Hot Water Heater Maintenance Tips

The hot water heater is one of the most important appliances in your home, so when it’s on the fritz, you experience a major inconvenience. The two most common symptoms of a hot water heater malfunction are either extremely cold or extremely hot water. Unfortunately there are a number of problems that could be causing either one of these two symptoms. Here are five common hot water heater problems and tips for dealing with them.

  1. 1. Water temperature problems – Of course the easiest fix for any problem dealing with water temperature is to adjust the temperature on the appliance. However, that may not be a permanent fix. If it seems like you need to keep adjusting the temperature frequently, you should call in an expert to find out what the real problem is.

  2. 2. Not heating water – The number one problem homeowners complain about when it comes to hot water heaters is a lack of hot water. Before you do anything, it’s important to know whether you have a gas or an electric hot water heater. Repairs for this issue depend entirely on whether it’s gas or electric. This is one of the more complex problems, so it does require a hot water heater expert.

  3. 3. Not heating enough water – Sometimes it may seem like your hot water heater does not hold as much hot water as it used to. The first step is to check the bottom of the appliance and make sure that it is not leaking. If a leak isn’t the issue, then you’ll need to flush out the tank because mineral deposits could be decreasing its efficiency. To do this, shut off the power supply to the appliance and wait until the water cools. Then shut down the water inlet valve and use a hose to drain the water, either to a drain on the floor or into a bucket. Next open the drain valve, which should be located near the bottom of the tank. Open up one of the hot water faucets in the house so that air will go into the line. After all the water has gone out of the appliance, turn on and off the cold valve until you see clear water running. Then shut off the drain valve, reopen the water inlet valve, and turn the power back onto the appliance. If necessary, relight the pilot light.

  4. 4. Water too hot – In the case of steam or near-boiling water coming out of your faucets, you’ll probably need to replace the temperature pressure relief valve. Immediately turn down the temperature because it is dangerous for the water to be so hot. Then call in an expert to change the valve.

  5. 5. Discolored or smelly water – If the issue is only with your hot water, then it’s probably one of the anode rods inside the appliance. You should have a plumber change it. If the problem affects both hot and cold water, you may want to consider a water filter or softener because the issue is likely your source water.

Another common hot water heater problem is a leaking tank. This is evident by the drips or pool of water at the water heater’s base. There are numerous problems that can cause a leaking tank, so you should definitely call an expert in for help with this issue.

Let the experts at Scott English Plumbing help you figure out what’s wrong with your hot water heater. They offer complete maintenance and service, as well as 24 hour emergency plumbing service, electronic leak detection, and garbage disposal installation. Call Scott English Plumbing today for help repairing or maintaining your hot water heater.