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Steps to Prevent Water Damage from a Busted Water Heater

A common cause of water damage and mold growth in the home is a leaking water heater. The average water heater has a service life of about 10 - 13 years, and begin to leak due to corrosion. Sometimes you may notice large puddles, or water may trickle unseen, damaging floors and walls. In the event that you determine your water heater is broken, follow these steps to drain the water heater and deter further damage.

  1. Cut off your water - To prevent further water leakage, turn off the main supply of water to the water heater. You can turn the water valve clockwise to cut off water on the heater, or if this is unsuccessful, turn off the main water supply to your home.
  2. Drain water from tank - Connect a hose to the drain valve found at the bottom of the tank, and run the hose to a lower area so that the dirty water will flow out. Open the valve and drain the water heater.
  3. Open pressure relief valve - To avoid creating a vacuum, open the pressure relief valve. Use caution as the water could be hot.
  4. Flush with cold water - Once the dirty water has been drained, flush the tank with cool water using the supply to the tank by turning it back on for a couple minutes.

As a part of regular maintenance, you should drain and flush water heaters annually to eliminate sediment in the tank and keep the water heater operating efficiently. If your heater leaks and causes damage, contact the water and mold remediation experts at ServiceMaster of Florence and Columbia.

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