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Common Water Heater Problems

A water heater is an essential appliance in every home, providing us with hot water for showers, washing dishes, and other daily tasks. However, like any appliance, Water Heater Repair sometimes is needed. In this article, we’ll explore common water heater problems, types of water heaters, DIY repair tips, and when to call a professional for help.

Insufficient Hot Water

One of the most common complaints with water heaters is not having enough hot water. This issue can be caused by a variety of factors, including a malfunctioning thermostat, a broken heating element, or a tank that is too small for the household’s needs.

Leaking Water Heater

A leaking water heater is not only a nuisance but can also lead to water damage if left unaddressed. Leaks can stem from a damaged pressure relief valve, a corroded tank, or loose connections.

Strange Noises

Hearing strange noises coming from your water heater, such as popping or rumbling, can be alarming. These sounds are often caused by sediment buildup in the tank, which can lead to reduced efficiency and potential damage to the unit.

Discolored or Smelly Water

Discolored or smelly hot water can be caused by a failing anode rod, which allows bacteria to grow inside the tank, leading to unpleasant odors and discolored water. Replacing the anode rod can help resolve this issue.

Types of Water Heaters

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters, also known as on-demand or instant water heaters, heat water as it flows through the unit, eliminating the need for a storage tank. They are energy-efficient and provide hot water almost instantly but may require more maintenance than traditional water heaters.

Storage Tank Water Heaters

Storage tank water heaters are the most common type of water heater, with a large tank that stores and heats water. They are generally more affordable than tankless options but may be less energy-efficient and have a limited supply of hot water.

Heat Pump Water Heaters

Heat pump water heaters utilize the heat from the air or ground to heat water, making them highly energy efficient. However, they may not be suitable for all climates and can be more expensive upfront.

Solar Water Heaters

Solar water heaters harness the power of the sun to heat water, offering an environmentally friendly and energy-efficient solution. These systems can be more expensive to install but can result in significant long-term savings on energy bills.

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DIY Water Heater Repair Tips

Flushing the Tank

Over time, sediment can build up in your water heater tank, reducing its efficiency and causing strange noises. Flushing the tank regularly can help remove this sediment and improve the performance of your water heater. To flush the tank, turn off the power and water supply, attach a hose to the drain valve, and open the valve to drain the water. Once the tank is empty, briefly open the water supply to help flush out any remaining sediment before closing the drain valve and refilling the tank.

Replacing the Anode Rod

The anode rod is a crucial component of your water heater that helps prevent corrosion by sacrificing itself to protect the tank. Over time, the anode rod will deteriorate and need to be replaced. To replace the anode rod, turn off the power and water supply to your water heater, drain a few gallons of water from the tank, and then use a wrench to unscrew the old anode rod. Insert the new rod, tighten it in place, and restore the water and power supply.

Adjusting the Temperature

If your water is too hot or not hot enough, you can adjust the thermostat on your water heater to find the ideal temperature. For most households, a temperature of 120°F (49°C) is recommended to balance comfort and energy efficiency. To adjust the temperature, turn off the power to your water heater, remove the access panel, and use a screwdriver to adjust the thermostat dial. Replace the access panel and restore power to the unit.

Resetting the Circuit Breaker

If your water heater is not working at all, it’s possible that the circuit breaker has tripped. Check your home’s electrical panel to see if the breaker for your water heater has been tripped and reset it if necessary. If the breaker continues to trip, contact a professional, as there may be a more significant issue at hand.

When to Call a Professional

Safety Concerns

Water heater repairs often involve working with electricity and hot water, which can be dangerous if not handled correctly. If you are unsure about any aspect of a repair or do not feel comfortable performing the task, it’s best to call a professional.

Complicated Repairs

Some water heater repairs, such as replacing a heating element or fixing a leaking tank, require specialized tools and knowledge. If you encounter a problem that you’re unable to fix on your own, it’s time to call a professional plumber.

Replacing the Water Heater

If your water heater is old, inefficient, or beyond repair, you may need to consider replacing it with a new, more energy-efficient model. A professional plumber can help you choose the right water heater for your home and install it safely and correctly.


FAQs Water Heater Repair

  1. How often should I flush my water heater? It’s recommended to flush your water heater at least once a year to remove sediment and maintain efficiency.
  2. How long does a water heater typically last? The average lifespan of a water heater is 10-15 years, depending on the type, maintenance, and water quality.
  3. Can I install a water heater myself? Installing a water heater can be a complex task that requires knowledge of plumbing and electrical work. It’s best to leave this job to professionals like the experienced team at Jilly Plumbing in Boerne. They can ensure your water heater is installed safely and efficiently, providing you with peace of mind.
  4. What are the signs that my water heater needs to be replaced? Indications that your water heater may need to be replaced include age (over 10-15 years old), frequent repairs, rust-colored water, leaks, and insufficient hot water supply.
  5. How can I make my water heater more energy-efficient? You can improve your water heater’s energy efficiency by insulating the tank, lowering the temperature setting, installing a timer, and performing regular maintenance, such as flushing the tank and replacing the anode rod.


Don’t wait until it’s too late – contact Jilly Plumbing in Boerne today!

