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Damien McCusker, Manager of Arpi's residential service division, has been working in the HVAC industry for 16 years and has hands-on experience in new home installations, furnace and air conditioner replacements, sales and residential service. He spends most of his spare time being an UBER driver, driving his kids to soccer practice and games.

Hot Water Heater Maintenance: Special Tips To Keep Your System In Peak Condition

Phil Laprairie

Hot Water Heater Maintenance: Special Tips To Keep Your System In Peak ConditionThere are three specific factors that make hot water heater maintenance a must for every homeowner. You see, hot water heaters are prone to fail if they’re not well maintained. Factors such as the buildup of sediment, a corroded tank or too much pressure within the system can cause the equipment to break down.

In fact, these three factors are the leading cause of system failure. To keep your equipment operating well and for a long time, make sure you put hot water heater maintenance at the top of your to-do list.

Most experts advise homeowners to flush out their tanks once or twice a year, an effective way to purge the tank of buildup and keep it clean. You should also regularly inspect the tank for buildup, cleaning out any visible sediment that you can access via the nipple or clean-out hole. The final task homeowners can do to help remove buildup is to open the pressure-relief valve.

When performing any hot water maintenance tasks, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. You can and should also have an expert HVAC contractor help with maintenance. Using an expert is particularly helpful because not all water-heating systems are the same, and some components require unique considerations, including the following factors:

  • Hot water tanks often use a plastic drain valve that you’ll need to access when draining the tank during maintenance. However, these types of valves break easily, and it’s optimal to have your contractor install a drain valve made of brass, which is much more durable.
  • Some experts recommend that homeowners flush just a single litre from the tank to remove sediment. At Arpi’s, we recommend that homeowners flush the entire tank for optimal results.
  • There is a component within the tank called an anode that purposely draws corroded materials that exist in the water. The anode is often called the sacrificial lamb, because by drawing corrosion to itself, the tank is protected. As a result, however, the anode needs to be replaced regularly.

For expert advice on hot water maintenance, contact Arpi’s Industries today! We’ve been serving Greater Calgary-area homeowners for almost 50 years.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about water heaters and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

Arpi’s services Calgary, Alberta. Visit our website to see our special offers to get started today!

Customer Service image via Shutterstock

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Comments

Thanks for these excellent tips regarding maintenance of a hot water heater. People whose hot water heaters have reached end of life might consider a tankless hot water heater as a replacement. These units typically cost about 30% or so less to operate and take up less room than a conventional hot water heater with a tank. Also called on demand hot water heaters, these units do not heat water until it is called for. One additional benefit is that they should last quite a bit longer than conventional systems, up to 20 years is not unusual. These units cost more to purchase and install, and if your home has a very high demand for hot water you may need more than one unit. Your favorite plumbing contractor should be able to give you all the details and tell you if these systems are right for you.

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