A Guide to Common Water Heater Problems and How to Troubleshoot Them 8 Sep 2022

You need hot water to take a bath, wash dishes, or do laundry, and you must have a water heater installed to do so. A water heater is an essential home appliance that is also the most used. A water heater keeps hot water available. However, excessive usage causes problems with the water heater.

So, if your water heater is not working optimally or is not supplying you with hot water, here is a guide that can help you identify the problem and solve it as well. Read on and act accordingly.

1. Water leakage

Water leakage is the most common problem with water heaters. From loose pipes to a cracked water tank, there can be plenty of reasons for water leaking from your water heater. The good news is some of them are repairable, and you will not have to call plumbing services to repair them or buy a new water heater.

The first thing you should do is check the water connection and tighten it with a wrench. If the water is leaking from the bottom of the water heater, it can be a condensation issue, and turning up the thermostat should solve the issue. Now, if the water is still leaking, it could be rust that has damaged the water tank. And for that, you will have to replace it.

2. Not heating water

Is your water heater not heating the water?

For electric heaters, it can be a faulty heating source or an electrical issue. Gas water heaters, on the other hand, may not heat water due to an issue with the pilot or burner. For electronic ignition systems, breaker box tripping can also be a reason for the burner not working. So, check the breaker box and reset it if needed. However, if it is not the case, it is better to call water heater repair services to resolve it.

3. Warm but not hot water

When the water is warm, but the temperature of the water is not what you want, it can be because of the following reasons:

  • A broken thermostat can be a reason for the water not being warm enough.
  • The heating element or burner not working optimally is another reason for warm water.
  • Lastly, an undersized water heater is also a reason for warm water.

In all possible situations, it is better to call an expert to diagnose the problem with your water heater and resolve it accordingly.

4. Low Water Pressure

Low water pressure can be caused by two reasons. The first and most common reason is that you are living in an old-built house. Older houses had thin pipelines, and that is the reason your water pressure is low. The only solution to this problem is to replace your pipelines with thick, 34-mm pipelines, and the water pressure will be improved.

Another reason for low pressure is that water pipes have been clogged by residues. Professional help would be needed to solve this issue.

5. Inconsistent Water Temperature

Is your water heater providing you with extremely hot water, and sometimes it is also providing you with cold water?

A faulty thermostat is the primary cause of this problem. You will have to get your thermostat replaced or repaired by a professional to resolve this issue.

6. Very Hot Water

Overheating is another common problem with water heaters and is often dangerous as well. So, fix it or get it fixed before hot water causes an accident.

Overheating could be caused by your thermostat being set to a higher temperature and lowering it would solve the problem. However, if that is not the case, either your thermostat is broken, or your valve is not working accurately. In both cases, you need to get it fixed by a professional.

7. Excessive Reheating Time

An electronic water heater should provide you with hot water in a few minutes, and a gas water heater should provide you with hot water after 15 to 20 minutes. If your water heater fails to do so, there is a problem with your heater.

One common reason is that your thermostat is set at a low temperature and turning it up should solve the problem. However, if the problem is not resolved, the thermostat or heating source is damaged, and you will not get it repaired.

Other than that, a small-size water heater also fails to provide you with hot water quickly because you are using hot water constantly and it doesn’t have time to heat the water. Consult a plumbing expert for advice on the best size of water heater for your home.

8. Smelly or Rusty Water

Do you smell a strange smell coming from your hot water tap?

Or the water coming from the hot water tap is rust-colored?

Tanks in water heaters are made up of metal and no matter how good quality or well-preserved metal it is, rust is unavoidable in metal products. Water leakage, smelly water, or rust-colored water are signs that your water heater tank is corroding and needs your attention.

We hope our guide will help resolve your water heater problems. If you need water heater services, feel free to contact Heng Plumbing. We are one of the best plumbing service providers in Singapore. Whether your water heater is not working properly, or your roof is leaking, we are just a call away.