Suppose your hot water heater is within the warranty period. For tankless water heaters, that would be five years, and you noticed that it takes too much time as expected for the water temperature in your shower to increase. Especially if you know how long do water heaters last for your type, chances are, you don’t need to replace your water heater. Unless you have issues with your water heater installation, the most probable issue that caused untimely water heater repair could either be over-pressurization or sediment buildup. Regular water heater maintenance can solve most of the causes of water heater repair. However, it would help if you also watched out for the following signs to ensure that you can help extend the life of your water heater or spare yourself the cost of water heater replacement.
Specific Common Issues For Gas Water Heaters
Expect your gas water heater to last between 10 to 12 years. On average, gas water heaters tend to have a shorter lifespan than electric water heaters. Proper maintenance can help extend its lifespan. The biggest enemy of gas water heaters is sediment buildup. Do this monthly if you know how to drain a water heater to remove the sediment. There are also many instances when the pilot light malfunctions or the gas is not connected correctly. For gas connection issues, call a professional plumber immediately. Ensure that your pipes are appropriately insulated. A meter of exposed pipes can lead to substantial energy loss. A worn-down thermocouple could also cause a lack of heating. Please note that regular cleaning of the gas burner should be among its regular maintenance cycle routines.
Specific Common Issues for an Electric Water Heater
The water heating element in electric water heaters is quite robust. On average, an electric water heater can last longer than a gas water heater because fewer components wear down over time. However, you also need to prevent sediment buildup in the water tank. A professional plumber should check these during their regular maintenance cycles. For common water heater issues, here are other problems that you need to check.
Common Water Heater Issues and How To Troubleshoot
Once the water heater stops producing hot water way before the manufacturer’s warranty expires, you may have visible issues even without the help of water heater repair services. By doing an inspection, you may need to check for the following problems:
- Not having enough hot water:
Suddenly getting cool water while having a shower is a common complaint of water heater users. Aside from over-pressurization and sediment buildup, the problem could be caused by a faulty thermostat or a defective heating element.
- Hissing Noises:
The most common cause of hissing noises is the sediment buildup in the tank. Draining the tank and cleaning the heating elements of scale can solve this issue.
- Leakage of Water Pipes:
Note that the thermostat only deals with the temperature right before the hot water leaves the tank. If your thermostat setting and the water temperature coming out of your shower do not match, or if the difference in water temperatures between your tank and your shower, or kitchen sink, feels different, your pipes may be leaking water. A thorough check of your piping system with the help of plumbing services can help you solve this issue.
- Leakage at the Pressure Relief Valve:
Should any part of your hot water heater plumbing system spring a leak, one of the most common areas that do so is at the pressure relief valve. Replacing the relief valve and ensuring a tight fit can correct this issue.
How To Do Basic Water Heater Checks
Modern water heaters are more robust. They require less maintenance or have more rigid and better-designed components. However, doing simple checks on your water heater can help save money on repair costs:
- Drain your water and clean your water tank regularly. The recommended frequency is to do this twice a year.
- Check if your pressure relief valve works properly. Try snapping the water supply off and on to check if the pressure relief valve is working fine.
- Keeping the temperature settings at 120 Degrees Fahrenheit can help prevent water tank damage because of overheating.
Takeaways: To Save on Water Heater Repair Costs, Do Regular Maintenance Checks
An experienced professional plumber can provide service regularly for your water heaters. In case of emergencies, especially if you are not sure of gas leaks, you can rely on same day service from dedicated plumbing services such as P&L. A new water heater, a new tank unit, or more costly repairs will feel expensive if you need to replace your current one after a few years.
At P&L Plumbing, we offer fast, reliable, and quality water heater maintenance service at the best price. We have served Apache Junction, Gilbert, Phoenix, and Mesa Az residents for decades. For any inquiries, contact us at (480) 649-4400. You can also visit our website at P&L Plumbing to appoint a schedule.