Your home’s hot water tank has a life of around 10 to 12 years, but if you don’t maintain it well, it can be as low as 6 to 7 years. No one wants that. If you want to ensure your home heater’s hot water tank stays functioning well, here’s what you need to do.

Flush the Tank

You should make a note to flush your home’s hot water tank every few months, or once a year, at least. Carrying out a flush will prevent rust and corrosion within the tank as it removes the sediments from the bottom of the tank. Removing the sediments also improves the efficiency of the heater. Here’s how you can flush your hot water tank:

  1. Locate the drain valve and place a bucket under it to catch the drained water.
  2. Turn the drain valve counterclockwise to drain the water into the bucket. Draining a few gallons can do the job of removing most of the sediments.

Do note that the water may be hot, so be careful when releasing the drain valve.

  1. Once a few gallons of water are drained, shut the valve by turning it clockwise.

Do this every few months, and you will keep your hot water tank sediment-free and your water heater running efficiently.

Test the T&P Valve

Your water heating system’s temperature and pressure relief valve is a critical safety feature that senses dangerous pressure buildup or temperature spikes within the water tank and opens the valve to relieve some pressure. A T&P valve works to prevent the water tank from exploding due to excessive pressure or heat. 

You should test the T&P valve at least once a year to ensure it is working correctly. Here’s how you can test it:

  1. Locate the discharge tube connected to the T&P valve (usually, it is at the base of the tank), and place a bucket under its end.
  2. On the T&P valve, use the manual discharge lever to open the valve. This will release the hot water into the bucket via the discharge tube. Note that the water will be hot, so be careful.
  3. After a few seconds, let go of the lever and let it snap back into place.

If opening the lever does not release water, or if it leaks after the test, you should replace the valve soon.

Lower the Temperature

Setting the water heater temperature high can cause several issues over time—it can cause excess load on the heater, increase your energy bills, and cause mineral deposits in the tank at a faster rate. The best way to prevent such issues is by lowering the temperature. For most houses, the ideal temperature is around 120F

Have It Inspected

Lastly, the best way to ensure your hot water tank survives for a decade is to contact Capital Plumbing. We can inspect, diagnose, and fix any issues with your hot water tank in Edmonton so that it runs efficiently for years to come. Contact us to know more about our home water heater maintenance services.