plumbing 4/20/2020 – gtg

The best time to learn about plumbing is now. If you can fix small problems by yourself, you won’t have to hire a plumber and you can prevent large plumbing problems. Read the tips in this guide and you’ll be happy you did it if ever you experience any plumbing issues.

To prevent your frozen pipes from bursting, leave the nearest faucet on to give the water a way to escape. This can prevent damage to your house because it lets the pressure that is in the pipe out, and keeps it from bursting.

Make sure the job gets done by not paying your plumber until you are satisfied, and the work is completed. You may have to put money down before they start working, but avoid paying the total amount until it’s done. You should make sure the plumber did a good job before you pay in full.

Know your plumbing tools and exactly how to use them before you start on any plumbing repair. Study before any do it yourself project by reading any relevant manuals, going online, and even making trips to your local public library. Be sure to plan before starting a repair, because it can be expensive to fix mistakes.

You need to avoid using any kind of tablet or odor remover in your toilet if at all possible. These tablets have chemicals that can damage rubber parts that are essential to the proper functioning of your toilet.

You can resolve most toilet clogs yourself. Try a plunger first. If plunging the toilet doesn’t seem to clear up a clog, check the toilet’s water level. If it’s too low, try filling a bucket with warm water. Open the toilet’s tank, and pour the water in. This procedure can be repeated if the water level again returns to a level that is too low.

If your garbage disposal is not working correctly, you should not try to fix it by putting your hand in through the drain. Garbage disposals are dangerous, even when turned off. Hire a professional, or at least find your owner’s manual to look at a diagram of the disposal. Many owner’s manuals are available online, and may even contain interactive troubleshooters.

It is important to clean your garbage disposal often to keep it functioning for many years. Prevent unsavory disposal odors through regular use of citrus peel, cherry pits, and dish detergent.

If you run your garbage disposal after working in the kitchen, use a large quantity of cold water. The cold water helps keep the blades sharp and can make disposal much smoother. Grease will stay solid and go through your drain with cold water; you don’t want gooey grease in your pipes.

If there is unwanted water draining into the dishwasher, it is most likely because of the hose to the kitchen sink being installed improperly. The hose from your sink to your dishwasher needs to go upward before going back down so that there is no mixing between fixtures.

If you’ve got a shower head to replace, get a good quality replacement. Sometimes, people will choose a shower head because it is the least expensive. However, cheap parts don’t work as well and break down more quickly.

If you take care of your plumbing, you will have lower plumbing bills. One major repair is a drain clog. Practically anything can get stuck in those drains and cause them to lock up, including hair, foreign objects, and sediment. There are ways around this; you can use a drain cover or screen which is actually designed in order to keep your pipes and drain free of hair. Cleaning hair from the screen is a much easier affair than it would be to get the hair out of the pipe.

In conclusion, it is extremely valuable that you know your way around a plumbing system. You will be a great resource to your family and friends, and potentially save yourself quite a bit of money, as well. Hopefully this article proved interesting and useful.



Some individuals believe that working on plumbing yourself is hard. But, with the right advice and know-how, it is a lot easier than you think. The following tips will get you started and help you complete that project that has been bugging you, in no time.

If you discover that a water pipe has frozen, find the tap closest to the pipe so when the thaw happens, the water has an exit point. By doing this, the pipe pressure is relieved, and this should stop it from bursting, which would prevent further home damage.

Knowing which tools to use and how to operate them is essential to any aspiring plumber. Use manuals and online sites to get informed before doing a plumbing project yourself. You need to conduct research before attempting a repair, because it could be expensive to correct an error.

If your toilet gets clogged, your plunger is not fixing it, and your water level inside of the toilet appears low, you can sometimes fix the problem by dumping warm water into your toilet at waist level (or maybe even a little higher). Once the water level gets low again, repeat the process.

Never put your hands in your garbage disposal to fix a problem. Garbage disposals are not healthy places for hands to be, even if they are not running. Use the web to locate a diagram or user manual for your device.

Check the floors in your bathroom for any give in order to be sure that there is no damage on the floors. Sit on your toilet and sway across both feet to feel if there are any spots less firm than the others. You can save money by noticing and treating this problem as early as possible.

Use filters on all drains to prevent debris that might clog the pipes from getting through. You should clean your strainer in your kitchen anytime you have anything in it. You should clean out the strainer in your bathtub often.

In order to ensure that your garbage disposal will last for as long as your home, keep it clean on a regular basis. By having a regular cleaning routine, which includes a combination of lemon rinds, dish soap, and even pits from a cherry, your disposal can be kept smelling fresh and running smoothly for many years to come.

Overflow Holes
Check overflow holes to make sure there’s no clog. If your sink starts to overflow, the water will run into the overflow holes, this might not be a huge issue, unless they are clogged. Clear overflow holes when doing periodic checks for problems and plumbing issues that should be addressed.

Frozen pipes can cause some very expensive plumbing repair jobs. It can also be easily prevented. Find out if all of your outdoor pipes are properly insulated. Before the cold season arrives, you should disconnect your hoses, drain them and store them. Outdoor faucets should be shut off, too. Making sure that all of this is done will have you a lot of money in plumbing bills.

There’s no reason to run water while running your garbage disposal. It is a common misconception that water will aid in flushing the food down the drain. In fact, it could cause garbage to stick to your disposal, which can create more damage.

Drain Cleaners
Drain cleaners should be avoided, if possible. There are some harsh, corrosive chemicals found in these drain cleaners. That’s why they work so well to knock out clogs. Over time, they will corrode your pipes. If you find that your drain is clogged, think about hiring a plumber to do an estimate and tell you what the issue is.

As was discussed at the beginning of the article, while plumbing can be an extremely difficult chore for anyone to complete, it becomes significantly easier if you have the right advice and information. Use the advice from this article, and you’ll be on your way to doing your own plumbing.


There is no better time than the present to learn about plumbing. Perhaps you have considered learning, but haven’t been able to do so. Take a few minutes to read the incredible tips in the below article. If you do so, you’ll be pleased you took this time to learn more knowledge about plumbing in case any issues arise.

To prevent frozen pipes, always keep the living spaces in your house above freezing, even if you aren’t home. Any exposed pipes need to be insulated against the outdoor temperatures. But, be advised that your pipes may freeze if the surrounding temperature near those pipes is less than freezing. At best, it can take time for them to thaw and for you to be able to have running water. The worst-case scenario is a busted pipe and a costly repair.

Septic Tank
Pump your septic tank about once every five years, to make sure it is working well. Having it cleaned out prevents the sediment from accumulating in the septic tank and creating a sewage backup in your house or triggering the meltdown of the entire septic system. Although it could cost a good deal of money to pump out your septic tank, it will cost a lot more having to clean sewage backup or having to fix or replace a septic tank.

If your garbage disposal is giving you problems, never stick your hand in it to fix it yourself. A garbage disposal can be dangerous, even when it is not on. Research your disposal online to locate a detailed diagram or troubleshooting guide for your model.

You should regularly check for water damage to your bathroom floor caused by your toilet in order to save money and further complications. Feel the floor around the toilet and check to see if the floor is soft, molded, chipping, etc. Another great way to check is to actually sit on the toilet and move in a rocking motion, going back and forth from right to left to see how much give you feel. By noticing a problem early on, you can save yourself a bunch of money if you were to leave it alone.

If you have well water and discover orange or pink discoloration on your bathtub or sink, you probably have iron in your water supply. To get rid of this problem, you can either use a commercial product to soften the water or have a contractor come to your home and do the work for you.

Keep your bathtub in good shape by using a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar down its drain monthly. Cover with a rag or plug, as a chemical reaction will occur in the pipes. After about 10 minutes you can flush the pipes out with boiling water. Doing this periodically should keep your pipes free of hair and soap scum.

