Water heaters can last for a decade or more, and with the simple 3-step annual maintenance plan, you can extend the life of your water heater even further and save money in the process.
Tank-type water heaters are one of those common appliances you rely upon every day. Whether gas or electric, they are generally very dependable and quiet.
Optimal temperature will increase your water heater longevity.
Check your water heater temperature setting:
Go to the temperature-setting dial on your water heater. It will be a knob on the gas valve or a thermostat behind an electric panel on your water heater.
Dial the temperature setting down so it is between 115F to 120F.
This lowered setting will protect the tank from overheating and will reduce the energy used to heat the water.
Test the T&P valve.
The temperature and pressure (T&P) relief valve is critical to safety and proper operation of your water heater. It’s a simple but important valve and is easily checked.
To test the T&P valve simply lift-up on the lever part way, then let go and allow it to rapidly span back.
You should hear a gurgling sound as the valve allows some water to be released into the drain tube.
If the T&P valve did nothing, then it is bad and needs to be replaced.
Perform a mini-flush.
Removal of sediments from the bottom of the tank is important to prevent rust and corrosion and improve efficiency. Although a full water heater tank draining and flush is best, performing a full flush is a bit of work and requires shutting down the water heater. This mini-flush works well, takes a fraction of the time and allows you to do it while the water heater is running.
Place a bucket under the drain valve found near the bottom of the water heater tank.
Some drain valves have a handle, and others have a short handle-less stem with a slot for a flat blade screwdriver.
Turn the valve counter-clockwise to release a few gallons of water into the bucket or drain.
Close the valve (turning it clockwise), and drain the bucket.
Call us if you have any problems.
If your water heater is leaking or not working, we are here to help. If your water heater is very old, Oak View Mechanical can replace it, bring your venting up to the current Building Department codes, and insure that you are properly protected with carbon monoxide alarms, all in one visit.
While these maintenance procedures outlined within are manageable by homeowners, we recommend that they be performed by licensed HVAC contractors, who also run diagnostic tests to ensure that the system is operating optimally.
Need Further Assistance?
Need a little more guidance from a professional? Our licensed technicians are ready to help.