The water heater in your home is one of those components that provides a truly essential service, but you don’t really think about it much because it’s extremely passive. It’s not something that you have to turn on or off every day, and it’s usually located somewhere in the home where you rarely need to look at it, like closet in the basement or a storage room elsewhere in the home. That being said, you’re definitely going to notice when it does stop working. Suddenly, you can’t get warm water for showers, the dish water isn’t effective, and even flushing becomes an issue. However, in light of all of this not working, you need to figure out what’s going on with the water heater, and determine if it can be repaired, or if you need replacement.
Looking at Common Issues
For most water heaters, the first noticeable issue is that you suddenly can’t get the water as hot as you want it. Where this stems from is tied to a couple of different possibilities. First of all, it could be something as simple as a faulty thermostat that is presenting the wrong temperature. Another potential issue could stem from a defective heating element. Depending what type of heater you have, there are a few things you can do.
One of the first things that you can do is check the power. This might be one of the most commonly suggested fixes no matter what sort of device you’re dealing with, but simply unplug it, wait 30 seconds, then plug it back in. You’d be surprised at how many times this resets the necessary components the device returns to normal functionality. Also, if you’re comfortable with it, you can attempt to flush the heater or replace the thermostat itself.
Always take a look around the heater to make sure that the gas itself is connected and the pilot light is on. While it’s not common, there’s a chance it can become extinguished, which in turn would prevent the heater from working. Also, people looking for a possible DIY fix can try to clean the gas burner.
There are also a couple of different indicators to be mindful of, including strange noises coming from the heater (or near the heater). For example, if you hear a constant hissing and have a gas heater, there’s very likely a leak, and you need to remove yourself and anyone from the home, then call your gas company to shut down the source. Also, keep an eye out for any piping issues near the heater, including leaks or sediment build up.
Contacting A Professional
If you’re looking for the best and quickest solution to a damaged water heater, you’re best off contacting a professional plumbing company. While you might not be able to get a precise quote (since they can’t have any idea of what the issue is until they look at it), make sure you ask them about some possibilities, and get a sense of what they’re capabilities are. A reputable company that your neighbors or friends have used is a good starting point, and also make sure to check out any online reviews.