While you can shrug off a cold or lukewarm shower every once in a while, especially during summer, water heaters are the winter heroes. A hot bath or shower always does the trick when hot drinks and warm clothing cannot keep your body warm. Water heater problems can bring the comfort of your home to a frustrating halt, particularly when you use hot water to clean, cook, bath, and run other appliances.
Identifying and addressing common water heater problems is a handy skill for every homeowner. Carrying out a water heater repair on time helps prevent damage to home appliances and costly replacements.
In this post, we look at some of the most common water heater problems homeowners complain of.
This is arguably the most common water heater problem. Naturally, the water will corrode the water heater tank or its components, causing microscopic cracks. If the leak appears to be from the top of your water heater, this may be a sign of a loose connection. Check to ensure that the cold water inlet and hot water outlet are tight.
If the leak is from the bottom of the tank, it may be coming from the drain valve. With an electric water heater, the leak could be from the heating element gasket.
Whichever the cause of your leak, consult a water heater repair professional. They will know other problems to look out for and also advise you on whether you need to replace your unit.
Lack of Enough Hot Water
This is a common problem for apartment dwellers and households with a large number of people. In such cases, the water heater may be struggling to meet the demand leading to insufficient hot water. Other causes of inadequate hot water are poor water heater maintenance, crossed connections, and frozen pipes. Also, the unit may have outlived its shelf life.
If the unit does not produce hot water at all, the circuit breaker may have tripped, or, in the case of an electric unit, the heating element could fail. A water heater repair professional will assess whether your unit is properly sized and address any heating element or thermostat problems.
Dusty or Rusty-Colored Water
The most common cause of discolored water from your water heater is a corroded anode rod. The anode rod is also referred to as the ‘sacrificial rod’ as it is made up of easily corroded material. It is placed in water heater tanks so that it can draw corrosion-causing elements to itself rather than the tank. Normally, an anode rod should last four to five years.
If the water is still discolored after replacing the anode rod, it could be due to sediment build-up in your unit. Bedford, TX, has rather hard water, which is the leading cause of scale build-up. This explains why most water heater companies recommend that homeowners install water softeners.
Smelly Hot Water
Stinky water from your water heater tank is due mainly to the accumulation of bacteria in the tank. Homeowners using well water are more likely to experience this problem quite often. Flushing the water heater tank once in a while may temporarily take care of the problem, but the main problem could be a worn anode rod.
Your water heater repair contractor may recommend that you replace it with a powered anode rod as it will get rid of any lingering smells and last longer. If the odor is powerful, the problem may be the gas line. In that case, turn off your unit and call your preferred water heater repair and gas utility company. Vacate the property until the problem is solved.
Inconsistent Water Temperatures
Drastic temperature changes when you are taking a shower or doing the dishes could be a sign of a severe problem and should not be taken lightly. Check the unit’s thermostat and ensure it is set to your preferred temperature. If the problem persists, you may be dealing with a failed thermostat or heating element. The problem could also be due to an improperly sized unit.
Noises from Your Water Heater
Unusual noises such as banging, hissing, knocking, or popping sounds from your water heater may be due to malfunctioned components or excessive sediment build-up. Flushing your water heater once every year should take care of the latter. If you have flushed your unit and tightened any loose connections, but the noise persists, contact a water heater repair professional immediately.
The water pressure that comes from your unit should be the same as the amount of pressure getting into it. If you start experiencing low-pressure problems, it may be due to any of the following reasons:
- Incorrectly sized supply lines – This is especially the case in older homes with the standard ½” plumbing that was used in the past. The only way this can be solved is through re-piping.
- A partially closed shut-off valve – If your unit’s shut-off valve is closed partially, the water flow will be restricted. This causes a drop in pressure on all hot water outlets.
- Kinked intake or outtake lines – This is particularly the case for tank-type units that have accordion-style copper pipes. Because of their structure, they could become kinked or too sharply bent, thus restricting water flow.
While you could try to troubleshoot the cause of reduced water pressure, consult a water heater repair professional for the actual fix.
The Water Takes Too Long to Heat
You can avoid most of these issues through regular water heater repair and annual maintenance. For example, flushing out the unit once every year prevents excessive sediment build-up. Replacing the anode rods on your traditional tank every few years also ensures that the unit stays in optimum shape.
Often than not, despite proper maintenance of your unit, you may find yourself in need of water heater repair services. In such instances, get in touch with our Bedford, TX professionals. At Tioga Contractors, we offer round-the-clock plumbing services to ensure you experience convenience and comfort. Get in touch with us today for more information about our services.
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