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Water Heating

Water heaters work by using electricity or by burning a fuel, like natural gas or propane. In most cases, heated water is stored in a tank so that it can be ready for use when needed. Some models only heat water whenever it is called for by the user (you) --these are known as on-demand or tankless heaters. 

Taking care of your water heater 

  • Check temperature at a nearby faucet. We recommend a maximum of 120 degrees F. 

  • Check for leaks around the pressure valve and discharge pipe. 

  • Ensure nothing is stored on or near the water heater –especially anything combustible or flammable!

  • Have qualified technician assist with any problems you are unsure about. 

Replace your heater before the situation is dire  

Water heaters typically have a lifespan of 10-12 years, but they can last much longer. Still, we do not recommend waiting to replace your water heater until it has already malfunctioned –potentially leaking and damaging your home’s structure and belongings. 

Ask yourself these questions to decide whether your water heat could be replaced with a new, energy-efficient model: 

  • Does the water heater make popping or cracking noises? This indicates a buildup of sediment in the tank. 

  • Have you ever needed to turn up the temperature setting over time to maintain an adequate supply of hot water? 

  • Do you have very hard water? 

  • Is there a buildup of rust or other deposits under the burner? 

  • Is there evidence of soot or burn marks near the vent hood at the top of the tank? This may indicate dangerous backdrafting. 

Ways to save water at home  

  • Fix leaky faucets. A hot water faucet leaking one drop per second will waste about 60 gallons of hot water a week. This could cost you up to $35 or more a year. 

  • Install flow restrictors on fixtures. These will save money on both the water bill and water heating costs. 

  • Install a water-saving showerhead. A typical showerhead uses between 4-9 gallons of water per minute. A water-saving model uses between 2-3 gallons. 

  • Wash only full loads of laundry or adjust the water level for smaller loads. Use cold water whenever possible. 

  • Use cold water to flush food away in the garbage disposal.

  • Place your water heater on its lowest setting if you are going to be away for a few days or more. 

  • Don’t let the hot water run when you are shaving, washing dishes by hand, or doing similar tasks. 

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