Tips on Proper Water Heater Maintenance

Many homeowners do not consider their water heater until something goes wrong, but water heater maintenance can help you to avoid the need for repair. 

Properly maintaining your heater will also lengthen its lifespan. Water heaters have a typical lifespan of around 15 years. With the following maintenance tips, you can keep your heater working effectively for as long as possible. 

Flushing the Water Heater

Once each year, you should flush the water inside your heater’s tank. Annual flushing will reduce the amount of sediment inside the tank. Over time, accumulated sediment can reduce your water heater’s efficiency and cost you money. 

First, turn off the power to your water heater. Connect a water hose to your unit’s drainage tap. The flushed water can run out of the hose to a nearby drain or appropriate outside area. 

When draining your tank, leave the water source connected to the water heater. Open the spigot to begin the draining process. Be careful not to touch the hot water leaving the tank, as this can cause burns. Let the heater drain until all of the sediment appears to have run out of the hose.  

Lower the Water Temperature

Lowering the temperature of your water heater has many advantages, including the following: 

  • Decreased risk of burns
  • Lower energy usage and bills
  • Lengthened lifespan of the heater

Decreasing the temperature is a good tip for keeping your heater in good working order. At the same time, the temperature should not be too low. Below a certain temperature, some pathogens may survive inside your water heater’s tank. The water temperature should be at least 122 degrees. 

Most gas heaters will feature a temperature dial. Electric water heaters usually feature a thermostat. For your safety, always shut off power to your heater before making any adjustments. 

Check the Pressure Release Valve

When too much pressure accumulates inside the tank, a water heater can explode. Because of this, water heaters feature a release valve to relieve excess pressure. To check this valve, disconnect the power and the cold-water supply to the unit.  

Place a bucket beneath the valve and lift it. If water flows out continuously, you should replace the pressure release valve with a new one.

With these simple tips, you can keep your water heater in good shape and avoid the need for repairs. When you want a professional service to take care of your annual maintenance, you can have a regularly scheduled tune-up! Interested in water heater tune-ups or replacing an outdated model? Contact B&B Professional Plumbing today!