Expert Tips for Maintaining Your Home’s Water Heater for Optimal Performance

Having a reliable and efficient water heater is a crucial component of a comfortable home. It provides a steady supply of hot water to meet your daily needs, such as showering, washing dishes, and doing laundry. To keep your water heater working efficiently and effectively, regular maintenance is essential. As HVAC and plumbing specialists, we understand the importance of proper water heater care and are committed to providing helpful guidance on essential maintenance tasks and how our team of professionals can support you in keeping your water heating system in tip-top condition.

Without proper maintenance, your water heater may not perform efficiently, leading to issues such as inconsistent water temperatures, higher energy bills, and even potential leaks or damage to the unit itself. Regular care and upkeep can not only extend the lifespan of your water heater but also save you money and avoid inconvenience.

Join us as we cover several essential water heater maintenance tasks that can help enhance its performance and longevity. These tasks include checking and adjusting the water temperature, insulating the water heater, draining and flushing the tank, inspecting and replacing the anode rod, and more. We will also provide insights into understanding when it’s time to call our professional technicians for assistance, such as addressing repair needs or considering a water heater replacement.

By staying proactive about your water heater maintenance, you can enjoy a reliable and efficient home water heating system that serves you well for years to come. Our professional technicians are always here to offer guidance, perform routine maintenance, and ensure that your water heater remains a dependable and valuable asset to your home.

Checking and Adjusting the Water Temperature

One essential aspect of water heater maintenance is monitoring and adjusting the water temperature. Typically, manufacturers set water heaters at a default temperature of 140°F (60°C). However, if you find that the hot water is too hot or not hot enough, consider lowering or increasing the temperature accordingly. Adjusting the temperature between 120°F and 130°F (48°C – 54°C) can help conserve energy, prevent scalding accidents, and still provide adequate hot water for your needs. Our technicians can help you find the ideal temperature setting for your home and show you how to make adjustments if needed.

Insulating the Water Heater

Insulating your water heater, especially if it’s located in an unheated area, can prevent energy loss and help the unit operate more efficiently. An insulating jacket should be fitted around the water heater tank, ensuring it fits tightly and securely. Insulating hot water pipes leading from the heater can also improve energy efficiency by reducing heat loss as the hot water travels through the pipes. Our professionals can assist you in selecting the proper insulating materials and installing them for optimal performance.

Draining and Flushing the Tank

Over time, sediment and minerals can accumulate at the bottom of your water heater tank, reducing the heater’s efficiency and potentially causing damage. To prevent this issue, it’s essential to drain and flush your water heater tank every six to twelve months. This process involves shutting off the power and water supply to the heater, attaching a hose to the drain valve, and allowing the tank to drain completely. Afterward, flush the system by opening the cold water supply valve for several minutes to remove any remaining sediment. If you’re unsure or uncomfortable with this task, our technicians can perform this routine maintenance for you.

Inspecting and Replacing the Anode Rod

The anode rod is a crucial component of your water heater, designed to protect the inner lining of the tank from corrosion. This metal rod gradually deteriorates over time, sacrificing itself to protect the tank. Periodically inspecting the anode rod and replacing it when necessary helps prolong the life of your water heater. Our professional can inspect the anode rod during routine maintenance, determine its condition, and replace it if required.

When to Call Our Professionals

There are certain situations that warrant calling in our professional technicians for water heater maintenance or repair. These include:

  1. Leaks around the Unit: If you notice leaks near your water heater’s base, this could indicate an issue with the tank or connections, which our professionals can quickly diagnose and repair.
  2. Inconsistent or Insufficient Hot Water: If your heater isn’t providing an adequate supply of hot water, it may require a repair or even a replacement.
  3. Strange Noises: Unusual sounds coming from your water heater may signify a problem with the heating element or sediment buildup, which our technicians can address accordingly.
  4. Age of the Unit: If your water heater is over ten years old, it may be reaching the end of its lifespan. Our professionals can help you decide whether it’s time for a replacement and guide you through the process of selecting and installing a new unit.


Proper and regular maintenance of your water heater is essential for its optimal performance and longevity. By following these expert tips and enlisting the help of our professional technicians at Stewart Plumbing, Heating and A/C for tasks that require more expertise, you can ensure a reliable and efficient water heating system for your home. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us today to learn more about our plumbing services in Scott City and for expert guidance and assistance with all your water heater maintenance and repair needs.