No one wants to be in a position where they need to call a plumber for water heater service. Unfortunately, as there is no water heater that is going to last forever, this will be needed at some point.
The good news is, there are steps you can take to help reduce the need for this service. One of these is to provide regular maintenance to your unit. Some ways you can maintain your water heater and keep it running efficiently can be found here.
Check and Test the TPR Valve
Shut off the power going to the water heater and the cold-water supply valve. Be sure to have a bucket on-hand to put where the TPR (temperature-pressure-release) valve drains. This is found on the tank’s side, or it could be on the top. This is the valve that is going to open if the pressure in the take becomes too high. Lift up the tab to the valve to let some of the water out, and then let it go. If you notice that the water continues to flow, then drain the tank partly, take off the old valve and put on a new one.
Check the Anode Rod
Place a hose into the water heater’s drain cock to let out several gallons of the water. Put a socket (that’s sized properly) onto the hex head of the rod that is found at the top of the heater (or beneath the top plate) and take the rod off. If it is no more than half of an inch thick, or if it is coated in calcium, then it is time to purchase a new one. Wrap the threads with Teflon tape, place it back inside the tank, and tighten it properly.
Wash Out the Sediment
The first step to take is to drain all the water in the tank into a bucket. Once this is done, stir up the sediment at the tank’s bottom by opening the cold-water supply valve for a few seconds. Continue to drain the water and then repeat this process until the water coming out of the hose is clean. Once done, close the drain cock, fill the tank back up, and turn the power back on.
By investing some time and effort into your water heater’s maintenance every few months, you can avoid the need for water heater service from the professionals. Keep in mind, though, it is still a good idea to invest in this maintenance from time to time as it can help ensure your unit continues to operate properly and run efficiently. In the long run, this is going to pay off and help the unit last longer.