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Water Heater 101: Handling Rental Property Plumbing Emergencies

Aug 30, 2022

As a property manager, plumbing emergencies such as a water heater leaking are some of your worst nightmares. Not only are these sorts of plumbing issues a nuisance for tenants to deal with, but they may also pose a risk to your ability to maintain your lease agreement and protect your property from further damage. Old, worn-out water heaters and other plumbing fixtures are a liability, and a good property manager has a keen sense when to nip a problem in the bud before it wreaks havoc on you and your tenants. 

Since you can’t be at every property at every moment, many times your tenants and proper maintenance are your first two lines of defense when it comes to issues like a water heater leaking. 

As such, the best offense is a strong defense. We’ve come up with these helpful tips for property managers to avoid water heater emergencies and problems. Keep reading to see how.

Communicate To Your Tenants Who To Call In A Plumbing Emergency

In the demanding world of property management, where being in two places at once would be ideal, the reality often involves juggling multiple tasks simultaneously. This makes it essential for tenants to know exactly who to contact in case of a water heater leak or any other plumbing issue that requires the attention of a skilled professional. Establishing clear communication channels for maintenance requests ensures swift and effective handling of such situations, relieving some of the pressures of property management.

Certainly, while you’d ideally be the second person they contact, it’s practical to have a reliable plumbing team on standby. Including their contact details in your rental packet for new tenants is an excellent strategy. Also, prominently displaying their after-hours or emergency contact number right on the water heater ensures quick access. This way, in an urgent situation, tenants won’t need to search through miscellaneous items to find the necessary contact information. This proactive approach can significantly streamline the response to any plumbing issues, providing peace of mind for both tenants and property managers.

Ensure Tenants Know Where The Shut-Off Valve Is

Communication with your tenants before issues arise is a running theme on this list of tips. That’s because in water heater emergencies, the sooner you and your tenants can act, the better.

Make sure all of your tenants know the location of the water shut-off valve. You can point it out when you do your first walk through and they sign their lease, or you might even want to include a map that they can reference in the case of an emergency

Stay On Top Of Your Pipes

In older buildings and in certain types of weather, pipes can be more persnickety and wear down over time. If you’re responding to an issue in an apartment, make sure you don’t use any chemical treatments to get rid of clogs that can cause damage to pipes over time. It’s especially important that your tenants understand this as well. 

You may even opt to provide your tenant with a drain snake if they feel comfortable using one to deal with clogs. 

Schedule Regular Maintenance

This is obvious, but if you have multiple units, it may slip through the cracks with everything else you’re managing. It’s important that you check water heaters for leaks and drips on a regular schedule. 

The good news is that this can be done by a professional team or by yourself if you’re looking to save a few bucks. Simply checking for leaks regularly or any other signs of inevitable wear and tear is never a bad idea. That being said, you may want your professional water heater company to walk you through what to look for so that you can properly analyze various water heater conditions at the buildings you manage.

Understand Which Leaks Are Emergencies—And Which Aren’t

Not every water heater leak is an emergency; however, some can be quite serious. As such, it’s vital that you have an understanding of which water heater leaks are serious and which are not. For example, if the leak is coming from the cold or hot water inlet at the top of your water heater, you may be able to fix the problem yourself. Other leaks, such as an internal tank leak, need to be handled by professionals ASAP.

Don’t Try To Cut Corners With Water Heater Repair

Water heater repair can be dangerous if mishandled, so it’s always a good idea to work with a professional team of experts to ensure everything goes smoothly. That being said, not every business understands the needs of a property manager or property management company. As such, it’s a good idea to work with a business-like Fast Water Heater Co. that fully understands how to diagnose water heater problems as well as the needs of property managers and owners. 

With the right team on your side, and a few precautions, you can keep a leaking hot water heater from raining on your parade. Reach out to Fast Water Heater today to learn more about their dedicated property management team and on-call guarantee for property management companies today.

Call (425) 636-7038
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