How to Maintain A Water Heater
Changing out my old water heater isn’t in the budget right now, so I’m not going to do it. What can be done to improve the efficiency of the system? — David Tichy of Fairfield, Connecticut, responds. Lance Marques of Swezey Fuel Co., an HVAC contractor, responds: You may improve the operational efficiency and lifetime of a water heater by following many simple and affordable procedures. Some tasks, such as installing insulation and adjusting the thermostat, only need to be completed once. The flushing of the tank and inspection of the anode rod should be done on a yearly basis, among other things.
Insulation can reduce heat loss by up to 45 percent, and it can reduce water heating costs by as much as 9 percent when properly installed.
And ensuring that a functional anode rod is suspended within the tank will aid in preventing the tank’s interior from rusting.
Simply following these hot water heater maintenance guidelines will help you save money on your hot water bill.
Hot water quickly corrodes the inside of the tank if the rod is not there, reducing the tank’s lifespan.
Steps on How to Maintain a Hot Water Heater
Changing out my old water heater isn’t in the budget right now, so I’m looking at other options. What may be done to improve the efficiency of the machine? — Respondents include David Tichy of Fairfield, Connecticut, and Lance Marques of Swezey Fuel Company, an HVAC contractor. The efficiency and lifetime of a water heater may be improved in a variety of methods that are simple and affordable. There are some tasks that must be completed just once, such as installing insulation and adjusting the thermostat.
Care for your water heater has numerous advantages, as you can see.
It is more efficient and longer-lasting to flush sediment from the tank.
It is significantly less expensive to replace a worn-out rod than it is to purchase an entirely new heater.
Pictured: Anode rods made of aluminum or magnesium were once as long as this rusted wire, which is all that’s left of them now. Heat from the water corrodes the inside of the tank quickly, reducing its lifespan if the rod is not present.
- Immediately turn off the electricity and turn off the cold-water supply valve. Place a bucket beneath the pipe that is linked to the temperature-pressure-release (TPR) valve, which is located on the top or side of the storage tank. (This valve opens if the pressure in the tank rises to an unsafe level.)
- Lift the tab on the valve to allow some water to flow out, then release it. If the water continues to flow, drain the tank partially, remove the old valve using a pipe wrench, and replace it with a new valve.
2. Check the Anode Rod
Ryan Benyi is a young man from New York City.
- Connect a hose to the tank’s drain cock and let a few litres of water to flow from the tank
- Now fit a 1 1/16-inch socket onto the rod’s hex head on top of the heater (or under its top plate) and unscrew the rod. When you find one that is less than 12 inches thick or coated with calcium, replace it with a new one and wrap the threads with Teflon tape before reinstalling and tightening it tightly. If there is limited space above the tank, this segmented rod should be used.
3. Drain the Tank and Wash Out Sediment
- Ryan Benyi
4. Adjust the Temperature
- Locate the temperature dial on the side of the tank and unscrew the cover that protects the dial. Using a flathead screwdriver, rotate the dial until it is at 120 degrees. On average, every 10 degrees Fahrenheit that the temperature is lowered results in a 5 percent reduction in energy costs. Turn the water heater off or the thermostat down to its lowest setting if you expect to be away from home for more than three days
5. Insulate the Pipes
Ryan Benyi is a young man from New York City.
- Purchase some 3/8-inch-thick foam pipe insulation that is self-sticking and has a diameter that matches the pipes. Slide the foam over the hot-and cold-water pipes as far as you can reach. The use of insulation around the cold-water pipe helps to avoid condensation in the summer. Remove the tape from the insulation and squeeze it closed. The pipe should be covered with 1-inch-thick unfaced fiberglass pipe wrap if it is less than 6 inches away from the flue.
6. Insulate the Heater
Ryan Benyi is a young man from New York City.
- Cut the insulating blanket (shown here: R-4.5 foil-covered bubble wrap) to fit around the pipes, the TPR valve, and the temperature control that protrudes from the tank’s bottom. Wrap the tank’s side with foil tape, and tape the cuts closed with tape. Covering the tops of oil or gas heaters is not recommended. Cap an electric heater with an oversize circle of insulation, and secure the edge of the circle to the side of the tank with tape.
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Maintain a Water Heater
Even though hot water is a contemporary need, updating your water heater may be a costly endeavor. Proper maintenance may ensure that your heater will survive, saving the inconvenience and expense of a premature replacement.
With a little effort, you can maintain your gas and electric water heaters functioning properly. Some repairs are straightforward, such as how to drain a gas or electric water heater and pressure relief valve, as well as how to maintain a tank or pilot light. You should, however, always consult a professional if you aren’t comfortable working around gas or electricity.
Check the Pressure Valve
Both gas and electric water heaters have a safety device called a temperature and pressure relief valve, or T P valve for short. In the event that the tank becomes overpressurized, the relief valve opens and allows the pressure to be released. It is possible for the tank to overpressurize and explode if the valve does not function properly. When performing maintenance on your water heater, always wear gloves, goggles, and other protective clothing to keep yourself and others safe.
Flush the Tank
In addition to decreasing the energy efficiency of your water heater, sediment accumulation in the tank might choke your water pipes. Avoid these problems and increase the life of your device by cleaning the tank each time you check the pressure relief valve.
Gas Water Heaters: Lighting the Pilot
Before you connect the electricity to your electric water heater, make sure you follow these instructions.
Leaks and Drips
Follow these guidelines on how to address leaks and drips.
How to Extend Your Water Heater’s Lifespan
A few minutes of basic maintenance once a year can help you extend the life of your water heater tank while also ensuring that your water heater remains efficient and safe.
