Water heaters are the silent workhorses of every business, facility, or home. They work around the clock to provide hot water in an instant. And, they’re out of sight, out of mind, until there’s a problem. Here are the seven most common water heater problems that you may experience.

Common Water Heater Problems

Not Enough Hot Water

Are you noticing that you run out of hot water? Your problem could be any of the following:

  • Water Heater Too Small
  • Thermostat Malfunctioning
  • Obstructed Flue or Vent
  • Faulty Dip Tube

Consider investing in a larger water heater for your business or look into a tankless water heater.

No Hot Water

Is your gas water heater not working at all? Check to see if the pilot light is on. If it’s out, turn it back on. Pilot light won’t stay lit? Here are four reasons that could be happening and what to do about it.

If the pilot light is lit, but you aren’t getting any hot water, this could indicate a more significant problem. Contact a plumber for help.

For an electric water heater, the problem could be that the heating element went out. Replacing the heating element is an easy job for a plumbing professional.

Water That’s Too Hot or Too Cold

Water temperature is too hot or cold could mean that the thermostat needs to be adjusted. If that doesn’t solve the problem, you may have a faulty thermostat or a build-up of sediment in the tank. You can DIY, or call a plumber to drain the tank, clean it out, and refill. If you don’t see and sediment, you may need a new thermostat or heating element.

Smelly Water

Does your water smell like rotten eggs? If so, it means you have bacteria in the tank. This common water heater problem is an easy fix. Flush the water heater with a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. Let the solution sit for two hours or so and then flush with clear water. If it’s still stinky, call a plumbing contractor.

A Noisy Water Tank

A noisy tank can be a sign of several problems. The most common is sediment at the bottom of the tank. If this is the problem, you’ll hear popping or rumbling sounds. To fix it, drain your water heater tank and refill. It’s an easy procedure, and something you should do about once a year as regular maintenance.

If you hear a high-pitched whining sound, your heating elements have a larger than normal amount of scale build-up. Call a professional to replace the heating element.

Off-Color Water

Rusty colored water indicates that your anode rod has failed, and your water heater is now rusting and corroding away. The anode rod prevents rust from collecting in your tank. Call your plumber to replace the anode rod, or you may require a new commercial water heater.

Leaking Tank

A broken drain valve could cause your tank to leak, too much pressure build-up in the tank, or rust. If you notice a leak, it’s best to call an expert to diagnose the problem.

Unfortunately, once your tank starts to leak it’s time to replace it. Leaks, even small ones, aren’t something you should ignore. If you do, you could end up with a busted water heater and water damage.

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