A good water heater is something that people often take for granted. Even if your water heater is working fine, you should still schedule maintenance every year. Like any home equipment, annual maintenance is a great way to catch any potential problems early on and make sure the unit is running at peak efficiency. In addition to preventing any headaches over a lack of hot water, an annual tune-up can help you save money by maintaining an efficient water heater.
What Are the Benefits of an Annual Tune-Up?
As an appliance that you use daily, it’s important to make sure your water heater is running smoothly. These units are working constantly to make sure you have hot water for your showers, sinks and dishwashers. A water heater that suddenly breaks down can become a huge, expensive nuisance. While they’re generally dependable pieces of equipment, an annual tune-up helps to ensure that there are no problems.
Performing annual maintenance on your water heater can prolong its life, and preventative repairs will not only save you money but save you the trouble of a broken water heater later on. In addition, maintenance can help improve a water heater’s efficiency, so you’ll be saving as much money as possible.
What Problems Can a Tune-Up Prevent?
While they are normally very reliable, water heaters can eventually break down without proper maintenance. Here are some of the problems that can occur over time:
- Not enough hot water, or lack of any hot water
- Leaking water
- Off-colored water
- Unusual noises
In extreme circumstances, a water heater without proper maintenance can stop functioning altogether.
What Happens During a Water Heater Tune-Up?
During a water heater tune-up, the heater is drained of water to rid it of all the collected sediment. This sediment causes corrosion, so doing this will help increase the efficiency of the unit. Next, the technician tests the pressure-relief valve. During this test, the water heater should release a burst of hot water into the overflow drainpipe. If it doesn’t do that, the technician may need to install a new valve to ensure it’s working properly.
The technician will also need to check the temperature on the water heater. The temperature should stay around 120 degrees Fahrenheit. This temperature reduces the amount of damage that overheating can cause the tank. Plus, you can save up to five percent in energy costs for every 10 degrees that you lower your temperature. If the water is not hot enough, it could be a faulty thermostat. If the thermostat is not operating properly, it will need to be repaired or replaced.
Remember you should always keep and maintain a two-foot clearance around the appliance, unless the manual specifically states otherwise.
Gas Water Heaters
Gas water heaters need to be checked as well. The technician needs to make sure the draft hood is properly placed within a few inches of air space between the tank and the area where it connects with the vent. Gas lines and piping need a visual inspection to determine if there is any corrosion.
SMO Energy offers annual water heater tune-ups, along with labor and parts coverage to keep you protected all year long. Whether it’s home heating oil or a new tankless water heater, SMO Energy can help you save money on your energy bills while maximizing the comfort of your home.