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A Basic Guide to Water Heater Maintenance

You know the experience of taking a shower when the hot water suddenly runs cold? It’s awful! You try and turn the faucet to get the hot water to come back, but it doesn’t. Only cold water runs through the showerhead. That’s when you know something is wrong with the water heater.

Water heaters are simple in design, but they’re powerful appliances used every day in households across the country. You use hot water while cooking, taking a shower, running the dishwasher, and washing your clothes. To keep your water heater working optimally, follow this step-by-step guide.

Check for Leaks

If you notice a leak anywhere around the tank, it may be caused by a loose drain valve, water pressure that’s too high, or a more serious problem that requires a licensed professional to fix.

Flush the Water Heater Twice a Year

Every six months or so, flush the water heater. Follow these steps:

  • First, turn off the water heater.
  • Using a normal garden hose, connect one end of the hose to the drain valve near the bottom.
  • Place the other end of the hose in a bucket.
  • Open the valve, and let the water drain out.

Minerals in the water separate and become sediment as the water is being heated. One of the main reasons to flush the water is to get rid of the sediment buildup. Therefore, drain the water heater until the water coming through the drain valve is clear. It’ll take somewhere between 20 to 25 minutes to drain the water.

Regularly Check the TPR Valve

The Temperature/Pressure Relief (TPR) valve is a safety device. It automatically releases water when the temperature gets too hot or the water pressure gets too high.

Periodically Check the Anode Rod

The anode rod sits inside the water heater. It attracts minerals that would otherwise become sediment. From time to time, remove the rod and check for corrosion or a rotten-egg smell. If you notice either, replace the anode.

Turn the Temperature Dial to 120 Degrees Fahrenheit

Move the temperature dial to 120 degrees Fahrenheit for normal use. If you’re going on vacation, turn off the water heater or move it to its lowest temperature setting.

Insulate the Pipes in Older Water Heaters

Use thick foam pipe insulation to cover the water pipes to protect them during the winter.

Rely on Your Local Professionals

If you’ve noticed a problem and need water heater repair or replacement, call us today at All Drain Plumbing in Dayton, OH to schedule an appointment. Our experienced plumbers will give you an honest estimate and offer the most cost-effective solution to your water heater dilemma.