A water heater is something most homeowners don’t think about until there is no hot water! But paying attention to your water heater’s well-being now is one of the best things you can do to ensure it lasts for decades. Take these steps to keep your investment running smoothly for years to come!
If you’re experiencing problems with your water heater, you’re due for preventative maintenance, or you think your appliance could benefit from flushing, give C&W Plumbing a call at 972-395-2597. Taking care of your water heater now can save you money and headaches in the long run.
1. Do Preventative Maintenance
Preventative maintenance is perhaps the most important aspect of caring for any part of your plumbing system, and that includes your hot water heater. Water heater maintenance involves a quick visit from a licensed plumber once a year to give your water heater a thorough inspection, making sure there are no minor problems that are about to become worse. They can also double-check:
- The temperature settings
- Gas supply
- Signs of corrosion
And repair any leaks that may have gone unnoticed.
2. Flush Your Water Heater
Another must in water heater maintenance is flushing, and it’s something you can do on your own if you feel comfortable. Over time, minerals can collect as sediment deposits in your tank, causing your water heater to become less efficient. Flushing rids you and your tank of this issue.
If you’re planning on DIYing this task, it’s important to first turn off the electricity to your water heater, along with your water supply. Then follow these steps to flush your appliance:
- Connect a garden hose to your tank’s drain valve.
- Place the end of the garden hose in an area outside that won’t be harmed by hot water.
- Open the drain valve and wait for all the water to drain out of your tank.
- Remove the garden hose.
- Close the drain valve.
- Turn the power and water back on.
- Give your water heater time to fill back up.
If you don’t feel comfortable flushing your water heater on your own or you’re not absolutely sure what to do, call a professional.
3. Add an Anode Rod, and Check It Regularly
Water and metal inevitably lead to rust, but an anode rod can help extend your water heater’s life. It attracts any corrosive elements within the water to help your water heater’s lining last longer.
Over time, just like many helpful household items, this rod may need to be replaced. When you call your plumber for annual maintenance, ask them to check on it.
4. Keep Your Heater Energy-Efficient
If you’ve looked at your water bill and aren’t happy with what you see, you may be considering replacing your water heater for a more energy-efficient one. Before you start your research, it may be possible to improve your current heater in terms of the energy it uses and your water bills.
Many homes set the temperature of their water heaters too high and don’t realize they’re wasting energy! Keep your home’s water heater set at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, rather than 140 degrees.
Adding insulation to your tank can also keep heat in, greatly improving your water heater’s efficiency.
How to Tell If Something Is Wrong with Your Water Heater
There are plenty of signs that point to your water heater needing a little maintenance. One of the most obvious ones is a lack of hot water. But there are others that can appear even before this.
Watch out for these things:
- Banging or other noises coming from your water heater
- Water around your water heater
- Wet carpet or flooring around the appliance
- Rusty or off-colored water in your sink or tub
- Rust around the water heater or pipes
- Hot water running out quickly
- Poor water pressure
- Odd odors, like rotten eggs, coming from your water heater or water
If you notice your water isn’t hot enough or any of these other signs, it’s time to call a professional. It could potentially point to one of these problems with your water heater:
- Your water heater is too small for your home’s needs.
- The temperature is set incorrectly.
- There is a leak.
- Your water heater is older than 10 years and may need to be replaced.
- There is a sediment build-up.
- There are loose connections.
- You have a broken heating element.
Failing to maintain your water heater can cause issues more serious than not enough hot water, including:
- Damages to your home and property
- Burns by scalding water, should it begin leaking
- Higher-than-normal gas or electric bills
Your hot water heater works hard for you! Preventative maintenance is essential to its long, healthy lifespan. Performing these simple tasks and calling your plumber at least once a year for an inspection can help you save thousands of dollars in potential repair and replacement.
If you aren’t sure about the status of your water heater, consider contacting knowledge of hot water heaters and will be happy to do a routine inspection of the system. Call us at 972-395-2597!
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