Water heaters are often able to operate flawlessly for a decade or more with little maintenance, making them an easy target for neglect. However, investing a few minutes once a year in water heater maintenance will pay off in the long run by extending the tank’s life span as well as maintaining the efficiency and safety of your water heater. If there are difficulties occuring, here are somewater heater repairtips to assist keep it operating.
Project step-by-step (3)
The pressure-relief valve, which is placed on the top or side of the water heater, should be checked. This valve automatically opens if the pressure inside the tank rises to an excessive level. ) (Excessive pressure may really cause the tank to explode.) Placing a bucket beneath the discharge pipe on your water heater tank and gently lifting the lever on the pressure-relief valve will allow you to test it.
Replace the Valve (if Necessary)
If the valve does not release water when the lever is lifted, the valve should be replaced. The procedure for replacing the valve is straightforward: shut off the water, dump the tank, remove the discharge pipe, and then unscrew the old valve.
Sealant tape should be applied to the threads of the new valve before it is screwed in. Depending on how old your valve is and whether or not it has ever been tested, it may leak after you have tested it. If this is the case, the valve should be replaced.
Check Your Work
Close the shutoff valve on the cold water supply line that feeds the water heater, and then turn off the water heater. Afterwards, turn on the hot water at any faucet to relieve the pressure that has built up inside the water heater’s tank. Keep the water running until you’re finished with your work. If you have an electric heater, make sure the power is turned off at the main switch. How to Adjust Water Heater Temperature Step 2: If you have a gas heater, switch the gas control dial to “off.”
Drain Sediments From the Water Heater Tank
To turn off the cold water supply pipe that feeds the water heater, turn off the shutoff valve. Afterwards, turn on the hot water at any faucet to relieve the pressure that has built up inside the heater’s storage tank. Ensure that you keep the water flowing while working. You should turn off the electricity to your heater at the breaker panel. The gas control dial of a gas heater should be turned off. Step 2: Changing the Temperature of a Water Heater
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Gurgling or Groaning Noises
If you hear gurgling or groaning noises coming from the heater, don’t worry about it. The sound you’re hearing is simply air entering the system as the water drains out. If, after you’ve finished, the drain valve won’t close tightly, drain the tank completely, unscrew the old valve, and screw in a new one. To re-start the water heater, open the shutdown valve and turn on any faucet that has hot water to flush out any trapped air from the system. Then switch on the power or re-ignite the pilot to complete the process.
If the dial does not have numbers, use a cooking thermometer to determine the temperature of the water.
Here’s a video on testing your water heater element:
The heater is not making any weird noises, so don’t be concerned about it. Rather than water draining out, that noise is simply air entering the system. If, once you’ve finished, the drain valve won’t close completely, drain the tank entirely, detach the old valve, and screw in a new valve. To re-start the water heater, open the shutoff valve and turn on any faucet that has hot water to flush out any trapped air. Then switch on the electricity or re-ignite the pilot to complete the procedure.
Use a cooking thermometer to determine the temperature of the water if the dial is not marked with numbers.
DIY Water Heater Servicing in Three Easy Steps
In general, a water heater has an expected lifespan of 8 to 12 years, but only if it is properly maintained. It is possible to extend the life of your water heater with a simple three-step annual maintenance regimen. No need to hire a professional to complete routine maintenance tasks if you’re doing them yourself.
A screwdriver and a bucket are generally all that is required for a homeowner to conduct the water heater service themselves. Turn off the electricity (for electric water heaters) or the gas supply (for gas water heaters) before you begin to ensure your safety:
- When using electricity, turn off the water heater’s circuit breaker at your home’s service panel (breaker box). For gas water heaters, turn the pilot knob (which is situated on the water heater’s gas valve/thermostat) to the OFF position.
Do a Mini-Flush
Maintaining the tank’s energy efficiency is accomplished by removing sediment from the bottom of the tank, which helps to keep rust and corrosion from developing. Although a complete flush of the water heater tank is recommended, doing so necessitates the shutdown of the water heater. It is possible to perform a mini-flush while the water heater is running, and it is effective and takes only a fraction of the time:
- Drain the water heater tank by placing a bucket beneath the drain valve, which may be found near the bottom of the tank. The valve should be turned counterclockwise in order to release 1 to 2 gallons of water into a bucket. Some drain valves feature a handle, while others have a short stem with a groove for a flathead screwdriver, which makes it easier to open and close them. Warning: The water will be extremely hot, so exercise caution to avoid burning yourself. Close the valve by twisting it in the clockwise direction.
If the valve won’t open, call a plumber to come out and do maintenance on the valve. Home-Cost.com was founded in 2009.
Test the T P Valve
T P relief valve is an important safety component of your water heater. It regulates the temperature and pressure of the water heater. It automatically opens when it detects a dangerous buildup of pressure or an abnormally high temperature inside the water heater tank, allowing the pressure to be released. Water heaters are susceptible to explosions if they do not have an operationalT P valve. The T P valve should be tested once a year, according to the water heater manufacturer. Depending on the model, the T P valve may be situated at the top of the heater tank or in the side wall, and it has a discharge tube that extends down toward the bottom of the heater tank, as shown.
- Place a bucket beneath the end of the discharge tube that is linked to the T P valve to catch the water. Manually opening the valve requires lifting up on the lever of the valve. The hot water will be released via the discharge tube and into the bucket as a result of this action. The water is extremely hot, so use caution when it comes into contact with your skin. Allow the water to run for a few seconds before releasing the lever and allowing it to click back into place, thus turning off the water supply.
