Your water heater is an essential component of your plumbing system. Without it, you wouldn’t have access to hot water throughout your home. Unfortunately, your water heater could be a source of headaches for you if you don’t maintain it. The system could fail and cost you hundreds of dollars. However, you can avoid expensive water heater repairs by keeping your heater using these five maintenance tips.
1 – Insulate Your Water Heater
During extreme winter weather, the pipes on your water heater can freeze, much like other pipes in your home. If your pipes freeze, you won’t have access to hot water. To prevent your pipes from freezing, insulate them. However, don’t simply insulate your pipes. It would help if you insulated your entire heater to help keep the water warm throughout the day.
2 – Monitor Your Anode Rod
Your anode rod prevents your water heater from corroding. Through electrolysis, the anode rod attracts calcium and mineral buildup, which contains your water heater from rusting inside. To ensure your water heater lasts for years, you must change your anode rod periodically. The process is as simple as unscrewing the road and replacing it with a new one. However, before you insert the replacement rod, wrap it in Teflon tape to extend the life of your new rod.
3 – Adjust Your Temperature Settings
You should adjust the temperature settings on your water heater throughout the year. For example, reduce the temperature of your water heater during the summer months when you don’t need boiling water. With a lower temperature, your water heater won’t have to work as hard throughout the day. Additionally, you’ll save money at a lower temperature because your water heater won’t come on as often.
4 – Check Your TPR Valve
Another critical water heater component is your temperature pressure release valve (TPR). Your TPR valve is a safety feature included with your water heater. If your water heater gets too hot, your TPR valve will release water, which will reduce the pressure inside your water heater tank.
Test it to ensure that your TPR valve is working as it should. Start by placing a bucket underneath the bottom of the rod. With the bucket in place, release the value and close it again. If water continues draining after you’ve completed it, you need a new valve.
5 – Clean Your Tank
Finally, it’s imperative that you clean your tank periodically. Although your anode works, it doesn’t hurt to help it out every once in a while. You can clean your tank by continuously opening and closing the cold water supply. Of course, once you notice clean water coming out of your tank, close your cold water supply, refill your tank, and turn your power back on.
Maintaining your water heater is one way to extend the life of your water heater. Keeping your water heater could also prevent repairs and save you hundreds of dollars. If you suspect your water heater needs repairs, contact your local plumber before the problem gets out of hand.