Top 6 Steps Of The Preventive Maintenance On A Hot Water Heater

July 10, 2022
 | By 
Jason Ray

Keeping warm is necessary, especially in the winter. Nobody likes to bathe with cold water. Water heaters are the solution to your cold water. They are pretty standard devices found in almost every house.

Water heaters provide hot water for bathing and drinking. The water heaters are a one-time investment for most people. Nobody wants to fix it once it stops working. And if a water heater system stops working and it's unfixable, the replacement cost can be huge.

Water heaters can provide you with years of service if maintained properly. You should follow some small steps to maintain a hot water heater. This article introduces the top 5 preventive maintenance on a hot water heater.

Why Should I Bother To Maintain A Water Heater?

"Why should I be concerned about a water heater?" "What are the things that can be happened if I don't maintain a water heater?". Perhaps, these are the questions spinning around your head. We understand your query. As we have said earlier, the water heater is a one-time investment for most people. Also, there are some remarkable benefits of maintaining a water heater. Let us tell you why.

The benefits of maintaining a water heater are many. For instance, installing an insulator can reduce 9% in your monthly water bills. Hot water heater maintenance can reward you with 24%-34% more efficiency. You can save approximately 15 percent of your electricity bills.

Proper maintenance slows down the rusting of the water heater tank, ensuring a seamless hot water flow. Electric things can be bugged sometimes because of the moisture and humidity. Electric water heaters are no exception. You should maintain and service your electric water heaters from time to time.

Water heaters are usually made to last a decade or so. But they can only service that long if you maintain and service them regularly. We are enclosing a few tips on taking preventive maintenance for water heaters.

A Few Steps On Preventive Maintenance Tips-

Examine The Temperature/ Pressure Relief Valve (TPR)-

A pressure relief valve as known as TPR

TPR or Temperature/ Pressure Relief Valve are designed to release water or air pressure when the magnitude of the force crosses the safety limit. TRP valves are usually installed on water heater tanks, boilers, or domestic hot water supply appliances.

The TRP is the first thing you should check when maintaining a water heater. TRP is the essential part of the water heater because it prevents any accidents from excessive pressure.

First, shut off the power and the cold water supply. Put a bucket under the bottom of the tank. Make sure that the pipe connected to the TPR is directly above the bucket. After that, pull the tap of the valve to release some water and instantly let go. If the water flow continues, open the drain valve to drain the tank partway and replace the old valve.

Test The Anode Rod-

A comparison between an old anode and a new one

An anode rod is one of the most critical components of your water heater. The anode is positioned at the center of the water heater. This is a steel wire coated with aluminum, zinc-alloy, and magnesium. The water heater is a perfect spot for rusting to grow.

The temperature, water, and oxygen gas make it a perfect place for rust. The anode's role is to counter the environment and deterioration as much as possible. This can significantly increase the performance and efficiency of your water heater.

Checking the anode rod should be a matter of great concern for you. Whenever you think of maintaining your water heater, this is one of the very few components that you should most definitely check.

A water heater's overall performance and efficiency significantly depend on the anode rod. So, whenever you think of preventive maintenance on your water heater, check the anode rod.

Drain Your Water Heater Tank Completely And Wash Sediments-

Water carries natural minerals that are always inside the water heater tank. Over time, the hard water minerals build up in the tank and become very hard. The sediments can chemically react with the surface of the steel water heater tank.

It results in a decrease in the efficiency of the electric water heaters. It becomes such complicated over time that any attempt to remove it can cause permanent damage to the tank interior.

To remove sediment, you need to open the drain valve and drain the remaining water in the bucket. Now, stir the sediment up in the bottom of the tank. Open the cold water supply valve. After that, drain the tank and continue until fresh water comes out of the drain valve.

Now, reassemble the drain valve, fill the tank again, and turn its power on. This will clean the sediments and increase the water heater's lifespan.

Adjust The Temperature Setting-

Check the temperature dial and adjust it

The temperature setting is one of the most important functionalities of electric water heaters. Check the temperature dial first to check whether the temperature is set at 120 Fahrenheit. But this is a variable function that can be adjusted according to the environment.

You can adjust the water temperature. The energy costs are also proportional to the heat generation in the electric heater. So, checking and changing the temperature setting is of great importance.

First, find the temperature dial anywhere adjacent to the water heater tank, and then uncap the temperature dial. It is an adjustable component. Use a screwdriver to adjust the dial to 120 degrees. It is proved that for every 5 degrees of temperature reduced, the energy cost is reduced by 2.5%. So, whenever you are thinking of maintaining your water heater, make sure to adjust the temperature setting.

Insulate The Pipes-

Photo of a pipe insulator from a popular brand

The pipes used to construct and connect a water heater are usually made from stainless steel as they are more durable than hydro-carbon substitutes. Metals have always been good conductors of heat. Most of the pipes used in the electric water heater are metal.

From the core steel wire to the discharge pipe, almost every component is made using metals. Metals can conduct heat pretty efficiently. The heat leads and convects from the lines into the air resulting in a temperature drop of 2-4 degrees Fahrenheit.

First, buy some pipe insulation foam from the nearest plumbing store. Then, coat the metal pipes with the insulator with glue. Make sure that the insulator covers up the metal pipes completely.

Peel the tape and close the insulator completely. And if you have an old insulator already installed, replace the insulator with a new one. Providing insulation to the pipes can increase efficiency and reduce the power bills.

Insulate The Whole Water Heater System-

Insulate the whole water heater system using a aluminum foil insulator

Insulators are great for retaining heat capacity for electric and gas water heaters. We have mentioned the importance of insulting the water heater in the previous topic of our article.

The insulator can increase the water heater's efficiency by reducing the power bills. It can retain at 2-4 degrees of more temperature. In the previous section, we have told you to insulate the water heater pipes. You can take your water heater maintenance to the next level.

You can cover up the whole water heater with an insulator, including the water heater tank. This will prevent any conduction or convection of heat.

Buy an insulating jacket from the nearest plumbing service provider. Cut the insulator jacket according to the shape of the water heater. Then try to wrap it around all the water heater components, including the pressure relief valve, discharge pipe, discharge valve, hose pipe, water tank, and others.

Don't cover the tops of the oil or gas heaters. Cover the electric water heater with oversize circular insulation. Then secure it with tape on its edge to the side of the tank.

Final Words

Everything needs a certain level of maintenance and servicing. Every mechanism needs servicing from time to time to get services for a long time. The same applies to water heater maintenance. Regular maintenance can increase the water heater's lifespan, whether a gas water heater or an electric water heater. This article includes some maintenance tips that every water heater owner should follow to ensure the water heater's good efficiency, longevity, durability, and performance. You should always check the components and service them regularly. It would help if you learned to do it yourself. That way, you can save the plumbing service bills.

If you need assistance with your electric or gas water heater, feel free to choose us over other plumbing service providers. Whether its a problem with your pressure relief valve, anode rod, new valve, water lines, mineral deposits, a temperature dial, tank, hose pipe, leaks, the pressure inside, or anything, QUEEN CHARLOTTE PLUMBING is always ready to provide any kind of plumbing services regarding your water heater maintenance.

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