Properly maintaining your water heater is essential for ensuring the overall quality of your water and the efficiency of your system. Water heater maintenance involves regular inspections and occasional repairs to ensure that it is running safely and efficiently. With a few simple tips, you can keep your water heater in great shape for years to come. Keep reading to learn more.
Drain the tank and wash out sediment.
One of the most important maintenance tips for water heaters is to drain the tank and wash out the sediment. This process should be done at least once a year and is necessary to prevent the tank from becoming corroded. The purpose of draining the tank is to remove any accumulated sediment that may have built up over time. This sediment can cause a variety of issues with the water heater. Hot water heater sediment symptoms can include a decrease in efficiency, inconsistent hot water supply, gritty or odorous water, and even damage to the tank itself.
To perform this maintenance, you will need to shut off the water and power supply to the water heater. Then, attach a garden hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the tank and open the valve to allow the tank to drain. Once the tank is empty, open the pressure relief valve to allow any remaining sediment to exit. Once the tank is empty, you can use a damp cloth to wipe down the inside of the tank and remove any remaining sediment. Once completed, replace the pressure relief valve and close the drain valve, then restore the water and power to the water heater. Regularly draining and washing out the sediment from the water heater tank will ensure that it operates properly and efficiently.
Test the TPR valve regularly.
The temperature pressure relief valve (TPR) is a special safety valve, and it’s responsible for making sure your hot temperature-pressure relief valve water tank stays within its designed temperature and pressure limits. When the TPR valve is functioning properly, it should open and release a small amount of water when the temperature or pressure inside the tank reaches a certain level. Testing the TPR valve is an important part of regular water heater maintenance, as it ensures that the valve is working correctly and will release pressure if needed.
To test the TPR valve, start by shutting off the power supply and water to your water heater. Once the power has been shut off, find the TPR valve, which is usually located on the top or side of the water heater. Next, lift the lever on the valve to release any pressure that has built up inside the tank. You’ll hear a hissing sound as the pressure is released. If the valve releases a steady stream of water, then the valve is working properly. However, if the valve does not release any water, then it needs to be replaced.
After testing the valve, be sure to turn the power back on and wait for the water to heat up before using it. Taking the time to test the valve can help to prevent serious damage from occurring to your water heater and ultimately save you from costly repairs.
Check the anode rod.
The anode rod is a piece of metal that is placed inside a water heater to help protect it from corrosion. It attracts corrosive elements in the water, sacrificing itself in order to protect the tank from damage. Over time, the anode rod will corrode and need to be replaced. It is important to inspect the anode rod at least once a year and replace it when necessary.
To check the anode rod, you should first turn off the power to the heater, drain the tank, and unscrew the rod from the top of the tank. Then, inspect the rod for any signs of corrosion, such as discoloration or pitting. The rod should be about three-quarters of an inch in diameter. If it is more than half corroded, it should be replaced. Once the rod is replaced, the tank should be refilled, and the power turned on. By regularly checking and replacing the anode rod, you can help keep your water heater working properly and extend its lifespan.
Water heater maintenance is essential for ensuring efficient operation, avoiding costly repairs, and extending the life of your water heater. By following the recommended maintenance tips, you can help to ensure your water heater is in good condition and functioning properly.