Your hot water heater is an often-overlooked piece of equipment -- until something goes wrong. As with any home appliance, your water heater can experience occasional difficulties. But many of them can be resolved without requiring you to purchase a new unit.
Some common water heater problems:
- Lack of hot water. If your water heater is fueled by gas, this problem could be caused by a faulty gas valve, bad pilot control valve (most hot-water heaters these days don't have pilots, but some do) or a bad thermocouple (the thermocouple detects whether the pilot is hot enough to ignite your fuel). If your unit is electric, you could have a malfunctioning thermostat or heating element - often the lower one.
- Lukewarm water. In electric models, this could indicate a bad heating element. The dip tube, which keeps the cold and hot water separated inside the tank in both electric and gas units, could be damaged. In a gas unit, the problem could stem from a faulty valve. If you use a lot of hot water, the problem could simply be a water heater that's too small for your needs.
- Strange noises. A popping or cracking noise in your water heater could indicate excessive buildup of sediment in the bottom of your tank, causing overheating and boiling. A whining noise can come from electrical elements that have a scale buildup on them.
- Leaks. Leaking tanks could indicate corrosion, which might mean you'll have to replace the unit. Other leaks can occur around the temperature and pressure valve or water connections.
Water heater problems sometimes have simple solutions. If you have questions about your water heater, contact us at P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling. If it's an easy fix, we'll tell you how to do it right. If it's requires a professional, we will do the job with a high commitment to service and quality.
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