As a homeowner, having a functional water heater is essential for your daily routine. But what happens when your water heater starts acting up? In this ultimate guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about dealing with water heater issues. From common problems to troubleshooting steps and maintenance tips.


Common Water Heater Issues

Let’s take a look at some common water heater issues you may encounter.

  • No Hot Water

One of the most common problems with water heaters is the lack of hot water. This issue can be caused by a variety of factors. Including a malfunctioning heating element, a broken thermostat, or a tripped circuit breaker.

  • Not Enough Hot Water

Another common issue is not having enough hot water. This can be caused by an undersized water heater, a damaged dip tube, or sediment buildup in the tank.

  • Leaks

Leaks can occur in the water heater tank, pipes, or valves. A leaking tank typically means the unit needs to be replaced. Leaks in the pipes or valves may require simple repairs.

  • Strange Noises

If you hear strange noises coming from your water heater, such as popping or banging sounds, it could be due to sediment buildup in the tank. Other potential causes include a malfunctioning heating element or a loose heating element.


Troubleshooting Water Heater Issues

Water heaters are essential for providing hot water to your home. They can also be a source of frustration when issues arise. Here are some common water heater problems and how to troubleshoot them.

  • No Hot Water

If your water heater isn’t producing any hot water, the first thing to check is the pilot light (if you have a gas heater) or the circuit breaker (if you have an electric heater). Make sure the pilot light is lit and the circuit breaker is on. If that doesn’t solve the problem, check the thermostat and heating element (if you have an electric heater).

  • Leaking Tank

If your water heater tank is leaking, turn off the power and water supply and call a professional plumber immediately. Do not attempt to fix a leaking tank yourself.

  • Strange Noises

If your water heater is making strange noises (such as banging or popping), it may be due to sediment buildup in the tank. Try flushing the tank to remove the sediment.

  • Smelly or Discolored Water

If your hot water smells like rotten eggs or has a rusty or brownish color, it may be due to bacteria or sediment buildup in the tank. Try flushing the tank and adding a treatment solution to kill the bacteria.

  • TPR Valve Release

If your water heater’s TPR (temperature-pressure relief) valve releases water, it may be due to high pressure or temperature in the tank. Check the pressure and temperature settings and adjust if necessary. If the valve continues to release water, it may need to be replaced.



When to Call a Professional

While some water heater issues can be easily fixed with basic troubleshooting and maintenance, others require the expertise of a professional plumber. If you’re unsure about how to fix a problem or you’re uncomfortable working with electricity or gas, it’s best to call in a licensed professional.


Water heater issues can be frustrating, but with the right knowledge and tools, you can troubleshoot and fix many problems on your own. Remember to regularly maintain your water heater to prevent issues from occurring in the first place, and don’t hesitate to call in a professional if you need help.

Call DION'S COMPLETE Plumbing, Heating & Cooling in Brighton, MI at (734) 352-9736 if you need professional assistance with your Water Heater Issues.



How often should I flush my water heater tank?

It’s recommended to flush your tank at least once a year to remove sediment buildup.

Can I replace my water heater’s heating element myself?

If you’re comfortable working with electricity, you may be able to replace the heating element yourself. However, it’s important to turn off the power supply and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

What’s the average lifespan of a water heater?

The average lifespan of a water heater is around 10-15 years, but this can vary depending on the unit’s make and model, as well as how well it’s maintained.

How can I tell if my water heater needs to be replaced?

If your water heater is over 10 years old, has frequent issues, or isn’t producing enough hot water, it may be time to replace it.

Can I insulate my water heater tank myself?

Yes, you can insulate your water heater tank yourself by following the manufacturer’s instructions. However, if you’re uncomfortable working with insulation or you’re unsure about how to do it properly, it’s best to call in a professional.