Maintaining A Gas Water Heater

Check the flue

water heater flue match testThe flue on a gas water heater should pull all fumes up and send them out of the house.  To check that the flue is working, light a match and blow it out, and hold it near the flue.  Smoke should be sucked up into the flue.  According to the plumbing of Santa Cruz experts, if it isn’t, check that all the connections are tight.  Have the gas company inspect to be sure.

Keep your gas water heater alive longer by following these tips:

  • In areas with hard water, a gas water heater will last no more than 10 years.  If you drain the unit once a year you will lengthen the unit’s life and increase its efficiency.
  • The higher a thermostat is set, the shorter the life of the water heater.  Set the temperature to just as hot as you want and no higher.
  • A damaged or incorrectly installed flue will lead to elevated levels of carbon monoxide.  Install a carbon monoxide detector near (or directly above) the water heater to warn of this dangerous gas.
  • A new water heater is well insulated, but an older unit will benefit from a slip-over insulation blanket made specifically for your gas water heater.

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