What To Do When Your Hot Water Heater Breaks Down

We’ve all been there -you turn on the shower to take a bath only to realize you don’t have hot water. This can be a confusing moment for most home owners who don’t know the next step to take. While you can always call the nearest technician, you still have to wait until they get there to get your hot water heater working. Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to try remedy the situation.

Problem with electrical heaters can cause a number of symptoms including temperature issues, noise, leaks, discoloration and even odor. Such problems can be caused by a wide range of reasons but most of them revolve around age and usage. Here are some of the most common causes;

  • Leaks – Over heating, faulty pressure and temperature valve, loose bolts or leaking water tank.
  • Temperature – Faulty heating elements or thermostat.
  • Noise – Overheating caused by build up of sediments
  • Discoloration or Odor – Corrosion or decaying sacrificial anode rod

Depending on your unit model, there are various techniques you can use to remedy all of these issues. Some of these tasks are not DIY friendly while others are fairly easy to get around. Before taking on a task, make sure you have the right tools for the job as well as proper knowledge of the process.

When you notice a problem with your hot water heater, make sure you take action early. Ignoring any change in the way your unit operates could lead to expensive repairs in the near future. This is especially awful when the problem could have been fixed with a simple tuneup.

Components in all electrical devices wear off after a while of use. This is regardless of whether you took care of it well or not. When your your hot water heater starts acting up, the first thing you should do is troubleshoot it for problems. In most cases, you simply need to replace some components to get it back running properly. Some other times, you’ll need a professional to look into the issue.

With proper maintenance, your water heater should serve you for an extended period of time. However, most hot water heaters have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years. If you are using an old water heater, then replacing it with a new one might be a better idea.

How to Repair your Hot Water Heater

The first thing you need to do when your hot water heater stops working is check to see which elements need to be replaced with new ones. But before you do this, check to see whether the circuit breaker is on or tripped.

If the heating elements are all in good working condition, then the problem could lie with the cutoff switch or thermostat. Testing to see whether the thermostat or cutoff switch is working can be complicated. But since they are not that expensive, you might as well just buy new ones.

Safety is important when dealing with electricity. Make sure you turn off your water heater from the main electrical panel before you start troubleshooting.

Different water heater models will require different techniques to check and replace worn out or faulty elements. Make sure you read the instruction manual on how to perform these tasks or check online for information on the model you have.

When it’s Time to Call a Technician

As mentioned earlier, it would be better to replace your water heater if it has reached its limit or nearing it. Newer models are more energy efficient and are easier to both maintain and repair. When shopping for a new water heater, familiarize yourself with terms search as Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER Rating). This is what the heating industry uses to show how energy efficient a unit is when you are buying. It will cost you more to buy a higher rated unit but pay off in the long run.

Your maintenance guy should know what ails your unit with ease. If you’ve been performing regular maintenance services on your unit, then whatever is interfering with your unit’s proper operation shouldn’t be difficult or costly to fix. However, you do require a professional to properly fixed your hot water heater.

When it comes to selecting a heating technician, you want to go for a licensed and experienced company or individual. Never gamble when it comes to choosing such a service. Mistakes can be costly when it comes to hiring any heating technician. Carry out a research on available options or get recommendations from those close to you. If you go that extra mile and check reviews on different service providers, then you’ll be a step closer to getting a reliable service.