In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to take your appliances for granted, and your electric water heater is no exception. But like any other household appliance, electric water heaters require proper care and maintenance to ensure they operate efficiently and have a long lifespan. This article will detail six essential tips for prolonging the life of electric water heaters.
Set the Right Temperature
One of the simplest yet most effective ways to extend the life of your electric water heater is to set the thermostat to the recommended temperature. A temperature setting of 49 degrees Celsius is hot enough to meet your daily needs but not so hot that it causes excessive wear and tear on the heating elements. Higher temperatures not only accelerate the formation of sediment, but can also increase the risk of scalding.
Regularly Flush the Tank
Over time, sediment and mineral deposits can accumulate at the bottom of your water heater tank. This build-up can reduce the unit’s efficiency and lead to corrosion. To prevent these issues, it’s crucial to flush the tank regularly. Connect a hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the tank and let the water run until it appears clear. Removing sediment is an easy way to improve heating efficiency and extend the life of your electric water heater.
Check the Anode Rod Regularly
The anode rod is a crucial component that helps to prevent corrosion inside the tanks of electric water heaters. Over time, the rod can start to deteriorate and lose its effectiveness. Inspect the anode rod annually and replace it if it’s more than 50% depleted. This simple maintenance task can prevent corrosion and protect your tank.
Test the Pressure Relief Valve
The pressure relief valve is a safety feature that releases excess pressure from the tank. To ensure it functions properly, test the valve at least once a year. Lift the lever, and if water doesn’t flow out, or if it continues to leak after releasing the lever, it might be time to replace the valve.
Schedule Professional Inspections
While there are tasks you can perform yourself, it’s essential to schedule regular professional inspections. A licensed plumber can identify potential issues, such as leaks, electrical problems or failing components. When problems are caught early, you can save money on repairs and ensure your water heater operates efficiently for years to come.
Consider Upgrading to a Tankless Water Heater
In addition to the above tips for extending the life of your electric water heater, it might be worth considering an upgrade to a tankless water heater. Unlike traditional tank-style heaters, tankless electric water heaters heat water on-demand, providing hot water only when needed. This not only eliminates standby heat loss, but also reduces the risk of sediment buildup. While the initial investment may be higher, the longer lifespan makes it a compelling option for those looking to enhance their home’s efficiency and reduce their environmental footprint.