Kitchen Sink
If you are seeing water at the bottom of the dishwasher, most likely this is due to a faulty setup of the hose that leads from the kitchen sink. The hose connecting the kitchen sink and the dishwasher has to go up and then down in order for the water of both locations to not mix.

Do this little test to investigate whether your toilet leaks. An easy way to determine this is to add a couple of drops of food coloring into the toilet tank. If you then see colored water in the toilet bowl shortly after, you know a problem exists that needs tended to.

Check your faucets outside for dripping or leaking before winter arrives. If they are, it is important to have all repairs completed before the temperatures drop below freezing. Freezing water can cause pressure to build up, causing your pipes to crack, or burst, regardless if your pipes are constructed with steel, plastic, or metal. The smallest crack will allow enough water to cause costly flooding and damage.

Good plumbers do work far beyond unclogging drains. When looking at a common project like fixing water lines, one can realize the in-depth knowledge that is necessary.

Many people aren’t well-versed in plumbing, and choose to pay whatever the plumber is asking for. If you own your own home, you should at least learn enough about plumbing to understand how plumbing problems should be handled by a professional. By gaining this education, you can protect yourself from getting ripped off by a shady plumber.

A lot of people dread plumbing incidents, as they believe that even a single incident could cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage. You can easily avoid that by knowing one simple thing. In order to prevent water damage to your home, you must know the location of the water register, and how you can quickly turn it off.

Assess the actual hot water needs for your family and use this information to increase the functioning of water heaters. Being aware of how many people in your house use hot water, and how many of your appliances will need hot water to work, will help you know the size that your hot water tank should be.

It is very important to know how to do plumbing yourself because it could save you a lot of money over time. If anything ever goes wrong with your pipes or drains, you will have the knowledge to fix it in a hurry without having to spend big money by calling in the professionals. Ideally, you found the concepts above both interesting and helpful in your quest to expand your plumbing knowledge.


When you are working on your plumbing, there is a lot that can go wrong. Some problems are a simple fix, but others need a professional. Regardless of the exact issue, it is critical that you understand at least the basics of plumbing so that you can fix the problem or get it fixed in a very timely fashion.

Check the floor for soft areas around the toilet to determine floor damage. Straddle the toilet, so you can rock from one leg to another to determine whether there’s weakness in the floor. Early detection of the problem may save you a great deal of money over time.

If your home runs on well water and you notice any orange or pink stains in your fixtures or tub, this is because of iron in your water. You can deal with use by using a water softener, which is something you can get on your own at a local retailer, or by hiring a professional to come out.

To keep your garbage disposal lasting for a long time, make sure you clean it on a daily basis. Prevent unsavory disposal odors through regular use of citrus peel, cherry pits, and dish detergent.

Keep the drains in your bathtub working properly by pouring a cup’s worth of baking soda and than a cup’s worth of vinegar directly down your drain every month. Cover the drain with an old rag, because there will be a chemical reaction taking place inside the pipes. After waiting a few minutes, flush the drain with boiling water. Although this is useful for clearing away simple clogs made of hair and soap debris, it will not work for serious blockages.

Be sure that the overflow holes are free of debris. The overflow holes help prevent a sink from spilling. When blocked, they don’t work properly and the water can spill out onto the floor. Inspect and clean the overflow holes as part of your regular household maintenance.

If you operate the disposal on your sink, run plenty of cool water. The blades on the unit will remain sharper and disposal will proceed with few glitches. If you use hot water, any grease in the disposal will liquefy, causing it to accumulate further down the drain, which could cause clogs.

By installing water-conserving shower heads in your bathrooms, you can save money on your monthly water bill. Energy-efficient shower heads can save you money on your energy bill and water bill. Invest in an energy-efficient shower head and you could save a hundred dollars every year on your water bill.

If water that is not supposed to be there is in the dishwasher, the likely culprit is a kitchen sink hose not properly attached. This hose should lead uphill first and then downhill so the water from the sink and the dishwater never mix.

Frozen pipes are one of the most expensive plumbing problems. This can usually be prevented. The most important step is to keep any pipes close to the outside, well insulated. When the temperature dips, you should also make sure your garden hoses are disconnected and that your exterior faucet is shut off. Doing so can prevent some nasty repair bills a professional plumber would charge you.

Don’t bother running water when you use your garbage disposal. Many people make the mistake of thinking that a disposal can handle anything as long as they have water running when they turn it on. That is not true at all. In point of fact, sending water and garbage through the disposal together can shorten its lifespan by encouraging more waste to stick to the moving parts.

Don’t use drain cleaners constantly. Their chemicals are extremely corrosive, and they may damage your pipes if used too often. Call a professional if you notice your drain is still clogged up.

There are two ways to remove clean out plugs. A hammer and chisel can be used to slacken the fitting. The only other method is to take the chisel and use it right through the plug.

If you need a plumber, check out his or her credentials first. A plumber that is not skilled in a particular task could actually aggravate the problem. Check reviews, and ask your friends and family for recommendations.

After reading this article, you know some of the different plumbing problems that you can encounter whether large or small. Use the tips in the article above to deal with plumbing issues with less stress and confusion.


While there’s a lot to be learned when it comes to plumbing, all it takes is a little effort to learn what you need to through utilizing the teaching or research resources that work best for you. By the time you finish reading this helpful guide, you should be a bit more informed about different aspects of plumbing. While you may not be the world’s greatest plumber, perhaps you will develop the skills to fix the occasional home plumbing problem.

Pump your septic tank about once every five years, to make sure it is working well. This will keep sediment from building and causing backup into the house, and possibly causing the septic system to fail. Hiring a professional to pump out your septic tank is costly, but it is far preferable to the damages that could be incurred if the tank becomes backed-up or inoperative.

Don’t pay the entire plumbing bill upfront; wait until the plumber finishes the plumbing job. You may have to pay a portion of the cost before the plumber works on the job, but you should never have to pay in full until after everything has been correctly finished. It will make you feel better knowing that your problem has been solved before parting with a large sum of money.

Get to know the tools and how they are used for the most success in plumbing. Read all of the equipment’s manuals and read up as much as you can on plumbing projects. Be sure to have a plan ahead of time before trying any type of repair, it could very expensive to fix the mistake.

If you have a clogged toilet with a lower water lever, and the plunger isn’t working, try pouring in some warm water directly into the toilet. Do this every time the water level gets too low.

If you find you are having an issue with the garbage disposal, do not put your bare hands in the disposal. Garbage disposals pose a serious risk, even when flipped off. Research on the Internet for diagrams, troubleshooter, or FAQs about your disposal.

Schedule all the plumbing work at one time. You might be tempted to contact a plumber every time you face a small problem, but if you have problems repaired all at once, you will have time to save money for the fixes. Because plumbers generally round up to the nearest hour, this also allows you to save money. The time only gets rounded up once, rather than multiple times.

If water that is not supposed to be there is in the dishwasher, the likely culprit is a kitchen sink hose not properly attached. You must have the hose going uphill and then down to get rid of the water in the dishwater.

To lower the chance that you will have issues with your toilet, do not approach it like it’s a trash can. Keep away from flushing improper items down the toilet, like cotton balls, diapers, paper towels, or feminine hygiene products. These types of items can clog your toilet as they do not dissolve. Try to minimize the amount of toilet tissue that gets flushed, too – but don’t neglect basic hygiene!

Now that wasn’t so bad, was it? As with many home improvement topics, plumbing encompasses a great deal of different topics. With the right information, you can tackle some of the most common home plumbing problems. Hopefully, you have received that from the above tips.






