How Often Should I Flush My Home Water Heater?

January 12, 2023

How Often Should I Flush My Home Water Heater?

Home water heaters operate 24/7 to ensure you and your family always have an available source of hot water. All this work can take its toll on your water heater. Regular maintenance is the best way to avoid problems with your home’s water heater. This includes flushing your home’s water heater once a year.

Why Should You Flush Your Home’s Water Heater?

Over time, sediment, minerals, and other materials can settle and collect at the bottom of your water heater’s storage tank. This buildup can affect the operation of the heating element in the bottom of the tank, the flow of water in and out of the tank, and the quality of the hot water being produced. Flushing out this sediment-laden water in the storage and replacing it with fresh water helps homeowners avoid many water heater problems.

Water Heater Problems Caused by Sediment Buildup

Many water heater problems are caused by sediment buildup. As the heating element becomes covered in sediment it has to work harder to heat the water in the tank. Eventually, it may become unable to heat or maintain the water inside the tank at the desired temperature.

Sediment buildup can damage your water heater and home’s plumbing as well. The sediment can corrode the storage tank, causing it to leak. Damage to pipes can include clogged pipes, loss in water pressure, leaking pipes, and burst pipes.

Another problem is that these sediments can contaminate your drinking water causing it to become discolored, taste and smell strange, and unhealthy for human use. Water heater sediments can include potentially harmful materials such as nitrates, E. Coli and other bacteria, and heavy metals like arsenic and mercury.

Benefits of Having Your Water Heater Flushed Out

There are many benefits of having your water heater flushed on an annual basis:

  • Extends the useful life of your water heater
  • Easier to maintain desired hot water temperature
  • Reduced risk of heating element and other mechanical problems
  • Lower chances of corrosion and other damage to your water heater and plumbing
  • Lower energy bills
  • Clean, healthy hot water supply

The Process of Flushing Your Home’s Water Heater

Here’s a basic rundown of the steps for flushing a water heater.

  • Shut off the water supply to the water heater
  • Turn off the gas or electricity
  • Open a nearby hot water faucet. This prevents a vacuum from forming and allows the tank to drain faster and easier.
  • Attach a hose to the water heater’s drain valve. Run the hose into a drain, or into a bucket.
  • Before you open the drain valve, allow the water to cool to a safe temperature. Let the water flow until it stops and the heater is empty.
  • Detach the hose and close the drain valve. Allow the water heater to refill with water.
  • Turn on the gas or electricity.
  • (It may take an hour or two for the water to heat up to the required temperature.)

If you know what you’re doing, flushing the water out of a water heater is a pretty straightforward process. Call a professional Oceanside, CA plumber if you are not sure of the process and want the job done right.

Water Heater Services in Oceanside, CA

Water heaters are expensive to replace. You want to keep yours up and running for as long as possible. Regular maintenance and repair is the best way to get the most value out of your water heater.

1st Choice Plumbing, Flood & Restoration has been providing expert water heater services to home and business owners in Oceanside, CA since 2012. Our team of licensed Oceanside, CA plumbers have the training and experience to keep your water heater in tip-top condition. If it’s time for a replacement, we offer professional water heater installation services, including tankless water heaters.

You can contact 1st Choice Plumbing, Flood & Restoration through our website or call us at 866-437-0205 to get a quote or learn about our water heater discounts and specials.