Common Issues With Water Heaters

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This is a collaborative post.

If you’ve experienced being the last person in a crowded house to take a shower, you know what to expect: icy cold, bone-chilling water. It’s essential to assess a water heater to see if it’s time for a water heater repair if you’re experiencing water issues without a crowded house.

Let’s look at some of the symptoms that might result from water heater issues. Switch off the electricity before doing any water heater troubleshooting. This can be accomplished by disabling the heating unit’s circuit breaker or fuse.

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Look for the Warranty

Check the equipment’s warranty before you begin troubleshooting your hot water heater issue because you don’t want to waste that by tinkering about. Hot water heaters are sold with a limited warranty for both home and commercial use. A rating plate with the model and serial number is located on each tank.

If the tank has a prorated warranty that might provide a replacement tank or parts, either free of charge or at a discount, it will be determined by these numbers, which provide the year the tank was manufactured. If there are any indications that the boiler may be acting up, take a picture or write down the facts and contact the manufacturer.

Temperature Issues

Water temperature concerns can result from a variety of electric water heater problems. Lack of electricity, a malfunctioning electric thermostat, or a broken top electric heating element might cause cold water. 

Insufficiently sized water heaters, crossed hot and cold connections, broken heating elements, or malfunctioning thermostats can all contribute to inadequately heated water. The thermostat is often set too high if the water runs too hot. Verify that your heater’s thermostat temperature is set anywhere between 110 degrees to 140 degrees.


A broken T&P (temperature and pressure) relief valve, too much pressure, jammed valves, overheating, leaks from above or nearby plumbing connections, loose element bolts, leaking tanks, or a poor gasket can all result in water leaks. Put something like a bucket underneath the pipe overhead, open your T&P valve, and wash out any debris. If the valve is still leaking, have it repaired or replaced. 

Using a wrench, tighten any pipe connections that may be loose while keeping an eye out for over-tightening. If necessary, tighten the fasteners holding the element in place. Remove the element and if it’s still leaking, then install a new gasket. Inspect the tank to see whether it is dripping because of rust or damaged o-rings.

Odor and Discoloration

Corrosion on the inside of a tank or a sacrificial anode that is defective can both result in water that has a rusty tint. Replace the failed anode rod with a new magnesium one. Additionally, a decomposing sacrificial anode may leak hydrogen, giving off an odor akin to rotten eggs. 

First, flush and clean the heater tank to remedy this. After that, treat the pipes and tank. Replace the failed anode with a new zinc-alloy one if the odor doesn’t disappear. Change the heater out for one coated with plastic if the odor persists.


When sediment builds up and causes overheating, it might make a deep, rumbling noise that indicates boiling water. Clean the heater’s tank to solve the problem. Scale accumulation on electrical heating components can produce a whiny, high-pitched noise.

First, cleanse the heater before treating this. The tank and components should then be cleaned of any scale. Lastly, install elements with a low-watt density and a larger surface area for improved efficiency in heat transference.

Consider an Upgrade

The sort of heater you have could be the cause of your difficulty getting hot water to run a bath, even though you have no trouble running your shower, dishwasher, or washing machine. Water is heated as it passes through tankless heaters, providing an endless supply of hot water on demand.

The water cannot be heated if it moves through the system too rapidly. If this is the issue, your tankless unit won’t be able to provide you with the hot water you want. Therefore, you will need to look into alternate heating options for your bath.

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