If your water heater is making noises or is not providing enough hot water, these are signs of system failure. Snell Heating & Air Conditioning provides fast and dependable water heater repair and maintenance services to homes in Virginia. Give us a call by phone at (703) 543-9649 or book an appointment to receive assistance. We provide water heater repair services to residents in areas of Virginia such as Centreville, Arlington, Alexandria, and Reston.
Signs It’s Time For a Water Heater Repair
It goes without saying that your faucet water should always be colorless! A rusty tank or brownish water means your water heater tank needs some assessment to determine the cause. Rust and sedimentation inside the tank can produce little particles in your water, which can be hazardous.
Inconsistent Water Temperature
Your water heater has been designed with two heating elements. The dual-elements are controlled by two separate thermostats. The upper element heats the upper portion and shuts off when it has reached a certain temperature.
The lower heating element takes in the cold water and houses it until it is needed for the upper element. If you are experiencing quick hot water loss, it is possible that one of the elements is not functioning properly, and will require a water heater repair.
Most of our household appliances are going to make some noise while operating. However, water heater tanks are usually tucked away and tend to be on the quieter side. If you notice any unusual noises that become louder, it might be time to schedule a water heater repair appointment with a licensed technician to assess if your system is working properly.
Signs of Corrosion
Checking the outside of your water heater tank can give you an insight into what’s going on inside. Water heaters are meant to last an average of 8-12 years, in order to get the most out of your water heater, it is important to have it cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. If your water heater has begun to corrode, scheduling a water heater repair might be in order.
To most, our gas water heaters look like a tube that is tucked away in our laundry room and storage closets — our skilled technicians at Snell see them for their complex components, and have been trained to know their ins and outs!
The Main Components of a Gas Water Heater
The Tank, Dip Tube, and Discharge Pipe
The largest component of your system is the tank which holds the water. Cold water meets the tank using the dip tube, which extends from the top of the tube to the bottom. The water is then heated and rises to the top to exit through the discharge pipe.
The discharge pipe carries the heated water throughout your home. The cold water line entering the tank does have a shut-off valve. However, this should only be used to shut off the water during an emergency water heater repair.
The Gas Burner and Assembly
The heat source in a gas water heater is the gas burner. The gas burner is underneath the tank, but the controls are arms-length on the side of the tank. The controls can be used like a thermostat to change the temperature and ignite the pilot light. A gas line is also along the sides of the tank. The gas line has a shut-off valve, which can be turned off in a gas emergency.
The Exhaust Flue
Using gas to heat water creates other gases that are generated during combustion. The exhaust flue is responsible for venting those gases away from the burner. The exhaust flue also acts as a heat exchanger. The flue should be vented outside of your home to flush the gases. If you notice an odd smell near your system, this may be a sign of a gas leak. Immediately evacuate your house and call a professional to perform an emergency water heater repair.
The Pressure Relief Valve and the Drain Valve
A pressure relief valve is a safety component used to control or limit the pressure built up inside the tank. Pressure and excessive heat can be dangerous. This valve is important to ensure the tank does not burst or explode. The pressure relief valve is located on top of your tank. The drain valve is located at the bottom of the tank. This valve can be used to flush sediments from the tank. The build-up of sediments can cause damage to your tank. Draining your tank every once in a while is a good maintenance measure to ensure no build-up. By scheduling a water service repair you can have your tank drained by a profession at Snell.
This should help homeowners better understand your gas water heater and all its components. Checking these components regularly can help you determine whether it is time for a gas water heater repair.
Electric Water Heater Components
The Heating Element
The heating element consists of an inner wire surrounded by the filler material which is enclosed in a sheath of copper or stainless steel. The thermostat allows electric currents to flow through the inner wire. The inner wire creates heat that is passed to the filler material or outer sheath.
Once transferred, it is then absorbed by the water. If your water heater is not producing hot water, this may be due to a broken heating element. Snell Heating & Air Conditioning provides replacement heating elements along with dependable water heater repair services to homes in Virginia. Elements can be offered in different wattages or materials to meet specific heating requirements.
The Control Circuit
The single-phase control circuit comes equipped with a high limit control switch with reset button, upper thermostat, lower thermostat, two heating elements, and wires. The upper thermostat sends electric energy to the upper heating element until the temperature in the upper third of the tank reaches the set thermostat setting. Then, power is transferred to the lower heating element until the remaining water reaches the lower thermostat setting. The high limit control switch will trip and shut off the power elements if the water temperature exceeds 170°F. Homeowners may also have a single element water heater, which has one element mounted at the bottom of the tank. The single element is controlled by a thermostat and high limit switch.
Running through this simple checklist will help you determine whether it might be time for a water heater repair service.
Types of Water Heater Noises & How to Fix Them
It is normal for your gas or electric water heater to produce noises while it’s heating water in your home. On the other hand, there are a variety of noises you should be familiar with that may indicate a water heater issue. To help you diagnose an issue with your system, we have compiled a list of various types of water heater noises and what they mean.
To prevent an accumulation of magnesium and calcium in your tank, it’s important to flush your water heater one or more times per year. As the water heater in your house becomes older, it will begin to collect sediment. The sediment will begin to accumulate at the bottom of the water tank as the water is being heated by your heating elements or gas burner. As the water travels through the pipes to your house, minerals from the ground become dissolved in the water.
