Water heaters are an essential part of every modern home – unless you like washing dishes in cold water and taking showers in freezing temperatures, that is – that most people take for granted. The average cost of a modern water heater is roughly $800 to $900; they typically last anywhere between eight to 12 years and cost – this is a rough estimate, of course – between $35 and $60 per month in utility costs.
It only makes sense to extend the life of your tank as long as possible. As long as it properly heats water, doesn’t run a risk of catching on fire, and has no leaks, why not stretch its life out? In order to keep your tank running properly for a long time, you need to regularly maintain it. Here are a few tips related to the maintenance of residential-use water heaters.
Are You Familiar With Your Tank’s Anode Rod? If Not, You’re About To Be
The anode rod is a relatively thin metal tube that’s about six inches long – or maybe even a little shorter, depending on its make and model. Also known as a sacrifical anode rod, the purpose of this necessary heater part is to prevent the inside of the tank from rusting over. If you took the anode rod out of your heater, it would quickly deteriorate – and you’d also be bathing, cleaning clothes, and washing dishes in rusty water. Check the anode rod every year. If it’s thinner than a pencil, replace it.
Flush The Tank’s Sediment Every Six Months Or So
At the bottom of every water heater lays a layer of fine sediment. If left to accumulate, your home’s pipes and the water heater could begin to get clogged. Make sure to flush your tank’s sediment about twice a year.
The Lower The Temperature, The Longer The Tank Lasts
Adjust your tank to warm water up to a lower level than what it used to be if you’re interested in preserving the life of your water heater – not to mention saving on utility expenses.
As long as you put forth effort, have the right tools, and research a little more about how to carry out these tasks, you’ll be fixing your water heater in no time!