Stack a bucket underneath the discharge tube that is attached to the T P valve. Manually opening the valve requires you to lift up on the lever. The hot water will be released through the discharge tube and into the bucket as a result of this operation. Water is extremely hot, so avoid getting it on your skin if at all possible! Allow the water to run for a few seconds before releasing the lever and allowing it to snap back into place, thus turning off the water supply;
Dial Down the Temperature
Water heaters are commonly installed at a temperature of 130 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on the manufacturer. The Department of Energy recommends a temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit for most families, claiming that doing so can save energy expenditures for water heating by more than 5 percent in most situations. Lower temperatures also lower the chance of scorching and limit the buildup of mineral deposits in your water heater tank, which are both undesirable outcomes. In order to reduce the temperature of water coming from a gas water heater, turn down the temperature dial on the heater’s gas valve to 120 degrees F.
- Close the circuit breaker that supplies electricity to your water heater in your home’s breaker box. Remove the access panel from the thermostat and adjust the temperature to the desired temperature. It is possible that a flathead screwdriver will be required. To restore electricity, replace the thermostat cover and switch on the circuit breakers again.
A common feature of electric water heaters is the presence of both an upper and a lower thermostat. If your home has two thermostats, set the lower thermostat to the same temperature as the top thermostat. Home-Cost.com was founded in 2009.
How to Care for Your Water Heater
It takes a lot of effort from your water heater to provide you with warm showers, clean clothing, and gleaming pots and pans.
Make sure to offer your water heater some love by following a normal maintenance program that will keep it working for its estimated 15-year lifespan, and potentially even longer than that. Related:Do you believe you may require a new water heater? What to Look for
Here’s What You Need To Do:
Set the thermostat to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. It is possible to save up to 5 percent on energy bills for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit that the temperature is lowered, and you will also lessen the danger of scorching. Unless the appliance’s handbook specifies otherwise, always keep a 2-foot space around the appliance. A quarter of the tank should be drained at least once every few months to eliminate silt and other debris. Turn off the cold water supply and connect a garden hose to the drain valve, allowing the water to drain into a bucket until it is clean of debris.
Additionally, the unit operates more silently as a result of this.
Maintain a close eye on the valve once it has been tested for leaks of any size.
If any of the following conditions are met, the rod should be replaced:
- The core steel wire is exposed for more than 6 inches on each side. The rod is less than half an inch in thickness. Calcium has been applied to the rod. A 13-inch zinc-aluminum anode rod may be purchased for around $16.
Be sure that older units are properly insulated with a fiberglass jacket to increase efficiency, and that no contact occurs with the flue (newer units should already be insulated; check your owner’s handbook to make sure). In addition, insulate both the hot and cold water lines. Set gas heater thermostats to “vacation” mode when you leave town so that the pilot light is maintained but no water is heated while you are away from the house. Homeowners are looking for ways to save money on their appliance energy costs.
Hot Water Heater Maintenance: What You Can (and Can’t) Do on Your Own
While your water heater is not a need in the traditional sense, it is one of those contemporary conveniences that you can’t fathom living without. It’s impossible not to desire consistent hot water throughout the house. However, if you do not do regular maintenance, you may find yourself in the unexpected position of having to take a cold shower. As a result of the fact that your hot water heater is concealed, it is simple to forget about it. However, it requires regular maintenance in the same way that any other item in your home does.
During this article, we’ll go over what you can accomplish on your own and what duties should be left to a professional plumber to complete.
Are you prepared to make certain that you constantly have hot water available?
How Often Does Your Hot Water Heater Need Maintenance?
Annual checks and flushes are essential for maintaining a safe and energy-efficient water heater. However, while this article covers DIY solutions that you may complete on your own today, it is better to get a professional plumber to perform your formal annual inspection.
Water heaters are devices that combine electricity, water, and, in certain cases, gas. If you don’t have the proper tools and knowledge, these may be dangerous equipment.
Your Annual Hot Water Heater Maintenance Checklist
Consider this to be a checklist for your annual inspection. When you have a professional plumber go over your hot water heater, you should ask them to double-check all of the items on this list. Some of these can be completed by the individual. However, we’ll mention it again for safety’s sake: if you don’t feel completely comfortable with any of these measures, we recommend that you consult with a qualified specialist.
✓ Test the Pressure Relief Valve
A pressure relief valve should be installed on all hot water heaters that include a storage tank. This valve is an extremely important safety feature. Whenever harmful pressure levels are reached, this valve permits water to flow away safely. To check the pressure relief valve, just lift the tab on the valve and let go of the tab until the valve stops working. When the tab is up, the water should flow, but when the tab is down, the water should stop. If you have any problems, you will most likely require a new relief valve.
✓ Flush the Water Heater to Remove Sediment
Regardless of whether you have hard or soft water, your hot water heater can accumulate a large quantity of sediment over the course of a year. Debris in your water tank can increase the likelihood of damage, lower the quantity of water accessible in your tank, and block your water lines. With another way of saying it, silt accumulation is harmful. You’ll need to cleanse your tank at least once a year if you have hard water, or every six months if you don’t. The good news is that everything is still on track.
- The bad news is that it is not good.
- You’ll want to ensure sure the power is shut off and that you have a safe location to drain the water that has been clogged with debris.
- We recommend that you hire a professional to do a comprehensive drain and inspection service.
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✓ Inspect the Anode Rod
The anode rod is responsible for protecting the inner lining of the tank of your hot water heater. It is constructed of a steel core wire with a zinc, aluminum, or other comparable material coating applied over the top. Anode rod testing is a preventative maintenance operation that helps to guarantee that you do not wind up with a leaking hot water tank in the long run. Draining some water, loosening the hex head, and inspecting the thickness and coating of the rod are all steps in the inspection procedure.
This is something you’ll most likely want to entrust to a professional plumber.
