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Common Water Heater Problems & What to do About Them

A good water heater will normally provide at least 10 to 13 years of consistent service, but there are a number of things that can go wrong along the way. When a breakdown occurs, you’ll want to call a professional rather than attempt any DIY repairs. Mistakes can lead to expensive consequences, so only attempt your own repairs when you fully know what you are doing.

The best repairs are the preventive ones. Preventative maintenance will save you a lot of time, money, and headaches, so monitor the water heater and take care of minor issues before they become major problems. Despite your best efforts, you may start noticing some common problems popping up. For some of them, there are simple things you can do to get everything running properly again. For others, you may need professionals to help.

Experiencing water heater problems in your home and need to schedule maintenance or emergency services? Contact Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Tampa at (813) 536-4515, and we’ll get someone out to fix your problem promptly – guaranteed!

Common Problems That Can Impact Your Home’s Water Heater

A lot of things can go wrong if you make a mistake while attempting a DIY repair to your water heater. If you have any doubts at all, no matter what the problem is, be sure to contact a professional who understands the ins and outs of your system.

Some common problems that homeowners run into with their water heater include:

Insufficient Hot Water

This may be the result of too much demand for an undersized water heater. On the other hand, there might be something more serious going on. The dip tube might be broken, allowing hot and cold water to mix in the tank, or perhaps there is a problem with the gas supply or the heating element.

If your family uses more hot water at once than your tank can supply, it may be time to upgrade to something larger, but be sure to check the heating element and gas supply to make sure it’s running as efficiently as possible.

Extremely Slow to Heat

There are a number of factors that could contribute to this. A faulty heating element is likely if the problem occurs suddenly. Other potential causes include an insufficiently insulated tank that causes heat leakages and the length and diameter of the pipes between point A and point B preventing water from heating quickly.

If the heating element is the culprit, you may need to replace it (though sometimes a repair is possible). If another cause is to blame, you will need to increase insulation or, if the outlets are a long way from the heater, use a tankless heater closer to the appliance.

It may take your plumbing system a few minutes to deliver hot water to the fixture. To ensure that you have immediate hot water, you can add a hot water recirculation pump to your water heater. It creates a loop that circulates the water through the pipes back to your water heater. This is done either through a dedicated line or a cold water line.

Strange Sounds Coming From the Tank

There are several potential causes of the strange sounds that might be emanating from your water heater. Smaller pangs could be the result of something as simple as the minerals in the water getting pushed around by rising air bubbles. A low rumbling noise might come from the water actually boiling inside the tank. This happens when too much sediment builds up at the bottom of the tank, which leads to overheating.

You can take care of this by flushing out the water heater. Simply drain the entire tank and then put some freshwater through it to make sure you get all the sediment out. Once it’s clean, you can fill it back up, turn it on, and enjoy a more efficient experience.

You may also want to consider using a water softener in your home because that can help filter out a lot of the minerals that lead to these problems.

Water heater making strange sounds? Call a professional at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Tampa today at (813) 536-4515 and schedule an appointment for all of your water heater repair & replacement needs!

Water Pooling Around the Base

If you start to see water pooling at the base of your heater, it could be due to a simple problem, but it might also hint at a more serious issue. The leak might stem from the tank itself, the temperature and pressure relief valve, or even from one of the other plumbing connections.

 You will need to test the valves and inspect the tank to find out if this is where your leak is coming from. You can try flushing the valves to clear out any sediment and ease the pressure there. You can also reduce the temperature of the water to stop the tank from overheating.

Rust-Colored Water

Assuming the discolored water isn’t a problem with the city’s water supply, you’ve probably got some corrosion going on inside the tank. It could also be related to the anode rod failing and leaving some residue.

If you flush out the tank and that doesn’t clear up the problem, you will need to replace the anode rod.

DIY Water Heater Repairs in Tampa, FL

If something goes wrong with your water heater and you’re going to attempt some repairs on your own, you need to begin with the simplest things first. Start with a basic diagnosis to determine your problem and what may be causing it. Then, once you’ve determined what needs to be done, take all the necessary precautions to ensure that you don’t do more harm than good.

Always pay attention to any manufacturer’s recommendations and follow them carefully. And always – always – call a professional plumber if you aren’t sure how to go about the repairs.

If you want to schedule water heater repair services in your Tampa, FL home, contact the experts at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Tampa today. Give us a call at (813) 536-4515 to schedule an appointment!