There are some instances where you may have to turn off your main water to your house, especially in the event of a plumbing emergency. You may wonder how turning off the water could possibly affect your water heater. In certain circumstances, like if you have a leak or need to repair or replace your water heater, you must turn off the water before doing so, else you risk a flood.
If you have a plumbing issue that you’re not sure how to fix, then it’s time to call in a professional. At Ambient Edge, we have decades of experience fixing plumbing issues, and our technicians are available anytime, day or night, to help you with any plumbing emergency you may have. Give us a call at 888-230-5160, and we’ll be happy to help!
When to Turn the Water Heater Off
Customers ask us all the time, “should I turn off my water heater if I have already turned off the main water supply?” There is no set answer to this. Just as there are a variety of scenarios that would cause you to have to turn off your main water supply, so too are there a variety of scenarios wherein we would advise you to turn off your water heater as well.
There are two situations wherein you absolutely must turn off your water heater:
- When your water tank is empty, and you know you won’t be home for a lengthy period, such as going on vacation
- In the incredibly unlikely scenario that you lose pressure on the cold-water side
Else, if you have a full water tank, and you need to turn off the water for an issue unrelated to your water heater, then it really doesn’t matter if you turn the water heater on or off.
Why a Water Heater May Leak
If you find that your water heater has developed a leak, you should turn off the water via the valve on the heater to minimize leakage. If, however, the valve is broken, you must turn off the main water supply to prevent a never-ending flood.
Here are some potential causes for a leaking water heater:
- Loose drain valve or fixtures
- Damaged storage tank
- Too much pressure as the result of too high a temperature or too high a pressure of the exterior water coming into the tank
- Improper drainage
If you’re able to troubleshoot the problem on your own, that’s great! But you may still feel wary about attempting to fix it yourself. No worries – there’s no plumbing problem that Ambient Edge can’t solve!
Lowering Water Heating Bills
Another reason some people turn off their water heater is to save money between uses. However, this actually does nothing to save you any money. In fact, you can cause more problems for yourself, like having no hot water when you get back and experiencing difficulties trying to turn the unit back on.
The “VAC” Option
If you’d like to truly save money on your water heating bills, consider either turning the temperature on your water heater down or setting it to “vacation” mode, if you have a newer model with this feature. You’ll know you have this feature because it is typically marked with a “VAC” on the thermostat.
What the VAC setting does is reduces the temperature of the water to 50 degrees Fahrenheit to help your water heater not work so hard. (Normally, the water heater constantly keeps the water at a temperature of between 120- and 130-degrees Fahrenheit.) However, a lower temperature keeps your heater running in more of a constant state so that it doesn’t experience overload when you turn it back on.
If, however, you do not see a VAC option on your particular model, simply lower the water heater’s temperature to 50 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. You’ll get the same efficiency as you would from putting a newer model in vacation mode.
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Having Issues with Your Water Heater? Ambient Edge Can Help!
If you’re concerned about your water heater, whether it’s experiencing a leak or simply isn’t heating your water the way it’s supposed to, give our team at Ambient Edge a call. We have experience with all makes and models of water heaters, and, if for any reason you aren’t satisfied, we offer a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee on all our parts and labor.
Interested? Give us a call at 888-230-5160 or send us a message via the contact form on our website. Putting off a water heater repair can result in catastrophic flooding and water damage, so don’t risk it – call Ambient Edge today.