Going Back to School: Water Heaters 101

Water Heater Basics

Almost every house has a water heater. It is an essential component of the modern household and is usually used daily. Water heaters account for about 25% of the overall home energy expenses. The average lifespan is between 8 and 12 years. However, they may break down from time to time, causing many issues in the home. Read on for more fundamentals of water heaters, the various types, and their components.

Best Type of Water Heater For Your Home

types of water heatersTank water heaters can be powered by gas or electricity and heat water and store it for when it’s needed. The pre-heating and storage method of water heating isn’t as energy efficient as some other options, as the unit constantly uses energy to keep water warm to a comfortable temperature.

A tankless water heater is a type of water heater that only heats water when needed. This saves energy because the heater doesn’t have to keep the water warm all day. Tankless heaters typically use less electricity or gas than traditional water heaters, so homeowners can save money on utility bills by switching to a tankless model.

Water Heater Maintenance

professional maintenanceOne common issue with water heaters over time is the buildup of sediment. This can happen if the water heater hasn’t been inspected or maintained recently. Sediment can build up in the heater, making it less efficient and increasing the risk of water safety issues.

The easiest way to flush a water heater is to drain the debris from the system. Professionals will drain the water heater by connecting a hose to the drain valve and emptying the tank. This should remove any residue in the tank. Routine maintenance can extend the life of a water heater by years, save money on utility bills, and prevent repairs which is why professionals recommend regular maintenance at least once a year.

Most water heaters have an anode rod protecting the lining and interior of the water heater from corrosion. The anode rod should be replaced every few years during maintenance once it wears out to prevent the tank from corroding and needing a premature replacement.

Signs the Water Heater Needs Repair

Most water heater tanks are made from steel, which makes them prone to rust and corrosion. If homeowners see small pieces of rust in the hot tap water or the water is discolored, it’s a sign that the tank is starting to rust. Rust may also be found around the joints and pressure relief valve. If the tank is deteriorating, it will need to be replaced.

If the water doesn’t seem as hot as it used to, or it cools down quicker, this could be a sign that there is a problem with the heating element or electric thermostat. These problems will prevent the heater from performing effectively and make the water cooler. This can happen over time or all of a sudden. Homeowners should immediately contact a professional if they notice these signs, so the issue doesn’t worsen.

About PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning

PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning is a disabled veteran-owned business with over four decades of experience serving Staten Island, NY, and the surrounding areas. They provide options to fit any budget, fast turnarounds, and maintenance plans. Call them today for water heater services in Staten Island, NY.

Water Heaters Deserve Holiday Gifts Too!

The Importance of Water Heater Repair

The holidays are a time of giving. Families get together and show their appreciation by giving gifts and spending time with one another. Something homeowners don’t realize is that their water heater would appreciate a gift this time of year as well. Contrary to popular belief, the holidays are a great time to have water heart repair and replacement. Ideally, homeowners will have this done before the holidays. Regardless, doing this ensures the water heater can withstand the added stress of the holidays and continue to work efficiently for the rest of the season. It is also important that homeowners understand the difference between signs of repair and signs of needing replacement. For more information, continue reading below. 

How To Spot When a Water Heater Needs Repairs

Water heaters are relatively durable appliances. On a daily basis, they don’t need very much attention at all. That said, they still require a certain level of maintenance and repairs. If the homeowner stays on top of maintenance and has problems fixed as soon as they pop up, the water heater will likely work more efficiently longer. 

Some common signs that repairs are needed include: 

  • The water pressure is off
  • The water temperature is inconsistent 
  • The water is discolored
  • The water smells unusual

Common Reasons Water Heaters Break Down


The most common reason water heaters break down is because of lack of maintenance. It is recommended for homeowners to have their water heater maintenance done once every year. Households that have large families should ideally have their water heater serviced more than once a year. 

It might not completely eliminate the need for emergency repair, but it will significantly reduce it. Some other common reasons for water heater breakdown include: 

  • Misuse
  • Over-use
  • Over-working the unit
  • Neglecting an issue

Is It Time for a Replacement? 

Sometimes it can be difficult to tell the difference between the need for repairs and the need for replacement. Luckily, a professional can help with this decision. Not only that, but a professional can help the homeowner decide what water heater replacement best suits their household’s needs. 


Regardless, there are still some signs that expressly point to the need for replacement: 

  • The water heater is ten years or older
  • It experiences frequent breakdowns
  • It doesn’t keep the water hot for very long (even on a good day)

At the end of the day, water heater maintenance is essential. Homeowners should call a professional today to have their water heater checked out before the holidays arrive!

PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning Does It All

When it’s time to call a professional, homeowners should look no further than the experts at PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning. They have the skillset needed to ensure homeowners are safe all winter long. Not only that, but they make sure the home is as efficient as possible so customers can save money in every area of the home. Count on PAC Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning for water heater services in Staten Island.