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How to Drain a Waterbed

If you have a waterbed, at some point you may need to drain it. Perhaps you are moving to a new home, or you are moving the waterbed to another room in your existing home. Either way, learning the best way to drain a waterbed mattress, and the tricks and tips in doing so would be helpful. Obviously, you can't simply pick up a waterbed mattress and move's much heavier than a traditional mattress. That's why we have created this FAQ page.

What are the steps when draining a waterbed?
First, strip the waterbed of coverings, pads, sheets etc.
After locating the fill and drain valve on the waterbed, release the valve.
Then 'burp' or push the air out of the vinyl bladder (after releasing the valve at the top). Remove as much air as possible as this will speed up draining.
Attach the hose adapter that comes with your Waterbed Fill and Drain Kit to the end of the hose.
With one end of the hose connected to the waterbed mattress, run the other end of the hose out of the nearest window, or into the tub or sink if that's more convenient.
Make sure the bathtub or sink will be able to accept the water and drain quickly. Otherwise, the water will flow back up over the rim and on to your floor.
Attaching a pump makes things easier and faster, and your mattress will drain more quickly.

Besides the above, is there anything else I should know when draining a waterbed?
Always have some towels on hand.
Make sure you unplug the waterbed heater before draining.
Unplug any electronic items that are near the waterbed.
Place a little weight around the valve on the waterbed mattress, such as a book or two. This will keep the valve portion of the waterbed lower than the rest of the mattress, allowing the valve to always be lower in relation to the rest of the waterbed mattress. You can also place items under the mattress itself as it empties, which will keep the mattress higher than the valve also.

What if I don't have a drain pump? Is there another way to drain a waterbed?
If you don't have a pump, you can use gravity instead.
Before draining, place the end of the hose that's going to be attached to the waterbed in a bucket. Then attach the other end of the hose (the end that is going out the window) to your outside faucet. Then turn the water on via the faucet and allow the water to flow back to the bucket briefly. Then turn off the outside faucet and attach the hose to the waterbed valve. Once the hose is connected to the waterbed, you can unscrew from the faucet, and the water will start draining. This will get rid of the air in the hose and allow the water to drain more freely from the waterbed, without having to use your mouth as suction to get the water to start flowing from the waterbed. Make sure the area you are draining to is lower than the bed itself so water will flow. If you have a pump, this step is not necessary.
Once you are in the draining process, to make things go a bit faster, apply some weight to the mattress by laying on it, waiting until the mattress is about 75% empty before doing so.

If I don't have a pump, can I use something else to 'suck' out the water?
Another method is to use a shop vacuum/wet vacuum to drain with suction. You will have to empty the shop vac as it fills.

How long does it take to drain a waterbed?
Without using a pump, it can take several hours for all the water to drain.
You can help things along by rolling up the waterbed mattress as it drains (be careful - the bladder is somewhat susceptible to tearing).

How many gallons of water will I have to drain from my waterbed?
California King Size Waterbed: 185 - 200 gallons
King Size Waterbed: 180 - 235 gallons
Queen Size Waterbed: 162 - 187 gallons

Do you sell any accessories that will help me drain my waterbed?
The following supplies will help you drain (and fill) your waterbed:
Waterbed Fill and Drain Hero:
Includes the following:
25 Foot Hose
Faucet and Hose Adaptor
Drain VenturiPump
Electric Drain Pump
8 oz. Conditioner

Waterbed drain and fill kit:
Includes the following:
25 Ft. Hose
8 oz. Waterbed Conditioner
Faucet Adaptor and Hose Adaptor
Siphon Pump

Smart Pack:
Includes the following:
Hose Adaptor
Faucet Adaptor
Siphon Pump
3 Year Supply of Waterbed Conditioner

Does a softside waterbed need to be drained?
Because a softside waterbed mattress looks like a traditional mattress, many mistakenly believe that they are shipped with the water already in them.
This isn't true, you will need to both fill and drain the water from a softside waterbed.

What's the difference between draining a waterbed or draining a waterbed mattress?
There is no difference. Draining a waterbed means you are actually draining the waterbed mattress.

Have any questions about waterbed mattresses? Give us a call at 1-800-428-7083.

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