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How Often Should You Drain Your Hot Water Heater?

The water heater is one of those appliances that work day in and out to keep you and your family comfortable. And yet, it is often taken for granted. Out of sight is out of mind, and this is true for water heaters that work years on end without the need for maintenance. However, like all home appliances, water heaters too need periodic maintenance in order to work efficiently. A poorly maintained water heater may continue to do its job but will gradually cause your energy bills to spike, and will ultimately fail. Needless to say, hot water heater repairs can be complex and expensive.

The best way to protect your expensive investment is to get your heater serviced annually by a reputable water heater contractor. A reliable plumber will perform a full inspection for leaks and rust. During the annual maintenance, the plumber may also check your thermostat and replace the anode rod to increase the longevity of your unit. While annual service is the best way to care for your unit, it is also important for you to flush the tank as often as you can to keep your heater working in good condition. How often you must flush the tank depends on the mineral content in the water that runs through your faucets.

Why Must You Drain Your Water Heater Tank Periodically?

Draining your water heater tank is an important step in its maintenance. Doing so will flush out lime and other sediments that build up over time, and thus, will improve your water heater’s efficiency and lifespan. Failing to flush the tank can lead to sediment build-up over time, which will calcify and eventually cause your unit to break down.

If you live in an area that has a lot of limestone, it is likely that the groundwater will pick up magnesium deposits, resulting in hard water. Unbeknown to most homeowners, hard water causes limescale build-up in the bottom of water heaters, leading to uneven heating and eventually, leaks. In some cases, scaling can also burn out the lower heating element and clog the drain valve.

How Often Should You Flush a Water Heater Tank?

How often you must flush your water tank depends on the amount of hot water you use, whether your groundwater is hard or soft, and also the size of your tank. The hotter the water you use, the more often you must flush out your tank. Flushing out the mineral deposits that accumulate at the bottom of your tank will prevent your unit from malfunctioning. Be sure to use the manufacturer’s handbook to guide you through the process.

If you do not know how to drain a water heater or simply do not want to get your hands messy, call in the professionals at Four Seasons Plumbing to do the job for you. We have years of experience in water heater repairs and plumbing services. Call us at 828-216-3894.

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