If you noticed lately that the hot water faucet in your home is running much more slowly, you've probably got built-up settlement in your hot water line. While this can happen in your cold water line as well, it's much more common in hot-water lines. This is because the heat running through the lines can break off the minerals on the inside of the pipe and send it further down the line, often creating obstructions where it collects. Fortunately, there is a quick and relatively easy way to flush out a hot water line. It's called backflushing, and here's how to do it.

What You Will Need

One Dime

Step 1. Turn off the supply of cold water running to your water heater. The valve is usually on the top or nearby, but it might be on the cold water line itself. You'll know you're cutting off the right one if you touch it and it feels cold.

Step 2. Go to a faucet at the lowest point in your house (it has to be one not experiencing water pressure problems). In the best case scenario, this faucet will be in your basement. Turn on the hot water faucet and just let it run.

Step 3. Now quickly go to the faucet you've been having a problem with. Close the drain to keep the rubber washer from falling into it when you remove the aerator. Now turn the aerator clockwise to unscrew it. Once you've removed the aerator, place it to the side so the washer won't fall out.

Step 4. Place a dime inside the aerator so it completely closes off the aerator screen. In some cases, you'll have to remove the washer, put the dime in and then put the washer back on for this to work. But in most cases, the dime will be a perfect fit. Now screw the aerator back on to the faucet.

Step 5. Turn the cold water faucet on (slowly) until it's on full. Leave it on for a while. Because the dime is blocking the faucet, no water will be coming out. This means the water will be forced back along the hot water line.

Step 6. Go back to the faucet you opened in step 2 and observe the water as it comes out. You'll probably see discoloration and debris in the water. Allow the water to keep running until it's running clear. Once it is clear, leave it running and go back to the faucet that has the dime in the aerator. Turn off the faucet, take off the aerator, remove the dime, and screw the aerator back on.

Step 7. Go back to the other faucet and turn it off. Then turn the valve back on supplying cold water to the water heater.

For assistance, contact a professional like Action Plumbing & Heating.

Share