, leaving a stain that is difficult to remove if not caught early. ...

Discover More

Fixing Leaky Pipes

Fixing minor pipe leaks is not a labor-intensive chore. The worst part of the job may be that you have to fit into tight ...

Discover More

Installing Low-Flow Toilets

Compared with the nearly 7 gallons of water it takes to flush a pre-1993 toilet, low-flow toilets take a mere 1.6 gallons of ...

Discover More

Find the Right Tool Right Away Finally, a homeowner's set that includes all the tools needed to complete basic DIY projects at an affordable price! The tools are stored in a molded case for security and portability. Check out Stanley 65-Piece Homeowner's Tool Kit today!

More Home Improvement Tips

What are Compression Faucets?

Have you ever wondered what compression faucets are? Chances are pretty good that you have wondered that at least once, ...

Discover More

Installing a Garbage Disposal

Installing a garbage disposal yourself is a task that almost every homeowner, or do it yourselfer can do. Why spend the added ...

Discover More

Foul Water Odor

Got a foul odor coming from your water tap? It could be caused by a number of different issues, as discussed in this tip.

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 3 + 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured home improvement tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)