Fall Water Heater Maintenance Tips and Tricks

Fall is officially in full-swing here in California! And it brought all the chilly mornings and shorter, far more crisp days with it! Unfortunately, as pleasant as the Autumn season is, it can wreak havoc on your water heater. That is, it CAN wreak havoc on your water heater IF you don’t follow the Water Heaters Masters five Fall water heater maintenance tips and tricks! As with any other home maintenance, it’s best to get it out of the way as quickly as possible. So, put down the pumpkin carving kit (carefully), and let’s can get started!

Tip One – Flush Your Water Heater’s Tank

The first thing you should do when performing your Fall water heater maintenance routine is to flush the tank (if you have a conventional tanked water heater, that is). To flush your water heater’s tank, follow these steps:
  1. Turn off the water heater
  2. Make sure you also shut the cold water valve off
  3. Let the hot water in the tank cool for a couple of hours
  4. Attach a hose to the drain valve (found on the side of the tank)
  5. Make sure to place the other end of the hose in a (large) bucket or drain
  6. Turn on a couple of faucets in your house (hot water faucets, for obvious reasons)
  7. Drain the tank by turning the valve
Once you’ve finished draining the tank, remove the hose, dispose of the water, close the valve, and turn the water supply and water heater back on.

Tip Two – Check The Tank and Pipe Insulation

Once you’ve flushed the tank, it’s time to check your insulation. And no, we’re not talking about the fiberglass stuff in your walls. Both the tank and hot water pipes connected to your water heater should be insulated. Otherwise, you’d waste tons of energy heating water that could have otherwise been kept warm, using far less energy (and saving you money). To check the insulation on your water heater tank and pipes (assuming there is some), just visibly inspect them. If you notice any significant damage or wear and tear to the insulation, then give us a call, and we’ll sort you out.

Tip Three – Decrease the Temperature Setting

This one may seem a little counterintuitive but trust us. We are the Water Heater Masters, after all. This Fall, try reducing your water heater temperature by about ten degrees. Since people tend to use more hot water during the Fall and Winter, decreasing the temperature by a small amount will significantly reduce your energy bills for the two seasons. Additionally, most people hardly even notice a ten-degree difference in water temperature. The only thing to be aware of when changing the temperature on your water heater is to keep the temperature over 120 degrees Fahrenheit and under 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Otherwise, you run the risk of water-borne pathogens and burns and scalds, respectively.

Tip Four – Check and Replace the Anode Rod

The anode rod inside your water heater attracts and extracts chemical elements that cause rust and mineral buildup in the water heater tank. However, just like any other type of filter or conditioner system, anode rods will eventually fail. In fact, you should replace your anode rod around every six years or so. If it’s been a while since someone has inspected or replaced your anode rod, then give us a call.

Tip Five – Check and Test the Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve (TPR Valve)

The Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve is an incredibly important safety feature on every make and model of conventional water heater. It relieves the pressure inside your water heater if pressures and temperatures get out of control. If your pressure relief valve isn’t functioning correctly, then the pressures inside your water heater can grow to such extremes as to cause explosions. In other words, never, ever neglect your TPR Valve. To check your TPR Valve, simply open the lever and wait for the water to rush into the attached discharge pipe. If, for whatever reason, you don’t hear or feel any water in the discharge pipe, stop what you’re doing, shut off your water heater, and contact us immediately.

Conclusions

Well, there you have it, a complete list of our five most highly recommended Fall water heater maintenance tips and tricks. Before you enjoy the crisp weather and shorter days with a sweet hot beverage, why not go ahead and get your water heater maintenance out of the way? We promise you won’t regret it. Moreover, if you don’t have the time or energy to handle it on your own, you can always contact our team of water heater professionals for help. Remember, when it comes to fast, reliable, and affordable water heater maintenance, you can always rely on us here at the Water Heaters Masters!