Take your city’s yellow pages and search through the plumbing section, and you will notice several options. Just a few years ago, the yellow pages were the source for every homeowner when it was time to call any type of maintenance service. It was perhaps comparable to a blind date, where you didn’t know what the outcome of such an encounter would be. However, things have changed with the internet and today you can have access to a lot more facts that can help you make an informed decision. When you search the internet, you will find our plumbing company, which is a reliable company that has been delivering plumbing solutions for many years in the area.

Services for Home and Businesses
Offering plumbing services for a home is one thing, but having the capability to service an entire building or office is another. As you may already know there are certain plumbers that only work for homeowners, mostly because they don’t have the workforce and the tools to take care of bigger problems. We have designed two special teams to take care of commercial plumbing issues, and they have been trained with rigorous plumbing courses. Moreover, keep in mind that plumbers in general must have the license required by the state in order to be able to offer their services. This license guarantees that the plumber fully understands the construction and plumbing codes to ensure the safety of their team and clients.

Save Money
Despite the fact that plumbing work is delicate and is best done by a professional, there are no reasons to pay more money than what it really costs. If you want to be able to receive a fair and affordable estimate, make sure you contact us for a free quote on our services. This, of course, will depend on the length of the project, as well as the type of service that you need, since a simple leak repair does not compare to an entire water heater installation. Furthermore, if you are a business manager, you may want to consider entering some type of long-term plan for our plumbing company, which can bring your total cost down even more.

Go Green
As you may have noticed, more people are beginning to implement the use of green products that don’t impact the environment in a negative way. We are environmentally conscious and that is why they started offering supplies and tools that have proven to be eco-friendly because they degrade easily. Besides these wonderful green supplies, we also make it a point to educate their clients on tips to save money and conserve natural resources. Some of these tips are:

Don’t overuse bleach and detergent
Check your water pressure because if it’s too high it can harm your pipes
Check your water meter periodically
Replace old showerheads and leaky faucets







water heaters VI 4/13/2020 – gtg

Under Sink Water Heaters

Under sink water heaters, also called under counter water heaters, point of use water heaters or instant water heaters for the sink, are water heaters that are usually installed in kitchen sections or in the bathroom, under the sink or counter, for easy operation and instant access to hot water. They are normally small appliances that are meant for instant water heating at the home or office, at the point of service. Under sink water heaters can save you lots of water, energy, and money when properly installed and used.

Advantages of Using Under Sink Water Heaters

A good working condition under sink water heater can offer lots of advantages for those who use it. One of the main advantages of using under sink water heaters is that they provide instant hot water to distant fixtures, which can significantly shorten the wait time. With this method, you do not have to go through the effort of running long pipes from the central water heater. You simply just plug this small water heater near the faucet and you get to enjoy instant hot water.

Purchasing an under sink water heater gives you the following advantages:

It is very easy to install as it comes with a quick installation guide.
It minimizes your heating cost up to 50% and it also minimizes used energy and water waste.
The under sink water heater is typically small in size, lightweight and compact. It does not take up too much space.
The under sink water heater saves you money since it eliminates the need for costly recirculating lines and/or pumps.
The under sink water heater efficiently saves water as it is used where it is needed, at the point of use – bathroom sink, kitchen sink, laundry, small cabins, garage, offices, boats and RVs, etc.
The under sink water heater typically serves one or two faucets which is mainly used for doing the dishes, shaving, handwashing, etc.
Interested buyers can choose from two different types of under sink water heaters – tank type or tankless. The tank type has a limited tank size which is usually from 2.5 gallons up to 20 gallons, whereas the tankless type can provide an unlimited water supply but with a restricted flow.
If you plan on supplying many fixtures or if you have a greater hot water demand (washing machine, shower, dishwasher), you will require a larger capacity model.

The tankless types typically heat water instantaneously because it flows through the unit and there is absolutely no standby heat loss.

The desired temperature of the outgoing water can be set by simply using the temperature dial.
Under sink water heaters can either be mounted to the wall or they can be floor standing.
Under sink water heaters are considered to be appliances that are very reliable, safe, and energy-efficient.
Under sink water heaters possess a compact body and have other easy-to-use features.
Under sink water heaters provide a safety feature for safe and reliable operation.

Buying and Installation Tips on Under Sink Water Heaters

When searching for a good quality under sink water heater to buy, it is wise to choose from the popular brands because they have a more thorough expertise regarding under sink water heaters, and they can certainly offer models that have unique and quality features. The most important criteria when choosing the right under sink water heater are:

Incoming water temperature
Activation flow rate
Water flow rate. A typical bathroom faucet allows an average 0.5 GPM (or gallons of water per minute); the shower, 1.5 to 3.0 GPM.
Heating power in kW
Price and warranty
Available features such as relief valve for safety, the modulation, and a conveniently situated thermostat
Under sink water heaters are for sale in many online stores. Buying the actual unit is one thing, but installing it is another different matter. Below is a simple and quick general installation guide for most models of under sink water heaters:

Decide where you want to install the under sink water heater appliance and get it ready for installation. The under sink water heater unit must be mounted closer to the fixture – under the sink, under the countertop, or inside the cabinet. Ensure that you will allow appropriate clearance for correct draining, maintenance, and service.
Gather all the installation tools you will need. The tools that are typically required are recommended in the manufacturer’s manual such as screwdrivers, an adjustable wrench, etc.
Prepare all the necessary plumbing components.
Follow the quick installation guide in the manufacturer’s manual that comes with the under sink water heater appliance. You also need to designate an electrical outlet. Simply follow the steps for plumbing connections.
The under sink water heater must have a T&P valve installed.
Remove all the debris and air. You need to do this after filling the under sink water heater unit with water. You must run the faucet for a few minutes to get rid of any air bubbles in the water heater. Never ever put the water heater ON unless you have already filled it with water. If in case you did, serious damage may occur.
Popular Models of Under Sink Water Heaters

There are many under sink water heater brands and models available in the market today. They can range from prices $150 to $250. Listed below are the most popular ones:

Bosch GL2.5 Ariston
Bosch AE-12 PowerStar
InSinkErator W152
Below are other popular brands that offer good quality under sink water heaters:

Stiebel Eltron Tempra

An under sink water heater is an electric-powered water heating appliance that gives instant water heating at home or at the office. It is a nifty appliance that saves you energy, water, and money. They are typically small, space-saving, efficient, and they provide hot water instantly. A tank-type under sink water heater has a limited capacity whereas a tankless under sink water heater can provide an endless supply of instant hot water. They are generally available online and also in stores such as Lowe’s, Walmart, and Home Depot.


What Causes Water Heater Breakdown

Water heaters, just like any other home appliance, can help us make our lives easier. However, as long as it is being used by you and your family, then you have to make sure that it is working fine and it is maintained regularly. If you own a water heater at home, then you should be well aware of the causes that can potentially make your water heater breakdown, unless it is perfectly fine for you to just spend money and buy another one.

1. Sediment Buildup

Sediments or scale is usually created when hard water is heated up. It normally builds up in the bottom part of the water heater unit, wherein the sediments insulate the tank bottom from the protection of the anode. This also causes the tank bottom to overheat and eventually melt away the protective glass lining of the water heater unit. There are many instances that homeowners said that the bottom of their water heater dropped out and their garage or basement was flooded due to this. As someone who uses a water heater, you also ought to know that too much sediment buildup can also void the warranties in commercial water heater units.

2. Very High Water Pressure

Most people are not very much aware of this culprit that can cause a water heater breakdown. The water pressure gauge that is present on the drain valve of a typical water heater unit must always show a pressure that is between 60 to 80 psi. Anything that is more than 80 psi can really damage your water heater unit, the piping, and the other appliances it is linked to. If you have a very high water pressure, then you must have a pressure-reducing valve and maybe even an expansion tank. The expansion tank will protect against damage from thermal expansion (which occurs when a water heater fires up in a closed system in order to maintain temperature, but when nobody is currently using hot water). One way to know is when the temperature-pressure relief valve begins opening and closing. However, in time they often stop working.

