Practical Advice on Maintaining a Home Water Heater to Improve Efficiency and Increase Longevity

Posted by Dan Wolf on Wednesday, October 15th, 2014 at 5:21pm.

Your water heater is something you probably don’t think about often, yet it is something that’s needed multiple times each day. One of the basics of maintaining a home water heater involves draining and flushing the tank from time to time in order to remove sediment. This is actually a very simple process that you can do yourself, even if you have little or no plumbing experience.

Flushing the Tank: Steps to Take

Over time, sediment can build up inside your tank, causing cold water lines to become clogged, and reducing the efficiency of your unit. Flush the tank by turning off the electricity and cold water inlet, and then connecting a garden hose to your tank’s drain valve. Open the drain valve, which will allow water to be removed from your tank via the hose.
Once it’s empty, close the drain valve, disconnect the hose and then close the tank’s pressure relief valve. Turn on all hot water faucets in the house before turning on the cold water inlet leading directly to your tank. Once hot water begins to flow from a faucet, turn it off. After all the faucets have been closed, turn on the electricity to your tank.


The interval between tank draining will depend on how hard your water is and the amount of hot water your household uses. If you have extremely hard water, you may need to perform this process two or three times a year, but once a year might be sufficient if your water is soft or you use very little hot water.

Flushing a hot water tank is just one way to ensure it is as energy efficient as possible. For even more home maintenance tips, contact us.

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