Water heater replacement can be an expensive repair, with cost for parts and labor being anywhere from $750-$1,500 for a tank style water heater. So, to save you time and money, there are some tips you need to know that can double the life of your water heater and save you from having to replace your tank sooner than expected.

  1. Replace Your Anode Every 2 Years

Tank style water heaters have a device called an anode rod. The anode is a simple rod, that is usually attached at the top and goes down into the water heater. The rod is typically made of aluminum or magnesium, which attracts minerals in the water and protects the internal components of the tank. Changing the anode every couple of years can double the life of your water heater and only costs about $20 each time. It’s a simple replacement that can save you a lot of money in the long run by making sure the inside of your tank is being maintained.

  1. Drain Your Tank

The next thing you can do is attach your garden hose to the drain at the bottom of the water heater and drain about five gallons of water. This should be done semiannually or as frequently as the manufacturer recommends for your particular unit. Doing so will flush any sediment that has accumulated in the bottom of your tank.

It is best to start this maintenance with a brand new water heater. It isn’t recommended to start this procedure if your water heater is over five years old because the sediment may damage the faucet and not allow it to shut off.

  1. Check your Cold Water Line

Finally, if your water heater is producing hot water for only a few minutes before getting cold, it may not be the water heater itself that’s broken, but the cold water feed line. The cold-water feed has a line inside the tank that goes all the way to the bottom, which allows the heated water to rise and exit through the hot water supply at top of the unit. The cold water feeding at the bottom also quickly activates the burner, heating the cold water as it enters the tank and allowing you to use most the hot water in the tank.

If the line disintegrates and breaks off, the cold water dumps right at the top of the tank and cools the hot water immediately. It also delays the burner from firing, often for several minutes. A plumber can replace the cold water feed line for much less cost than replacing the entire tank, making it a much easier fix than you might assume.

By following these simple tips, you can save money and prolong the life of your unit so you and your family can enjoy additional years of piping hot water.

For all energy related questions, contact the energy experts at Florida Public Utilities by clicking here.