3. Corrosive Fumes

To most people, it had never crossed their mind that their simple household cleaners (such as bleach, ammonia, and other acids) can potentially make a water heater unit break down. However, because of the fact that water heater units draw in air for combustion, and the components present in the air is crucial. Bleach, ammonia, acids and anything else near it can potentially break the water heater unit down due to their corrosive nature.

If in case the water heater unit draws corrosive air into the burner, then the fumes that will be created there will prove to be detrimentally corrosive, thus corroding the water heater as a result. This can potentially lead to premature water heater tank failure. Moreover, you should not store bleach, ammonia, and other corrosive agents where the water heater is placed, especially in tiny closed spaces because the fumes will quickly cause the water heater unit to corrode.

4. Internal Rust

If you have a water heater unit at home, then you should be well aware of the fact that its sacrificial anodes tend to get used up in the long run. If these sacrificial anodes are not replaced when they are supposed to, then the tank would rust, and then eventually, it would leak. Even if you replace it with a powered anode, it would be too late at that time.

For many water heater owners, they should be made aware that water softeners oftentimes speed up anode consumption. Under typical situations, if you have a water heater unit with a 5-year warranty, then that means that you can wait until those 5 years is almost up before you check its anode. For those individuals who use water softeners must check their anodes about once a year or once every 2 years. Another possible option for individuals who use water softeners is to use a powered anode, which is considered to be a permanent replacement to the sacrificial anode and it does not get used up as well as it does not need to be replaced.

5. Improper Sizing

Is your water heater unit a hard worker at your household? Is it always running all the time? Every water heater manufacturer nowadays have sizing programs that will let you input a specific number of people, number of appliances, number of bathrooms and then you will be given an estimate of the gallons and BTU in figures, which are usually along with several models that are able to fit those parameters. If you purchase a water heater unit that is too small for the tasks it will have to perform, it will gradually break down because of the constant contraction and expansion of the tank, even if the water pressure is normal and even if you frequently change the anode.

6. Neglect

One of the most common ways on how a water heater breaks down is neglect – the person who buys them, installs them, and forgets about them should be the one responsible for taking care of them as well. Water heater units are normally placed in areas such as in the basement where the residents of the house seldom go to, which is obvious that nobody will ever check on that unit for a very long time. The availability of water heaters at home are only taken for granted as long as they are working out fine, but of course, until they break down. Make sure that your water heater unit will not end up suddenly breaking down and needing replacement, so do mark your calendar and schedule a regular maintenance check so you do not have to go through the trouble.

Over time, leaks can appear which can gradually damage your water heater unit from the outside. When your water heater unit has this kind of problem, then it is quite a little late to perform maintenance work on it. Additionally, if you put off maintenance work for far too long on your water heater unit, leaks can also develop inside the tank as well.

7. Leaking unions and flex lines

Unions and flex lines have to be really tightened after about 6 months due to the fact that the rubber washers will shrink down and then start to leak. These fittings, when neglected, can result in the breaking down of your water heater unit because it will rust from outside to the inside.


Tips in Choosing On-Demand Tankless Gas Water Heaters

It is without doubt that tankless gas water heaters are very energy efficient. Although there are times these models are unsuitable due to certain situations if they can be used they offer a significant amount of savings on utility bills. This is mostly because water is heated only when it is required, thereby saving a substantial amount of energy as compared to conventional tank versions that always heat water to maintain it at a certain temperature.

Even if it can be said that tankless gas water heaters are a very efficient type of water heating system, it cannot be said that they do not have any disadvantages towards their tank counterpart. The truth is tankless gas water heaters have their advantages as well as disadvantages.

• They are energy efficient which means they save a lot of energy.
• They are eco-friendly.
• They offer unlimited amounts of hot water as they are not limited by the capacity of the storage tank.
• They offer constant water temperature as they do not rely on how much heated water is stored in a tank.
• They are small in size which means they can be mounted on walls.

• It takes several seconds to a few minutes before hot water starts flowing out of the faucet. This makes shorts uses, such as washing of hands, somewhat impractical. Due to the time it takes to wait for hot water to flow, the initial flow of water which is unheated is wasted.
• The heater will automatically switch off if it detects the flow of water is too low. This is probably because the heater has a failsafe switch that allows it to detect a low flow of water, which for instance is caused by a faucet that is not fully closed. The main disadvantage of this failsafe switch is that the users may end up using more water.
• The heating capacity of tankless gas water heaters may not be enough to heat water up to temperature during winter times.
• These types of water heaters require more maintenance as compared to storage tank types.
• There are certain models that require its vents to be made of stainless steel and not galvanized steel, something which can cost to several hundred dollars.
• They require high gas pressure. Something which some areas will not be able to accommodate due to their low gas pressure.
• The warranties of these products are very strict and these warranties can easily be voided if the unit was not installed by licensed plumbers or the unit has not gone annual maintenance.

Tankless gas water heaters will have a maximum flow rate that ranges from 2 gallons per minute (GPM) to 7 gallons per minute (GPM). This comes with a temperature elevation of around 45°F on the water outlet. The flow rate can still be increased, but at the expense of the water temperature. Most households will consider 2 GPM too low, except of course during the summer months. Manufacturers however recommend 4 GPM as the minimum requirement for single applications, such as shower, washing machine, or dishwasher with each tap being opened one each time. If you plan on using two taps simultaneously, then it is recommended to have around 6 to 7 GPM.

The ignition system of a gas water heater can be powered by electricity, battery, pilot light, and water turbine ignition. Electricity is the most simple and reliable way to ignite the gas of your gas water heater. The only drawback with an electrical ignition system is that it will not work during power outages. Battery can also be very reliable. However, you need to replace the batteries when they run dry and this usually happens when you are in a hurry. The Pilot Light can be reliable as long as the light is not blown out should there be no automatic damper on the vent. The Water Turbine Engine is a turbine the spins from the flow of water and thereby generates electricity to power the electrical ignition. The main problem with this type of ignition system is that the turbine can sometimes jam, especially if the inlet water is not being filtered.

These days, thanks to computer-controlled heaters, you can now control the temperature level of the water. It will provide you with a steady water temperature even if you increase or decrease the flow of water. Even with the advantage of computer-controlled heaters, this can still sometimes be unreliable due to factors such as water pressure and gas pressure. Since they are digital, they often rely on electricity which is why they will not work during power outages. Manual controls on the other hand are by far still the most reliable. The main problem with manual controls however, is that you constantly need to regulate the temperature should there be a sudden increase or decrease in the flow of water.

Picking the right type of tankless gas water heater is not as easy as it may seem, especially when you try to consider the required piping and ventilation. Before purchasing a tankless gas water heating system, it is suggested that you consult a qualified plumber first before making any decisions. The plumber will be able to advise you regarding what brands he is familiar with and is able to service, which brands are reliable, which brands are good, and which brands can fit your budget. The plumber will also be able to advise you, based on the size of your home, whether you will need small electric tankless water heaters which can be placed near the point of use to increase the temperature of the water, depending on the heating requirement. Using both gas and electric water heaters in conjunction may in fact serve as leverage in helping increase the efficiency of your main water heater, which of course would be the tankless gas water heater. In fact, this tandem can even be more economical than using a 40-gallon tank water heater.


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The Different Types of Water Heaters
There are many different types of water heaters. These water heating units, depending on their type and model, use different energy resources to raise the temperature of water. The heated water will then be stored (as with storage tank water heaters) or be used instantly (as with on-demand water heaters). The different types of water heaters would include storage tank water heaters, tankless water heaters, solar water heaters, and integrated space and water heating systems.

