Your hot water heater is probably not an appliance you think of often. In fact, many homeowners don't pay any attention to their hot water heaters until they break, leaving them without hot water. However, if you spend a little time thinking of this appliance when it's in good shape, then you'll spend a lot less time repairing it and dealing with a lack of hot water later on. Once a year, spend a few hours completing these tasks to check up on and maintain your water heater.
Check for water droplets.
Many leaks start off slow, emitting just a drop of water here and there. It's better to detect them at this stage than waiting until you have a huge puddle on the floor. If you do see water droplets around your water heater, look more closely to see whether it's coming from a valve or from the bottom of the tank. If it's coming from the valve, you probably just need to close the valve more tightly. If it's coming from the bottom of the tank, then sadly, it's time to have your tank replaced.
Look at the flame.
If you have a gas water heater, take a peek at the flame to make sure it's burning blue and white rather than orange or yellow. If the flame is orange or yellow, this means it's not burning hot enough. Your water is probably not getting up to the temperature you'd like it to be at, and you're probably wasting gas, too. Make sure the gas valve is all of the way open. If opening the valve does not fix the problem, then you'll need to have your plumber come clean the burner because it is probably clogged with soot or other debris.
Flush the tank.
Flushing the tank once a year will remove sediment that can settle out of the water over time, reduce your efficiency, and lead to blockages.
To flush your hot water tank, start by turning off power to the unit at the circuit breaker. Also, turn off the water supply by closing the cold water valve at the top of the tank. Then, hook a hose up to the drain valve. (This valve should be labeled and is located at the bottom of the tank.) Run the hose outside or to a floor drain, and open the drain valve. Let water flow from the hose until the tank is empty. Then, close the drain valve, disconnect the hose, turn the cold water valve back on, and restore power to your unit.
If you have questions about any of the tasks above, consult a plumber in your area.
During the summer months, I enjoy taking care of my outdoor plants and flowers. Because I live in the southern United States, my vegetation needs water almost daily. Thankfully, I have a convenient outdoor faucet connected to my home. However, I recently endured some problems with this source of water. When I turned on the faucet, I was greeted with a forceful spray of water going in all directions. Before I could gather my senses and turn the water off, I resembled my dog after she jumps into a pool of water. To avoid the wet dog look in the future, I plan to hire a professional plumber to take care of my faulty faucet. On this blog, you will learn about the benefits of securing a reputable plumber to repair your problematic faucets.