If you follow any type of plumbing, home service or hardware-type accounts on social media, chances are you’ve seen plenty of articles about water heaters. You’ve likely seen things about when you need to replace them, how much they cost and maybe even how you, as a homeowner, can perform some simple maintenance tasks. While all of that is great, you probably aren’t too familiar with the actual components and where they’re located on your equipment, right? Today, we’re going to break down exactly that — where the important parts of your water heater are located with hopes that it will make routine maintenance that much simpler.


This is the main component of a tank-type water heater. The large round tank is insulated and it’s job is to hold hot water until it’s needed throughout your home. Basically, the tank is what you’re looking at when you look at a water heater.


Most gas water heaters come equipped with a gas control valve as well as a thermostat to change the temperature of the water that gets delivered to your plumbing fixtures. Generally speaking, both the gas valve and thermostat are located on the outside of the tank near the bottom (sometimes hidden by a metal plate). When searching for the thermostat, keep an eye out for a dial, knob or lever that looks like it controls temperature settings.

On electric water heaters, thermostats are often held in place by a special bracket that holds it up against the tank.


The reset button, or buttons if there are two thermostats, are usually red in color and are commonly found right above the thermostat. You may also need to remove a metal plate to access the reset button(s) if the thermostat itself is hidden.

In order to reset your water heater, first flip the circuit breaker to the off position. Then press the red button inwards — you may hear a click to indicate that it worked properly. Finally, flip the breaker back on and your equipment should now receive power.


This is often considered the most important factor in determining whether or not it’s time to replace your system. So, where do you find it? The anode rod is a steel core wire wrapped in one of three different metals that is screwed into the top of the water heater.

In some cases, the anode rod may be connected to the hot water outlet, but you should always check the user manual as it will likely have a diagram that indicates where the rod is located.


This valve shuts off the cold water supply to the tank whenever your water heater needs to be drained or replaced. The valve can be located on the cold water supply line, usually above the top of the tank.


When it comes time to flush out your water heater, the drain valve will come into play. It’s located near the bottom of the tank and it looks similar to a garden hose spigot. In fact, you can use a garden hose to transport the draining water to a floor drain nearby, if you prefer that method over using a bucket.


If you think there might be something wrong with your water heater, you don’t want to wait until an emergency—like a burst water heater tank—strikes. Instead, call Universe Home Services at the first sign of trouble. We’ll be there promptly and can help you determine if you need water heater repairs or if you should replace the water heater altogether. To schedule an appointment, call us today at: (516) 473-0202.


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