If the water flowing into your home is filled with minerals, it could cause problems with your home's hot water heater. This is because the heat inside a hot water tank will cause minerals to transform into scale, which are basically solid deposits in the tank. When scale forms, it reduces the overall lifespan and efficiency of a hot water tank. Here are some tips for dealing with scale.
Install a Whole-Home Water Softener
The two main elements that will cause scale in a hot water tanks are calcium and magnesium. If you want to keep both of these minerals out of the tank, you'll need to soften the water that goes into it. While many homeowners buy water softening systems for faucets in the kitchen, this doesn't help the water that gets heated in the tank. That's why you will need a whole-home water softening system instead.
A local plumber can help you purchase and install one of these systems on the main water line that comes into your home. As an added benefit, you'll have soft water coming out of every faucet, including the water used for your showers, washing machine, and dishwasher. This can be a great benefit if your home has particularly hard water already.
Flush Your Hot Water Tank Every Year
Over the years, the scale will build up along the very bottom of your hot water heater. This forms thick sediment that can cause noise when the water is heated. That sediment layer also absorbs heat, making the heating element work harder than it has to in order to heat the water.
Flushing out all of the water in the hot water tank will help remove this sediment, and it should be done every year. All you need to do is shut down the heating element, connect a hose to the drain along the bottom of the tank, and let all the water drain out of it. Let the water in the tank cool down before draining it to avoid handling scalding hot water.
Clean the Hot Water Tank With Vinegar
A safe way to clean the inside of the tank is with vinegar. The process involves using 2 buckets to push white vinegar through the tank, which will help remove any of the scale that is still in the tank. This works so well due to the acidic nature of white vinegar, which will cause tough deposits to loosen.
For more tips on keeping your hot water tank in good repair, talk to plumbers like Assured Plumbing & Heating.