Hearing strange noises from your water heater can be scary and mean many different things. Water heaters make noise often when they need maintenance, and it is usually an easy fix. Whether your water heater has a tank or is tankless, catching these noises at the start can make fixing your water heater much quicker.
When your water heater is running and heating water, the boiling water separates bits of natural sediment from the water and deposits it to the bottom of the tank. Over time, these mineral deposits can start to build up and trap water underneath. That strange popping noise coming from your water heater is made from the trapped water percolating underneath the layers of minerals while being heated up.
To fix this, your water heater will need to be drained and have the sediment cleaned out. If your water heater is over ten years old, it may accumulate buildup slightly faster and need to be flushed out more frequently.
This ear-piercing noise can be scary and make it seem like your water heater is on its last leg! Luckily, this noise is usually more loud than it is damaging to your water heater, so it should be okay. The screeching or screaming sound you’re hearing is coming from water trying to pass through a valve that is either too small or partially closed.
Sometimes, this valve is easy to reach and after turning off your water heater, you can turn it to open it all the way in just a few minutes. However, if the pressure is building up in your water heater’s pressure release valve, a plumber will need to come and assess the situation. This is because the steam that could be released can easily burn you, and a qualified technician will be able to help fix the noise safely.
There are a few reasons why your water heater is making a sizzling or crackling noise. It could be due to:
If you suspect a leak in your water heater, schedule an appointment immediately. Some leaks require a new unit, and not only is the water leaking out but you’re losing some money on the water that is being heated and unable to use.
While condensation dripping onto your burner is annoying, it’s not as serious. The condensation isn’t harming your unit or the burner, so your water heater is going to be okay. For electric water heaters, limescale buildup can cause steam to release. This could be the cause of the condensation on the burner.
If you suspect your water heater is leaking and you need to shut off your system, no need to worry! The process of turning off your water heater is easy and can help you avoid further damage.
To start, determine if you have a gas or electric water heater. To do this, find the access panel on the side of your water heater. If you remove the panel and see a blue flame, you have found the pilot light, and your home uses a gas water heater. Another way to tell if you have a gas furnace is to check and see if your water heater has connected pipes leading out of it; that is the gas pipe.
If you do not see the pilot light inside the access panel, look towards the top of the unit to see if you have an electric water heater instead. If you see a thick cord connecting your unit at either the top or the side, your water heater is electric. If you’re still unsure, look at your fuse box to see if there is a label for your water heater. If there is, your unit is electric.
Now that you’ve determined the type of water heater you have, it’s time to turn it off. To start, you need to disconnect your water heater from the power source. For an electric furnace, go to your breaker box and turn off the circuit breaker. For a gas furnace, find the dial by the thermostat, and turn the dial all the way off.
If your water heater noise determines that you need to drain your tank, the best choice is to give us a call and have a certified plumber drain your water heater for you. While you can do it yourself at home, a technician will be able to complete the job quickly and efficiently to get your hot water up and running again. However, if you need to quickly drain your tank water heater at home, follow these steps in order to make sure you are doing it safely and correctly.
Before starting to drain your water heater, make sure you have given the water enough time to cool inside the tank! Start by looking at the bottom of your water heater tank to see if there is a spot to attach a hose (some models may have a cover over this opening). After finding the outlet, hook up a garden hose to the unit and make sure the other end of the hose is in a well-drained area like a bathtub, bucket, or if possible, outside.
The next step is to open the drain valve. You may need to bend the hose slightly to one side to allow air into the tank and start the flow of water. After the warm water has left the tank, turn the cold water on for brief moments at a time to flush out any sediment in your water heater and to make sure all of the water is gone. You’ll know when the sediment is cleared out when the water runs clear.
Once you have flushed out your water heater, you are now able to close the valve, disconnect the hose from the unit, and hook your water heater back up to its power source.
If you suspect any of these problems are happening to your water heater, our certified technicians are here to help! With any water heater repair service, our professionals are able to quickly analyze and fix the problem.
At Quality Comfort, our service calls are only $48 and we offer emergency weekend services; no more waiting for hot water!