Once the water reaches the water heater, the calcium and magnesium particles begin to separate from the water to form lime scale. If the accumulation of sediment in your tank becomes too severe, you may begin to hear a popping sound. The licensed plumbers at Snell Heating & Air will help you drain your water heater to remove the limescale. Give our team a call by phone at (703) 543-9649 to receive help with a water heater issue. Snell Heating & Air provides dependable water heater repair services to homes in Arlington and other areas of Virginia.
Sizzling sounds may be a signal of reduced water flow in your gas or electric water heater. This noise may be caused by a high quantity of pressure or water in your water tank. This is a frequent issue that occurs due to a malfunctioning temperature and pressure relief valve. This valve is engineered to release excess water from the tank if the pressure becomes too high. To prevent damage to your water heater, deactivate the system and call a licensed plumber.
If you are lucky, the sizzling noise from your water heater may be caused by a partially closed water inlet valve. This valve is designed to provide your heater with a supply of cold water from your house. To eliminate this noise, adjust the water valve to ensure it’s open. We also recommend checking the water outlet valve to ensure it’s not closed.
The water inlet and outlet valves on your water heater may include a heat trap. This is a mechanism that is engineered to stop heat from escaping as it enters and exits your water heater. To eliminate the tapping sound, you may want to consider purchasing valves or nippes that do not contain heat trap mechanisms. To receive help with replacing or installing valves on your water heater, give our team a call by phone at (703) 543-9649. Our team of certified plumbers offer water heater repair services to homes.
As the temperature of the water in your water heater begins to rise, the water expands. This allows the water to depart from the limescale at the bottom of the water tank. As the warm water emerges, your water heater will produce a rumbling sound. Is your system not producing a rumbling noise? This is an indicator of a severe sediment buildup in your tank.
Once the buildup of magnesium and calcium at the bottom of the tank becomes too severe, the water heater in your home will become less efficient. To prevent high utility bills, we recommend contacting a local plumber in your area to drain your water tank. Snell Heating & Air Conditioning provides fast, efficient, and safe water heater repair services to homeowners in Alexandria and other areas of Virginia
Water Heater Repair Services Near You in Virginia
No matter what type of water heater repair, maintenance, or installation service you may need, Snell Heating & Air Conditioning will be here to help. We provide water heater services to homes in areas of Virginia including Centreville, Alexandria, and Arlington. Reach out to one of our water heater experts today!
How Many Hours Does A Water Heater Run Each Day?
The total amount of time your hot water heater operates each day is dependent on your water usage patterns. If you utilize your dishwasher and washing machine on a daily basis, the gas or electric water heater in your house will be required to operate for a longer period of time to fulfill the demand for warm water. A water heater in an average household will operate for a few minutes every hour of the day to maintain a warm temperature in the storage tank. The water heater is engineered to activate when the temperature of the water at the top of the system becomes too cold.
Although a typical tank water heater will operate for a couple of minutes per hour, the total amount of time will vary depending on factors such as the total amount of family members in the house, thermostat settings, and tank size. The total amount of time a storage tank water heater operates each day is around 3 hours. If your water heater is producing noises or a low supply of warm water, give our team a call at (703) 543-9649 to receive help. The licensed plumbers at Snell Heating & Air Conditioning provide trustworthy water heater repair services in areas of Virginia such as Centreville, Arlington, Alexandria, and Reston.
How Many Showers Will a 40-Gallon Water Heater Provide?
The total amount of showers provided by a 40-gallon storage tank water heater each hour will vary depending on the total amount of appliances you are using, including your dishwasher and washing machine. In addition, the total number of family members in your house that are able to shower will be dependent on how long each shower session is. An average household is able to take two showers each hour with a 40-gallon hot water heater.
If you are always running low on hot water while you are washing the dishes or showering, this is an indicator that your 40-gallon hot water heater is too small for your house. For example, a household with 3 to 4 people will use an average of 35 to 46 gallons of warm water and will require a water tank that is larger than 40-gallons. On the other hand, a household of 2 people or less may use anywhere from 20 to 36 gallons of hot water. This type of family will only need a 40-gallon water heater to shower, wash clothes, or do the laundry. Are you always running low on warm water? Give us a call at (703) 543-9649 to receive help. We will perform the necessary repairs to your water heater to ensure you are never required to take a cold shower again.
How Do You Determine the Efficiency of a Water Heater?
The efficiency of a storage tank hot water heater is determined by its Energy Factor (EF) rating. The efficiency of a water heater is dependent on the total quantity of warm water produced when compared to the amount of energy utilized on a standard day. The Energy Factor (EF) will vary based on cycling and standby losses produced by the water heater. In addition, it’s also important to consider the recovery rate while comparing water heaters.
Standby heat loss refers to the total quantity of energy loss each hour from the water in the storage tank. On the other hand, the recovery rate of a water heater gives an outline of the efficiency of heat transfer from the gas burners or heating elements to the water. Lastly, cycling heat loss refers to the total amount of energy lost while hot water is distributed through the tank, inlet pipes, and outlet lines. If you believe your water heater is becoming inefficient, give our skilled contractors a call by phone at (703) 543-9649. Fenwick Home Services provides safe, fast, and trusted water heater repair services to homeowners in Centreville and other areas of Virginia.