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Can Hard Water Affect Water Heater?

  • Transcript

    JIM: Yes. I have hard water in my house and every, I don’t know, year about I have to clean out my water heater to get the calcium deposits out. So, my question is – first of all, is there a better tool than a shop vac with a piece of copper tubing taped to it to get into the – I take the bottom element out and I shove that in there and try to clean that calcium out. Is there a way to liquefy that so that I could wash it out? Or is there a water heater on the market that provides access to that?

    TOM: So, how much calcium do you actually think you’re getting out of this when you open it up?

    JIM: Oh, my. It gets to the point where it’s almost to the bottom element.

    TOM: I wonder if you could put a filtration system in before the water heater that will take some of that away.

    Yeah, the problem with calcium is not so much that it shortens the life of the water heater, it just acts as an insulator. And so, if you have it – I’m sorry, you have a gas – you have an electric water heater?

    JIM: It’s electric, yeah.

    TOM: Yeah. So it’s probably not even affecting your efficiency much because it’s just taking up room.

    See, if you have a gas water heater and the flame is underneath it, then it acts as an insulator and the gas has to run longer to heat the water up. Because you have an electric water heater where the elements are embedded up higher in the unit, I don’t think it has any effect on the efficiency.

    JIM: Well, how I found out about this was the element went bad.

    TOM: Yeah.

    JIM: The bottom element. And I took it out to replace it and I couldn’t hardly get it out; it was actually above the element, at that point, the first time.

    TOM: Yeah. You know why? Because it probably – that might have shortened the life of the element, because it basically held the heat into it, didn’t allow it to cool like it normally does. So I could definitely see it shortening the life of it.

    Do you have any other type of filtration system on the well?

    JIM: Just an in-line filter that we put on. We had the water tested and an ultraviolet light and an in-line filter is all we have.

    TOM: There is an electronic device called EasyWater that basically will help suspend those water particles – those mineral salts – in the water and kind of let it flush right through, as opposed to collecting.

    JIM: OK.

    TOM: And I like it because it’s no salt involved. You know, it basically doesn’t add to the salinity of the water. It does it electronically. It’s at EasyWater.com.

    Take a look at it. They also have an extraordinarily good warranty. If you install it and you don’t like it, they’ll send you your money back.

    JIM: Alright. Great. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.

    TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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