✓ Insulate the Heater and Pipes
Are you looking for a maintenance assignment that can help you save money on your electricity bills? Your water heater is built to store a significant volume of hot water at a steady temperature for an extended period of time. Although this is a simple way to take a hot shower at any time of day, it is not necessarily the most energy-efficient method. The storage tank has been insulated in order to limit the quantity of heat that is wasted throughout the system. However, there are a few things you can do to boost the insulation.
Installation will take some time and effort due to the fact that it will need to be trimmed around pipes, temperature controls, pressure relief valves, and other important components.
Pipe insulation is available in a variety of sizes to accommodate the standard diameters of water lines.
In addition, make sure to cover both the hot and cold water pipes.
Condensation is prevented from accumulating on the cold pipe by insulating it throughout the summer. Insulate your water tank to minimize standby heat losses by 25 percent to 45 percent, and you’ll save roughly 7 percent to 6% on your water heating bills. –Energy.gov
Your Tankless Hot Water Heater Maintenance Checklist
Is it possible to reduce your electricity expenses by performing some routine maintenance? If you have a big volume of hot water that has to be kept at a regular temperature, your water heater is intended to accommodate this need. Although this is a simple way to take a hot shower at any time of day, it is not necessarily the most energy-efficient method. The storage tank has been insulated in order to limit the quantity of heat that is wasted throughout the system. It is possible to improve the insulation, though, in a number of different ways.
- Installation will take some time and effort due to the fact that it will need to be trimmed around the pipes, temperature controls, pressure relief valves, and other components of the installation.
- Typical diameters of water lines are shown by the sizes of pipe insulation.
- Ensure that the hot and cold water pipes are properly covered as well.
- Condensation is prevented from accumulating on the cold pipe when it is properly insulated.
✓ Descale the Tankless System
Tankless hot water heaters, as the name indicates, do not have storage tanks for hot water. Sediment, on the other hand, continues to accumulate. Typically, it will gather around the pipes, valves, and inlets of your tankless water heating and cooling system. If you want to completely clear out the mineral buildup in your tankless hot water heating system, you’ll need a flush kit. This process entails shutting down the electricity or gas to your home or business. In addition, you’ll need to turn off the water valves.
Another work that may be completed safely and promptly by a local plumber is replacing a toilet.
✓ Check the Temperature Setting
Water heaters that do not have tanks, as the name indicates, are known as tankless heaters. Sludge is still accumulating, though. In your tankless system, it tends to concentrate in the areas where the pipes, valves, and inlets are located. If you want to completely clear out the mineral buildup in your tankless hot water heating system, you’ll need a flush package. This operation entails shutting down the electricity or gas supply to your home or apartment. The water valves will need to be shut down at the same time as well.
Using a local plumber to complete this operation in a safe and timely manner is another option. Cleaning your system incorrectly can result in contaminated drinking water, electric shock, or a significant accumulation of minerals in your system.
When It’s Time to Call a Professional Plumber
You should almost surely contact a professional plumber if you can’t recall the last time your water heater was serviced. A competent plumber can make certain that all necessary maintenance is completed appropriately. In addition, their knowledge will assist them in identifying any other potential difficulties that you may have overlooked. While the plumber is on the job, we recommend that you inquire about the maintenance measures they recommend you conduct on your own and how often they recommend you do so.
How to Maintain & Drain A Water Heater: 8 Step Guide
Date of publication: December 2019 You may take your water heater for granted until it stops working and you are forced to take a frigid shower in the middle of winter. Even worse, it might cease operating altogether, resulting in water splattered all over the floor. Fortunately, a hot water heater does not require much maintenance, although emptying it on a regular basis may assist to ensure that it continues to operate smoothly. Consider the following recommendations for maintaining your water heater.
According to The Family Handyman, silt builds up in the bottom of a water heater over time, which can cause obstructions in the system.
If you do not properly maintain your water heater, it may not operate at peak efficiency or may even fail to operate at all in some cases.
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A high level of protection for your house makes all the difference when it comes to keeping your family safe. Allstate home insurance can assist you in protecting what is important to you. Request a quote Locate a representative. When it comes to draining a water heater, the DIY Network recommends the following measures. The owner’s handbook for your water heater will provide you with particular information on your water heater. For those who are uncomfortable completing this sort of maintenance on their water heater, contact a plumber to arrange for a professional draining to be performed.
- A water line and a shutdown valve leading into the water heater may be found at the very top of the water heater’s tank.
- Step 2: Disconnect the water heater’s power supply line.
- Alternatively, if you have an electric water heater, turn off the electricity at your home’s electrical panel.
- If you have a gas water heater, according to the DIY Network, you may change the water heater’s thermostat to “pilot” to complete this procedure.
- Check your water heater’s owner’s handbook and follow the directions that are provided for your particular water heater.
- Because your water heater is running at a high temperature, it is incredibly hot.
- (According to BobVila.com, you should at the very least wait a few hours.) In addition, taking a hot shower can assist to accelerate the cooling process.) Step 4: Connect a hose to the drain valve.
Connect the other end of the hose to the drain valve located at the bottom of your water heater.
The hot water tap, such as a sink faucet, that is closest to the water heater should be opened.
According to the DIY Network, it is preferable to use a tap that is located on the floor above the water heater.
As soon as you turn on this valve, the water will begin to drain out of the storage tank.
Step 7: Reconnect the water supply to the tank and flush it with fresh, clean water to finish the job.
It is necessary to repeat this process until the water flows clean.
Step 8: Refill the tank with water.
Return the water supply to its original setting to begin replenishing the tank. Once the tank is full, turn on the electricity or gas supply to the water heater to re-energize it. While draining the tank, remember to turn off the faucet that you had previously turned on.
