Surprising Plumbing FAQs: Draining Your Water Heater
Things You May Not Know About Your Water Heater
Has anyone ever told you that you need to drain your water heater? This is something that most homeowners know nothing about. However, draining and flushing your water heater yearly or twice a year may be the key to helping extend its life and prevent scale and sediment buildup.
You may need to drain and flush your water heater if:
- You’ve never done it before
- It’s been several years since you last drained and flushed it
- You just moved into a new home and don’t know when it was last drained
- It’s taking a long time for hot water to come from the tap
- Your hot water isn’t as hot as it used to be
- The water coming from your hot water tap is discolored or has sediment in it
While you can find DIY instructions on how to drain and flush your water heater online, we recommend you call our plumbers first, especially if you’ve never drained a water heater before. When it comes to ensuring your water heater’s proper and safe functioning, it is always a good idea to have repairs and maintenance performed by a professional plumber, like AAA Service Plumbing, Heating & Electric.
Keep reading to learn more surprising facts about your water heater.
Up to 25% of Your Monthly Energy Usage Comes from Your Water Heater
We rely on hot water every day, from showering to doing the dishes to doing laundry to washing our hands. Consequently, our water heaters work continuously to meet the demand. Furthermore, if you have a conventional water heater with a storage tank, your water heater runs all day, maintaining the temperature inside your tank. Because of this, your water heater can account for up to 25% of your monthly utility costs.
To combat this, you can install an ENERGY STAR-certified water heater the next time you are due for a water heater replacement. Another option is to install a tankless water heater. Tankless water heaters rely on electricity, and because they do not have to keep a tank of water warm, they tend to use significantly less power and resources than a conventional water heater.
Heat Pumps Can Be Used to Heat Water
You may be aware of heat pumps as a solution to heat your home, but did you know that heat pumps can also provide hot water for your home? As heat pumps become more popular, we are beginning to see more heat pump-powered water heaters on the market. Not only can you buy a stand-alone heat pump water heater, but you can also buy a combo system that provides both water heating and space heating functionality.
Improper Installation Can Lead to Health & Safety Problems
Though it may sound dramatic, an improperly installed water heater can indeed cause serious health and safety hazards. For example, if set up incorrectly, the temperature can be set too high, leading to seriously scalding burns. And this is just the beginning.
An improperly installed water heater can:
- Leak water
- Leak gas
- Leak carbon monoxide
- Allow for bacteria growth in the water tank
- Cause an electrical shock
- Cause a fire
Improperly installed water heaters can even explode. Though very rare, water heater explosions have happened when an improper installation causes pressure issues. They may also explode due to sediment buildup, causing excess pressure.
Because the problems associated with an incorrect installation are so severe, it is crucial that all water heater installations and replacements are completed by a licensed, professional plumber, like ours at AAA Service Plumbing, Heating & Electric.