Ask a Buffalo Plumbing Expert About Water Heater Maintenance

Performing Periodical Maintenance at Home Will Help Improve Your Tank’s Efficiency

How many appliances or luxuries in your home can work at 100% efficiency over the course of their life without a little maintenance work now and again? Probably none.

That’s because maintenance helps to ensure that things like cars, water heaters, generators, furnaces, and air conditioners work when you need them most. It catches any small problems before they turn into big ones; it can even stop those problems from occurring in the first place. Whether it’s you performing these checks, or a professional, it’s important to show your household conveniences some love.

In the case of water heaters, it’s a pretty big annoyance when you run out of hot water. You can’t do a whole lot in the way of everyday chores if the only water running through your pipes is cold. Preventative maintenance serves as a way to ensure that you won’t have that problem. Avoiding most, if not all, of common water heater problems (like leaks) will save you money in repair work down the line.

What sort of preventative maintenance can you perform?

Of course, our professionals here at Roy’s are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for any type of repair or maintenance needs you might have. But before going that route, there are some things you can do at home:

  1. Check the temperature and pressure valve: A failing temperature and pressure valve is often the cause of water heaters bursting because it’s function is to relieve excess pressure inside of your tank. It’s typically located near the top of the water heater where you see a lever. To test it, lift the lever enough to allow the valve to open. Release, and the valve should close. If you try to lift it and the valve is frozen, or it’s just not functioning properly, it needs to be repaired or replaced.
  2. Flush your tank: Despite what you may have heard, flushing your tank is a good idea. Doing so will help to remove rust and sediment deposits that may have collected over time. This will improve overall system efficiency and ensure that you will have cleaner, healthier water.
  3. Inspect the flue assembly: You should be doing this at least twice a year. To inspect it, check to make sure that the assembly is properly aligned and that all of the joints are sealed. Put your hand near the draft diverter at the top of the water heater. If you feel air flowing out, there may be an obstruction. You should call someone to rid that obstruction for you.
  4. Clean the burner ports on a gas water heater: If you have a gas water heater, it’s recommended that you shut off the gas, remove the access panel, and clean the burner ports using stiff wire or a needle.
  5. Lower the temperature: The ideal temperature for an average water heater should be between 115 and 120 degrees Fahrenheit. If you periodically lower the temperature, you can help prevent your water heater from overheating. Lowering the temperature also conserves energy and helps save you money.

For any water heater problems, or questions, Roy’s Plumbing, Heating, & Cooling is here to help. Call us today!