Properly maintaining your water heater will allow you to increase its efficiency while enhancing its performance, and this will help extend its lifespan. Routine checks are a must, and getting to know your water heater is important because this will help you spot problems early on. It is recommended that you inspect your tank every few months, as this will ensure it is working properly, and you will also have the opportunity to look for signs of trouble like leaks and odd noises, for example.
Your water heater is a piece of equipment your family relies on, and the proper maintenance procedures will help you improve the quality of your water while enhancing the unit’s performance. The right steps will also help increase its efficiency, but you have to remember that your hot water tank contains extremely hot water, so you have to be very careful. If you do not feel comfortable with maintenance checks, contact a professional and only proceed if you feel confident with the process.
One of the first things you should do is to control the temperature setting. The Government of Canada recommends setting the temperature of your water heater to 49 °C or 120 °F, as this will prevent scalding. If your water temperature is too hot, it can burn your skin, and if your water temperature is not hot enough, harmful bacteria can grow, so adjust this aspect and control it. Another thing you can do is insulate your tank. You can purchase thermal wraps, which will fit around the outside of your tank, and this will reduce energy consumption while also prolonging the life of your unit. This type of insulation will cut down standby heat loss and will prevent your unit from having to work unnecessarily hard to maintain the temperature of the water in your tank. This will not only lead to lower energy costs, it will also reduce wear and tear and will extend the life of your unit.
You should also check the space around your water heater because this unit needs room and ventilation in order for it to work efficiently. A certain amount of clearance is required; otherwise, the heater cannot function correctly or safely. Check the surrounding space regularly and remove any items that may be in the way. You will want to keep the floor under and around the tank clean as well. Dust, dirt and animal hair can build up which can cause issues with the burner assembly. It is important to note that cat litter boxes placed close to a water heater in an enclosed space, can also cause problems. The strong chemicals used in cat litter can cause the gas valve to register a safety issue which will then lock out the gas valve, causing your water heater to stop heating water.
A water filtration system can also help extend the life of your water heater, so this is something you may want to consider as it will protect your water heater from excess mineral deposits and scale. By filtering the water prior to it entering the tank, less scale will build up on the bottom of the tank so it won’t have to work as hard to heat the water through the layer of scale and minerals. This will also help it to operate much more quietly with less “popping” and “crackling” sounds.
Lastly, you must schedule professional maintenance checks regularly because experts will make a world of difference. Their knowledge, skills and experience will allow them to complete thorough maintenance checks to ensure your unit is running both efficiently and safely. They will drain sediment from the tank, check the ventilation, check for carbon monoxide, test your water quality and the temperature and pressure relief valve.
Oliver Plumbing & Heating can help you with all water heater repairs and replacements. We are experts in this field and specialize in both commercial and residential plumbing services. For more information, contact us today!