(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16

Thread: how to remove broken drain valve

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member abfab's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    canada
    Posts
    1

    Exclamation how to remove broken drain valve

    i was trying to replace a plastic drain valve on my gas water tank that was leaking. as careful as i tried to be it snapped and now part of the threaded pipe is stuck inside. i tried pliers but can't get it out. any suggestions?

  2. #2
    DIY Member msgale's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    90

    Default

    Irrigation sprinkler supply houses sell a tapered serrated insert, you jam it into the stuck nipple, and twist it out.
    doesn't always work,though.
    Plastic that's repeatedly heated like that has a short life span.
    You might need new water heater.

  3. #3
    Plumbing Contractor for 49 years johnjh2o1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    South*East
    Posts
    1,121

    Default

    Use a hacksaw blade and make two cuts 1/4" apart on the inside of the remaining nipple. Be careful to cut just the nipple not the threads on the water heater. Then remove the peace between the two cuts. Then pick the rest out with a small screw driver.

    John

  4. #4
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    It is likely you will scar the threads on the tank a bit, so you should get a thread chaser to run over them and clean them up. I would suggest using a brass nipple and a ball valve as a replacement.

  5. #5
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    892

    Default

    When this happened to me about 10-12 years ago the plumber had no idea what to do. I ended up using an old kabar knife and wire brush to scrape out the plastic inside, then painstakingly cleared each thread channel. Then the plumber proclaimed that he did not have a valve that would fit it. I told him to go find a valve and bushing that would fit. This apparently was a novel concept to him. I'm still wondering what is considered a basic part for stocking a plumbing van because he did not have anything with him to do the job.

  6. #6
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    I have used a regular 3/4" brass nipple into a 3/4" ball valve for several years. When I got my new heater install recently, I just transferred them to the new tank. The threads in the tank are just regular pipe threads, it's the valves that are pieces of crap.

  7. #7
    Master Plumber master plumber mark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of the brave....
    Posts
    4,243
    Blog Entries
    1

    Talking do the hack saw thing....

    Quote Originally Posted by johnjh2o1 View Post
    Use a hacksaw blade and make two cuts 1/4" apart on the inside of the remaining nipple. Be careful to cut just the nipple not the threads on the water heater. Then remove the peace between the two cuts. Then pick the rest out with a small screw driver.

    John

    that works the best...

    but you might need a 3/4 tap to clean up ther threads even if
    you are careful..

    its more fun when the water is pissing out on you
    whilst you are doing this......

  8. #8
    Plumbing Contractor for 49 years johnjh2o1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    South*East
    Posts
    1,121

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by master plumber mark View Post
    that works the best...

    but you might need a 3/4 tap to clean up ther threads even if
    you are careful..

    its more fun when the water is pissing out on you
    whilst you are doing this......
    Been there done that.

    John

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    892

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart View Post
    I have used a regular 3/4" brass nipple into a 3/4" ball valve for several years. When I got my new heater install recently, I just transferred them to the new tank. The threads in the tank are just regular pipe threads, it's the valves that are pieces of crap.
    I've got a 3/4 to 1/2" bushing and 1/2" brass valve that I've held onto from when I replaced that old tank. I've used it for various short term tests. Next time I have to replace the gas valve I will probably install it on the water heater.

  10. #10
    DIY Senior Member SteveW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    1,042

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart View Post
    I have used a regular 3/4" brass nipple into a 3/4" ball valve for several years. When I got my new heater install recently, I just transferred them to the new tank. The threads in the tank are just regular pipe threads, it's the valves that are pieces of crap.
    And make sure to use a full-port ball valve to better flush out chunks of mineral deposits.

  11. #11
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    Go 3/4 all the way! You can flush the tank much quicker and I believe much better with the larger diameter. Also use a ball valve. We're not talking a lot of money here.

  12. #12
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    892

    Default

    Are you or how are you securing the ball valve handle so that nobody inadvertently bumps it and produces a real mess/danger to themselves? Cable tie? Or are you putting a plug/hose cap on the end of it?

    Using a full port 3/4" ball valve does make the most sense. I haven't priced one of these in brass. I'll start looking for one with hose thread on the outlet.

  13. #13
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    You bring up a good point on safety, so I'll expand on the description of my setup. I have a floor drain very close to the water heater. I have a 4" slab poured on top of the basement floor and a 6" high basin enclosing that plus 3 more feet to enclose the floor drain. On the output end of the ball valve I elbow down to the floor of the basin described above then another elbow aimed at the drain. All of this is done with 3/4" copper. Since only my wife and I live in the house I see little danger in the valve being opened accidentally, but even if it was, the water would be expelled on the floor of the basin and not sprayed around the room. If I felt there was a real danger, the handle of the valve could be removed and kept on top of the tank.

  14. #14
    DIY Senior Member SteveW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Omaha, NE
    Posts
    1,042

    Default

    The question of safety is a really good one.

    What I did was to take off the handle (easy to do - just remove the nut). I also screwed on a hose-end cap with a rubber gasket (intended for closing off the end of a garden hose) for extra protection.

  15. #15
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    892

    Default

    I originally used a hose cap like that on the old water heater years ago because the plastic drain valve wouldn't completely seal after blowing it down.

    I've used quarter turn valves a fair bit industrially. They are nice but it is easy to snag something on a handle and blow down a lot of flammable or otherwise nasty gas unexpectedly, so I try to anticipate the possibility when I add one.

    My valve is only a few feet from the floor drain and I've been planning to rework the condensate and humidifier drains to there anyway. Adding a copper line to the drain is a possibility. I've got some work to do to prevent water from entering a closet any time water is blown down there anyway. Much of this rework is awaiting replacement of the furnace and AC. I can fix the wall and seal the floor back there once I pull those out.
    Last edited by Runs with bison; 09-30-2009 at 09:43 PM. Reason: typo

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •