Just as winter is approaching and you’re spending more time keeping warm inside, an unchecked problem with your water heater could spell disaster if it suddenly stops working. Homeowners commonly forget about this crucial home appliance because they often install the unit in a basement corner or a closet. Consider the benefits of regularly checking your water heater and some common problems that can arise with the appliances over time. By checking this list, you may be able to avoid an expensive water heater repair. But if repair is necessary, you will have checked the other possible symptoms first.
Inconsistent Water Temperature
Have you tried to take a nice hot shower but the water came out warm or even cold instead? You have likely discovered a problem with your water heater. There are a few different possible issues causing this. The first step should be to check that the water heater is on. If it’s not, see if a circuit breaker hasn’t been flipped. If it is on and just not hot, check the thermostat on the unit to see if it is set to an appropriate temperature. A general guideline would be to set it between 120-140 degrees.
If neither of these is the culprit, you may have a faulty heating coil. You’ll need to call a licensed water heater repair person to come out and service or replace the unit.
Water Leaking from Unit
As water heaters get older, a leak may become more likely to spring up. All plumbing systems are susceptible to leaks and this includes water heaters. Leaks can be caused by the heating up and cooling down of the unit many thousands of times during the course of normal use. Begin checking for a leak by making sure all the fittings and connections are tight and secure. Next, look at the bottom of the unit for excess water. There is a pressure relief valve that may release excess pressure, resulting in some condensation. However, this will not cause a significant leak. If you cannot find and fix the issue, you’ll need to call a qualified water heater repair technician.
Reduced Water Pressure
Have you noticed a reduction in water pressure? This could be a result of a buildup of magnesium and calcium within your plumbing. Therefore, you’ll want to get this checked and cleaned out sooner rather than later so you’re not left without water. You can call a service technician to descale your water heater and inlet and outlet pipes. If this doesn’t resolve the issue, it may require more extensive work throughout your plumbing.
Your water heater’s age may be the cause of another problem. If it is on the older side, you’re missing out on some of the advances in technology that have occurred in recent years. Newer machines will be less likely to vary in temperature or create weird noises. Plus, if you invest in a newer tankless style unit, you can enjoy a faster heat up of your water, making for a more enjoyable shower.
Regular Maintenance and Water Heater Repair
Finally, it’s wise to have your water heater checked regularly by a certified technician. This will prevent an unexpected problem from arising suddenly and leaving you without hot water. This is especially important during winter when it’s too cold to bath in cold water.
If you do need to replace your water heater, you can look at it as a chance to go over your options and perhaps upgrade to a newer tankless system. This will perform better and save you money on your electricity bills. At the same time, consider your home appliance coverage. A home warranty covers many components of your water heater and other appliances, keeping you protected from large, unexpected expenses. So, look over plans to see which option may be best for you.