Storage Tank Water Heaters – these water heaters are the most common types and they are the types used in a lot of households all across the United States and Canada. Perhaps the reason behind their popularity is that they are the most affordable to both buy and install. This type of water heating system heats and stores the heated water on a tank so it will be available for use when needed. The main advantage of this water heating system is that it can store large amounts of heated water continuously. Of course, storing hot water does have its disadvantages as the heated water will eventually cool down. This makes it necessary for the unit to reheat the water to the desired preset level once it reaches a certain temperature; something which inevitably costs money as heating consumes energy. Having extra insulation will help prevent the fast cooling down of the heated water. On average, a typical storage tank water heater will last you around 10 years. A specific model may use electric, gas, or oil as its main heating element. Gas-fired models may cost more to buy and install as compared to electric models. Then again, if you compare operating cost and the savings you get from using gas instead of electricity, the savings you get with your utility bills may be well worth it in the long run. The main issue with storage tank units is that they require regular maintenance in order to prevent the buildup of scale and lime inside the tank. This kind of buildup will make the unit inefficient, making it work harder and consume much more energy in comparison to a regularly maintained unit. Flushing the unit every 6 months will help to prevent such buildup.

Tankless Water Heaters – also known as instantaneous water heaters or on-demand water heaters, these water heating systems have rid the use of storage tanks. Instead, they heat water only when it is needed thus eliminating any standby heat loss or the need for any tank insulation. These types of water heaters are very efficient and cost effective since they heat water only when hot water is needed. In addition, since they no longer use any storage tanks, owners will be able to save valuable household space. Perhaps the best thing about tankless water heaters is that they are most likely to last longer than storage tank types. In fact, if you maintain your tankless unit properly, it is likely to last you from 15 to 20 years. This is likely the reason why manufacturers offer longer warranties for them. Another thing that makes tankless-types water heaters the units to consider is that they are very easy to repair when compared to other types of water heating units. The truth is there are basically two types of tankless water heating units –
the whole house type and the point-of-use type. Whole house units, as the name suggests, are large enough to accommodate the hot water usage of a whole household. Point-of-use units on the other hand are small units that are commonly installed near the area where they will be used. There are even times they are used along with other water heating units to help raise the

temperature, particularly in households where a lot of hot water taps are turned on
simultaneously and the main water heating unit is not able to cope up with the demand. Perhaps the main disadvantage with this type of water heating unit is that it takes some time before it reaches the hot water temperature you require for showering. Another disadvantage it has is that when multiple hot water taps are opened simultaneously, the hot water it is able to provide dissipates as it will be providing hot water for multiple taps.

Solar Water Heaters – for people living in warm areas or areas where the sun shines bright most times of the year, a solar water heater can be the most cost effective way to enjoy hot showers. Since solar energy is free, having a solar water heater will alleviate any additional cost in your utility bills used for water heating. In fact, a solar water heater can provide nearly 70% of the hot water requirements of a typical household while the return of investment can happen in just five to seven years. A solar water heating system basically works by storing hot water on insulated tanks and different solar water heating systems use different ways to heat water. There are generally two types of solar water heaters – active and passive. Active solar water heating systems uses either heat-transfer fluid (indirect) or allows water to circulate through the collector and heat exchanger (direct) in order to heat water. Passive solar water heating systems on the other hand has a storage tank atop the solar collectors. Once water is heated by the collectors, the heated water will go up the tank while the cold water that goes to the bottom will have its turn to be heated. Depending on how a solar water heater is utilized, it is likely to cost less in the long run. While it is true that the initial investment may be quite high, but the overall savings you get from using free energy will definitely offset the price you paid initially.

Integrated Space and Water Heating System – this is a type of combination heating system that heats both air-space and water. For new homes on areas with cool climates, this may be a practical investment as only a single boiler will be used for heating both water and the inside space of the home. The system works by heating water in an external storage tank. The heat is then collected by fans and coils to be distributed inside the home as warm air.
Tips in Buying and Maintaining RV Water Heaters
It is a common fact that the water heater installed in your RV is primarily a propane gas appliance. Typically, the water heater unit that is installed in most RVs has a 6-gallon tank, but bigger RVs may have 10-gallon or even up to 16-gallon tanks. An RV water heater may operate only on gas or on gas and/or 120 volt AC, depending on the model installed.

Tips on Buying an RV Water Heater

RV water heaters are typically built as small and lightweight water heating devices, with the purpose of being installed below the floor, behind the baggage door, or outside, so you can have more space to enjoy in your mobile home, and still be able to enjoy the benefits of having hot water anywhere and anytime you like.

RV water heater are considered to be very convenient not only by providing hot water with the use of the RV engine’s heat (while driving), but also it can provide electricity from the electrical system or generator.

When you are in the search to buy an RV water heater, the best model is the one that meets all your needs, has high performance, has a decent tank life and is extremely reliable. Of course, you would not want to experience going outdoors while on a camping trip in the mountains only to discover that your RV water heater unit is not working properly at all.

Unlike other types of water heaters such as those used in a residential bathroom or in a hotel, RV water heater units are very robust and durable. Even if you are currently on the road driving your RV through rough terrains, unpleasant weather conditions and far away from civilization, you never have to worry about your RV water heater unit as it is protected against shorts in the electrical system and voltage spikes as well as it has a feature protection for electronic ignition caused by excessive heat conditions.

As with any other water heater unit, the size is also very important, and the size of the water heater unit that you must have for your RV depends on how many of you are usually traveling and using hot water for doing the dishes or for showering, and even the extent of the demand. You can buy water heater models for RVs with a capacity ranging from 3 gallons up to 16 gallons.

Take Note: If you are not going to use your RV during the winter season, you must try to protect the plumbing/heating system, by either adding the antifreeze or draining the system. You must take precautions by first removing the anode rod because it might get affected by corrosive action.

A typical RV water heater and its components such as the limit switch, reset button, anode rod, drain plug, pilot lights and the ignition system are very accessible and concealed just behind the removable outer door. With a flush mount or standard protective doors, an RV water heater unit does not interfere with mobile home design as it has a compact and neat appearance as well as it has corrosion-free resistance.

Like other water heater units that are popularly used at home, RV water heaters are very much user-friendly as you can turn the power on either from the inside or outside. They are also easy to maintain, troubleshoot and repair.

RV water heater units having the electronic ignition can be activated from inside your RV and the heating process will commence even when you are driving, without you having to leave the RV. For pilot light models, it is possible to re-ignite from the inside as well.

Take Note: It is highly recommended not to use RV water heaters that are utilizing propane gas most especially while driving, because the pilot light or flame can be really affected with the incoming air.

Maintenance Tips for RV Water Heaters

Below are some common and simple maintenance tips for RV water heaters:


The drain plug for RV water heaters can be found on the bottom of the outside compartment. After every trip you take, it is best that you drain the completely. If it is troublesome for you, then at least you must drain your RV water heater during the winter time. If you do not do this, then you are risking your water heater unit to be damaged due to freezing. Moreover, ensure that you never the water heater while it is still hot or under pressure.


You must never make the mistake of lighting your RV water heater when it is empty. The tank has to be completely full of water before you can light the heater. You can actually easily tell whether the tank is full or not. First, you need to open the faucet for hot water. When you get a steady flow of water, then you will know that the hot water tank is full.


You need to also inspect the burner area and the exterior water heater vent occasionally as these areas are prone to obstructions. You have to ensure that there are no insect nests that are blocking the vent. If there are any obstructions in the vent, it can prove to be troublesome as it prevents the release of harmful gases.


Most RV owners seal their RV water heater units in order to protect them. However, you must never make the mistake of using plastic in order to seal your water heater unit. Plastic is known to trap moisture, which may potentially have the opposite effect of what you wanted. As a matter of fact, trapped moisture can easily and quickly damage RV water heater units.

