Your furnace is an appliance you want to have running efficiently when the Winter months roll around to keep you and your family warm. Very few homeowners stop to think about another vital appliance that helps keep you warm all year round: your water heater.  Hot water is stored in your water heater and is dispersed throughout your home’s sinks, dishwashers and showers. Homeowners know very little about the composition of a water heater, so here are a few notes about where the hot water in your home comes from and what to do when it isn’t working:

 

How Your Water Heater Works

 

That giant, cylindrical container next to your furnace is responsible for your warm showers and clean dishes. Typically located in the lowest level of your home, your water heater is connected to the water lines of your home. The water that enters your heater is cold, and the heating element inside the container initiates the heating process. For gas powered water heaters, the gas burner heats the water with incredibly hot, yet toxic, air that is expelled outside of your home through a component known as the “chimney.” As the chimney gets hot, so does the water that surrounds it, which begins the warming process. There is a pipe located at the top of the water heater known as the “heat out pipe,” and it transfers all the hot water from and to the household appliances when requested.

 

How to Choose the Right Size for My Home:

 

Choosing the right water heater for your home depends on a few variables. Firstly, if you have a high number of occupants that live in your home, that routinely shower or bathe, you may need a larger water heating unit. Unfortunately, many homeowners will purchase a smaller hot water tank to save money. However, if you don’t plan on reducing your water consumption habits, it will still end up costing the same on your hydro bill, without the adequate heat you wanted. If you live in a two-bedroom, one bathroom home, a smaller tank may satisfy all aspects of your living needs which include showering, dishwashing and cooking. If you live in a bigger house and invest in a small water tank, it may affect your re-sell value in the future when a family moves in and requires a much larger unit.

 

Troubleshooting

 

Basic issues with hot water in your home can be fixed by checking your breakers to see if your water heater was turned off. If you can only get cold water from your appliances, it is wise to inspect to see if there is a blown fuse in the water heater circuit. For all other concerns regarding your water heater, it is imperative that you enlist the assistance of an HVAC specialist. Dealing with the mechanics and electrical components of your water heater can be dangerous, so ensure that your water heater runs efficiently for a long time by calling your HVAC specialists today!