How Often Should You Drain Your Water Heater?
A good insurance policy may make all the difference when it comes to insuring your house. Allstate house insurance can assist you in protecting what is important to you in your home. Consult for a price Locate a real estate professional. When it comes to draining a water heater, the DIY Network recommends the following steps: The owner’s manual for your water heater will provide you with detailed information on your system. For those who are uneasy completing this sort of maintenance on their water heater, call a plumber and arrange for a professional draining to be performed.
- A water line and a shutdown valve leading into the water heater may be found at the top of the water heater’s cabinet.
- In step two, turn off the water heater’s electricity supply.
- You should turn off the electricity to your home’s water heater if you have one that is powered by electricity.
- If you have a gas water heater, according to the DIY Network, you may change the water heater’s thermostat to “pilot” to complete this task.
- Please refer to your water heater’s owner’s handbook for precise installation and operation instructions.
- Because your water heater is operating at a high temperature, it is quite dangerous.
- You should wait at the very least a few hours, according to Bob Vila.) In addition, taking a hot shower might aid to expedite the cooling process.
As soon as your water heater has cooled down, connect one end of the hose (you may use a garden hose) to a floor drain or, if it is long enough, to the exterior of your home.
Step 5: Run a hot water faucet to warm the water.
Additionally, the tank drains more quickly as a result of this kind of pressure relief.
The drain valve should be opened in step six.
Remember to be patient, as it may take some time for the tank to drain completely if it was completely full or if there is a lot of silt in the tank.
Turn on the cold water again while leaving the drain valve open to assist in flushing out any residual silt from the bottom of the tank.
Once you’ve done that, shut off the water supply valve.
Fill the tank with fresh fuel.
Reconnect the water supply to begin filling the tank. Turn the water supply back on. The water heater’s electricity or gas supply should be turned back on after the tank is full. During the draining process, make sure to turn off the faucet that you had opened previously.
How to Maintain a Gas Water Heater
It is critical to do regular water heater repair in order to keep your natural gas expense under control. Aside from the fact that natural gas water heaters consume less energy and are more cost-effective than electric water heaters, they are not without their own set of problems. If you don’t keep your water heater in excellent working order, you may still have high gas expenses to worry about. The Energy.gov website estimates that your water heater accounts for around 17 percent of your overall household energy use.
How Does a Gas Water Heater Work?
The agas burner is used in the operation of a gas-powered water heater. When cold water is introduced into the tank by an adip tube, this burner begins to heat the water. As the natural gas burns, it produces gases that rise through the tank and out of the tank through a chimney in the middle. As the air rises through the chimney in order to escape, the metal of the chimney and the surrounding water become heated. Following then, warm water rises and circulates via the heat-out pipe throughout the whole house’s plumbing system.
The thermostat on the water heater regulates the quantity of gas that is used to heat the water to a desired temperature.
The higher the temperature setting, the greater the amount of gas required to attain and maintain the desired temperature.
How do I Perform Water Heater Maintenance?
The majority of gas water heaters have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years before they need to be replaced. Here are some easy water heater maintenance things that will help you get the most out of your gas water heater for the least amount of money. In addition to gas water heaters, these recommendations also apply to electric water heaters.
Check the thermostat
For your water heater, Energy.gov recommended that the water temperature not exceed 120 degrees Fahrenheit. If you set it higher than this, the amount of gas that is consumed will rise, resulting in a greater gas bill for you. Examine the temperature of the water that is coming out of your faucets. The temperature should be at 120 degrees (or match the setting on your water heater thermostat). If this is not the case, there might be a number of contributing variables. For starters, it’s possible that your water heater’s thermostat isn’t working properly.
Third, it’s possible that silt has accumulated in your water heater, which is causing it to perform less efficiently.
Test the pressure relief valve annually
Following that, check the temperature and pressure relief valve (T P valve) on a yearly basis. This valve is responsible for monitoring and controlling the pressure within the tank of your water heater. If there is a problem with the pressure, water will seep from this valve to prevent a buildup of pressure. (This is a positive development!) In most cases, the T P valve is located on the top or side of the heater, and it is linked to a drainage pipe. You’ll need to remove the pipe from the wall with a wrench and place a bucket or bowl below it to catch the water.
As a result, the water flow from the valve will be slow and sluggish. And then there will be a discharge of air and steam. If this does not occur, it indicates that the pressure release valve must be replaced as soon as possible. This is something that should be left to a professional plumber.
Flush out sediment from the tank annually
Sediment is the most common cause of water heater malfunctions and even complete failures to function. Water minerals are used to construct the structure, with substances gathering at the bottom of the tank to serve as a storage area. There is a possibility that it takes the form of sand or microscopic particles, so forming an unneeded barrier. Since the heater is working harder to heat numerous gadgets throughout the house, your utility cost will rise as well as your bill. A year is sufficient time for silt to accumulate at the bottom of the tank.
In addition, it is a very significant component of water heater upkeep.
Unfortunately, if the heater is left unattended for an extended period of time, it may fail.
This is no longer repairable and will necessitate the complete replacement of the heater.
Check the anode rod every 3 years
The anode rod should be checked as the following item on the water heater maintenance checklist. For those who are unfamiliar with this rod, it is the mini-superhero who prevents the water heater from corroding away. Due to the fact that water corrodes metal, logic implies that the tank should be corroded. However, this is not the case due to the little anode rod that has been put into the top of the tank. The “sacrificial rod” is made of magnesium or aluminum, which corrodes swiftly in water, and it rusts away, allowing the tank to stay intact.
If you don’t, you’ll notice rusty water and/or a heater that doesn’t work.
This may be accomplished by releasing the hex head screw and removing the anode rod.
