A faulty water heater is a common problem in many homes, and it can be a pain in the neck. It not only causes the inconvenience of not having hot water, but it can cause a high-risk accident. I did a quick research on common water heater danger signs that should never be ignored.
Here are 5 water heater danger signs: Smell of gas (Gas leaking), Noises coming from the heater, Rust on the tank or in water, Leaking water from the heater, Water not getting hot enough, and faulty pressure valves. Let’s dive in and look at each of these in detail and what should be done.
Smell of Gas
A small ignition flame can cause a huge fire when there is a leaking gas around a water heater. You should be careful when you smell gas near the water heater. You should call a qualified plumber to have a look at it.
Carbon Monoxide poisoning
Another danger that can be caused by leaking gas is carbon monoxide poisoning. This happens when a water heater is not properly ventilated, or it is not properly maintained. Carbon monoxide is hard to detect because it’s odorless. When carbon monoxide is inhaled it reacts with iron present in blood which used by the blood to transport oxygen throughout the body; thus, impairing the ability of blood to transport oxygen.
Popping noises coming from a water heater
When a water heater starts to make a popping noise, it means a shell of sediments is covering the burner at the bottom of the tank, and the burner is heating water while it’s under a shell of sediments. If the sediments are not removed, the whole heater will be damaged.
You might be asking yourself, do sediments affect electric heaters? Well, what happens is the sediments accumulate and cover the electrical heating element and it eventually burns out.
To protect your water heater when you detect popping noises, you should turn off the heater. If you are using an electrical heater switch off the electrical power at the circuit breaker and for gas, the heater turns off the gas supply. Then drain the tank.
Leaking Water Heaters
Leaking tanks is an indication that your heater is about to flood your house. When the tank inner lining has been damaged because of fractures and cracks, water starts to leak under the tank. You will have to replace the water heater because it has the risk of flooding the whole house.
Water not getting hot enough
If your water heater is giving out water that is not hot enough, it is a sign that your heater is about to fail. It’s usually a sign that sediments have amassed inside the tank add are blocking the burner from transferring heat to the water which means water is not receiving enough heat. The burner has to work harder to heat the water. The consequence of this is the high consumption of electricity and gas. It eventually triggers leaks, and you have to replace the entire system.
Rust on the tank or in water
To protect the tank from rusting, water heaters are installed with an anode rod for drawing in rust that is in water. However, the anode rod can fail which results in rust getting into the tank and then it spreads inside. When this happens you will need to contact a plumber to replace the anode rod.
Faulty pressure valves
When plumbers are trying to diagnose the problem with a faulty water heater, one of the most common issues is defective valves. Failing valves are common in both tanked and tankless water heaters. Water heater pressure relief valve helps to regulate the pressure that is caused by rising in water temperature.
Failure to replace a faulty pressure valve can lead to ranks raptures, leaks and flooding. You should call in a qualified plumber to look at the heater when you notice signs such as leaks and popping noises coming from a water heater.
How long should a hot water heater last?
You should always be on the lookout on how your water heater is behaving to help you avoid the inconvenience of not having hot water when you least expect. Moreover, having a water heater that is working efficiently saves you a lot of money on electricity bills and gas bills because they are more energy efficient.
You can expect a tanked water heater to last for about 12 years, and a tankless water heater will last for about 20 years.
If your home water that has lots of sediments which lead to a faster rate of deterioration, it’s advisable you install a sediments filter to increase the water heater life.
How much does it cost to replace a water heater?
Tank Water Heater: It typically costs an average of $ 1500 to replace a tanked water heater that runs on gas. The costs are inclusive of buying the water heater, installation materials, and labor costs.
Tankless Water Heater: When it comes to tankless water heaters the initial cost of installation is higher, but the cost of running them is much lower. The average cost of installing a tankless water heater is about 2,900. This cost is inclusive of buying the tankless water heater, permits, labor costs, and installation material.
The water heater danger signs that you should never ignore include Smell of gas, noisy heater, leaking heater, rust on the tank, and faulty valves. A big danger that is posed by faulty heaters is the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning which occurs when a gas heater is not properly ventilated. You can expect a tanked water heater to last for about 12 years while tankless water heaters last for 20 years. The cost of replacing a tankless heater is high although the cost of maintaining it is low. On average expect to spend about $ 1,500 to buy and install a tanked heater and about 2,900 to buy and install a tankless water heater.