It’s no secret that water heater repair bills can get very expensive. That’s why it’s so important that you take steps to maintain a water heater for as long as you own it. The better care you take of the unit, the better care it will take of you and your family, producing hot water time and again for cleaning clothes, washing dishes, and soothing showers and bath time.
So be sure you follow these steps for keeping your water heater in great shape and extending its lifespan far beyond what the manufacturer has promised, which is typically around 10-15 years. These helpful hints will not only preserve the condition and performance of your water heater but you may also see a significant reduction in your heating costs.
The reduce your heating bills, extend the life of your water heater, and prevent injuries from scalding by hot water, you should lower the thermostat to 120 degrees. This will equal as much as a 5% savings on your energy costs for every 10 degrees you reduce the temperature of the unit. Keeping the heat at a minimum is just a smart move across the board.
Don’t Crowd the Unit
You want to make sure that you give your water heater a clearance of at least two to three feet from all other items. Depending on the type of water heater you own and your manufacturer’s specific directions, the unit may require an even wider berth from all objects in the nearby vicinity.
It’s very important that you do not crowd your water heater as it could result in the unit becoming damaged and require repair.
Clean the Sediment from The Tank
Allowing sediment and other debris to settle in the tank is not a good idea. They can make the unit work less efficiently and even increase the amount of noise that emanates from it. You should flush the unit every three to six months depending on how often you use it.
All you need to do is drain the tank about a third of the way and shut off the cold water. Attach a standard garden hose to the drain valve and then allow it to pour through into a bucket. Check the condition of the water that comes out, if it’s clear and crisp, then you’re okay. However, if the water appears cloudy, start up the cold water to flush out the sediment and then drain the tank over again.
Be Sure to Insulate Properly
Older water heater may lack proper insulation to help them run more smoothly and with greater efficiency. If your water heater is more than five years old, you may want to add a fiberglass layer to the unit. Just take care not to come into contact with the flue. You should also add insulation to the pipes that your water heater is connected to, including both hot and cold water.
If your unit is newer or relatively new, don’t worry about this, insulation likely come standard with the water heater. You may want to check your owner’s manual to confirm.