If you’re like most Chicagoland homeowners, hot water is pretty essential to your daily routine. From showers to washing dishes and doing laundry, your home relies on a properly working water heater. In this article, we’ll review some relatively straightforward ways that local homeowners can engage in regular water heater upkeep and help prevent common water heater problems, especially as the tank starts to age.
For professional water heater services here in the Chicago area, contact the plumbing professionals here at King Cooling, Heating & Plumbing. We offer free VIP plumbing inspections, which means you can have an expert plumber out to look at your water heater if you suspect anything is wrong or if you think it might be time to replace it with a new model.
Our tips for regular water heater upkeep here in Chicago
1. Inspect the pressure valve
All water heaters have a temperature pressure release valve that can release pressure from the tank if it gets too high. It’s essential that this valve is working correctly to avoid serious problems. You can inspect the TPR valve by lifting the valve to let a little bit of water out of the tank, then close it. If water continues to flow from the valve, you’ll need to have one of the professional plumbers here at King replace it.
2. Check the anode rods
Regularly checking on your water heater’s anode rod is essential in preventing the tank from rusting. This small rod consists of a steel wire surrounded by either zinc, magnesium, aluminum, or all three. The anode rod attracts the corrosive materials in your water so that the interior tank walls don’t corrode. If you don’t replace the rod regularly, you may have to replace your tank sooner.
To check on the status of the anode rod, unscrew it from the top of the tank. If it has been corroded down to less the one-half-inch thick or has a thick coating of calcium, it’s time for a replacement. Call King for anode rod replacement services here in Chicagoland.
3. Flush the tank
For optimal functionality, your water heater needs to be flushed at least annually. This removes the sediment that builds up in the tank, reducing its efficiency and even clogging the water lines.
Perform a tank flush by turning off the cold-water inlet to the tank. Attach a hose to the drain valve and open the TPR valve. Drain the water out of the tank into an area that can a large amount of hot water, such as a floor drain. After all the water is out of the tank, close all the valves and turn on the hot water faucets in your home and the cold-water inlet. Once water flows back through the faucets, close each one and turn your water heater back on, lighting the pilot light carefully.
Call King for our water heater services
If you’re unsure about how to proceed or uncomfortable doing this on your own, please call in the professionals at King. Our experienced plumbers can quickly and safely manage your water heater upkeep—including pressure valve, tank flush, and anode rod check—and ensure that your system is ready for the year ahead. Call us today!