Does your home have a traditional hot water heater with a water reserve tank? If so, you may be neglecting the regular maintenance that you should be doing, since it is common to wait until a problem occurs to take action. Thankfully, maintaining a water heater is very easy to do, with most homeowners being able to accomplish these tasks on their own. These tips will help maintain the tank and improve its overall lifespan until maintenance or replacement is needed.
Check The Temperature
While a hot water heater is designed to produce hot water, that does not mean that the tank can sustain having the thermostat turned up as high as it can go. There may have been people in your home that have adjusted the thermostat without your knowledge, either by accident or on purpose to make the water hotter.
You'll want to occasionally check the thermostat on the hot water heater to make sure it is set properly. Not only does setting the tank to a high temperature put more wear on the heating element, but it increases your energy bills as well. You can also use vacation settings for those times when you won't be at home, which reduces the energy that the tank uses to keep the water in the reserve tank hot.
Drain The Tank
You may not be aware of how much sediment can find its way into a hot water tank over the years. Even if you have a municipal water source from your city, sediment in the water can collect in the water reserve tank over the years. This causes several problems for the tank.
The heating element will have a harder time heating the water, so it needs to work harder than necessary to heat the same amount of water. The sediment can also cause banging sounds, caused by hot water underneath the sediment causing trapped air bubbles, which rise to the top and sound like a bang.
The solution to sediment is to drain the tank periodically. All you need to do is turn off the tank, let the water cool, and connect a hose to the spigot at the bottom of the tank. Open the spigot and allow the hot water to flow into a nearby drain. You can turn off the spigot when you notice that the water coming out is free of any debris from within the tank.
Contact a plumbing company in order to find out what to do to keep your water heater maintained.