You may either replace this rod on your own or hire a plumber to do it for you.
How Can I Tell if My Water Heater Has Sediment?
The majority of the United States has hard water. In fact, hard water may be found in 85 percent of the water supply in the United States. Because of the presence of calcium and magnesium in the water, calcium carbonite or lime scale can build up in your water heater. When the sediment levels reach high levels, the sediment might resemble pebbles in your water heater. As a result, if you haven’t cleansed your water heater in a while, it is probable that you have sediment in it. If you pay attention to the sound of your water heater, you can detect if there are mineral deposits or silt present.
Knocking or banging noises will be heard emanating from the tank, indicating that silt has solidified at the bottom of the tank.
Additionally, you’re using more natural gas to heat your water as a result of this.
The sound should be consistent across the whole tank of water heater. If the sound is different at the bottom vs the top, what is the cause? The silt in the tank, on the other hand, is most likely to blame. Other indications of silt buildup in your water heater are as follows:
- There is no hot water available
- The temperature of the water changes
- Your hot water appears to be rusted
- It takes a long time for water to heat up
It is possible for water heater sediment to resemble fine grains of sand or gravel. (Photo courtesy of Mr. Rooter)
How do I Flush a Water Heater to Remove Sediment?
Although flushing your water heater to remove sediment is a straightforward procedure, it is one of the most overlooked aspects of water heater maintenance. It is recommended that you include it on your Fall home maintenance checklist. Time commitment: 3 hours. Instructions on how to remove sediment from a hot water heater
- Turn off the water heater if necessary. Turn the thermostat knob all the way to the left. It’s possible that your water heater has a “pilot” option as well. Disconnect the gas supply to the water heater. Additionally, switch off the gas entirely as an extra safety precaution. Located on the gas line that enters the water heater, you’ll locate the valve. Turn off the cold water supply tap on your home’s plumbing system. The cold water valve is normally located on the top of your water heater and appears similar to a standard outdoor faucet. Open the pressure release valve if necessary (optional) When draining, opening the pressure relief valve can make the water flow more freely and smoothly. Take cautious, because this water will be quite hot
- Allow the water in your tank to cool completely before continuing. This might take anywhere from 2 to 3 hours, depending on the size of your water tank. Entrance inside your home and activation of the hot water to flush the pipes Turn on the hot water at two different locations, such as a sink and a bathtub. Using this method, you will avoid the formation of a vacuum in the water lines while you are draining the water tank. Connect a garden hose to the drain valve on the water tank to remove any excess water. The drain valve may be found on the tank’s side, at the bottom. Connect the line to the tank using a hose clamp. Then check to be that the other end of the hose is connected to the outside. If your water tank is located in the basement, you may want a large bucket as well as a portable pump to get the water outside of the house. Turn on the drain valve spigot and let the water tank to empty completely. Drain the water from your tank until the water flows crystal clear. In certain cases, if you have been routinely draining the sediment from your tank, you may only need to remove 1/4 to 1/2 of your tank. Fill the tank with cold water and flush it out. Depending on how much silt you have, you may need to drain the tank fully and clean it with cold water to thoroughly remove all of the debris. Turn on the cold water spigot to allow cold water to enter the tank in order to flush it. After a few minutes, only clear water should be coming out of the drain hose
- After the sediment has been drained, everything should be returned to its original configuration. Remove the hose from the drain valve after it has been turned off. If you accidentally opened the pressure release valve, close it immediately. Turn off all of the water taps in the home that were currently flowing. Once this is completed, switch on the cold water spigot to allow the tank to be refilled with water. Reset the water heater’s thermostat to 120 degrees Fahrenheit and relight the pilot light on the water heater. After 30 minutes, check to see if the water is hot.
If flushing your water heater appears to be beyond your capabilities (or just something you would prefer not to do), you may hire a local plumber to take care of the job for you. Maintaining your gas water heater can assist to ensure that your water heater continues to operate as intended. Aside from that, regular maintenance might help you avoid a high gas cost. Anyone who owns a natural gas water heater should be familiar with the importance of water heater maintenance. After all, if this item is properly maintained, the amount of energy it saves in your house is well worth the investment.
Here are some suggestions for lowering your winter gas cost.
Gas Water Heater FAQs
More commonly asked questions concerning gas water heaters may be found in the next section. What is the source of the knocking sound coming from my water heater? It’s possible that you have sediment in your water heater’s tank if it’s creating a banging sound. Sediment arises naturally as a result of the presence of chemicals and minerals in the water (also known as “hard water”). When heated, these chemicals and minerals decompose, resulting in the formation of silt. If your water heater is creating a banging sound, you should flush the unit or call a plumber for assistance.
- Water heaters should be set at 120 degrees Fahrenheit, according to Energy.gov, since it is the most energy efficient setting.
- If you discover that you need to turn your water heater up to a higher setting in order to obtain hot water, you may want to check for sediment in the tank.
- What is causing my gas water heater to not heat?
- Check to check that the pilot light on your water heater is still lit before using it.
- You can hire a plumber to relight the cigarette lighter for you.
- It is not typical for a pilot light to extinguish on its own.
- What should I do if I’m going on vacation and forget to switch off my gas water heater?
- It is preferable to reduce the temperature of the water heater to a lower level.
Some water heaters even have a “vacation” option that may be selected. You’ll avoid having to worry about your gas water heater starting up and sustaining a high temperature while you’re gone. Save this article about water heater maintenance for later by pinning it to your Pinterest board.
How Do I Flush My Water Heater and How Often Should I Drain It?
