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Troubleshooting Water Heater Problems

When water heater problems arise they usually present a few symptoms, these include:

No hot water

With a gas water heater, this is usually caused by a faulty pilot light, thermocouple or pilot control valve.

Hot water is running out too soon

Sometimes the tank is simply too small to meet the demands of the household for hot water. Other reasons could be a broken dip tube that is allowing cold and hot water to mix or a gas supply issue that is preventing the burner from reaching the preset temperature.

Discoloration of water

Rust colored water is usually an indication that corrosion is happing inside the tank. If the anode rod has failed corrosion can start attacking the inside glass lined tank, discoloring the water.

Water odors

Rotten egg and other smells could mean there is bacteria growing in the tank. Sediment fed by the corrosion of the tank anode tube is usually the cause. Flushing the tank can remove the sediment and the odors.

Unusual noises such as rumbling, popping or whining

When excessive sediment builds up at the bottom of the tank it can cause the water to boil and make noises as it percolates upwards. The tank should be flushed to remove the sediment.

Water leaks near the base of the water heater

Broken temperature or pressure relief valves are usually the cause of water leaks. Also check the plumbing supply connections above the tank for possible leaks.

If the water tank is getting up in years it could be a leaking storage tank caused by excessive corrosion. If this is the case, the water heater will need to be replaced.

Have questions about your water heater? Give ABC Southwest Plumbing & Air Conditioning a call, we can help.

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