Despite the fact that water heaters are an essential appliance in most modern homes, many people unfortunately do not think about water heater safety as much as they should. Most water heaters today feature cutting-edge technology and are certainly built to last, but it doesn’t hurt to keep some of these water heater safety tips in mind to prevent unforeseen issues later on!
Read the Inspection Decal Carefully
All water heaters should have inspection decals affixed to a visible part of their body. Do take some time to carefully read and understand the crucial information written on that sticker, which may include information like the installation date, heater specifications, and safety warnings.
In general, you should have your water heater inspected at least once every 3 to 5 years, depending on the model and make of the heater. The last date your heater was inspected should be recorded on the sticker – if your heater’s due for another inspection, be sure to contact your local trusted water heater professionals as soon as you can!
Learn your Water Heater’s Settings
By knowing when and how to use your water heater, you can extend its lifespan, ensuring you’ll regularly receive nice hot water for an even longer time. For instance, if you’re not using your water heater for an extended duration, be sure to turn down its heat settings. This will not only prevent overuse or damage of internal heating units, but it can also help to reduce your utility bills!
Inspect the Gaskets on the Tank
The gaskets on your water heater tank are one of the clearest indicators of the overall health of your heater – a worn gasket signals that it’s probably time for some heater maintenance.
Gaskets can be found wherever you see an “in and out” line on your water heater, in the form of a rubber or poly seal. Regularly ensure that your gaskets are dry, tight, and intact – damaged or loose gaskets can cause water heater leaks, which in turn can cause structural damage to your heater and home.
Clear Dust and Debris to Prevent Fire
The importance of thoroughly cleaning the area around your gas water heater cannot be understated; even the slightest bit of accumulated dust can cause a fire hazard, due to the intricate temperature and pilot mechanisms at the base of the heater. As such, do make sure you keep at least a 24-inch area around your heater free from all dust and debris from the housing unit covering your gas water heater’s pilot light.
Consider Installing Water Heaters on a Wall
Though most water heaters are installed free-standing in closets or basements, installing your water heater on a secondary wall might be a worthwhile investment as it will be safely out of the reach of pets and young children. You may also wish to install a further grate or temporary brick enclosure around your heater for added safety.
By applying all these tips, you’ll be sure to have a safe and comfortable experience when using your water heater at home.