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Guide to Heating and Cooling for New Home Owners

posted in: Tips and Tricks

As a new home owner, I never knew what went into the maintenance and care of my heating and cooling systems, let alone my water heater, until I worked for a company who installs, repairs, and services them. As home owners, paying attention to tell-tale signs is extremely important.

One never realize how important these systems are in your household until one of them has an issue or fails entirely. Your heating, cooling, and water heater systems are like the “silent bills” waiting to happen in your household. If they are not properly installed, serviced, and repaired when needed, you will end up spending thousands of dollars in repairs and replacements, not just in equipment but possibly in household damages which end up going through your home owner’s insurance.

Just like many things in life, the old saying “you get what you pay for” stands true with your heating, cooling, and water heater systems. If you hire the cheapest guy, to install the cheaper system, it will likely result in more mechanical repairs, failures, and replacements at your expense. Now, if you go with the company who is little more expensive, offers a variety of solutions, top name brand equipment, and offers an extensive yearly service package for your equipment, you will see that you won’t have to worry about those “silent bills” as much because you know you invested wisely, and had water heater experts assist you in your process.

The following is how Patriot handles typical water heater inspections:

Gather Information

We ask the client if they have any issues they know of. Have lost or ran out of hot water? Has anyone else done repairs to the unit? If all answers are no, the tech goes down to the water heater. If any answers yes, the technician investigates.

Visual Inspection

  • What is the condition of the water heater, is it clean? What type of water do they have? Public, or well? Is there an expansion tank? Check all valves and shut offs.
  • Look at controls. What is the temperature setting?
  • If it is electric, go to breaker panel to ensure the properly sized breaker.
  • If its gas, verify the unit gas type is correct.
  • Verify temperature at a fixture with a thermometer


  • Electric – Turn power off to unit, check resistance on the two elements and make sure they are not failing or grounded out.
  • Gas – Clean flame sensor and burner. If they are five years or older it’s time to replace them, depending on condition.
  • Test water pressure
  • Ensure drain valve opens and closes.

Typical Recommendations

  • Thoroughly flush heater and inspect anode rod. If anode rod is deteriorated and pitted severely now is the time to replace it.

Knowing now that this is what goes into just inspecting and servicing a water heater gives me comfort. Think of it like buying a new car. You wouldn’t buy the car and drive it 100,000 miles without ever changing the oil or breaks. Preventative maintenance is everything for all the systems in your house!


heating anode

  1. […] You can read more about tips and tricks in our guide for new homeowners here. […]

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