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Preventive Maintenance Can Extend Your Water

by John Dewis (2017-10-20)

Temperature & Pressure Relief Valve geysers (T&P Valve)The T&P valve is designed to prevent the heater from exploding if the water pressure or temperature exceeds safe limits.


  • Pull up the handle on the valve and water should flow out and stop when you let go of the handle.
  • The T&P valve has a drain line that should go down to about 6" from the floor or be plumbed outside your home.


Note: Water leaking out of a T&P drain line can signal a bad T&P valve, high water pressure, or a malfunctioning thermal expansion device.

Water Pressure (All Water Heaters)


  • Water pressure over 80 pounds per square inch (psi) can damage heaters and your piping. It can also damage plumbing appliances, toilets, and your fixtures.


Note: One giveaway that your have high water pressure is when the T&P Valve on the heater starts opening and closing.

Outer Water Heater Metal Shell & Plumbing Fittings


  • Inspect the heater outer sheet metal shell for leaks or rusting.
  • Inspect the plumbing fittings on the heater for corrosion, rust, or water spotting.


Note: Rusty fittings or discolored shell is a telltale sign that a leak is present!

Temperature Control


  • Inspect the heater temperature control dial to insure its set at the correct water temperature.
  • The ideal water temperature is 120° Fahrenheit.


Note: Anything above 120° Fahrenheit greatly increases scalding risk, energy use, and sediment build-up in the bottom of the heater!