This video outlines a key component to water heater maintenance that is often overlooked, the expansion tank.
What does the expansion tank do?
The expansion tank will allow expanding water (water expands when it heats) a place to go.
Do you need one?
You need an expansion tank, if you are on a water system with a back-flow preventer (a one way valve). If you are on city water and do not have a back-flow preventer, you probably do not need an expansion tank. The city water system can absorb the expansion. Same with a well system.
Water heater maintenance on your expansion tank
Your expansion tank will have an outlet to connect up a pressure gauge. You can test the pressure at this port. It should match what your water pressure is set for. Watch the video for more details.
Problems when your expansion tank fails
If the expanding water has no place to go, it could leak out of your system through the T&P valve.. If your expansion tank fails, you can have leaks from the T&P relief valve, drippy faucets and faucet washers that wear out faster.