By-Pass Valve Kit

When it is time to winterize your RV, you will most likely need to put at least 6 gallons of antifreeze into your RV water heater/s. You can utilize a by-pass valve kit in order to avoid having to waste a lot of antifreeze in the heater unit. These by-pass kits let the antifreeze to bypass the tanks of the RV water heaters after they are completely drained. The antifreeze will go directly into the water lines.

Mentioned above are a few common and simple maintenance tips for RV water heaters. You need to ensure that the tank is completely full prior to you lighting the heater. You also have to drain the tanks in order to prevent freezing during the winter season. If you choose to do so, you can use a by-pass kit so that you will not have to waste a lot of antifreeze filling up the RV water heater tank.

Before you go and buy a water heater unit for your RV, it is best to search the market first for what is the best one there is out there for your mobile home. Consult a professional or ask some of your friends who may also have an RV.
Tips in Finding Economical Water Heater Models

If you are looking to replace your old water heater, comparing the prices between water heaters may be a good idea as this is what most people will likely do. However, should you try to evaluate its selling price in regards to its heating capacity, installation cost and operating cost, sometimes, you may not be getting the most out of what you pay for. This is because when buying a new water heater, it is important to consider the three factors mentioned above including the manufacturer’s warranty. This will allow you to get the most economical water heater model suitable for your household’s water heating needs.

Heating Capacity

Most people who buy storage tank water heater models often tend to look at the storage capacity of the unit as the basis for its price. While the storage capacity of the tank too is important, the overall heating capacity of the unit is more important. The heating capacity can be read through the unit’s FHR or First Hour Rating, and this can be found in the unit’s specifications. The FHR shows you how much hot water it can make within a span of one hour. To help ensure that the unit you are buying meets your water heating needs, make sure to focus on its FHR and not on the size of the tank. Make sure that that the FHR of the unit exceeds the hot water usage of your household during peak usage. The FHR is very important as it reflects the heating power of the unit. In some cases, larger tank units have low FHR than some smaller tank models.

In case you are looking for tankless water heater models, then look into models with flow rates that exceed the hot water usage of your household during peak usage. Once you have sorted the models that can meet your water heating needs, then this would be the time to compare prices.

Efficiency and Operating Cost

Water heaters running on electricity are usually more efficient and relatively cheaper than gas-fired models. However, since natural gas is far cheaper than electricity and can heat water much faster, then not only do gas-fired water heaters have lower operating cost, but they also have a much faster recovery time.

High efficiency storage tank models are able to accomplish their efficiency through the use of more effective and better insulation. This not only gives them better retention of heat, but since heat also hardly escapes, they are able to heat water a bit faster than normal units. In fact, high efficiency electric water heating units have efficiency levels exceeding 95%, making it very effective and very efficient.

High efficiency gas-fired storage tank models on the other hand have efficiency levels of 63-64%. This is about 10% percent more than ordinary gas-fire storage tank models. The small increase in their efficiency does not justify their high cost. However, when you consider that these models are more durable and equipped with more advanced features along with longer warranties, then surely their higher price tag makes it a bit more reasonable. High efficiency gas water heaters are eligible for rebates, but electric models, however, are not.

Tankless water heaters are more expensive than standard tank models. However, there are gas-fired tankless models that qualify for tax credit as they are rather more efficient that high efficiency gas-fired storage tank models. This efficiency is achieved since they only heat water when it is needed. With the use of a tankless model, you do not spend money to keep the water inside the tank hot. A properly sized model can provide your household with endless amount of hot water without ever worrying about running out.

Installation Cost

Storage tank water heaters are cheaper to install as compared to tankless units. Should you have a tank unit that needs to be replaced, it is more advisable, less hassle, and more economical to purchase a more efficient tank model that uses the same energy source as your old water heater. This is because most, if not all, of the connections will be the same. However, due to the extra insulation your new unit might have, it is important to take into consideration if the new unit will fit into the space previously occupied by your old unit. One way of checking this is by simply looking at your old water heater and its location and determining if there is enough space, or it is simply too tight. If the space is a wee bit restricted, then you should get the measurements of the new unit you are eyeing at before making a purchase.

In case you want to replace your old tank unit with a tankless unit, don’t be surprised if you are looking at a higher installation cost. This is particularly true for gas-fired tankless water heater units. This is because you will need to upgrade your gas lines from ½ inch to ¾ inch. In addition, due to the high combustion temperatures used in gas-fired tankless models, you will also be required to upgrade your flue and venting system. Before purchasing a gas-fired tankless unit, it is recommended that you first get a quote from your plumber so you can expect how much you will need to spend and that if you are willing to go through with the additional expense.

Electric tankless water heaters on the other hand will usually require a higher power which may require you to upgrade your electrical supply. This is somewhat relatively cheaper as compared to upgrading your gas and venting system.


Although you will find a lot of water heater brands in the market, you will be surprised to know that there are just a few manufacturers making them. This is because some of the competing brands are made by the same manufacturers themselves. Take for instance A.O. Smith. Their lines of water heaters are very reliable. However, they are also the ones who make water heaters for American, Kenmore, Maytag, and Whirlpool. The same goes for Rheem who makes and manufactures models for General Electric.

The prices of water heater units having the same feature, particularly ones made by the same manufacturer may often vary widely. This is not because a brand may be more prestigious than the other, but because simply because the components they may have used are fairly substandard or inferior as compared to the other.

Simple Tips on Water Heater Safety

As mentioned in the previous post, water heaters are basically household appliances that heats water for our convenience. Heated water is normally used for showers, dish washers, and clothes washers. The truth is the availability of heated water in the tap is very convenient, whether you live in cold or warm regions. However, using water heaters, specifically gas-fired types, can be very dangerous, especially if some safety measures and maintenance are ignored. Knowing the signs for water heater safety and knowing where to look can be very helpful in preventing such situations.

Combustion Chamber Hatch – checking this regularly is highly recommended. Taking the outer hatch off is not usually a big deal, but inner hatch is usually the problem, especially if it has recently been fired as the hatch can get be quite hot. On the other hand, with new heater models, you will not find an inner hatch but a small glass window that allows you to see what’s on the other side of the chamber.

When looking inside the hatch, the one thing you need to watch out for or observe is the flame. If the flame is yellow, there is likely some problem with the air intake. Yellow flame creates lots of soot which can clog up the combustion roof and vent if left unattended for prolonged periods. This makes it very dangerous as the flames may billow out at the bottom, or worst, the carbon monoxide created by the combustion will escape from the seams of the vents. This is also true if you notice the chamber to be black and full of soot. Combustion problems, drafting problems, fume problems, and fire hazards are some of the problems caused by excessive soot in the chamber. Vacuuming the dirt underneath can help to solve this problem and prevent any worst case scenarios from happening. However, if what you see on the inside chamber is blue flame or simply the gray metal of the chamber, then you have nothing to worry about.

Pedestal – all across the U.S., one of the safety codes they implement for storage tank water heaters is that they be mounted at least 18 inches off the floor. This safety measure is made to keep low lying fumes from getting ignited. In fact, this standard has been mandated several years back. This mandate also includes electric storage tank water heater units, except on vents and combustion chambers as they are not equipped with those.

Drain Valve – if you live in an area prone to natural disasters such as tornados, hurricanes, and earthquakes, there is a high chance that during one of those instances, your waterline will be cut off. If water has been cut off for a long time, it means that the water sitting in your water heater unit is left there for days. Should the water in your area be hard water, there is a high possibility that sediments will be building up in your unit which could corrode your aluminum anode rod. This makes it very important to drain to drain the water in your tank as accidentally ingesting the water can cause serious damage to your stomach, intestines, and joints. Opening the drain valve and allowing the water to drain will help to prevent this from happening.

