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Many people purchase a conventional tank water heater and simply forget about it until it stops working and it's time to replace it. However, with a few simple water heater maintenance steps you can increase the lifespan of the unit while also making it work more efficiently.

Water Heater Maintenance

1. Flush the water heater tank annually

Almost all water heater manufacturers will recommend flushing the water heater tank annually. Draining the tank will remove the sediment that has collected at the bottom of the tank which will allow the burner to work more efficiently. Check the manufacturer's instructions for the correct procedure for draining your model of water heater.

2. Check the anode rod and replace it if needed

The anode rod hangs in the tank to help prevent its inside from rusting out. It should be checked annually when the tank is drained. Replacing a badly corroded rod is far cheaper than replacing the water heater.
Without a good anode rod, hot water will rapidly corrode the inside of the tank, shortening its life.

3. Insulate the water heater tank

This is a step you only have to do once. Wrapping your water heater in a blanket of insulation can improve it's efficiency up to 40 percent.

Have questions about maintaining your water heater? Call the experts at MR Plumbing, we're here to help.

Tuesday, 21 August 2018 16:15

How Water Heaters Can Affect Water Quality

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If you're noticing changes to the water coming out ouf your tap – such as strange colors, tastes or odors – the cause may be your water heater. To find out if the water heater is the cause, note the following:

• Does the problem only occur first thing in the morning?
• Does it happen after the water has not been used for a while?
• Does the problem clear up after you run the water for a few minutes?
• Is the problem isolated to the hot rather than cold running faucet?

If any of the above cases is true, it could be caused by your water heater.

Water Heater Odors

Bad smells, such as a sulphur odors, are sometimes caused by bacteria growing in the water heater tank. When the water heater goes unused for long periods of time bacteria, while usually harmless, can cause unpleasant odors. A sulphur, or rotten egg odor, is sometimes caused by a corroded anode rod inside the water heater. The rod should be inspected and replaced if needed.

Hard water can also cause sediment to accumulate at the bottom of the tank, causing odors. Installing a water softener should fix the problem.

Water Discoloration

Brown, red or yellow tinted water can be caused by rust from a corroded water heater tank, or pipes inside the home. The iron present in most water is not a significant health risk, but it can stain clothing and dishes and leave drinking water with a metallic taste. Your plumber can help track down the cause and determine if the water heater is the source of the problem.

White or tan particles in the water are usually a sign of calcium or magnesium. While not generally harmful to ingest, the minerals can clog pipes and drains over time. A water filtration system or water softener can remove the minerals from the water.

Have concerns about water quality in your home? Give MR Plumbing a call. We can help identify the cause of the problem and recommend effective solutions for cleaner, better tasting water.
Tuesday, 07 August 2018 15:33

Energy Saving Home Heating Tips For Fall

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Heating takes up the largest percentage of a typical household's energy use, about 42% of the typical utility bill. You can save money and increase your comfort by properly maintaining your heating system. A properly maintained heating system will not only keep your home more comfortable it will reduce the likelihood of a breakdown during the coldest time of winter, when you need it the most.

Even the most energy-efficient heating system won't have a significant impact on your heating bill if the whole-house isn't energy efficient. Good insulation, duct sealing, weather sealing windows and doors and programming your thermostat can save about 30% on your energy bill.

Here are some home heating tips to reduce energy use and make your home more comfortable:
  • Replace your furnace filter once a month or as recommended by the manufacturer
  • Program your thermostat to the lowest comfortable level, and lower when you're away from home or sleeping
  • Keep your air ducts clean and make sure they are nit blocked by furniture, rugs or drapes
  • Seal holes and gaps in air vents
  • During the winter keep shades on your south-facing windows open during the day to allow the sunlight to enter your home and closed at night to reduce the chill.
  • Use ceiling fans to improve the circulation of warm air in your living space
  • Replace worn weather sealing around windows and doors
  • Ensure your attic has sufficient insulation
Have questions about saving energy this heating season? Give MR Plumbing, Heating, Air, Electrical a call. From furnace tune-ups to duct sealing, we can help you stay comfortable and save energy all year long.
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