Water heaters usually operate out of sight and out of mind since they are tucked away in locations like the garage or basement. Although your water heater will normally do its job without much fuss, it will certainly announce itself when there’s trouble brewing. Depending on the specific problem, there are a number of symptoms that usually indicate something that’s seriously wrong. So, how do you know when it’s time for a new water heater?
Tank corrosion could present itself in the form of rusty water coming from your taps. However when you have galvanized piping, then your pipes could be rusty. You can pinpoint the exact problem by flushing the water heater tank with a few buckets of water. Drain 3-4 bucketfuls of hot water. If the water is still rusty, then the heater (rather than the piping) is the culprit.
Factors like rust, damage and corrosion are all known to cause water heater leaks. Regular expansion and contraction (as a result of heating and cooling) will further cause slight fractures on the metal. With enough time, these minute cracks develop into leaks. These are usually indicated by the presence of moisture around the water heater.
So, when you notice puddles around your water heater, this is a sign that the equipment has reached the end of its life. However, before replacing it, ensure that there are no other leaks coming from pipes and fittings around the tank. Also, check your pressure/temperature overflow pipe for leaks.
A water heater that bangs, knocks, rumbles, or creaks whenever it’s in use is an indication for the need of a replacement. Such noise issues are usually caused by sediment that accumulates inside the tank. The interaction between this sediment and the heating elements is what causes the noise.
Besides affecting the efficiency of your equipment, sediment will also cause more damage to your tank if you don’t address the problem immediately. While flushing your tank could work as a temporary solution, the mineral buildup will inevitably cause more wear on the metal tank, resulting in cracks and tiny holes. So, if your water heater makes rumbling or banging noises when it’s heating up, start figuring out how you’ll get a new one as soon as you can.
A compromised hot water supply is often the first symptom you’ll notice when things aren’t going well with your water heater. The water coming from the tank could be hotter/cooler than usual, or it may run out faster than before. Although broken heating elements are known to cause such issues, they could also mean that the bottom of your tank is coated with hardened mineral sediment. The latter tends to happen around the 10-year mark, and should be taken to indicate imminent failure.
Can You Replace Your Own Water Heater?
A broken heater can make life pretty difficult for most households. This is why you might want to replace yours as quickly as you could when it is showing signs. Although you may be tempted to replace your own unit (mostly because it means you get to save some money), the job is best left to professionals.
Some of the reasons why you might want to put away your tools and instead pick up the phone to make an appointment with a trained professional include:
- Safety: From electrical wiring to the pressure-controlled tank, there several vital elements that could cause disaster if mishandled. It takes a trained professional to properly work around these hazards. Knowing what to do minimizes the risk of damage and/or injury.
- Installation: A professional plumber will know how to take care of all the necessary piping and venting. They will be able to handle the wiring and soldering as well.
- Codes: A licensed plumber will be familiar with all the local codes. They’ll also obtain all the permits required to guarantee that the job is done correctly.
- Warranties: Your plumber will provide assurances on the performance and future maintenance of your new unit. Opting for the DIY route means you will forego all these.
Water Heater Macungie PA
Your water heating system can sneak up on you with unexpected breakdowns at the worst possible moment. And while most problems are easily detectable, the equipment isn’t something you could just pick up and plug in. If your home needs a new water heater, get in touch with a professional plumber. They’ll recommend the best solutions available for all your plumbing needs.
Robinson Plumbing offers professional, affordable, and trusted plumbing services through the Lehigh Valley, PA area. Be sure to contact us as soon as you notice any of the above signs. This will give us the chance to inspect your water heating system to find out what is going on with it. Do you have any other plumbing problems? For a list of our plumbing services, click here.
We service Alburtis PA 18011, Breinigsville PA 18031, East Texas PA 18046, Emmaus PA 18049, Hereford PA 18056, Macungie PA 18062, Old Zionsville PA 18068, Trexlertown PA 18087, Zionsville PA 18092, and surrounding areas.