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Why Is My Water Heater Not Working?

A uniformed Cooper tech working on a water heater outside a residence

Imagine heading in for a hot shower on a freezing winter morning and feeling like you’ve just embraced the frozen icebergs of the North Pole. It’s frustrating, isn’t it? But you’re not alone.

We’ve encountered thousands of exasperated homeowners, just like you, whose lives have been disrupted by a simple luxury we all take for granted. So, why is your hot water not working? This guide will delve deeper into some causes of hot water issues:

Tired of no hot water? Call the pros at Cooper!

Do you need a professional to look at why your hot water heater is not working? Contact the experienced team at Cooper Heating and Cooling today. We offer fast and convenient scheduling to resolve your hot water problem quickly.

Problems with Temperature

Temperature problems can vary from having no hot water to consistent temperature fluctuations. We’ll cover them all so you can better understand what could be wrong. And remember! Always get educated advice from trusted experts to enjoy uninterrupted hot water safely.

No Hot Water

One of the most common reasons for no hot water is because the pilot light has broken down or is damaged. In this instance, the burner does not activate, resulting in no hot water.

Some other issues could be loose connections with electrical outlets or tripped circuit breakers. There may even be a loose connection or a faulty heating element within the water heater.

The problem for gas heaters could be a shut-off gas valve, meaning you don’t have enough fuel to run the water heater.

Lukewarm Water Only

If you are experiencing a problem where you only get lukewarm water, it could be as simple as the thermostat temperature setting is too low. Increasing the temperature may solve this issue.

Some other common reasons include sediments inside the water tank preventing heating, faulty heating elements, and damaged mixing valves. You may also be using too many appliances at once, and your water heater cannot cope.

Running Out of Hot Water Fast

More often than not, this problem is related to having a water heater that is too small for your household needs. This can happen when your house is too big for the water heater system, your family has expanded, or your general needs have increased.

In this instance, consider upgrading your system to one with a higher capacity. We provide free estimates on all new installations and are happy to provide educated advice on the capacity you may need to accommodate current and future use.

Extremely Hot Water Only

While this may not sound like a big problem in context, scalding hot water cannot be the only option. A faulty thermostat that fails to correctly read the temperature is a common culprit. Here, replacement may be necessary.

A broken mixing valve that doesn’t allow hot and cold water to mix properly is another issue you may have. It may also be worth noting that the Department of Energy recommends that water temperature remain constant at 120 degrees F.

Fluctuations in Temperature

One possible reason for this problem could be a faulty mixing valve that cannot properly blend hot and cold water.

Another reason could be the smaller size of the pipes in your home that are now unable to meet the water demands of the household – resulting in inconsistent temperatures. Changing the pipes may help prevent this uncomfortable problem in the future.

Leaking Water Heater

Leaking hot water is a common trigger for your home’s lack of water supply. When hot water leaks, the system has to work harder to keep it hot, increasing your electricity bills and causing inefficiency. This not only hurts your pocket but is also bad for the environment. An immediate fix is highly recommended.

Besides the lack of hot water, an unchecked leak can damage your home, especially if the water starts seeping into the floors and walls, causing mold and mildew. Detecting and fixing these problems early are key to preventing major plumbing catastrophes in the future.

Our highly trained technicians know exactly what to look for and can help resolve your hot water problem quickly and effectively.

The Water Heater Is Making Popping or Whistling Noises

A popping sound is often caused due to sediment and minerals building up inside the tank. The only way to eliminate this sound is to descale or flush the tank to break down and remove the minerals. Another reason for this sound is when the anode rod frequently encounters alkalinity due to minerals in the water. The anode rod may need to be replaced.

The whistling sound you hear could be the temperature and pressure valve opening to relieve excess pressure inside the system. Pressure can build up due to extremely high water temperature, a defective thermostat, or sediment buildup.

Identifying and fixing water heater problems are complicated and unsafe. For the untrained, combinations of water and electricity can be particularly hazardous, so it is important to put safety at the forefront and call a professional plumber to address the problem.

Need help with your water heater? Call Cooper Heating and Cooling!

If you want a professional plumber to come and look at your water heater quickly, contact Cooper Heating and Cooling Today. In business since 1978, we have more than 40 years of experience in high-quality plumbing services and come to you with thousands of 5‑star reviews and a 100% satisfaction guarantee. We also offer 1‑year renewable labor warranties and fast and convenient scheduling, so you waste no time getting back up and running.

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Luke Cooper