Effortlessly Move a Water Heater: Expert Tips and Tricks

To move a water heater, first, turn off the gas or electricity, drain the tank and disconnect the piping. Moving a water heater can be a challenging task as it is heavy, bulky, and can leak if not handled properly.

However, if you are diy-savvy, you can do it yourself without professional help. It is important to have the right tools and equipment to protect yourself, the water heater, and your home. In this article, we will guide you through the steps to move a water heater to a different location or a new house safely and efficiently.

By following these guidelines, you can avoid any damage, injuries, and unforeseen expenses.

Assessing The Situation

Moving a water heater can be a challenging task, and it requires proper planning and execution. Before starting, it’s essential to assess the situation to avoid any mishaps. Here are the key points to consider:

Surveying The New Location

Before you move the water heater, you need to survey the new location to ensure it is suitable. Here’s what you should look for:

  • Check the floor: Ensure that the floor is sturdy enough to support the weight of the heater and the water it contains.
  • Check accessibility: Make sure the heater is accessible for installation and maintenance.
  • Check the distance: Measure the distance between the old and new location to ensure that it’s not too far for the hoses or pipes to reach.

Ensuring Adequate Safety Measures

Moving a water heater can be hazardous if not done correctly. Here are some safety measures to keep in mind:

  • Turn off the power: Before you start, switch off the power supply to the heater to avoid any electrical hazards.
  • Turn off the water supply: Shut off the water supply valve to prevent water from entering or exiting the heater.
  • Ventilate the area: Make sure the room is well ventilated to prevent any gas leakages.

Checking For Potential Obstructions

Moving a water heater can be tricky if there are any obstructions in the way. Here are some things to look out for:

  • Check for ceiling height: Ensure the ceiling height is sufficient to accommodate the water heater’s height.
  • Check for doorways: Ensure there are no narrow doorways or hallways that may make it challenging to maneuver the heater.
  • Check for stairways: If the new location requires the water heater to be taken up or down, make sure to measure the stairs’ dimensions to ensure the heater fits.

Preparing The Right Tools

Moving a water heater requires some specific tools. Here’s a list of what you need:

  • A dolly: To move the water heater, use an appliance dolly, preferably one with straps to keep it secure.
  • Wrenches and pliers: You’ll need these to disconnect the water and gas connections.
  • Pipe wrenches: These are necessary to disengage the pipes connected to the heater.
  • Teflon tape: Use this tape to seal the pipe connections and prevent leaks.

Moving a water heater can be a challenging task, but by assessing the situation carefully, surveying the new location, ensuring adequate safety measures, checking for potential obstructions, and preparing the right tools, you can make the process much smoother and safer.

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Preparations Before Moving

Moving a water heater can be a challenging task that requires proper preparation to ensure the safety of both the equipment and the people involved. Before you start moving your water heater, there are several important steps you must follow to get the job done correctly.

Below, we will outline the necessary preparations you need to make when moving a water heater with h3 headings (###) for each step.

Detaching And Shutting Off The Water And Gas Supply

Before you move your water heater, you must first shut off the water and gas supply. This is important to ensure that no water or gas is spilt during the move, which can lead to damage or injury. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  • Turn off the gas supply valve by rotating it a quarter turn until it is perpendicular to the gas line.
  • Shut off the cold water supply valve by turning it clockwise.
  • Connect a garden hose to the drain valve and run it outside or to a floor drain.
  • Open the pressure relief valve on top of the unit to let air into the tank.
  • Open a hot water faucet to allow hot water to flow out of the tank, which will help drain the water faster.

Draining The Tank And Removing Sediment

Once you’ve shut off the water and gas supply, you can drain the water heater. This step is essential to avoid damage to the equipment or risking injury. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  • Open the drain valve at the bottom of the tank and let the water flow out. This can take up to several hours.
  • Once the water has drained out, turn off the drain valve and disconnect the hose.
  • Reopen the cold water supply valve and let it run for a few minutes to flush out any remaining sediment in the tank.

Disconnecting Electrical Wiring

If your water heater has an electric power supply, you’ll need to disconnect the wiring before moving it. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  • Turn off the power supply to the water heater by turning off the circuit breaker to the unit.
  • Remove the access panel cover to expose the wiring and disconnect any attached wires.
  • Tape the exposed ends of the electrical wiring securely to prevent contact with other surfaces.

Securing The Tank For Transport

Finally, you must secure the tank for transport to prevent it from tipping over or becoming damaged during transit. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  • Move the water heater onto a dolly or cart that can support its weight.
  • Strap the water heater securely to the dolly or cart using bungee cords or rope.
  • If you are transporting the water heater in a moving truck, make sure to secure it further with extra straps or padding.
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By following these steps, you will be well-prepared to move your water heater safely and efficiently. As you move your water heater, remember to be cautious and take your time to avoid any accidents or injuries.

