copper flex lines/drain valve

The Tank copper flex lines/drain valve

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  • #18455
    gfe76
    Participant

    New to site. Replaced my electric water heater this weekend myself. A real adventure. I didn’t find this site until after I replaced it. I did change out the drain valve to a 3/4 ball, but used a regular galvanized nipple, not a plastic lined one—should I drain tank and use a plastic lined nipple????
    Also I hard piped the inlet/outlet. I was going to use corrugated copper flex lines, but called 3 plumbers and they said these lines fail in 5-6 years. What is the consensus here on using copper flex lines?
    I plan on draining the tank 2x/yr and changing anode in 5 years. I live in florida and have a water softener.
    Thanks for all the input.

    #18456
    Randy Schuyler
    Keymaster

    Copper flex lines do get brittle with age, but I don’t agree that they fail in that time. You could also use stainless steel flexes which don’t get brittle.

    It wouldn’t be a bad idea to go back and replace the galvanized nipple. It’s bound to clog with rust eventually. But you don’t have to drain the tank to do it. Go to my main site using the Basics link on the left side of the Tank topics index, then click on Know-How.

    With the softener, there is little reason to drain the tank since there won’t be much sediment. On the other hand, your change anode every five years is optimistic. You should check it every year and replace when you see six inches of exposed core wire.

    Randy Schuyler

    #18457
    Larry Weingarten
    Participant

    Hello: One tidbit; some plumbers don’t like flex lines because sometimes they leak. This happens when the rubber washers shrink a bit with heat. If you go back after six months and re-tighten the flex lines, they will be good for a very long time 😉

    Yours, Larry

    #18458
    gfe76
    Participant

    Thanks to both of you.
    Randy, by “stainless flex lines” do you mean the braided ones or the ones that look like the copper corrugated, only stainless?

    #18459
    Randy Schuyler
    Keymaster

    The corrugated ones. There have been issues with a rubber lining in the braided ones disintegrating in some kinds of water.

    Randy Schuyler

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