Simple things in life are some of the most important ones. Warm water is one of these simple necessities that we yearn for. Places near bodies of water are places that our ancestors inhabited exclusively. Living in a place with no running water is much more complicated than one might think. Warm water is especially a luxury in such places.
Water heaters are one of the things that we take for granted. Most people just think they exist and they work. It isn’t until it is too late that people start thinking about water heaters. Luckily, water heaters are not quantum physics. It is pretty easy to deal with such problems and prevent them from appearing in the first place. These 4 tips will serve you greatly when it comes to honing your water heater knowledge.
1. Confirming the issue
Water heaters are pretty straightforward devices. However, if you experience leakage, it does not need to come from the water heater itself. Before diagnosing water heater problems, you need to check the additional piping and other parts. Just because there is water underneath the heater does not imply it is from the heater. Other common issues could be coming from plumbing pipes or regular condensation.
While water is running, check the pipes to see if water is leaking. The water could be leaking at the very end making it look like it is coming from the water heater. To solve this issue, you will need to replace the pipes or valves connecting the pipes. If you see even droplets forming on the water heater, it is just condensation. To avoid this, you need to open a window or put a small fan in there. The circulating air will help this water to evaporate and not drip down the heater.
2. Temperature and pressure valves
Once you determine that the problem comes from the water heater, you will need to shut it down. Shutting down the water heater means stopping the water flow and heating. To stop the water flow, you need to locate the pipe that supplies cold water. At the end of the pipe, you will find either a ball or a dial valve. If you have an electric water heater, just flip the power switch off. If the heat comes from gas, you will need to stop the gas supply
The built-up pressure could have caused valves to loosen up a bit. In that case, by simply tightening them, you will stop the leakage. You can cover the valve with a plumber’s tape to secure the valve even more. If the valve is too old and rusty, it would be better to just get new ones instead. If the valves are in even worse condition, you should definitely call a professional to install new valves. Remember, these valves can have immense built-up of hot steam that can burst right into your face.
3. Drain valve
Every valve can become loose over time and sustain some damage. Drain valves are very important for maintenance purposes. Drain valves usually get damaged from clogged debris, usually salt formation. Switching a fault drain valve is much easier than switching temperature and pressure valves. You can just buy a new drain valve and screw it on yourself with a wrench. It is pretty simple, cheap, and it prevents one of the most common leakage issues.
With the right maintenance, you do not need to worry about water heater leakages. These leakages always occur when you do not want them to happen. Maintenance does require time, but at least it is planned downtime and not unexpected. You can install anode rods that help prevent valve corrosion. It is important to use the drain valve to drain the water heater every once in a while. You will be disgusted to see what this sediment looks like if you do not drain the water heater often.
These 4 tips were selected on the premise of being pretty simple and effective. It does not take long to do any of them, and you can get so many results. It is very fast to learn how to conduct these tricks, and you can start saving your water heater. In times of need, these quick tips will do wonders for your water heater.
Of course, there is vast literature regarding water heaters. It is incredible how much science and philosophy can come out of such simple concepts. It is up to you to read upon more to find even more tricks that could save someone’s time and nerves. Over time, everyone can become a water heater master. The important thing is not to give up and learn more about water heaters.