Now that spring has come and we started thinking about how we could offer quality tips to our friends and neighbors here in New Jersey, we wanted to cover something most people aren’t talking about in their blogs and websites. We got to thinking about some advice we could pass on to others who have the same seasonal concerns living here in NJ in regards to springtime checklists and to-do’s so we decided to hit on the topic of appliance maintenance in the spring this year. There are a few things that a homeowner should always do each spring just for home appliance maintenance and safety precautions, as appliances have inherent dangers associated with them that need to be monitored regularly. Here’s a basic checklist we suggest all homeowners follow every spring that will help ensure appliances are safe and that your home and family are protected from danger. Also, by following our springtime appliance maintenance checklist below, the longevity of your appliances you’ve invested so much time and money into will be protected as well. So, now for our to-do’s:
- Check your water heater and set it to just below the “optimal temperature” of 120°F, maybe to around 110°F. If you want to set it a bit higher then set it no higher than 120°F to prevent scalding or burning your skin at the tap, and it will also reduce energy costs.
- For appliances like your water heater, we suggest that each spring you should drain several gallons out of your water heater tank. This is done in order to flush out any existing corrosion or sediment that has built up inside the unit – it may easily clog the unit or cause other problems like leaks or even flooding. Sediment not only reduces heating efficiency and shortens the life of the unit, but will be more expensive to use due to a loss in its efficiency in general. Just refer to your product’s user manual just to be certain there’s not any specific instructions or procedures you need to know or follow when doing service work of the water heater unit.
- Look and see how old your hot water heater actually is. If over 15 years have passed since it was manufactured, it’s highly recommended that you go ahead and replace the unit if at all possible on your budget. If you don’t know how old the unit is, take a look at the first four numbers of the serial number and they will tell you the month and year it was made at the factory. Since newer water heaters are more energy efficient, you might be able to put off getting the unit replaced for a bit longer if yours if less than 15 years old, but you shouldn’t wait any longer than necessary.
- Flammables should never be placed anywhere near appliances like your hot water heater or your furnace, as this could obviously create a deadly situation in the event one of the pilot lights were to be too close to fumes and one of the materials were to ignite and cause an explosion.
- Homeowners should carefully inspect the water lines to and from your dishwasher, as well as your washing machine and the water line to your fridge’s ice maker to ensure there are no bulges, leaks or clogs in them. If they are showing signs of weakness or general wear, or if they’re older than ten years, it’s recommended that you replace them just to be on the safe side when you do your springtime appliance maintenance routine each year.
- Whenever possible, switch your appliance’s plastic or rubber hoses or lines to stainless steel hoses made of a quality mesh fiber. This is something you will want to do because they are not going to break down like rubber or plastic lines plus they’re well worth the extra initial cost when you see how much you save in the long run. Bursting or bulging is not nearly as common with this type of material as opposed to others like rubber or plastic that are commonly used.
- Lastly on your springtime appliance maintenance list of to-do’s, if your washing machine has a lint trap, it’s a good idea to add a piece of screen-type material made of metal fibers in the hose where the water drains out of the machine. This will prevent the lint from clogging the drain line in a place where it may be very difficult to access.
There are other things you can certainly do to ensure your appliances will last for years to come, so feel free to give us a call to inquire or just stop on into the office. We’re glad to help our customers out and invite you to use our 24/7 emergency services if you run into a problem, which is available every single day of the year, including weekends and holidays. Don’t forget – we’re always here to help!