Thank you for visiting the Direct Energy series, “Take Charge of Your Home!” While hiring a professional to do household maintenance may provide convenience and peace of mind, many of these tasks may be completed by the homeowner without the need for specific tools or knowledge. And, in the process, you’ll save money, learn more about how your house operates, and experience a sense of satisfaction from completing a well-executed DIY project! You may take your water heater for granted, but it is one of those items that is simple to overlook.
- It’s possible that you only think about it when something goes wrong.
- This is especially true for tankless water heaters.
- The most effective strategy to safeguard your investment is to have your water heater serviced by a certified plumber on a yearly basis.
- In contrast, the last step – cleansing the tank — is something you may want to do on a regular basis, perhaps once every few months, depending on the mineral level of your local water supply.
Should I Drain My Water Heater Periodically?
Flushing out the lime and other particles in the water heater tank on a regular basis helps to increase the efficiency and longevity of the heater. Sediment can build up and calcify in water heaters that have been ignored, making it difficult to clean out. Eventually, this can get so severe that the entire unit may have to be replaced. However, by flushing your tank on a regular basis, you can avoid silt from causing difficulties. – Mineral content is present in all water to varying degrees. Because limestone is abundant under the surface of the groundwater, if you live in a location with a lot of limestone beneath the groundwater will pick up calcium and magnesium deposits, resulting in “hard” water.
When using natural gas heaters, it is possible to have uneven heating on the tank, which might lead to leaks over time.
In addition, silt accumulation might jam the drain valve in any case.
When Do I Want to Flush My Hot Water Heater?
For the most part, homeowners should clean their water heaters every six months or so; however, if you have particularly hard water, you may want to flush it more frequently.
Depending on the mineral level of your local water supply, it may be essential to flush your hot water heater as frequently as every few months or even more frequently.
Before You Begin a Water Heater Flush
You must first figure out how to switch off your gas water heater before you can begin draining the tank. It’s possible that a vacation location will do the trick. It’s also a good idea to find out whether the pilot light has to be turned on manually. In this case, the original owner’s handbook is the greatest source of information, because pilot lighting processes differ from one model to another. If you don’t have a handbook, search on the water heater’s label for the manufacturer’s name and model number, and then try to get the manual online using those details.
How to Flush Your Water Heater
Following the completion of your calculations, it’s time to do the flushing procedure.
- Step 1: Shut off the cold water supply to your water heater and remove the tank from the tank. Depending on the age of your home, you may need to cut off the water where the main water supply line enters your property. A shut-off valve for the water supply should be installed between your main supply line and the water softener
- Otherwise, the water will not be softened properly. Step 2: Turn off or lower the temperature of the water heater thermostat. Some water heaters are equipped with a “vacation” setting. In order to avoid the heater turning on once all of the water has been drained out, especially for natural gas heaters, it is best to avoid doing so since heating it without water might cause damage to the tank. Additionally, before continuing, you should turn off the gas supply valve. Step 3: Connect a garden hose to the drain valve on the tank, which is located towards the bottom of the heater. The other end of the hose should be connected to a drain or to a safe location outside the house. In the event that you want to let the water drain outdoors, make certain that it is far enough away from your foundation so that it does not run into your home’s crawl area. Also, keep it away from bushes or other landscaping. In order to avoid dealing with hot water altogether, switch off the water heater at the end of each day to allow it to cool overnight before draining it, or just run your hot water tap for several minutes before getting started
- Step 4: Open all of the hot water faucets. This will allow the water to drain from the tank more quickly. Put another way, it has the same effect as placing your finger tip on the end of a soda straw and then raising out of a drink. The vacuum maintains the liquid locked within until you remove your finger from the vacuum. Step 5: Open the drain valve on the water heater and let the tank to empty. Remember to keep an eye on the water as it pours out of the hose to keep an eye on how much sediment is coming through. Check that the water is flowing in the direction you want it to, and keep any young children or curious dogs from getting too close. If you open the drain valve and no water comes out, it’s possible that sediment has clogged the valve. In this case, you’ll need to open the temperature pressure release valve to release pressure from the tank and drain any water that has accumulated in the hot water pipes downstream from the water heater. Next, use a wet/dry vacuum to remove part of the obstruction from the drain valve — at the very least enough to begin the water flowing again. Wearing gloves and being careful not to get sprayed with hot water are recommended. If the blockage is severe enough that it will not budge, remove the temperature pressure release valve and suck out the water with the wet/dry vac before replacing the drain valve
- If the blockage is not severe enough to budge, replace the drain valve. Step 6:After the tank has been drained, switch on the cold water supply to assist rinse away any sediment that may have accumulated at the bottom of the tank during the draining process. After a few minutes, check the end of the line to make sure it’s clear and then switch off the water supply to the house. As a test, gather a glass of water from the drain hose after about one minute of flushing, and then turn off the water supply to the toilet and sink. Wait a few minutes to see if sediment begins to settle at the bottom of the glass, and if it does, or if the water has become tinted, repeat the process once more. 7. Disconnect the hose from the drain valve and use a wet/dry vacuum to remove any sediment that has accumulated around the opening. 8. As a result, it will not clog the valve when you turn it off. A little won’t hurt, but you want to make sure there’s enough space around the valve to prevent it from leaking. Reconnect the cold water supply once you’ve finished shutting down the drain valve. Step 8: Keep the hot water faucets open until the water starts to flow out of them. Step 9: This will prevent any trapped air from accumulating. Don’t be surprised if you notice rust or sediment coming out of the drain at the beginning. It will be safe to turn off the faucets once the water has cleared, which will usually take about a minute. Step 9: Adjust the water heater’s thermostat to the temperature you want it to be. You should also restart the pilot light on your gas water heater if it is equipped with one. To do so, reopen your gas supply valve and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to do so. The time it takes to fill the tank should be between 15 and 20 minutes, though the exact time depends on the size of your water heater, its overall efficiency and whether it’s powered by natural gas or electricity.
