Getting a replacement for your water heater can prove to be an expensive affair. A much cost effective alternative is to get it repaired if the problem is still under control; however if your water heater has been faithful to you for a number of years, with nothing more than a few basic problems, and it suddenly starts having more issues, you can consider replacing it as a last resort. The good news is that most of the issues that water heaters have can actually be solved by simple means. A number of issues can be handled on do-it-yourself basis while for others you may need to hire a plumber.
To manage things on your own, it is critical that you identify the problem in time so it can be repaired; do not wait for it to get out of hand and spend a large sum of money on its replacement. If you live in a region where the temperatures are lower, you must be aware of your water heater’s importance for the health and comfort of your family. This article covers a number of major issues you can have with your water heaters. Before you start worrying about getting a replacement, consider the following:
When the quantity of hot water decreases
When you are used to a good volume of hot water and suddenly the quantity starts decreasing, there can be many reasons for it. There can be a possibility that the thermostat, that regulates the temperature of your water heater, needs replacing.
When sediments accumulate at the bottom
Sometimes when you have been using your water heater for a long time, sediments that are present in water may accumulate at the bottom of the tank and result in decreasing the quantity of hot water that reaches you. In this case, you can get your heater cleaned and save the cost that you may have to spend on buy a new one.
When your dip tube needs repair
Dip tube is a plastic tube that runs through the length of a water heater and makes the cold-water travel to the bottom of the tank. If it is cracked or even broken owing to being used for a long time, the cold water meant to be taken to the bottom of the tank can be mixed with the hot water and you may think that your heater is not functioning properly. In such a case, you simply need to get the dip tube repaired instead of considering replacing your water heater.
The reduction in the quantity of hot water may also be due to some environmental factors. Since that pipes that take up water to your heater lie underground, they may make it difficult for your heater to heat the water in it. This process is similar to the one makes it difficult for you to get cold water during summers. The pipes get so hot that they make the water running inside them hot as well.
When your water heater starts leaking:
Your heater can begin to lose its complete functionality and start leaking due to a number of issues. Sometimes the temperature-pressure relief is damaged and cause leakage. Check for excess pressure on its valve and if it seems to be the cause of leakage, clear it to restore proper function. Your water tank’s needs to be fully functional because it ensures safety of the water tank and excess pressure it can cause an explosion in your tank.
Worn out gasket
Not only the TRP but also, the gasket and pipefitting’s of your water heater should be checked properly to maintain complete functionality. Sometimes the water tank also is damaged due to over use and cause leaks.
When your electric heater stops heating the water:
When your electric heater stops heating water, issues strictly depends on the make and model of your heater. In case your electric water heater is malfunctioning, you need to check its circuit breaker. If it is the factor that is causing problems you can simply switch it off and then on again to reset its settings. In another case, reset your heater’s high temperature or the ECO option. However, sometimes the thermostat also starts having technical problems; in which case you will need to call your plumber and seek professional help.
When your gas heater stops heating the water:
If you have a gas water heater and it suddenly, stops heating water you need to check it for a couple of factors before coming up with exact problem at hand. Check that the pilot light on your heater is on or off; if it is not switched on, you need to follow the instruction on the either the instruction manual or they may be printed on the tank of your water heater. If the pilot light will not switch on even after following the instructions, you might have to contact your supplier as the problem may be with the gas supply. However, if the light quickly goes out after turning on for a couple of seconds, your heater’s problem lies in either the gas control valve or thermocouple.
Call your trusted plumber for issues like this and do not attempt to repair this damage on your own.
When your heater starts making a sound:
Noises like rumbling or something popping inside your water heater can cause heating issues in your heater. This happens when a considerable quantity of sediments have accumulated inside your heater and may be causing overheating to the water inside. If the water heater at hand is an electrical one, accumulating calcium carbonate in the heating system can also cause similar sounds.
When lime gets accumulated on the inside walls
Flushing the sediments to clean the inside of the water can stop these sounds. In addition, if lime has accumulated on the heating you can clean it by professional cleaning liquids. However, if you are hesitant to do this yourself, you can get help from a professional plumber. Many small issues that your water heater may have can be handled by simply draining all the water in it and replacing it with fresh water.
When your water starts stinking:
After a good long run by your water heater, you may observe that the water coming out of your taps has turned to slight rust colour. This is an obvious indicator that your water heater has started corroding from the inside. The rusting may be happening on the anode rod that is put in place to secure the tank’s walls from the inside. This can lead to production of hydrogen inside your water tank and start smelling like bad eggs. It is actually the bacteria, which are being fed by the produced hydrogen.
You can simply get this anode rod replaced and get rid of the bad smell. This will also help you in cleaning the accumulated sediments from your heater’s tank.
While even the most well kept water, heaters can have problems in functioning seamlessly. However, with proper maintenance and regular visits by a professional plumber you can make this household necessity to work for years without too many problems. A water heater costs a lot of money and more often than not, repairing it is an affordable option, instead of replacing the entire equipment. However, when you have used a heater for a number of years and it requires you get your plumber more times than you normally do, you may need to consider replacing your equipment.