How To Maintain Your Water Heater

Thu 25th Jul 2013 - 11:12am Energy and Heating How To Maintain Your Water Heater

Benjamin Clarke

In the current climate, people are always looking for ways to run a more efficient home and save money. One great way to ensure you are not wasting energy is through the regular maintenance of your water heater.

With a few simple checks and measures you can get a better performance from your water heater. Making a few simple but crucial changes will save you money. These checks can help to prolong the life of your existing heater, delaying the need for any costly replacements or repairs.

Here are a couple of simple measures you can think about if you want to prolong the life of your water heater, or just make sure it is at optimum working level. We would always recommend that you refer to your owners manual and ensure electricity is off when working with electrical equipment.

To help remove debris and sediment from your tank it is recommended that you drain and flush your tank at least once a year. Sediment can cause your system to use more energy during the heating process, so having a clean tank will lead to a decrease of energy wastage and also see your costs reducing.

After carefully attaching a hose pipe to the drain valve (be careful not to break the valve), turn off the gas or electricity to your heater and turn off the water supply.

Slowly open the valve letting the water drain. Always start this process off slowly to ensure there will be no leaks. You can speed up this process by opening the pressure relief valve on the top of the tank.

You can then flush out the tank by opening the cold water supply for around a minute to make sure you get rid of any remaining debris.

To get your system ready to operate once again, you will need to close the pressure relief valve, then close the drain valve and disconnect the hose. Be prepared for any spillages during this process.

After turning the cold water supply back on, turn on a tap in the kitchen or bathroom to relieve the air being flushed from the tank and let it fill. Once the tank is filled, turn off the open tap and turn on the electricity to your water heater. For gas water heaters, be sure to follow the direction in your manual for turning the gas back on to your water heater.

This simple process can help the efficiency of your whole system and you may also consider insulation as a great energy conserver.

Simply lowering the temperature on your water heater by a small amount is also a great way to lower costs in the long run, with little or no impact on your usage of the system.

Another extremely important way to ensure your water heater has the best chance of lasting longer is by checking the anode rod and replacing it when necessary. This rod protects the tank from corrosion by corroding first, before the tank. Once the anode is gone, the tank begins to corrode.

Learning the correct way to check and replace the anode rod could save you a considerable amount of money in the long run and you can read how to do that here - Maintaining Your Water Heater Part 2 - Replacing Your Anode Rod

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