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Careful of These Water Heater Problems

tank-water-heaterPeople tend to worry about the strain their heaters are put under during the winter, and their air conditioners during the summer. Very few worry too much about their water heaters, though. That’s unfortunate, because though water heaters are designed to be quite tough, they are not invincible.

It’s important that you be able to identify problems with your water heater as quickly as possible, so that you can have it repaired before it gets any worse. The following are some of the more common water heater problems that your system may find itself dealing with.


No matter where it is, or how big it is, you should never ignore a leak that you find in your water heater. Depending on the location, a water heater leak can eventually cause the storage tank to rupture, the circulating pump to malfunction, or any one of a dozen other issues. It’s best to have this problem looked at as quickly as possible, as any leak that is left alone will only get worse if given time to develop.

Sudden Temperature Fluctuations

If the water at your faucet appears to be fluctuating between hot and cold temperatures without your input, you might have a problem with the dip tube. The dip tube is a PVC tube that runs from the water line down through the top of the storage tank, and lets out at the bottom. The dip tube is what ensures that new water is introduced where it will warm up the fastest, and that it stays separate from the hot water that is leaving the tank.

If the dip tube cracks or breaks, as sometimes happens, fresh water will be introduced directly into the hot water as it leaves the system. This is what sometimes causes the sudden fluctuations in temperature.

Low Output

If your water heater seems to be having trouble providing even a moderate amount of hot water, you may have a couple of different problems. The first possible problem is that your burner assembly needs cleaning. As the burner assembly combusts fuel, carbon particles build up on the jets. This causes the jets to fire later than they should, or not at all, cutting into the heating capacity of the water heater. This only applies to gas burners.

The second possibility is that you have sediment buildup in the storage tank. This is a common problem in homes that have hard water issues. As lime scale and other sediment build up on the bottom of the tank, the water inside the tank becomes insulated from the heat generated by the burner assembly. The way to solve this is to have the tank flushed out by a professional. If the sediment has hardened, it may need to be manually scraped out.

SPS Mechanical Inc. provides comprehensive water heater repair services throughout Turnersville, NJ. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our expert technicians. We can restore your water heater to full operating condition.  

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