It isn’t uncommon for a water heater to produce low noise when running. This especially happens whenever the unit puts in an extra effort to heat your water for the various household needs. However, the water heater sounds might prove pretty innocuous, and at times, they might require no attention on your part. Unfortunately, the noises produced by a water heater are a sign of an underlying issue within the unit. Below are five noises that show it’s time for a water heater repair in Bloomington, IL.
What Are the Common Water Heater Sounds?
Crackling or Hissing Sounds
You will most likely hear a cracking or a hissing sound if your water heater is electrically-powered. However, it isn’t uncommon for these sounds to arise once after a while in an electrically-powered water heater. A persistent hissing or crackling sound indicates that something is blocking the heating element.
Such is a serious issue that needs you to call a water heater repair technician to drain the tank and perform further inspections. If the water heater uses gas or oil, the cracking sounds likely because of a moisture buildup. The best way to pinpoint the root cause of the issue is to call a professional to inspect the unit and perform the necessary repairs.
Rumbling or Banging Noises
These are some of the most common noises you will likely hear from the water heater. Normally, they are because of an excessive buildup of sediments. Whenever mineral sediments are deposited on the heating elements, it creates mini-explosions that you hear. Normally, this is a simple issue to resolve. A technician will flush the tank to remove any buildup of excessive sediments.
This is a preventative maintenance service that should be done twice a year. The other reason why you might hear the rumbling and banging sound is because of a water hammer. This might make the pipes leading into the water heater burst. Hence, have the plumber adjust the pressure within your plumbing system using a pressure-reducing valve to eliminate noise.
Whistling or Screeching
Are you hearing a high-pitched whistling or screeching sound emanating from the water heater? That is a sign the valves are loose, and the air is leaving the tank via them. A water heater repair technician will check the pressure-relieving valve, inlet/outlet valves, and temperature valves to ensure they are adjusted properly. The valves’ recommended settings and location can be found in the water heater manufacturer’s manual.
Do you hear a ticking sound coming from the water heater like it will explode soon? That should worry you. However, the situation might be as bad as it sounds. A ticking noise from a water heater is a sign of sudden pressure changes within the tank. The pressure-reducing valve can adjust the water pressure levels whenever you hear the noise levels persistently. However, having a water heater repair technician inspect the tank and root out the cause of the problem is probably the best idea. The professional might install some insulation or straps around the water heater to protect it from the temperature changes and prevent it from moving.
This is also a sign that there is an excessive accumulation of sediments in your water heater tank. When the alkalis in the water react with the unit’s heating elements, the mini-explosions produce popping sounds. The alkali sediment is highly rich in magnesium and calcium, the primary agents contributing to rusting in your water heater tank.
Besides flushing out the tank, you might want to have a water heater repair technician replace your unit’s anode rod. This is a sacrificial metal that protects the walls of the water heater tank from corrosion and prevents the growth of anaerobic bacteria. The technician might also recommend installing a water softening solution to tackle the problem from its origin, protecting the water tank and other plumbing system elements from sedimentation and corrosion.
What Are the Main Reasons the Water Heater Might Produce the Noises Above?
Have you heard any of the noises above from your water heater? What might be the cause? Below are some main reasons a water heater might start producing uncharacteristic noises.
The most common reason conventional water heaters produce banging, rumbling, and popping sounds is an accumulation of sediments inside the tank. This issue commonly affects Bloomington, IL, homes that receive hard water from the water utility provider. A buildup of excessive sediments in the water heater tank might cause rumbling and banging sounds.
The sediments and limescale inside the tank might react with the unit’s heating element, causing the strange sounds you hear. A buildup of sediment in the water heater tank also causes corrosion, affecting the water heater’s energy efficiency and reducing the unit’s service life. This problem can be resolved by flushing the unit at least twice yearly to remove the accumulated sediments within the tank.
Poor Water Flow
Your water heater might also start producing the sizzling sound whenever there are obstructions or clogs in some of its valves, restricting the flow of water. Do you suspect the valve controlling the water flow into the water heater tank has an issue? Then ensure that a water heater repair technician inspects it.
A Used-up Aluminum Anode Rod
The other reason your water heater might produce a disturbing pop sound is if the anode rod has been exposed to high alkalinity levels. This is an issue commonly found in areas that receive alkaline water. The plumber will resolve the issue by replacing the aluminum anode rod with one made from magnesium.
A Faulty Heating Element
Is your water heater producing an uncharacteristic humming sound? A loose heating element may cause the issue. The unit’s heating element might also become loose because of poor installation or normal wear. When a water heater repair technician comes for an inspection, they will tighten the heating element.
Your Reputable Plumbing Company
Have you noticed that your water heater is producing either of the above? That isn’t an issue to neglect. Rather, enlist the help of a water heater repair professional in Bloomington, IL, to inspect the unit and perform the necessary repairs. Call our experienced technicians at Covenant Plumbing for any water heater repair service.