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Make It Last: 8 Things You Should Never Do to Your Water Heater

As a homeowner, you rely on your water heater to provide hot water for all of your daily needs, including bathing, laundry, and washing dishes. A functioning water heater is essential to comfortable living, but it can be easy to forget about our water heaters until something goes wrong.

From time to time, you might be tempted to perform your water heater maintenance or to make modifications yourself that could cause more harm than good. In this post, we’ll share with you the top 5 things you should never do to your water heater to ensure it lasts as long as possible.

Ignoring the Owner’s Manual

When you purchase a new water heater, it comes with an owner’s manual that outlines instructions and maintenance requirements. Neglecting to follow these guidelines can result in damage and malfunctions. Always take time to read through the manufacturer’s instructions in detail, and make sure you’re following them to a tee.

If you ignore the owner’s manual, you could be making yourself vulnerable to a number of potential problems. Over time, not following the manufacturer’s instructions can cause damage to your water heater that will require costly repairs or even replacement. Ignoring these guidelines also puts you at risk for issues like water temperature fluctuations and leaks due to improper installation. Following the instructions in the owner’s manual is the best way to protect your water heater and ensure long-term performance.

Ignoring Leaks

If you notice a leakage from your water heater, don’t ignore it or put it off till later. A leak is a sign of a damaged or corroded tank. Ignoring leaks can cause further damage, leading to costly repairs and even flooding. In severe cases, it may require you to replace the water heater entirely.

Leaks usually occur around the valves, fittings, or tanks of your water heater. Telltale signs include reduced hot water pressure, increased humidity in the area surrounding your water heater, and visible wet spots or pooled water on the ground near it. If you notice any of these warning signs, be sure to inspect your system for any leaks and address them immediately with a licensed professional before the damage worsens.

Setting the Thermostat Too High

It might be tempting to turn your water heater’s thermostat all the way up to get the hottest water possible, but doing so can be dangerous.

Not only could you burn yourself or your family members, but high temperatures can also cause your water heater to malfunction or even explode. A safe temperature is generally around 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Neglecting Sediment Flushes

Water supplies often contain sediment, especially if you live in an area with hard water. Over time, this sediment can accumulate in your water heater and diminish its efficiency. Regular flushing helps to remove buildup and keeps your water heater running efficiently.

Performing a sediment flush should be done on a regular basis to keep your water heater running efficiently. Generally, it is recommended that you perform a sediment flush at least once every year or two, depending on the age of your water heater and the type of water supply you have. If you notice any signs of decreased performance from your water heater, such as reduced hot water pressure or odd noises when running, it is likely time for a sediment flush. To be sure, it is always best to consult a licensed professional.

Neglecting to Service the Unit

Just like with any other machine, your water heater needs regular servicing to run efficiently. This includes testing the temperature pressure relief valve and anode rod, checking for any leaks, and draining the tank to remove build up. Neglecting this important maintenance can cause your water heater to malfunction or even break down completely.

Finding the best service company for your water heater is essential in order to ensure that it lasts as long as possible. When researching a potential company, such as TPS Heating & Cooling, make sure they are licensed and insured and have plenty of experience with water heater repair and maintenance.

Using a Smaller-Than-Recommended Tank

When replacing your water heater, be sure to get one that is the proper size for your needs. A tank that is too small won’t produce enough hot water to meet demand and will have to work overtime, leading to higher energy costs and a shorter lifespan. On the other hand, a tank that is too large will cycle on and off more frequently than necessary, also leading to higher energy costs and a shorter lifespan.

When determining the best size of water heater for your home, you should consider the number of people in the household, as well as how much hot water you use. The more people who live in the house and the more hot water used, the larger tank size is necessary to meet demand while still providing efficient energy usage. You should also take into account factors like whether you have a dishwasher, washing machine, or other large appliance that require hot water to run. In addition, consider where the water heater is located and how much space it needs.

Attempting DIY Repairs

When your water heater breaks down, it can be tempting to try to tackle the repairs yourself to save some money. However, water heaters are complex and dangerous systems. Working on your water heater without the proper knowledge and training could lead to injury or further damage to your unit. Always play it safe and call a professional plumber.

Overburdening Your Unit

Water heaters can only provide so much hot water at a time. Overburdening your system with several high-demand tasks, such as laundry and showering at the same time, can cause it to work harder than it’s designed to. This can cause damage, and your water heater may need to be replaced prematurely.

To ensure that your water heater isn’t overburdened, it’s important to space out high-demand tasks throughout the day. Try to avoid running multiple showers, washing machines, and dishwashers at the same time. If you need to do laundry or other large tasks that require lots of hot water, try scheduling them for different times in the day when your water heater isn’t being heavily used. This will help to extend the life of your water heater and prevent costly repairs in the future.

Your water heater is an essential appliance that needs to be taken care of properly if you want it to last long and perform well. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can extend the life of your water heater, save money on repairs, and keep your family safe. Remember to always hire a professional plumber for any installation, maintenance, and repair work to ensure that your water heater is in good hands.


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