Common Water Heater Problems and Fixes

Posted on
Standard Water Heater repair

We all take electric water heaters for granted until they no longer work. If you are experiencing no hot water, too much hot water, strange odors, and other water heater problems, there are a few things you can troubleshoot to determine the source of the problem.

The life expectancy of a water heater can vary depending on the quality of the unit, how often it’s used, and the level of minerals in your water. Remember, if you can’t locate the problem or don’t feel comfortable making repairs, you can always consider finding a plumber to complete a water heater repair in Vancouver, WA.

Common Water Heater Problems

With regular servicing and maintenance, you should get many years of nice warm water out of your water heater. However, if you are experiencing any of these problems, calling a professional may be necessary:

  • No hot water
  • Too much hot water
  • Strange odors
  • Rumbling noises
  • A shortage of hot water

No Hot Water

If your electric water heater has been functioning properly for quite some time but you suddenly find yourself without hot water, there could be some repair issues. A heating element may have gone out, or there could be a problem with the electric thermostat. It is also possible that you may have blown a fuse or tripped the circuit breaker.

Replacing a fuse isn’t that difficult, and you can easily check to see if the circuit breaker is tripped. However, if the thermostat is faulty or you need to replace the bottom of the tank heating element, you might need to call for water heater repair in Vancouver.

Too Much Hot Water

Too much hot water can present a real danger to anyone living in a home. If the thermostat is set too high, it could end up scalding someone as they step into the shower or use a sink for whatever reason. The first thing you’ll want to check is the thermostat settings on the unit. Make a note of the current setting and reduce the setting to a lower temperature.

If the water temperature coming out of the faucet improves, you’re all set. However, if you hear the sound of boiling water in the water heater or see steam coming from the faucet, you may have a faulty pressure relief valve that will need to be replaced. If there are no changes, you may have a faulty thermostat.

Strange Odors

Cold water can sometimes develop a strange odor due to minerals in the water like copper or iron. Installing a water filtration system could resolve the problem. However, if you determine there is a rotten egg smell coming from the hot water, you may need to flush the water tank or replace the anode rod.

What is an anode rod? It’s a long, metal rod that goes down the center of your water heater tank. Its job is to intentionally degrade over time, releasing electrons as it erodes to help slow or even prevent corrosion in the tank. It takes a beating so your water heater doesn’t!

If you have a gas water heater and you start to smell gas, there could be an issue with the gas valve. If that’s the case, you should call a plumber or HVAC professional as soon as possible. Water leaks are one thing, but a gas leak is something else entirely.

Rumbling Noises

Hard water accumulations, minerals, and contracting metal can cause noises in your water heater. The most common cause of these noises is sediment build-up on the bottom of the tank, causing the heating element to work extra hard to heat the water. It may be time to have your Vancouver water heater flushed by a professional.

A Shortage of Hot Water

The most common reason for a shortage of hot water in a home is because of lifestyle changes or an increase in the demand for hot water. For example, if one or more kids have moved in or you’ve rented out a room, your demand for hot water has just seriously increased. It’s possible you simply need a larger electric or gas water heater with more capacity.

If these situations don’t apply, you may need to increase the temperature setting on the thermostat if cooler weather is affecting the water heater’s ability to maintain temperature. You may also need to flush the water tank if you live in an area with high amounts of mineral deposits.

Need a Vancouver Plumber for Water Heater Repair?

Replacing and troubleshooting electric water heaters can be a big job. If you need professional help from an experienced plumber in Vancouver, WA, contact Simpson Plumbing today. We work with all types of water heaters and can perform regular maintenance to ensure you get the most from the units.

Plumbing Services Plans Contact