Protecting Your Home from Water Heater Damage
This article from Safepoint Insurance has the best description on what is involved in being sure that your home hot water heater is not going to suddenly cause you a huge water loss claim due to a sudden failure. This type of water claim is probably by far the most prevalent type of homeowner claim that we see.
We have seen claims go from a few thousand dollars up to over $100,000 and in one case on a Mobile home, the water loss totaled a fairly new mobile home.
Water heater failure is a common issue. But you can help prevent hot water heater problems, including a leaking water heater, with these 4 steps for water heater maintenance.
1. Check your water heater's age. If your water heater reaches its life expectancy, the risk of a slow leak or sudden burst increases. Consequently, your efforts to inspect and maintain the water heater should increase.
2. What is an anode rod and why should you care? A "sacrificial" anode rod is installed in water heaters to avoid corrosion of the tank. To determine if your anode rod needs to be replaced, it should be inspected once every two years and at least annually once the warranty has expired.
3. Clean out your water heater regularly. Regular water heater maintenance should include re-moving sediment by flushing the tank every six months. Water heaters can be flushed by attaching a garden hose to the valve at the base of the water heater. Note: Turn off the power and run hot water until it cools before you try to flush the tank since the heated water may be 130 to 140 degrees or more.
4. Get an inspection annually! Don't forget to have a plumbing professional inspect your water heater's shut-off valve and all piping annually. Signs of broken valves and loose or wet joints and rust are a signal that more severe damage is coming.
Water heater failure is one of the top five sources of residential water damage, according to an IBHS study. In fact, water heater failures cost an average of $4,444 per incident after the deductible was paid. If you think your water heater is not in risk, keep in mind that 69 percent of all water heater failures result from a slow leak or sudden burst. Don't get stuck with cold showers and costly water damage repairs due to water heater failure. Reduce your risk with these steps for avoiding water heater failure.