Anode Rod – Aluminum anode rods generate gunk that is bad for the water heater unit. The worst part would be ingesting water littered with corroded aluminum. In many cases of natural disasters, it has been know that people drink water stored in the tank of their water heaters, something that could be very bad for the stomach. Substituting your aluminum anode rod with a magnesium one will help to prevent such scenarios should you require the use of your storage tank for emergency situations.

The Dangers of Gas Water Heaters

Carbon Monoxide – this is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is caused by gas appliances or combustion engines that are not properly vented. Detecting this toxic gas can be very difficult. Continuous exposure to carbon monoxide will lead to carbon monoxide poisoning with which the person exposed to such will not even know they are being poisoned. The only thing they would notice would be lightheadedness, confusion, headache, and vertigo. This is why they often refer to carbon monoxide as a silent killer.

Fire – this occur when flammable vapors collect around the water heater unit which could ignite when the unit kicks in. Combustible materials that emit vapors such as paints, cleaners, and gas cans can get ignited. Having papers, drapes, and other materials that easily catch fire will become ablaze when the vapor catches fire.

Explosion – new models of gas-fired water heaters have sealed bottoms which is why it is unlikely that gas vapors will get ablaze by the unit’s flame. On older units however, the bottom part is not sealed which can pose as a risk for explosion. Another reason why storage tank water heaters explode is due to the failure of their pressure relief valve. If this is busted or is not working properly, the pressure inside the tank will get at very high levels which may result into an explosion. Always make sure that the safety relief valve is working by checking it regularly in order to avoid such scenarios.

In order to prevent such accidents from occurring, it is important to make sure that the unit is properly vented. Try to make sure that the vents are double-walled and that the vents are using the same diameter as the vent of the unit itself. Making sure that the pressure relief valve is working properly will also help greatly. When it comes to carbon monoxide poisoning, it is best to install a carbon monoxide detector so that it will alert you should the levels become dangerous. Another important step you may want to make would be to keep the area of your water heating unit clean at all times. Make sure that there are no chemicals stored nearby as these potentially combustible and flammable materials or chemicals may get ignited resulting in a fire or explosion.
Water Heater FAQs – The Things You May Need to Know
Having your very own water heating system in your home can be great as these systems helps to eliminate the common task of having to boil water in a kettle to get some hot water which can be used for bathing or for washing the dishes. The best part about them is that since they are mostly automated, all you need to do is turn on the tap or press a switch and out comes the heated water. The truth is there are many types of water heaters, ranging from electrical to gas-fired, tankless to storage tank, point-of-use to whole-house use, and residential to commercial. This reason alone can spark a lot of water heater FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) from consumers. The list below shows some of the more common questions:

Should I go for Gas or Electric Water Heaters?

Gas-fired water heaters are more cost-efficient when it comes to operation and are also known to last longer. Electric water heaters on the other hand are cleaner to operate. Although they consume 75% more energy than gas-fired ones, many people use them as you do not need to allocate any valuable space in your home for the storage tank.

Is it Possible to get a Larger Water Heater?

Since water heaters require either gas or electric as their main source of energy, the width and the height of the unit are basically the only things you need to watch out for. As long as your space is able to accommodate the sizes of the upgrades, then everything should be fine. However, there is one thing you may want to consider when you upgrade into a considerably larger gas-fired water heater – a larger exhaust vent. Aside from lining up the old pipes towards the pipe spaces of the new water heater, there are practically no additional problems.

What Size of Water Heater do I Need?

The size of the water heater you choose will greatly depend on the number of people there are in your home and the number of bath tubs and showers, including the dishwasher and washing machine. Each location where hot water heater is needed equals one number. Adding these numbers will result in the gallon capacity needed.

4 or less = 30 Gallons
5 – 7 = 40 Gallons
8 – 9 = 50 Gallons
10 – 12 = 75 Gallons
This is the graph commonly referred to by manufacturers. However, if space is not a problem for you, it is recommended to go for the 40 gallon instead of the 30 gallon tank as they practically cost the same. The price range of the 50 gallon tank on the other hand has a considerably higher price than that of a 40 gallon tank.

Do I Need to Turn Off the Water Heater When I Go On a Vacation?

If you are leaving your home with no occupants for more than two weeks, it is recommended that you turn your water heater off. However, make sure not to turn off the water valve going to the water heater. Gas-fired water heaters can be turned off or set to vacation setting on its setting knob. Electric water heaters on the other hand can be turned off on the main switch of the electrical panel box. One of the more common problems when leaving the water heater turned off though would be the dripping of water as the heater gets cold. A hot water tank will usually be able to hold its heat for about 1 week. After that, the water will start to get cold and drip will likely occur. In order to avoid this, use the heated water stored in the tank after they have been turned off.

Will a Tankless Unit Suite my Water Heating Needs?

This greatly depends on your water heating needs. There are people who prefer tankless water heaters and there are ones who prefer storage tank heaters. If you require almost limitless amounts of heated water, then a tankless water heater will be the right one for you as it is not limited by how much volume of heated water a storage tank can store. A tankless water heater is also suitable for you if you are only planning on installing them on point-of-use basis.

Why does it take a bit of Time before Hot Water gets to My Faucet?

This factor is usually dependent on the distance the hot water needs to travel from the tank (or whole house tankless water heater) towards the faucet. If the faucet is more than 20 feet from the source, you may require some time to run the water for at least 20 seconds before heated water comes out. In the case of whole-house water heaters, aside from the distance that should be considered, you should also consider takes several seconds to a few minutes before they are able to deliver heated water at the required temperature. After this wait however, a whole-house tankless water heater will be able to provide you with continuous heated water.

How do I know when to replace my Water Heating Unit?

One of the factors that will require you to replace your water heating unit will be its age. A water heater will usually last around 10 years before you may want to consider replacing it. This is because with age will arise signs of failure such as leakage and slow output. Other indicators would include noise, calcium buildup and deposits, and total failure to heat water.

How long does a Water Heater last?

This depends on the quality of the water being used, the quality of the water heater itself, and the maintenance provided by the owners.

How much Clearance is needed for a Gas-fired Water Heater?

It is usually suggested to have at least 24 inches of service clearance in front of the unit and at least 2 inches of clearance on the back and sides of the unit.

What are Dip Tubes?

Dip tubes are basically long plastic tubes that guide the cold water entering the tank so that it runs down through the hot water so it can be placed near the heating source.
Water Heater Preventive Maintenance

A water heater may seem to look like it is a pretty simple equipment, but that does not mean that it cannot develop problems along the line. Understanding how the mechanism works, especially on knowing exactly what to do when something goes wrong, can help you prevent serious hot water heater issues.

It may seem a bit funny and weird, but many people tend to forget about their water heaters. Typically tucked away well out of sight in a storage closet or in the garage corner, water heaters normally sit noiselessly and perform their jobs without a lot of ruckus. However, forgetting about them completely can prove to be a huge mistake.

Unlike some equipments or appliances at home, when a water heater suddenly does not work properly when you use it, it does not always just stop working. In some situations, you could find yourself standing in about 40 gallons or more of scalding hot water! Worse scenarios may include the risk of fires, explosions, or the release of deadly carbon monoxide gas into your home. With all those potential problems, it seems like having a good old-fashioned cold shower sounds pretty good right about now.

Do not worry too much about the dilemmas previously mentioned above. This is just to keep you aware about the importance of keeping an eye on your water heater. An annual inspection, along with some simple, regular maintenance, is usually all you need to do to keep your water heater doing great. Knowing some water heater basics would let you understand more about them.

