Water heaters aren't usually on your mind until you've got to take cold showers and wash your dishes in cold water. If this happens when the temperature's low you'll be miserable, so spending some of your time on the water heater now is a wise choice. With these suggestions, appliance maintenance is easy.
Buildup of sediment and minerals can mean trouble. That's why it's good to drain the heater's tank every so often to look for signs of that buildup. By pressing the drain valve and running water into a bucket below it, you can visually check for any loose sediment in the water. If you see any, you may want to do a full flush by turning off water supply to the appliance, lowering the temperature and emptying out the tank completely to see if that washes out all the sediment. If not, you may need to replace some of the inner components.
Use Anode Rods
Sediment buildup isn't the only problem your water heater faces. Corrosion on the inside of the tank is problematic too; your water heater's tank is lined with metal, which can rust and crack. To reduce the chances of this happening, use a single anode rod in the heater tank. These rods are thin, long, and will attract all corrosive elements so the integrity of the metal liner remains intact.
Turn Down Temperature
If you've got your heater set to the highest setting, not only are your utility bills going to reflect that, but it can also wear down your tank quickly. Most of the time, the hottest temperature is not necessary for comfortable showers and adequately hot water. Try setting the temperature at the lowest comfortable temperature for your family; you'll protect the heater.
Have Noises Checked
Don't assume that all the sounds your water heater makes are okay. Even if you've recently moved in and don't remember life without water heater sounds, noise could be an early indicator that repairs are essential. Sounds can mean that mineral buildup is interfering with functioning, that a leak has happened or many other issues which need a pro's touch. Get an HVAC repair technician to look at it.
Periodic attention for your water heater should keep it working. If you're unsure what different sounds mean or need repairs, remain in contact with a HVAC repair company that can get to your home right away and assess the heater's health.