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Water Heater Maintenance | Roto-Rooter Plumbing & Drain Service

The life expectancy of a water heater may vary depending on location and design of the unit, quality of installation, water quality and maintenance schedule. Caring for your water heater will help increase its efficiency and extend the life of the unit. There are a few simple things you can do to maintain a water heater and keep it operating efficiently and effectively.

However, if you experience serious issues with your unit and you suspect water heater repair is in order, it’s best to call a professional, such as Roto-Rooter. Whether you require water heater inspection, repair or replacement, our plumbing experts can help.

We’ve put together some helpful tips to assist in your water heater maintenance:

Check the temperature and pressure relief valve. Both gas and electric water heaters have a temperature and pressure relief valve (T&P). If the tank over-pressurizes, the relief valve opens and releases the pressure. If the valve doesn't operate correctly, the tank can build up too much pressure and explode.

In order the check the T&P, turn off the electricity or gas to the unit and shut off the cold-water inlet to the water heater. Place a bucket under the T&P valve and pull the trip lever on the valve. You should hear a small rush of air or see some water and vapor exit through the valve. If you don't, drain the tank and replace the valve. This device should be replaced about every two years. Remember, this is a safety device that should not be ignored! If yours has an annoying drip, do not plug the leak. Further evaluation by an experienced plumber is necessary.

Flush the tank. Sediment buildup in the tank can reduce your water heater's energy efficiency and clog your water lines. Keep buildup at bay and increase the life of your water heater by flushing the tank each time you check the pressure relief valve. Here’s a link to a video that will lead you through the process.

  • Turn off the electricity or gas to the unit and shut off the cold-water inlet.
  • Connect a garden hose to the tank's drain valve. Careful! The water draining from this valve will be hot.
  • With the pressure relief valve open, open the drain valve and allow the tank to drain completely. This should remove most of the sediment. However, even though the drain valve is ¾ inch, the hole in the valve is only ¼ inch and therefore will easily clog when sediment starts flowing through it. You may need to probe the hole with a tool to keep the drain free of sediment as the water is flowing out. This means, it may not be practical to attach a hose to the drain faucet until water begins to flow reliably out of the drain.
  • Close the tank drain valve, disconnect the hose and close the pressure relief valve. Open all hot-water faucets in the house and turn on the cold-water inlet to the tank.
  • Close each hot-water faucet as water begins to flow from it. After all faucets are closed, turn on the electricity or gas to the water heater.

Adjust the temperature. Is the temperature set too high? Adjust your water heater’s temperature to 120 degrees. For every 10 degrees the temperature is lowered, you can expect to save up to 5 percent in energy costs. Additionally, turn the water heater off or the thermostat down to its lowest setting if you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time.

When you rely on Roto-Rooter, you can expect professional service from a skilled plumber. If you are in need of water heater repair or replacement, we offer 24-hour emergency water heater service, so you will have hot water again as quickly as possible.

Why Choose Roto-Rooter?

  • Emergency Service
  • Available 24/7
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