You may not give your water heater much thought until the shower turns cold, or a repair or replacement is needed. However, the water heater is an important appliance that is used daily in practically every home. Consider these water heater maintenance tips to raise the performance of your system and lower your utility bill.
Water Heater Maintenance
Regular maintenance helps your water heater operate safely and efficiently. When maintaining your system, remember that you're not only dealing with very hot water, but also high pressure. Water heaters have a built-in safety feature called the temperature and pressure (T&P) valve. This device should be checked at least every six months. Here's how:
Turn off the electricity at the circuit box or turn the gas to pilot.
Turn off the cold water inlet valve, which is located near the top of the water heater on the side. A pipe may extend from the valve to near the bottom of the water heater.
Place a bucket beneath the pipe to catch hot water.
Pull the lever on the valve. Air and hot water should rush out. If it does not, replace the valve.
If you ever notice the valve dripping water, replace it.
Refer to your owner's manual for flushing the tank. Many manufacturer's suggest flushing the water heater twice a year. This is best left to a professional. In between full tank flushes, perform a mini flush every month. Place a bucket beneath the drain valve at the bottom of the tank and flush about one gallon of water. This helps remove sediment and preserve water heater lining.
Water Heater Efficiency
To help your water heater operate more efficiently, set the temperature to 120 degrees. You may also insulate the inlet and outlet pipes. Newer water heaters are well insulated to curb standby heat loss. If your water heater is warm to the touch, consider installing a blanket or jacket insulation.
If you have questions or would like to schedule water heater maintenance in your Broken Arrow area home, contact Air Assurance today.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: “thodonal88/Shutterstock”