Hot water is necessary for many tasks around the house. Bathing, laundry, washing dishes, and cleaning the house are made easier with readily available hot water. Take care of your water heater to keep it operating efficiently and reliably. The average lifespan of a water heater is between 8 and 12 years. You can extend the life of this appliance with routine water heater maintenance.
1. Read the Manual
Anytime you purchase an appliance for your home, read the instruction manual from the manufacturer. Often the company will provide tips and advice on how to best maintain the appliance.
If you’re purchasing a new water heater, the store may offer a service plan or extended warranty. It may be worth purchasing the extra protection, especially if you live in an area with hard water.
2. Flush the Water Heater Tank
Following the manufacturer’s recommendations, drain the tank of your water heater every 6 months to a year. Flushing the tank removes sediment that can build up, causing damage. Hard water contains minerals that can be harsh on your plumbing and water heater. If you have hard water, the tank will need to be flushed more frequently. This is a task most homeowners can do, but many people choose to hire a professional for the job.
3. Water Heater Maintenance: Inspect the Appliance
Check your water heater for signs of leaks. Inspect around the bottom of the tank, looking for moisture or water on the floor. It’s also important to check the joints in the pipes and hoses to look for leaks. If you notice any signs of a leak or other problems, call a plumber to inspect the water heater and make repairs.
4. Annual Water Heater Maintenance
To keep your water heater functioning well and efficiently, hire a service professional to inspect the appliance annually. Professional maintenance usually includes inspecting the anode rod and replacing it if necessary. The technician will check the pressure relief valve and inspect and clean the burners. They will flush the tank to remove sediment and some professionals offer a bacteria flush as well.
Keeping up with water heater maintenance will ensure you and your family have hot water when you need it. Regular maintenance helps the appliance run more efficiently and will extend its lifespan.