03 Feb 2024

How do I drain a hot water cylinder?

The unthinkable has happened, you have opened the cupboard where your hot water cylinder is located, and you notice that it is leaking.

Worse still, it’s late in the evening and the chance of getting a qualified tradesman in to fix the problem is next to nil. So what can you do as first aid to stop the cylinder leaking so that you aren’t going to deal with a major flood as the tank empties itself into your house?

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Actually, the best and fastest fix is to drain your cylinder, and just follow these instructions to temporarily solve the problem before the Plumber can get there and assess what needs to happen next.

1. Isolate the power to the hot water cylinder. The easiest way of doing this is to turn the power switch off to the tank, or if you are feeling super technical, turn the fuse switch to the off location at the power board in your house which will isolate the circuit.

2. Turn off the tap. Technically called the “cold feed” that fills the hot water cylinder with cold water to be heated. This is found around the cylinder somewhere, usually at the bottom, and this means that the tank isn’t going to keep on filling up with cold water and adding to the problem.

3. Turn on every hot water tap tap in the house and drain the tank. Once you have turned off and isolated the power, stopped the tank filling with new cold water, the last step is to turn on every tap in the house and drain the cylinder, and this means that the leak will stop. This can take a while to drain depending on the size of the cylinder, but keep them on until the water stops.


It may pay you to throw a couple of towels down to pick up any water that may be around the area, but at least the initial problem of a leaking hot water cylinder has been temporarily solved.


Contact us and we can organize a local plumber for a free assessment 


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