Your water heater plays a significant role in your quality of life and day-to-day schedule, making sure your family has a constant supply of hot water to shower, clean clothes, wash the dishes, and more. Residential water heaters often last between 8 and 12 years with regular use, and depending on your system of choice, they can be expensive to replace. Instead of risking a premature water heater replacement, you can instead keep these helpful care tips in mind to prolong your system’s lifespan.

Add an Expansion Tank

When water is heated, it expands and pressurizes a space. If your water heater tank cannot adequately handle this expansion and pressure, there can be damage to your water heater and associated valves. There can be increased risk of potentially cracking the tank or even causing total system failure. An expansion tank will collect that excess water and reduce the overall force exerted on your primary water tank.

Insulate Pipes and Heater

Increased energy bills can indicate your water heater is losing its efficiency. While this could be a sign of a more serious issue, it may also just mean that your water heater is aging. Insulating your pipes will make it easier for your water heater to maintain a higher water temperature. The system won’t have to use up as much energy or kick on as frequently during the day.

Test the Pressure Relief Valve

On the top or side of your water heater, you’ll find the pressure relief valve. Its role is to open and release water automatically if it senses the tank’s internal pressure is reaching unsafe levels. In a worst-case scenario, this part could fail and ultimately lead to a water heater cracking or bursting open.

You can perform a basic test on this valve by placing a bucket beneath it and opening it to release a few gallons. If you try to close the valve and it doesn’t stop the flow immediately, it could be time to replace it. Your water heater technician will also check this component during your routine maintenance appointments.

Flush the Tank Regularly

Sediment buildup is one of the most common factors associated with premature water heater failure. Your water supply has natural minerals and particles that slowly build up along the sides and bottom of your water heater tank. Too much sediment can decrease the system’s efficiency and lead to internal corrosion.

To minimize the accumulation of minerals and other debris, you can flush your water heater annually. This process involves draining water from the tank. You may need to flush it more than once a year if your home has particularly hard water. If you’re worried about the difficulty of the procedure, consider relying on a professional to complete this service.

Use Water Softener

The quality of your home’s water supply can have an impact on your dishwasher, washing machine, and even your water heater. The excessive magnesium and calcium found in hard water will cause sediment to form in these appliances. Installing a water softener can pull most of these minerals out of your water before it travels to your fixtures, appliances, and systems.

Plan on Maintenance

Routine maintenance checks can add years to your water heater’s life. When completing your checkups, you should clear the floor and area around the system to search for leaks or odd residue. Make sure you know how to turn off the water supply in case of an emergency. Don’t forget to have essential information like the water heater model and serial number on hand when you decide to schedule a routine maintenance appointment.

Along with your own checks, you should also schedule care with our professional water heater team. Only experienced experts have the skills and training to service all of your heater’s fragile and complicated parts. Our professionals will also be able to spot the early signs of serious issues like rust or corrosion.

Comprehensive Indoor Comfort Services

Bernard Heating & Cooling has been a locally owned and operated HVAC company in Hudson, OH since 1991. We always deliver best-in-class comfort services that aim to be as responsive as possible to all of your family’s needs. Count on us to handle your heating, cooling, and indoor air quality installation, repair, and maintenance. Besides all that, we also take exceptionally good care of water heaters. Contact us at Bernard Heating & Cooling today to learn more about our services or schedule an appointment.

company icon