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Home Maintenance Topics

2-10 Maintenance Guide / Systems Maintenance / Water Heater Maintenance

Systems Maintenance

Water Heater Maintenance

To assure proper function
Twice a year
  • Read the manufacturer’s operation manual, which explains how to periodically drain and refill the tank for optimal performance. Read more about draining your water heater.
  • Check that temperature setting is set on letter “B”, “Normal,” or 140 degrees.
  • For natural gas units, there is a pilot light and a main burner that heats the water. If the pilot light goes out, read the relighting instructions found on the side of the tank.
  • Never turn on electricity to the unit or light the pilot if it has an empty tank.
  • Always shut off the electric or gas supply before turning off the water supply.
  • When away from your home for an extended time, turn the temperature down to its lowest setting.
  • Never store combustible materials near a natural gas unit. Fumes are often heavier than air and can make their way to the pilot light.
  • Vacuum often near the base of the unit to keep dust from interfering with the flame.
  • Avoid using the top of the water heater as a storage shelf.
  • Test the pressure relief valve at least once a year by briefly pulling up on the lever and confirming water discharge. Stay away from the end of discharge pipe when performing this test, due to scalding danger.
  • Condensation at bottom of inner tank and above flame may not be a leak.
  • . Water dripping from the bottom of the outer tank may be a leak.
  • Consult with a qualified plumber as necessary.