When your hot water heater malfunctions, it can be a frightening and messy situation. But knowing what steps to take will help minimize the harm and keep your home secure.
One of the first steps you should take is turning off the power source to your water heater. Doing this can prevent further issues and keep you safe from fires or other hazards.
Water Pooling Under the Tank
If you notice a small puddle of water on the ground, particularly near the base of your hot water heater, it could be indicative of an issue. In such cases, replacing either the tank or other component may be necessary to resolve this issue.
Water heaters often develop sediment accumulation at the bottom of their tanks. To avoid this issue, be sure to drain your heater regularly in order to flush out sediment buildup.
Another possible explanation for water pooling under your tank is that the drain valve may be loose or not functioning correctly. You can tighten it yourself or call a plumber like Ben Franklin Plumbing AZ to do it for you.
Fixing a malfunctioning drain valve can be an annoying chore, but it’s essential to do so promptly. A malfunctioning valve could lead to further issues and will only worsen over time.
Unusual Smells or Tastes
If your water heater has an unusual smell or taste, it could be indicative of an issue. It could be contaminated, in which case you should contact a plumber for assistance.
Odors associated with a malfunctioning hot water heater can include sewer odor, bleach, rotten eggs, gas, fish and much more. These unpleasant odours may make your household members ill and should not be ignored.
Thankfully, most of these unpleasant smells can be quickly eliminated with simple cleaning solutions and the help of a professional plumber like Ben Franklin Plumbing AZ.
Your water may smell like rotten eggs due to bacteria feeding off dead organic matter in your plumbing system, causing a chemical reaction which produces hydrogen sulfide.
If you detect a sulfur odor coming from your faucets or fixtures, it could be due to damage or destruction to the magnesium anode rod in your water heater. When softened water breaks down this mineral, sulfide gas accumulates within the tank.
When your hot water heater breaks, the water you turn on may appear murky or cloudy. This is caused by minerals and other deposits that leak out of the tank and into your taps.
The issue with sediments in your water is that they can clog faucets, reduce flow rate and lead to other plumbing problems. Furthermore, they cause a metallic odor and taste in your drinking water.
If you notice discoloration in your water, contact a plumber right away to have the problem identified and fixed. Depending on what’s causing it, they may suggest flushing the system or installing a sediment filter as necessary.
If after trying all these remedies and the cloudiness persists, it could be indicative of a larger issue. You should have your hot water heater checked by a plumber to identify what’s causing the cloudiness.
Less Hot Water
If your hot water heater malfunctions, you’ll notice that its output of hot water is considerably less than usual. This is likely due to sediment buildup inside the tank which reduces how much heat can be generated.
Sediments can clog faucets and plumbing valves, leading to reduced water pressure. To resolve the problem, have your plumber flush away sediment from the pipes.
However, if your water heater isn’t producing enough hot water, there’s likely a problem with its heating elements or corrosion which must be fixed or replaced.
Another possible issue is a cross connection. These occur when potable water comes into contact with non-potable materials like sewer gas, which could result in cold water.