Hot Water Heater Maintenance Tips

There’s nothing quite like a hot shower at the end of a long day, and without hot water flowing through your pipes, you couldn’t get your dishes clean or your clothes fresh from the washing machine.

Your gas water heater has an important function in your home and offers you the convenience of having heated water at the ready whenever you demand it; however, like all types of machinery, your water heater is subject to wear and tear and can become damaged over the years just by regular use. If you ignore the needs of your water heater, you could one day step into the shower, turn on the taps or fill up the washing machine only to find that the water is cold.

Fortunately, you can greatly reduce the risk of water heater failure by taking some simple measures. Follow this list of tips to keep your water heater in the best of condition and your hot water flowing.

  • Have your pipes insulated. As water travels through your plumbing, the temperature of the metal can cause your water to cool. To compensate, you must turn up the hot water, putting extra strain on your hot water heater. By simply insulating the pipes, you can keep the water warmer and decrease the burden on the heater. You can also insulate your water heater with a special jacket to improve water temperature.
  • Follow the servicing instructions in your owner’s manual. Just like your car, your hot water heater has a maintenance schedule that helps to determine when parts should be replaced. Manufacturers make these recommendations based upon research on how long it takes for the various components of the hot water heater to become worn out. By having a licensed repair service like Sydney Emergency Plumbing keep up with the manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations, you can potentially avoid parts wearing out and causing the heater to break down.
  • Clean the burner ports on your water heater biannually. Every other year, it is best to turn off the gas and clean the burner ports in the water heater with a wire or a needle. This helps to remove carbon and keep the appliance running smoothly. Many people prefer to have a professional handle cleaning to avoid damaging the components.
  • Have your water heater inspected at least once every 5 years. Even if the maintenance schedule does not call for regular maintenance during the interval, it’s a good idea to have your system checked once every 60 months by a licensed repairperson. This is particularly the case if you have a storage tank system, as these can become corroded over time without producing noticeable symptoms until the problem becomes severe and a breakdown is imminent.