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Provo Water Heater Flush: Reasons and Frequency

Provo Water Heater Flush: Reasons and Frequency

While hot water heaters are among the plumbing appliances that require the least maintenance, they do need a bit of attention every now and then. For traditional water heaters that utilize a tank format, one such area of attention that should be carried out periodically is the flushing of the tank.

At My Buddy the Plumber, we're happy to offer a variety of water heater repair and other water heater and plumbing services to clients throughout Provo, including assistance with simple maintenance like flushing the water heater tank. Why does this task need to be carried out every so often, and how often should it be done? Furthermore, how can a handy homeowner perform this job safely and effectively? We'll go over all these answers in this two-part blog series.

Why Water Heater Flushing is Done

Over periods of time, sediment buildup occurs within the water heater tank. This can result in a number of problems, including decreased performance levels (e.g., increased wait times for hot water), mineral scaling on the bottom of the tank, or corrosion that leads to leaks and other problems like clogged pipes.

All of these issues are among the most common reasons why water heater tanks are replaced. But by performing the flushing process on a periodic basis, homeowners can remove sediment buildup in between larger water heater tank replacement projects.

How Often it Should Be Done

The frequency of flushing the water heater will depend on a few factors, such as the quality of water used and where you live. In Provo, we recommend flushing the tank every few years. However, if your home uses well water or if there is a high concentration of minerals in general that aren't removed by filtration processes (such as reverse osmosis), it may be necessary to flush the tank more often.

As we noted above, some handy homeowners will be capable of flushing their own hot water heater. However, we strongly recommend that if you're uncomfortable with any of the steps we'll lay out here and in part two of our series, you stop what you're doing and call our plumbers for assistance -- both for your safety and for the quality of your water heater.

Water Supply and Gas Turn-Off

Before any flushing can begin, you'll need to cut off the water supply coming in to your hot water heater. Also, you'll want to shut the gas supply line that leads into the unit. With these lines turned off, you can place a bucket under the drain valve on the bottom of the tank and open it up.

Hose Attachment

Once your water and gas lines are off, attach a garden hose to the tank's drain valve. Simultaneously, lead the opposite end of the hose to a drain or some kind of exterior receptacle where water can be spilled or drained out. If you set the bucket up correctly, this should allow sediment to spill out of your hot water heater tank for a period of time.

In part two of our series, we'll go over the final steps in this process. For more on how to flush your hot water heater, or to learn about any of our plumbing or HVAC services in Provo, speak to the staff at My Buddy the Plumber today.

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