In this post, we are going to give you step by step instructions on how to replace your water heater.

We have more than 14 years of experience in the HVAC industry, including repairing and installing water heaters, and we would love to share our helpful advice with you.

We’re going to take a closer look at what is involved in replacing a water heater. So let’s get started!

Replace Water Heater – Step by Step

It’s best to let a professional install any gas appliances
– Image Source: US Department of Energy

Note: The following instructions are given for information purposes only. A gas water heater is best replaced by a trained technician who has the experience and training to replace your water heater safely.


Tools and Materials Needed to Replace Water Heater


Here are the steps involved to replace your gas water heater:


Step 1: Shut off the water supply to your water heater.


Step 2: Shut off the gas supply to your water heater.

Turn the gas switch to “Off” – Image Source: This Old House

Step 3:  Drain all of the water out of your water heater.


Drain the water from your tank – Image Source: This Old House

Step 4: Remove the Old Piping

Remove the old gas piping and the overflow from the temperature and relief valve.

Remove the old gas piping – Image Source: This Old House

Step 5: Remove the Flue Gas Connection

You will need to break the galvanized flue gas connection located on top of your water heater to remove it.

Take off the galvanized flue gas connection
– Image Source: This Old House

Step 6: Clean Your Pipes

It’s a good idea to clean your hot and cold copper water line pipes before you cut them. If they are clean, then it will be easier to hook up your new water heater to them later. Cut these water lines with a tube cutter. Once you have cut these pipes, you can remove your old water heater.

Clean pipes before you cut them – Image Source: This Old House

Step 7: Install Your New Water Heater

Bring in your new water heater and place it where the old one was connected.

Note: If your new water heater is the same size as your old one it will be quite straight-forward to install. However, if it is larger, then you will probably need to re-pipe it.

If your new hot water heater is larger, you will have to adjust your piping to fit – Image Source: This Old House

Step 8: Re-connect the Fittings

Re-connect your gas by dry fitting the old gas connection to the new ones. Use some pipe dope to seal the connections.

*Tip: Use two pipe wrenches when you are attaching the gas valves so that you won’t stress them.

Re-connect your gas fittings – Image Source: This Old House

Step 9: Attach the Pipes

Attach the pipe assemblies to the hot and cold water pipes above your water tank and solder them in place.

Step 10: Attach the Vent

Attach your vent to the new water heater by tightly pushing it onto the draft hood and connecting it with three 3/8 inch sheet metal screws.

Attach your draft hood – Image Source: This Old House

Step 11: Fill with Water

Make sure that your drain valve is closed. Then, you can turn your water back on at the main and open the cold water valve on your water heater. You can leave this valve turned on.

Step 12: Turn on Gas and Test

Turn the gas back on. Check for leaks in your connections by placing some soapy water (half dish-washing liquid and half water) on each of your connections. If any bubbles form, you know that there must be a leak there that you will need to repair.

The following video will show you these steps in greater detail.

Replace water heater: Trust a professional to do it for you

You Can Trust Draft Control to Repair or Replace Water Heater Safely & Affordably


At Draft Control we work on all makes and models of water heaters:

No matter what type or brand of water heater you have, the highly trained technicians at Draft Control can repair or replace them. Whether you have an electric, gas, or tankless water heater, we will be able to determine the problem and repair the issue. Or, if it is necessary to replace your water heater, we will recommend a unit that is the proper size for your family’s needs and one that will fit your budget.

We repair both residential and commercial water heaters:

Whether your water heater is in your home or at your place of business, contact Draft Control for any repairs you need or if you want to replace your water heater. No job is too big or too small for us to handle, and regardless of the size of job, we will always treat you and your water heater with the greatest care and respect.

We are never pushy and we put your needs first:

Don’t worry; we are never pushy and we won’t try to sell you a water heater that isn’t the best choice for you. If your water heater can be repaired and doesn’t need to be replaced, you can trust us to do that for you. At Draft Control, we put out customer’s needs first.

Call us if you have an emergency water heater repair. If your water heater repair is an emergency, you can trust Draft Control to come to your home as soon as possible to fix your problem efficiently and correctly.

“My hot water tank stopped working on a Saturday. Selim was able to diagnose the problem over the phone and came to fix my tank same day.  Friendly, honest person with knowledgeable advice. Highly recommended. I will stick with Draft Control for my service work from now on.” – Michael Lee