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Sediment Settling in Your Water Heater? Maintenance Tips for Cleaning It Out

Sediment Settling in Your Water Heater? Maintenance Tips for Cleaning It OutOf all the HVAC equipment installed in your Calgary area home, the water heater is the one appliance you rely on every day. Whether gas or electric, it’s generally very dependable and quiet, built to last about 10 years. With proper maintenance, however, you can extend the life of a water heater.

All water – hard or soft – contains dissolved minerals which eventually settle to the bottom of the tank when the water stands for long periods of time. This layer of sediment builds up, reducing the energy efficiency and eventually damaging the tank of the water heater.

While a full inspection should be done by your local HVAC contractor as part of your HVAC maintenance plan, flushing your water heater once a year is good water heater maintenance. The following tips will help your water heater operate more efficiently while extending the life of the unit.

  • Shut off the electricity to the tank at the circuit breaker for an electric water heater. Take note of the thermostat setting on a gas water heater before shutting off the gas valve to the tank.
  • Shut off the cold water valve on the tank and open the pressure relief valve to lower the water pressure. Release about one gallon of water into a bucket.
  • Attach a garden hose to the drain valve near the bottom of the tank and run it outdoors or into a floor drain.
  • Open the drain valve and let the water completely drain out of the tank before shutting off the drain valve, disconnecting the hose and closing the pressure relief valve..
  • Turn on only the hot-water spigots in your home, then the cold-water valve to the tank. Close each spigot when water begins to flow.
  • You can now turn the electricity back on or turn on the gas valve, light the pilot and reset the thermostat.

For more expert HVAC tips or to schedule water heater maintenance, please contact the HVAC professionals at Arpi’s Industries. We’ve served the greater Calgary area for more than 50 years.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta 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.

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