Plumbing Blog

Is Your Seattle Water Heater a Time Bomb?

Seattle Water HeaterIt’s hard to believe it, but over 19,000 water heaters are replaced every day. About 7 million heaters end up being tossed out each year in Canada alone. A large city such as Seattle may see several thousand water heaters a year disposed of. Not only are water heaters a common plumbing malfunction, but unfortunately, they can be dangerous when they do malfunction. The Consumer Product Safety Commission recently said that almost every single day someone gets injured or killed from a explosion.

Naturally, then, extending the life of your water heater and preventing any unexpected break downs is a priority. So, first, we need to understand the common causes for problems. The first common problem would have to be sediment build up. Sediment comes from dirt, mineral deposits and rust. This build up of sediments and internal rusting can cause premature death of your device. It can burn out the heating elements and cause overheating. This also results in an increase of unnecessary energy use. Another common cause of rust inside the water heater is  hard water.  If that is the case, it would be a good idea to call an experienced Seattle plumber for advice and recommendations when selecting your water heater.  An experienced plumber in Seattle would be familiar with the quality of the water and would be able to make recommendations as to which water heaters are more likely to resist premature rusting.

The New Mexico State University issued a study where the results showed that water heaters operate 22-30 percent less efficiently when they have hard water scale. The only way to know if your current water heater is collecting minerals and deposits is to call a qualified Seattle plumber and have them come out and inspect your water heater.  If sediment is discovered, the plumber will be able to flush out the sediment and give it proper maintenance.

Another common cause for water heater problems is improper water heater installation from the beginning. This could include bad flues, improper clearances, ignoring installation instructions, and disregarding national and local Seattle plumbing safety codes. These instructions and codes are issued for a reason – to make sure the hot water heater operates safety and according to intended operation. Ignoring such instructions and safety codes can be dangerous. The only way to know if your hot water heater is properly installed is to have a qualified Seattle plumber inspect your water heater system for such code violations. It’s also possible that some new code requirements have changed since your water heater was first installed. If this is the case, your plumber can also let you know about these improved codes and what can be done to bring your hot water system up to par.  And finally, a fourth cause of water heater malfunction could be external leaks. If, for whatever reason, a leak develops on the outside of the water heater, it oftentimes initiates rusting from the outside in. This destroys a newly installed water heater prematurely. It also can corrode electrical connections and cause a dangerous electrical shock.

Hot water heaters explode every day. Is YOURS a time bomb? Don’t take the chance. Have a qualified Seattle plumber come and perform regular water heater inspections and water heater maintenance for your own peace of mind, safety, and protection from very costly repairs later down the road.

To schedule an appointment with one of our Tacoma, WA plumbers, call 877-694-5176 or fill out our online request form.

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Seattle Water Heaters

Storage water heaters are by far the most common type of water heater in the U.S. today. Ranging in size from 20 to 80 gallons (or larger) and fueled by electricity, natural gas, propane, or oil, storage water heaters work by heating up water in an insulated tank. When you turn on the hot water tap, hot water is pulled out of the top of the water heater and cold water flows into the bottom to replace it. Because heat is lost through the walls of the storage tank (this is called standby heat loss), energy is consumed even when no hot water is being used. New energy-efficient storage water heaters contain higher levels of insulation around the tank, substantially reducing standby heat loss.

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