Everything Homeowners Should Know About Water Heaters
A Comprehensive Guide
Are you experiencing problems with your water heater? Do you want to know more about how water heaters operate, their various types and features, and common signs of a malfunctioning heater? If so, this guide is perfect for you! This comprehensive guide will uncover the mysteries of water heaters, from why they're essential components in any home to the types of water heaters to signs it may be time to repair your unit.
Why Are Water Heaters Necessary?
Water heaters are essential household appliances that provide hot water for showers, dishes, laundry, and other activities. Without a water heater, it's nearly impossible to get hot water for everyday tasks. Water heaters heat cold water as it passes through several pipes inside the unit. This process warms the water to the desired temperature and then delivers it directly to outlets such as faucets and bathtubs.
On top of providing convenience and comfort, having access to hot water is also necessary for many different health-related reasons. Hot water removes dirt, bacteria, and germs from surfaces, dishes, clothes, bodies, and more. Additionally, hot showers help relax muscles after work or an exercise session.
Water heaters are also an essential part of energy efficiency in homes. Heating cold water right when needed rather than storing large amounts of hot water throughout the day or night can significantly reduce energy consumption. Furthermore, some newer models feature better insulation materials and more efficient designs, which can lead to even more savings on energy bills in the long run.
Types of Water Heaters
Several water heaters are available today, each offering different features and benefits. The most common types of water heaters include tankless electric, tankless gas, traditional storage tank electric, traditional storage tank gas-fired units, and point-of-use water heaters.
Tankless electric water heaters work by heating cold water directly when it is needed. As electric heaters do not store the heated water in a reservoir, they can provide an unlimited hot water supply. On the downside, they use more electricity than their gas counterparts and require a significant initial investment. Tankless gas models are more efficient than tankless electric models since they only use energy to ignite the flame when hot water is needed. Although these systems may require ventilation due to combustible gases being released during operation, they can help reduce energy costs compared to conventional storage tanks.
Traditional storage tank electric models are the most popular type of heater in homes today as they offer greater capacity than other types and generally cost less than their alternatives. These units store heated water in an insulated tank until it is needed for use and use electricity to keep the stored hot water warm between uses. Gas-fired tanks also store the heated liquid but use natural gas or propane fuel instead of electricity to keep it at a comfortable temperature. Point-of-use (POU) heaters come in electric and gas versions and work similarly to traditional storage tanks, except that they are installed near where the hot water will be used so that it can be provided faster with little or no wait time. This makes them ideal for applications such as kitchen sinks or bathroom showers where quick access to hot water is desired without waiting for a larger unit to deliver it further away.
Signs Your Water Heater Needs Repair
When your unit begins to show signs of wear and tear, it's essential to have it evaluated by a professional plumber as soon as possible. The following are some signs that you may need to have your water heater repaired:
Lack of Hot Water
First, if you notice a decrease in the temperature of your hot water output or a lack of hot water, this could indicate that your water heater needs repair.
Strange Noises Coming From Your Water Heater
Additionally, suppose you hear strange noises such as popping, gurgling, or rumbling from your water heater while it is running. In that case, this can also mean something is wrong with it and should be assessed by a professional.
Higher Energy Bills
Another common sign that your water heater requires attention is if there has been an increase in monthly energy bills. This could be due to the inefficient functioning of your appliance caused by sediment buildup in the tank or worn-out components.
Foul Smell From Water
Finally, suppose you notice any foul odors from your appliance when turning on hot water taps around the house or standing near the unit itself. In that case, this could indicate that bacteria has formed inside of it and needs to be addressed right away.
No matter what issue you may have with your water heater, it's best to contact a licensed plumber immediately so they can assess and diagnose any potential problems before they become more serious —and expensive—to fix later down the line.
Work With Plumbing Professionals
Water heaters are standard in many households, as they provide hot water for showers, dishes, and laundry. It is important to know the signs that your water heater needs repair before it completely breaks down. These include leaks, strange noises, not enough hot water, or discolored water. Be sure to call a professional if you experience any of these problems so they can fix them before they become more significant.
The team at Moe Plumbing Services can help ensure your water heater runs at top efficiency for maximum comfort. Call our team at (818) 396-8002 or visit our website to learn more.