Moving The Water Heater

Deciding On The Appropriate Moving Method

Moving a water heater can be a daunting task that requires careful planning and execution. The first step in moving a water heater is deciding on the appropriate moving method. Here are some options to consider:

  • Hand-carrying the tank: This method is suitable for small water heaters that are light enough to be carried by hand. It is an easy and inexpensive option that does not require any special equipment. However, it can be physically demanding and may require several people to lift and carry the tank.
  • Using a hand truck or dolly: A hand truck or dolly is a useful tool for moving a water heater, especially for larger tanks. It can help reduce the physical strain on the person moving the tank and also ensure that the tank is transported safely. When using a hand truck or dolly, it is essential to strap the tank securely to prevent it from falling or tipping over.
  • Moving the tank with a vehicle: For long-distance moves, it may be more convenient to move the water heater with a vehicle. This method requires a truck or trailer that is large enough to accommodate the tank securely. It is important to use straps or tie-downs to keep the tank in place during transportation.
  • Using a professional moving service: If you are not comfortable moving the water heater yourself, you can hire a professional moving service to do it for you. A professional service will have the necessary equipment and experience to move the tank safely and efficiently. Be sure to choose a reliable and reputable company to ensure that your water heater is in good hands.

Moving a water heater can be a challenging task, but with the right preparation and equipment, it can be done safely and efficiently. Be sure to choose the appropriate moving method for your tank and take the necessary precautions to ensure that it is transported securely.

Reinstallation And Safety Checks

Moving a water heater can be a daunting task, requiring physical effort and technical skill. However, it can be done successfully, especially if the right safety measures and precautions are taken. In this section, we will discuss the essential steps to take when it comes to the reinstallation and safety checks of a water heater.

Ensuring The Tank Is Level And Secure

Before turning on the unit, it is crucial to ensure that it is secure and level. Here are the key points to keep in mind:

  • Place shims under the water heater to ensure that it’s level, particularly if it was moved upstairs or if previously placed incorrectly.
  • Tighten all the bolts that hold the water heater to its mounting platform or base.
  • Make sure the pipes are connected to the water heater and secured to the walls.
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Reconnecting The Water, Gas, And Electrical Supply

Once the water heater is level and secure, the next step is to reconnect the water, gas, and electrical supply. Follow these key points:

  • Turn off the gas and electrical supply if you disconnected it from the water heater during the move.
  • Reconnect the gas supply to the gas control valve and tighten the nut using a wrench.
  • Reconnect the water supply, using teflon pipe tape on the threaded ends for a tight seal.
  • Reconnect the electrical supply and turn it on.

Checking For Leaks

After reconnecting all the integrated systems, checking for leaks is critical. These are the key points to consider:

  • Inspect the connections and pipes of the gas, electrical and water supply for any leaks or cracks.
  • Test each connection by spraying soapy water on them and watching for any bubbles.
  • If any leaks are detected, turn off the water, gas, and electrical supply and immediately call a licensed plumber or electrician.

Rekindling The Pilot Light

If you have a gas water heater, you may need to relight the pilot light. Here are the key points:

  • Turn the gas control valve to “pilot” and hold it down for 30 seconds to allow the gas to flow.
  • With a match or lighter, ignite the pilot light.
  • Turn the gas valve back to “on” and adjust the temperature to the desired level.

Testing The Newly Installed Water Heater

It’s critical to test the unit to ensure it’s working correctly and follow these key points:

  • Let the water heater run for at least 20-30 minutes to ensure proper heating.
  • Check if the burner is working correctly and if the water is heated to the desired temperature.
  • Test the temperature and pressure relief valve by lifting the lever and releasing it to ensure that water is released.

These steps are essential to follow for a successful reinstallation and safety check of a water heater. By adhering to these guidelines, you can ensure safe and smooth operation with your water heater.


It is never an easy task to move a water heater from one place to another. However, with the proper tools, knowledge, and precautions, you can safely relocate it to your desired location. Before starting, make sure to turn off the gas or electricity and cut off the water supply to avoid any unanticipated accidents.

Firstly, drain the remaining water from the water heater and disconnect it from the water and gas or electricity lines. Secondly, remove the heater from its place and place it carefully onto the dolly. Finally, carefully move the water heater to its new location without damaging it.

Following these steps can help you move your water heater with ease. It is always advisable to seek professional help if you are unsure of the steps involved or if you have any concerns about safety. With these simple guidelines, homeowners can move their water heaters without causing any damage.

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