Gas and electric hot water heater troubleshooting and repair guide tips for homeowners. How to troubleshoot the element leaking, when pilot light goes out, sediment build-up, rotten egg smell, noise, rusty hot water, thermocouple issues, no hot water, not enough hot water, tankless...
The water heater troubleshooting guide will help you become familiar with common problems that might happen to your heater, how to use the symptoms for easier troubleshooting and what is needed for successful repairs.
As reported by the users and experts, some problems are simple and easy to fix by a handyman. The solution can be found here or in any other DIY article or forum. As long as you have some plumbing, electrical and gas skills, and the right tools, you can do the repairs without calling a service company.
For those homeowners who are not handy or problems are way too risky and complicate to repair, the recommendation is to contact a plumber.
The following symptoms and problems are common on tank-type
units using both fuel type; electricity and gas (natural and propane,
LP). Keep in mind that gas units are more complex machines than
electrical so troubleshooting is more difficult. Common problems and
solutions can be found below, while some issues that are specific to
each type can be found in the article about troubleshooting
electric type and gas units.
Water heater leaking
One of the frequent complaints about water heaters found on forums and in many user reviews is the puddle of water found under the unit. Most of the time, leaking is the cause. The reasons for the leak are the rusty tank, TPR valve discharges an excessive pressure or loose fittings/connections and damages on the pipe. How to fix water heater leak is one of the problems this article will deal with.
Sediment and lime build-up
Almost every heater is affected by the hard water and this is what increases the chance of reduced efficiency and performance, and premature tank failure. Cleaning sediments out from the heater regularly is what eventually saves money, as the water heater performs better and more efficient.
Sediment build-up affects the performance of your water
heater, can cause the rotten egg smell and annoying popping noise. This
water heater troubleshooting article will cover ways how to control the
build-up and how to remove it.
Water color change
Rotten egg smell
Smelly water is an unpleasant problem. You open the hot water tap and there is a terrible sulfur odor that smells like rotten eggs. How to troubleshoot rotten egg odor and how to prevent it, is what this article will cover.
Water heater noise
Cold water sandwich
Most of the time "cold water sandwich" is found on tankless
heaters but can also be seen in storage tank-type. Temperature
fluctuation is what makes unpleasant showers, hot-cold-hot-cold, or
known as cold water sandwich.
How to do hot water heater troubleshooting when your water heater has a low water pressure. What causes the low pressure and how to fix it?
Not enough hot water or temperature is too low
for a shower
How many times did you experience lukewarm water after 10 minutes of showering? What causes the problem when there is not enough hot water for your shower or dishes, and how to do repairs. Is it a heating element, gas burner, dip tube or something else?
Heat traps problems
Explore what are the most common heat trap problems and how to solve issues on water heaters such as the rattling noise, flow restriction problems, thermal expansion through pipes and loss of energy.
Note: Keep in mind that some listed problems here are hard to fix and require a professional assistance. Check out this company from where you can get FREE ESTIMATES from the local plumbers.
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
Whirlpool model nu40t61-403 loud hum:
I first wrote a post here that said I had got rid of loud hum by turning gas supply valve to 1/2 off to slow gas and that would solve problem. Well …
How to fix the thermocouple on Reliance?
I have a Reliance gas water heater and it seems that the thermocouple is out. I suspect that there is a thermocouple malfunction because pilot light doesn’t …
thermal expansion in water heating systems
Do I have to install the expansion vessel in water heating system and how to check to I need one? Any recommendations for the brand?
No hot water
4 years old State electric water heater suddenly stopped producing hot water. Why the problem occurred and how can I fix the problem?
AO Smith pilot light goes out
My gas-powered AO Smith water heater was recently installed in my home's attic. The problem I am having is occasional; the gas burner outage, also the …
Having the hot water all the way on in the house is not triggering the tankless to turn on when the pump is off in timer mode. Not rated yet
Our pump to our Noritz tankless died. We still had hot water but it took a couple minutes. We had a new pump installed but now the heater will only work …
Flame is too high Not rated yet
When I light the pilot light and turn the knob to the "ON" position it pauses for about 3 seconds before flame ignites but when it does it seems like its …
low water pressure Not rated yet
I have a Noritz NRC98-OD gas tankless water heater that is about two years old. It has developed a low pressure issue. Any idea why?
thermal fuse Not rated yet
The thermal fuse on Eternal Hybrid Water Heater Model GU195M blew out. A replacement only lasted less than a week. What is the problem that the tank is …
shady warranty Not rated yet
I purchased my first home back in 6/2010 6 months later my water heater was leaking and my home warranty ended up replacing with brand new Bradford and …
hot water In 1/4 faucets Not rated yet
We have a beach house with 2 electric hot water heaters. We've always had lots of hot water. The plumber told us we should shut off the main water supply …
Bradford White Hydrojet 50 kicks off breaker Not rated yet
Our Bradford White Hydrojet 50 gallon electric water heater ran fine for one year, then started to "kick" the breaker off. Plumber came out and replaced …
Bosch PowerStar AE125 Does not keep up anymore Not rated yet
I have a Bosch PowerStar AE125 electric tankless water heater and it has worked fine for 3 years but in the past 3 weeks it does not produce hot water …
Whirlpool Gas Water Heater makes loud hum Not rated yet
Bought a Whirlpool gas water heater, model NU40T61-403, 40 gal. tall unit. I had this loud hum when the burner assembly would light and last for 10 seconds. …