How Do I Drain My Tankless Water Heater?
However, tankless water heaters are equally subject to harm from mineral silt, as stated above for traditional tank water heaters. To flush tankless water heater technology, an entirely separate procedure must be followed, and a pump is necessary to circulate water throughout the system. Tankless water heater flush kits with thorough instructions can be found at most hardware stores for a reasonable price. With an electricity plan from Direct Energy, you can see how your do-it-yourself home renovation tasks may help you save money on your energy bills.
In some regions, you may even be able to obtain free power every weekend!
Water Heater Service & Repair
The technique described above pertains to typical tank water heaters; however, tankless water heaters are equally subject to harm from mineral silt. For tankless water heater technology, a completely new procedure is followed, and a pump is used to circulate the water throughout the system. In most hardware stores, you can purchase a tankless water heater flush kit that includes full instructions. With an electricity plan from Direct Energy, you can see how your do-it-yourself home renovation tasks may help you save money on your utility bills.
Select states may even provide you with free power on weekends!
- Service for water heaters that are fueled by electricity or gas
- Detailed understanding on all types of water heaters
- Hot water available on demand
- The finest value in the Inland Empire
- Estimates for services are provided at no charge. Service available 24 hours a day, seven days a week
If your water heater is already exhibiting signs of a problem, we can provide a precise diagnosis as well as a timely, effective repair service at a fair price. Please contact us right away for prompt and expert help.
Do You Need Water Heater Service?
If your water heater is already exhibiting signs of a problem, we can provide a precise diagnosis as well as a timely, effective repair service at a fair price. If you want prompt and expert assistance, please contact us immediately!
Expert Water Heater Repairs
A water heater repair or replacement can even enhance the taste and appearance of rusty, discolored drinking water.
You can count on us to provide water heater servicing and repair that is quick, safe, and effective. The following are signs that your water heater may be malfunctioning:
- The hot water has gone out
- There is no hot water, and there are loud rumbling sounds. Wet regions in the vicinity of the water heater (due to leaks)
Water Heater Sales, Installation, and Replacement
- It is no longer possible to get hot water. Lack of hot water
- Loud rumbling noises
- And other problems patches of standing water around the water heater (due to leakage)
We offer a comprehensive selection of water heaters in a variety of styles and sizes, ranging from small under-sink models to large commercial boilers (for more information about commercial water heater sales and service, see our Commercial Water Heater SalesService page). Our broad collection includes both conventional and tankless water heaters, gas-powered or electric, with options to match most budgets. You may select from the most reputable manufacturers in the water heater industry, including the most energy-efficient models from Rheem, A.O.
Energy-Efficient Water Heaters
Investing in a new tankless on-demand water heater can help you save money on your energy expenses. Because it offers hot water instantly and constantly, it is also more handy than previous versions; hot water will pour out of the faucet immediately and will not run out until you turn off the faucet. Our tankless on-demand options, which include under-sink units that are available in a variety of sizes, are also available. We also provide tankless water heaters for the entire house. We provide a one-year labor guarantee on all of our water heaters, in addition to a 10-year equipment warranty on certain models.
Most of the time, the savings you’ll get on your power bills will more than offset the expense of your new energy-efficient unit.
Expert Water Heater Installation
Whatever type of water heater you pick, it is critical that it be installed by a competent professional in order to maximize the unit’s energy efficiency and safety. At Steve’s Service, we make certain that every tank we sell and install is the proper size for your home or company, ensuring that you aren’t wasting energy heating water that you don’t use. During the installation process, we adhere to all safety precautions that have been advised, such as providing seismic strapping, ensuring that the unit is correctly connected and has appropriate ventilation, and even putting emergency shut-off valves if the customer requests it.
Additionally, whether you have space restrictions or other special circumstances, Steve’s Service has the knowledge to create a practical solution.
Tank and Tankless Water Heater Service and Repair
- Electric or Gas-Powered
- Expertise in the installation, maintenance and repair of all water heaters, from small under-sink models to large commercial boilers. Hot water available on demand
- The finest value in the Inland Empire
- Estimates are provided without charge. Service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Water heaters, both conventional and tankless, should be serviced once a year on average. An yearly maintenance visit will help to extend the life of the water heater and ensure that it is operating as effectively as possible during that time. Additionally, routine maintenance can assist you in identifying issues before they get worse and more expensive. When you service your unit, you will save money on utility and repair bills, which will more than pay for the cost of servicing your unit. Steve’s Service provides affordable, convenient water heater maintenance that is thorough and thorough.
This procedure cleans the inside of the unit as well as the heat exchanger of calcium and hard water deposits.
If your water heater is already exhibiting signs of a problem, we can provide a precise diagnosis as well as a timely, effective repair service at a fair price. Here are some symptoms that your water heater may be having problems:
A water heater repair or replacement can even enhance the taste and appearance of rusty, discolored drinking water. Selecting a certified, competent contractor that is knowledgeable with all makes and models of water heaters is essential if you want to get the most value out of your water heater maintenance or repair visit. With over 25 years of expertise dealing with a wide selection of water heaters, Steve’s Service is completely licensed and insured. Contact us now to learn more. You can count on us to provide water heater servicing and repair that is quick, safe, and effective.
We’ll be pleased to answer any queries you may have.
Contact Us to Schedule Your Appointment
Get in touch with Steve’s Work today to schedule a free estimate for any plumbing service you may require. You may reach a real person 24 hours a day, and we’re standing by to assist you. We also offer emergency plumbing services 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To get started, please call us at (909) 985-5254 or complete the online form.