Water Heater Maintenance

Person fixing water heater. D&F Plumbing, Heating and Cooling, serving Portland OR & Vancouver WA provides water heater maintenance services.Want to keep things hot and steamy in the shower, the kitchen, and the laundry room? Then, you’ve got to maintain your water heater! Despite how essential your water heater is, it’s easy to forget about it until something goes wrong. And when it does, it can throw a wrench in your daily routine. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to keep your water heater working smoothly and help extend its lifespan.

How to Take Care of Your Water Heater

Water heaters are big investments, and they play a crucial role in many day-to-day activities. If you want to extend the lifespan of your unit, it’s important to keep up on regular maintenance tasks. In addition to scheduling regular professional services, follow these steps to keep your water heater running smoothly:

Check the Anode Rod

The anode rod is located inside your tank and its purpose is to corrode so the tank itself will not. Over time, the anode rod will become so degraded, it will no longer do what it’s supposed to do. So you’ll want to replace it once you notice large sections of metal missing.

Drain the Tank and Wash Out Sediment

Gallons upon gallons of water flow through your water heater, leaving behind minerals and sediment. Eventually, that sediment will harden and may damage the tank. At least once a year, drain out your water heater and flush it until the water runs clear.

Inspect for Leaks and Damage

Every so often check the area around your water heater, looking for signs of leaks or damage. Also, be sure there aren’t any flammable materials nearby.

Add Insulation

Wrap the exposed pipes with a ⅜”-thick foam pipe insulation that matches the pipe’s diameter to help reduce heat loss. Another way to reduce heat loss is to wrap the appliance in an insulating blanket. Insulating blankets are known to reduce heat loss by up to 45%, reducing your monthly heating costs.

Adjust the Temperature

Set the temperature to your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. This will improve your energy efficiency and help extend the life of your water heater.

Clean the Filter

Tankless water heaters have filters to capture incoming debris. Over time, it may become clogged, impacting your water heater’s performance.

Your Local Water Heater Maintenance Experts

Do all of these tasks sound daunting? We get it and we’re here to help. As a locally-owned plumbing company since 1927, D & F has helped thousands of homeowners with their plumbing services, including water heater maintenance, installation, and sales. Give us a call today to schedule your service!

Water Heater Maintenance FAQs

To keep your water heater functioning properly, we recommend flushing it at least once per year. Doing so will remove any built-up sediment that could otherwise cause a clog or premature breakdown. 

Professional water heater inspections will screen for potential problems that could lead to a breakdown. It’s generally best to have your water heater inspected at least once every year, though depending on the age and size of your unit, you may want to invest in more frequent services. 

At D&F Plumbing, Heating and Cooling, it’s our goal to keep your water heater running perfectly all year long. That’s why we provide thorough maintenance services that address every aspect of your system. During a water heater maintenance appointment, our experts will:

  • Examine your unit for signs of leaking, damage, or corrosion
  • Completely flush your tank to expel any sediment buildup
  • Check the temperature and pressure release valve
  • Ensure each part is in good condition
  • Provide a full report on recommended repairs if necessary

It can be easy to forget about your water heater, especially if it is working properly. However, failing to keep up on maintenance could lead to costly problems. Flushing your water heater annually is a crucial step in caring for your unit. If you don’t flush your water heater, you could experience problems such as:

  • Blocked pressure relief valve
  • Clogs and leaks
  • Premature corrosion
  • Reduced hot water capacity
  • Permanent and costly damage