If you’re experiencing water heater issues or are in need of a new water heater, don’t hesitate to call the experts at Jilly Plumbing in Boerne. Our team of skilled technicians can help diagnose and repair your water heater or install a new, energy-efficient model to keep your home comfortable and save you money in the long run. Contact us today for all your water heater needs!

Water Heater Repair & Installation

Kerrville & Fredericksburg TX

Commercial & Residential Water Heater Services

water heater with expansion tank and overflow pan

Professional Water Heater Repair & Installation Services

Water heaters are a big investment for your home that you don’t want to replace more often than necessary.  Home and business owners should be able to rely on skilled plumbers to keep that investment working efficiently for as long as possible.  With proper installation and knowledgeable water heater repairs, you’ll be able to extend the life of your water heater whether you live in Kerrville, Fredericksburg or the remote parts of the Texas Hill Country in between.

If you need a new water heater installed, give us a call and we’ll perform the installation properly.  We’ll re-plumb if you want to relocate the unit or if the current pipes are corroded.  And we’ll make sure the unit is installed according to plumbing code and set properly for you needs.

When you need some repair work for you water heater, our plumbers can do that as well.  We’ll replace burned out elements, check electrical connections, evaluate the thermostat and a perform a full diagnostic evaluation on your unit to get it back to functioning efficiently.  If you need to schedule a water heater repair for Kerrville or Fredericksburg, TX give us a call.

Licensed plumbers available 24 hours a day

Kerrville and Fredericksburg, TX residents can rest easy knowing the Jilly Plumbing 24 hour plumbers will be available when they’re needed.  We serve both commercial and residential customers.

We guarantee our plumbing services.
white tankless water heater

Tips To Keep Your Water Heater In Good Repair

Making your water heater last as long as possible can be accomplished with in a few ways. 

  1. Install a water softener to reduce the effects of the minerals in the hard water prevalent in Kerrville, Fredericksburg, and the Texas Hill Country.
  2. Flush your tank water heater semi-annually to remove calcium buildup from the bottom of the tank.
  3. Perform other routine maintenance including changing the anode rod and exercising the relief valve as needed.
  4. Keep the temperature of the water set between 120-125. Setting the thermostat above 130 can result in severe burns.
  5. Schedule repairs for your water heater as quickly as possible with a licensed Kerrville or Fredericksburg plumber to prevent rusting or further damage to your unit.

How to Decide Between Repairing or Replacing your Water Heater

No one wants to spend money on what they don’t need.  That includes buying a new water heater before you need to.  So, how do you know what’s wrong with your water heater? And how do you decide if it’s time to purchase a new unit?  We have a few questions to help you walk through the decision process.

How old is your water heater?

The average useful life of a water heater in the Texas Hill Country is 8-12 years for a tank water heater or 20 years for a tankless water heater.  If you are nearing the end of the lifespan and the needed repair is extensive, it may be more cost effective to purchase a new unit.

How extensive is the repair needed?

If the cost of the repair is more than the prorated value for the rest of the water heater’s life, the repair would be a no-go.  You’ll always want to consider the comparison between the remaining useful life of your water heater and the cost of the repair.

tankless water heater installed on wall

Has the water heater had problems multiple times?

If this is the first problem or problems are infrequent for the water heater, repairing the unit is probably the best choice. However, if you feel like you’re always having to get your unit worked on, it’s time for a new water heater.

How efficient is your unit?

If you can dramatically increase the efficiency of your water heater, you may be able to save enough in energy bills that it would make sense to move forward with installing a new, more efficient unit.

Types of Water Heaters Texans Install in Their Homes

As a Texas Hill Country resident, you have many options when it comes to heating water for your home.  You can choose from conventional tank or tankless water heaters.  Each type of unit comes in multiple sizes that can meet the demands for hot water in the home.  Tank units have varying recovery time for replenishing the hot water in the tank.  On-demand units vary in the gallons per minute of hot water they can produce.

Another important consideration is the option of either gas or electric powered units. Both conventional tank water heaters and tankless, on-demand units can be purchased to run on gas or electricity.  Home and business owners will need to decide on which type of power they want their units to utilize.

If you have questions about the type of water heaters available, our licensed plumbers can help walk you through the different options.  And we’ll provide you with professional installation for the water heater of your choice.

Choosing the Best Water Heater To Install In Your Home

Deciding on the best water heater for your family’s needs means taking into consideration  all the features available for tank and tankless water heaters.

Features to consider include:

  • Energy source: gas or electric
  • Warranty
  • Display on the unit
  • Built-in anti-scale devices
  • Size of the unit
  • Space needed for installation
  • Rate of Heating-Gallons Per Minute for a tankless water heater or recovery time of a tank unit
  • Insulative properties of the tank

Contact Jilly Plumbing For Water Heater Repair & Installation Services

Looking for a local plumbing company you can trust with your water heater needs?  Jilly plumbing is focused on the Texas Hill Country with plumbers in Kerrville and Fredericksburg to serve our clientele better.

To schedule your free estimate for water heater repair or for the installation of a new water heater, give our friendly staff a call.

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