I know that a hot water heater should be flushed yearly to mitigate sediment buildup.

What kind of hose should be used? Is a simple garden hose sufficient, or will the hot water melt or damage the rubber? Are there heavy-duty or heat-resistant hoses for hot water?

  • Set yourself up to back-flush through whatever drain hose you use. Like get a hose connector so you can connect the opposite end of the hose to a water source to blast backwards into the water heater. I had to do this because large clumps of mineral deposits/scale plugged up the drain valve on the bottom of the water heater and the hose. It helped flush it out well also. Apr 3, 2015 at 20:27

3 Answers 3


While there are "hot water hoses" and you'll pay a pretty penny for them if you want more than the standard 5 feet or so that washing machine hoses are, you can use an ordinary garden hose.

Why? No pressure. You don't (or shouldn't) have a nozzle on the hose, so it should not be subject to much pressure. Also, you are draining from the bottom of the tank, the cold water dip tube supplies cold water to the bottom of the tank, so your tank flushing should be mostly cooler water - the hot water will mostly remain in the top part of the tank, or at the most be somewhat mixed with the cold water coming in to replace the water you are draining out. So your hose will see "warm" water at the worst.


If you're going to flush the hot water heater you might as well turn it off and then take a shower or do a load of laundry. That way the water will only be lukewarm when you flush the tank and you won't throw away water you already paid to heat. Then you don't need to worry about the type of hose (or worry about spilling scalding water on yourself).


I use a washing machine fill hose. There are two reasons why I use this type of hose:

  1. It is rated for hot water use.
  2. More importantly, it does not leak water; I first tried with a (cheap) garden hose and that leaked.

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