Proper Maintenance of Water Heaters

Whether you have a big or small household, you likely rely on your water heater a lot. It supplies a steady stream of hot water for baths and showers as well as when you wash your dishes or your clothes. While its average lifespan is eight to 12 years, you can make it last longer and cut down on repairs and premature water heater replacement, with proper maintenance. 

Types of Water Heaters

You’ll want to know about the different types if you plan on purchasing one in the future. Tank-based water heaters are the most common type found in Charlotte homes. They are affordable and have a tank that holds up to 80 gallons of heated water. Many homeowners now opt for a tankless water heater, however, because it takes up less space. We’re also seeing a high demand for hybrid models because they’re more energy-efficient. 

Importance of Water Heater Maintenance

The top two reasons to maintain your water heater are that it saves you money and keeps your family safe. A small leak can lead to a lot of water loss, which increases your water bill. Other issues increase the price of just running and using it. You also risk ignoring small problems that require help from a plumber in Charlotte, NC, and one or more expensive repairs. We’ll go over some of the best maintenance tips that make your water heater last longer.

Flush the Tank

As water moves through the pipes, it leaves behind trace amounts of sediment. That sediment builds up over time and reduces the heater’s efficiency. Because of this, we recommend flushing the tank at least once a year. The hard water can also corrode the pipes and your unit. While you can flush the tank yourself, it’s best to look for a plumber near me to ensure that the task is done properly the first time. 

Add Insulation

Any plumber that does water heater repair in Charlotte, NC, can usually add insulation for your heater as well. Not only do you want to insulate the heater itself, but you also need to insulate the pipes. Charlotte’s winter temperatures drop into the low 50s during the day and can fall below freezing at night. The cold air forces your water heater to work harder to reach your desired temperature, which both reduces its lifespan and increases your power bills. It often takes just a few hours to install plumbing insulation.

Test the Release Valve

All tank water heaters have a pressure relief valve that reduces the pressure buildup that occurs inside the tank when the water is too hot. Hot water produces steam, which can cause the tank to explode. We recommend you test this valve every other month or every month if you use a high temperature setting. Find the valve on the side of the tank, lift it, and then lower it. A working valve will produce a small amount of water and shut itself off. If more water or no water comes out, you may need water heater services.

Pay for an Inspection

While you can do some water heater maintenance yourself, consult the pros if you need help. An inspection lets the pros get to the source of any gurgling or other weird noises you hear. They can also let you know why the appliance uses so much water or discover why your energy bills are so high. There isn’t a best time for an inspection, but you should opt for one every year.

Let Charlotte Plumbing Masters get to the root of your water heater problems and provide some of the maintenance you need. Contact us today for reliable water heater installation, repair, or replacement services.

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