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How to maintain your hot water heater


  • Flush Your Water Heater Every Six Months

    Sediment 
    The most impactful maintenance service you can provide to your water heater is to regularly flush it out. This keeps the hard water mineral in Wisconsin water from building up on the bottom of your water heater. Lime, scale and calcium will eventually build up and decrease the efficiency of the heater and cause stress on the tank. 

    Pro Tip- Put a reminder on your phone to flush the water heater or join our maintenance program
  • Check The Water Heater Anode Rod Annually

    Inside the water heater is the sacrificial anode rod. This is a tank protecting device that breaks down as water attacks it, saving your water heater tank from being attacked. If the anode rod depletes and there is no anode to attack, the water will go to work on the water heater tank which is why it is critical to make sure that the anode road is intact.

    Pro Tip- Use a high torque impact driver to remove the anode rod and the proper amount of teflon tape and pipe thread sealant when you reinstall it.
  • Other Maintenance Items To Check On Your Water Heater Annually

    Gas water heater maintenance items

    • Check for gas leaks
    • Pull and clean thermocouple 
    • Pull and clean flame sensor 
    • Remove and clean burners
    • Inspect water heater venting 
    • Test outgoing water temperature 

    Electric annual maintenance items

    • Inspect and check wiring 
    • OHM check electric elements 
    • Snug electrical lugs on elements and thermostats 
    • Test outgoing water temperature

Ready To Get The Water Heater Maintenance You Need?

Austin Plumbing, Heating & Air truck responding to a water heater emergency

Water Heater Maintenance Made Easy

Everyone wants their water heater to last longer, especially at the cost of a replacement water heater nowadays! Gas water heaters, electric water heaters and tankless water heaters all benefit from annual maintenance.

Interested in DIY Water Heater Maintenance? Check out our step by step guide on how to maintain your water heater.

The Importance Of Water Heater Maintenance

Each manufacturer of water heaters has their specific annual maintenance items. We find that most manufactures expect you to test, inspect or adjust critical parts of the water heater in order to increase performance and life of your water heater. Below are some common items that we routinely check during yearly water heater tune-ups


Temperature And Pressure Relief Valve

This is a critical safety component of the heater that should be tested annually.

Anode Rod

This is a consumable piece of the water heater that deteriorates over time. When it’s gone, the water will deteriorate the water heater tank, so it’s important to monitor the condition of the anode rod to prolong the life of the heater.

Sediment Removal

During normal use, sediment builds up on the bottom of your hot water tank which makes the unit inefficient and more prone to leaking. This sediment should be flushed out annually.

Combustion Chamber, Gas Piping & Exhaust

Because of the carbon monoxide risk associated with all gas appliances, a thorough inspection of the combustion chamber and associated gas pipe should be done for safety annually.

Water Pressure

If the water pressure in your tank gets higher than the maximum of 80 PSI, your water heater is destined for a short life. Your home’s water pressure should be tested annually to make sure it’s under the code maximum.

Schedule Your Water Heater Maintenance Today


From emergency service to routine maintenance or installations, Austin Plumbing is ready to take your call!
Call us now to schedule an appointment.