Should I Drain My Water Heater?

How often does your car need an oil change? Depending on the make and model, it’s likely that it’s every 3-5 months or 3000-5000 miles. Regular oil changes help keep things running smoothly and extend the life of your car, in addition to scheduled maintenance. It’s the same with your water heater. Most manufacturers recommend flushing your water heater at least once a year. But there’s a major caveat: You need to maintain it consistently, draining it year-after-year, or you may experience a leaky mess. Read on to find out what you need to know about draining your water heater.

Why being consistent with draining your water heater is important:

When sediment has been collected at the bottom of the water tank, it’s usually not evenly distributed and tends to collect spots in the tank. These spots are then subjected to higher heat, as the sediment displaces the water from the bottom of the tank.

This increased heat exposure breaks down the steel more quickly in those spots, resulting in a thinning of the metal and multiple potential failure points. A yearly inspection and flush by a certified plumber can clear out the sediment and keep your water heater in peak condition.

Don’t DIY

After several years of sediment build up, the steel may have thinned out enough to have a small hole in it. The existing sediment can act as a type of “plug” for this weakened area of the tank. Imagine what could happen after flushing the tank after many years of build-up: The sediment gets washed out of the hole or thin spot it was plugging, and your tank springs from a leak.

Therefore, yearly maintenance is so important, but if you haven’t flushed your water heater for many years (or ever), don’t risk it by trying to DIY. Contact the experts at Mr. Plumber for an inspection and water heater maintenance. We will take care to evaluate your water heater and recommend the best course of action.

It’s easy to forget about regular water heater maintenance, so consider a Mr. Plumber PlumbingCare Maintenance Agreement to gain peace of mind, and to know that it will be done on schedule and correctly. If you have any questions about draining your water heater, Ask A Plumber.

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