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How Often Should I Flush My Water Heater Tank?

Are you noticing that your water heater isn't heating as well as it should? One reason could be a build up of sediment at the bottom of the tank. If you have a tank-style gas or electric water heater you can extend the lifespan of the unit by regularly flushing the tank to remove sediment build-up that can reduce heating efficiency and shorten the lifespan of the unit. Sediment is caused by minerals in the water that accumulates at the bottom of the tank. Flushing the tank removed the buildup and helps the burner work more efficiently. It also reduces the likelihood that the bottom of the tank will develop corrosion and leaks.

How often you should flush the tank depends on a number of factors, including the size of the tank, the number of people in the household and how hard your water is. Here is a general guide for how often you should flush your tank.
  • 1 or 2 person household - Inspect the water heater every 6 months and flush the tank every 12 months.
  • 3 or 5 person household - Inspect the water heater every 4 months and drain the tank every 8 months.
  • 6 or more person household: Inspect the water heater every 4 months and drain the tank every 6 months.
Need help maintaining your water heater? Call Ostrom, we can help with all your home plumbing maintenance needs.
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