Common Issues with Hot Water Heaters
We rely on our water heaters to warm the water that comes into our homes for hot showers, cooking, cleaning, and other household tasks. Being stuck with freezing cold water is a situation no one wants to be in, so be on the lookout for these common hot water heater issues.
No Hot Water
Turning on the kitchen sink or shower and finding that the water isn’t getting hot is one of the most obvious signs of water heater malfunction. There could be a few different causes:
- If your water heater is electric, check the breaker box first. A circuit may have been tripped, or the cause could be a blown fuse.
- Check the temperature that the heater is set to. If something or someone accidentally knocked the dial and lowered the pressure, this is a quick and easy adjustment.
- If you have a gas water heater, check the pilot light as it may have blown out. If it doesn’t stay lit, a professional is likely needed to inspect and fix the water heater.
If you find that a strange smell is coming from your water heater, similar to the smell of rotten eggs, there’s likely a buildup of bacteria in the tank. Your water heater tank can be cleaned with chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide to eliminate the bacteria. Another indication of bacteria is if the water coming from your faucets is discolored. Either way, it’s best to have a professional check the heater to see how serious the damage is.
Making Strange Noises
Water heaters are known for making cracking and popping sounds when there is sediment buildup at the bottom of the tank. The scale and sediment builds up on the heating elements, which causes the unit to overheat and the water to boil, thus the popping sounds. The water needs to be flushed from your water heater and the scales need to be cleaned and sediment removed in order to fix this issue.
Low Water Pressure
When the water coming from faucets and plumbing fixtures in your home seems to have little to no pressure at all, your water heater might be to blame. A clog in the tubes due to sediment buildup could be causing your water pressure to drop.