How to Maintain Your Hot Water System
Tuesday, October 9th, 2018
Hot water systems are essential to your everyday life, so it is important that you maintain them well. We rely on hot water systems for comfortable showers, cooking our meals and washing – all activities that are hard to go a day without.
Taking good care of your hot water system can save you a lot of stress in the long term as it can help prevent issues from arising when you aren’t equipped to deal with them.
There’s never a convenient time for your hot water system to break down, so proper maintenance is always essential. Taking preventative measures, such as the ones below, can help give you some peace of mind.
Keeping tabs on your sacrificial anode
Most hot water systems will have a sacrificial anode, which is a metal rod constructed from aluminum or magnesium, with a layer of zinc.
A sacrificial anode protects your hot water system by attracting any impurities in the tank water so that any reaction and rusting is directed towards the metal rod rather than the inside of the tank.
Having a sacrificial anode greatly increases the life and functionality of your hot water system, so it’s important that you remember to replace it.
On average, your sacrificial anode should be replaced once every 5 years and remembering to do this simple bit of maintenance can extend the life of your hot water tank significantly.
Checking up on the temperature and relief valves
The temperature and relief values are safety measures for your hot water tank. These valves will automatically vent hot water from your tank if the internal pressure or temperature is getting too high.
Having a precautionary measure like this is incredibly important as your tank could potentially explode (yes, explode) from too much internal pressure or heat expansion. These valves act as an emergency measure to prevent the worst from taking place.
Your temperature and relief valves should be checked every six months, although you should always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions just to be safe.
How to check your valves:
You can check that these valves are in working condition yourself by testing the flow of water from your valve. Lifting the valve handle should expel hot water from the pipe, while closing it should stop the flow of water.
The water expelled should be very hot, so it is essential you are wearing the appropriate clothing for your protection. Hold the end of the pipe away from you, and wear closed shoes and gloves.
If it doesn’t seem like the valves in your hot water system are working as they should, you should call your plumber for a closer inspection. These components should also be replaced around every two years.
Call your plumber for a checkup
Calling your plumber for a regular checkup is the best way to ensure the maintenance of your hot water system. The replacement of your sacrificial anode and valves shouldn’t be attempted on your own and is best left to an experienced professional.
Hiring a plumber to perform a routine check-up will ensure that everything is operating as it should so you can enjoy hot water all-year-round!