Your hot water heater is by far one of the most important major appliances in your home and one that we all depend upon a great deal. Often people take advantage of the hot water in their kitchen sink or shower until they find themselves faced with only cold water. With that said, it is important to understand that like other appliances, your hot water heater needs routine maintenance and a bit of attention from time to time to keep it running at peak levels as well as smoothly and efficiently.
The folks here at Steve Mull Plumbing wanted to share some important facts and some simple maintenance tips to keep your tank style water heater running as effectively and as efficiently as possible. For starters, we strongly suggest that you simply get in the habit of taking a moment to examine your heater and determine if there is any water on the floor, are there any leaks, or is the bottom of the tank beginning to rust. By performing routine visual inspections you are able to identify problems early on and ultimately save yourself a good deal of time and money down the road.
Next, we suggest that you have an annual test of your temperature and pressure (T&P) valve performed. This is a critical component of your water heater and it is essential that it is operating effectively at all times. This valve is located either at the top or side of the heater and is constructed with a discharge tube that travels downward toward the base of the heater. The highly skilled technicians here at Steve Mull Plumbing can certainly perform this inspection for you, but if you prefer to attempt the task on your own follows these simple steps.
Put a bucket of some type underneath the discharge tube. Lift the lever in order to open the valve. At this point hot water should travel downward through the tube and into the bucket below. Hold this lever for a few seconds and then let go so as to shut off the water. Take note of whether or not the water shut off appropriately, did you notice any leaks and is it leaking now. If you noticed any of these scenarios then its time to replace your valve. But don’t fret, that’s where our professional team comes in. Our qualified plumbers stand ready to serve you and to provide you with your every need, no matter how big or small a project it may be.
The next important task is to perform a water heater flush. Take your bucket again and put it underneath the drain valve located at the bottom of the heater tank. Loosen the valve and let 1-2 gallons of water flow into the bucket and then close the valve. Look at the water to determine if it is cloudy at all. If it is, then it is time to schedule a complete flush of the water heater with our expert team.
In addition to the simple maintenance tips above, be certain to check your water temperature regularly. The suggested temperature by the US Department of Energy is 120 degrees. Be aware that many manufacturers set the temperatures at 140 degrees and that reducing that temperature to 120 degrees will save you both money and energy.
Whatever type of water heater you may have, and whatever maintenance or service needs you require, rest assured you have come to the right place. Our plumbers are on hand to provide you with all your service and maintenance needs. By performing routine maintenance on your appliance you help it to work smarter and not harder, while increasing its efficiency and lifespan as well. For more information on hot water heater maintenance or to schedule your service or inspection appointment, reach out to the experts at Steve Mull Plumbing today. You’ll be more than glad you did!!