Water Heaters – Its Basics

Water heaters are pretty simple equipments at home, and they have changed very little in the past 50 years. Due to the advancements of technology, water heaters have been refined and are made extremely better than they used to be, with higher efficiency, longer life spans, and the addition of safety features that minimize the risk of physical injury and property damage.

Every water heater is designed to convert energy to heat, and then transfer that heat to the water. They are then connected to a cold water supply pipe and have at least a single pipe for outgoing hot water that directs the heated water to faucets and other appliances throughout the entire house.

Even if there is a wide variety of water heaters available in the market such as electric, tankless, propane and even solar-powered model units, the most commonly used in the United States is a holding tank that is fueled by natural gas.

Water Heaters – Preventive Maintenance and Safety

Below are some basic ways on how to properly maintain your water heater.

First, check its overall physical condition. Water heaters are built to have lots of rust protection internally, but they have very little rust protection externally, so it is wise to watch out for leaks. Also, check for flaking paint, staining, or corrosion on the surface of the tank. Both external and internal rust can surely result into your tank failing. Keep in mind that the exterior shell may look okay on the outside, while all along it is already consumed with rust on the inside. However, if you see and confirm that nothing looks out of the plain ordinary, then move on to the regular maintenance duties.

The two chief steps to properly maintaining your water heater are: periodically draining the tank to remove sediments; and testing the temperature and pressure release valve (T&P) to make sure that it is working appropriately.

Every time the water heater is turned on, sediments begin to form. The sediments are actually made up of calcium carbonate, a mineral present in water, which is precipitated out through heating. It typically settles to the bottom of your tank, and therefore can shorten the lifespan of your water heater; significantly reduce its efficiency; clog lines, valves, and the recirculating pump; and even provide a suitable breeding ground for anaerobic bacteria. How many times you drain your tank depends a lot on the quality of water available at where you live. Areas that have very hard water means that you need to frequently drain your tank in order to keep the sediment levels low. The frequency may range anywhere from 6 months to 1 year.

The temperature and pressure release valve (T&P) is crucial for preventing explosions resulting from overpressure, because it automatically releases water at specific critical pressure levels and prevents the tank from exploding. Be sure to test this valve from time to time to make sure that it opens and closes properly, so that it will not fail whenever you need it.

Last but not least, install a carbon monoxide alarm near your water heater. Carbon monoxide is a gas that is odorless and colorless. However, if your water heater does not seem to vent properly or starts to back draft, these fatal fumes can enter your home and endanger you and your family.

If everything is working properly, do inspect the water temperature with the use of a cooking thermometer in order to make sure that it is set to your family’s comfort level as well as to ensure everyone’s safety. If the water is too hot for the human skin, it can really cause scalding which can lead to serious injuries. On the contrary, some people tend to put their water temperature at a low setting so as to try to be economical. However, keep in mind that if the water is not hot enough, it can potentially harbor bacteria. A good intermediate setting for your water temperature is about 130 degrees.

If you have never performed any of the basic maintenance tasks stated above on your water heater before, it is a good idea to simply hire a technician to do it properly for you the first time, and then you can ask them to show you how to do it by yourself for the next time. It is actually not very complicated to do these tasks, but you must be aware that there are potential risks involved. The risks of performing maintenance tasks incorrectly are obviously great compared to a just shelling out a minimal service fee. If you truly know and understand what the problem is with your water heater and you really know how to fix it, then by all means do so. Otherwise, let the professionals do it.

Let’s face it, nothing really lasts forever. Your water heater’s lifespan typically lasts anywhere from 6 to 12 years. With regular and proper maintenance, you can actually beat those numbers, help ensure the safety of your family, and last but not least, help you save precious money in the process.
Simple Tips on Water Heater Safety
Water heaters are basically household appliances the heats the water coming out of the tap. This is done so we can have a warm shower or other things we use warm water with, such as on the dishwasher or clothes washer. More often than not, water heaters do what they do best – to heat water. However, there are times, especially if we ignore some of the water heater safety that the manufacturers have given or built into the system, a situation can get hazardous and life threatening. This makes it very important for us to know the dangers and warning signs involved with water heater safety.

Vents – if you are using gas-fired water heaters, then you’ll know exactly how important having proper venting is. First of all, the diameter of your vent should be equal to the diameter of the draft diverter of your water heating unit. Atmospherically vented water heaters should have a vent that goes up and out only. Direct vent heaters must go out a side wall. Power vent heaters on the other hand are more flexible since they are equipped with a fan that sucks and blows out the fumes.

A vent should always be double-walled whether it passes through the wall or roof. In case a vent is single-walled, each section of the vent should be crimped and shoved together, and screwed with at least three screws per section. It is important that the vents are connected and secured properly because if a section falls apart, then the silent killer carbon monoxide, a colorless and odorless gas, will likely escape through the broken section and enter your home.

Backdrafting can also be a big issue with vents. There can be many reasons to why vents can backdraft. However, one of the most common reasons is soot buildup or a backpitched vent connector. Regardless of what’s causing the backdraft, this should be immediately corrected in order to avoid combustion or fumes from seeping into cracks and other areas of the home.

Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve – this valve is connected to the water heater and its purpose is to prevent the unit from exploding should the temperature and pressure exceed safe operating limits which they do by opening and venting. The main problem with these valves, especially for residential types is that they are prone to failure. This makes it very important for homeowners to regularly check the temperature and pressure relief valve of their water heater units in order to ensure that they are not running a ticking bomb in their home. Checking this valve is quite easy. All you need to do is pull up on the handle wherein water should freely flow out and stop as soon as you release the handle. However, if you pull the handle and it runs, drips, or does nothing, then you should have the valve replaced immediately.

The truth is most people don’t like to be bothered testing the temperature and pressure relief valve of their water heaters. However, when you are stuck with the notion that someday you might end up getting hospitalized or have a big hole in the roof to fix due to an exploding water heater tank, then it may be a good idea to do it after all. Besides, it will hardly take any of your time to do it. When a water heater explodes catastrophically due to failure, severe injuries (most likely scalding or injury to shrapnel) or death are almost apparent, not to mention the severity of damage to property.

If you are a fan of Mythbusters or have had the opportunity to watch one of their shows where they did the exploding water heater myth, you will be surprised how much energy and damage a water heater can do when it fails catastrophically.

Another important thing to remember about temperature and relief valve is to always make sure it has a drain line, usually around 6 inches to the floor, or plumbed outside. This will help to prevent anyone from getting scalded should the valve open when someone is standing next to it. In case you notice water running out of the line, it may just be a case of bad valve, or a signal that your unit is running dangerously high pressures, an issue of defective control which should not be ignored.

Earthquake Straps – if you live in an area that is prone to earthquake, your water heater unit and its vent should be properly strapped. This will help to prevent your water heating unit from falling over and severing the gas line connected to it, or prevent the vents falling or getting dislocated from how they were stacked.

Shell – the outer part of the water heater that you see is basically its shell. It is a strong sheet metal covered with insulation to help keep the heated water inside from cooling fast. If you notice that the outer shell of the unit does not look good, full of dents and all, chances are, the inside of the unit does not look great either. It would be best to just junk it instead of waiting for a catastrophe to happen.

Temperature Control – temperature controls for residential water heaters are set on warm, hot, and very hot; unlike commercial water heaters where you can set them to the degrees you want. Since there is such a big variation with these settings, especially from heater to heater, it would be a good idea to measure the temperature of your heated water from the tap. The ideal temperature would be 130°F to 140°F. You can use a kitchen thermometer to do this test.

It is important to set the temperature at not lower than 130°F as legionella bacteria, a Gram negative bacterium which causes the Legionnaire’s disease can still grow at 120°F, and not higher than 140°F as this could cause scalding, more energy use, as well as sediment buildup. This makes it ideal to have 130°F to 140°F as the range in temperature to have in your tap.