When your water heater breaks down, you'll be alerted when you don't have enough hot water or when your water is too hot. Odd noises are another sign that your heater could be in trouble, although not all noises are indications of something serious. Here are three noises that might indicate the need for water heater repair.
1. A Banging Noise Might Be From Pipe Pressure
Certain things can cause pressure in a water pipe and in your water heater to increase. This might happen when you shut off the water supply suddenly and the water comes to an abrupt stop and then flows backward. Since the event causes a banging noise, this is often called a water hammer.
The problem can lie anywhere, but if it's close to your water heater, the tank might be adversely affected. You'll probably need a plumber to figure out what's going on and make the right water heater repair. They might put on an expansion tank or a water hammer arrestor if you don't have one.
2. A Hissing Noise Could Signal High Pressure
If you hear hissing coming from your water heater, check the pressure relief valve. The relief valve is supposed to release high pressure as a safety mechanism. Sometimes, the valve gets clogged and doesn't work right. You might even see water dripping from the valve along with the loud noise. This could indicate a dangerous situation with your water heater, so you may want to shut it off so it stops heating water and then call a plumbing company to check the valve.
3. Rumbling Might Be A Sign Of Sediment
Rumbling is sometimes heard when sediment collects in the combustion area of a gas water heater. Too much sediment might also cause popping and knocking noises as the sediment gets stirred up and bangs against the side of the heater. The solution for this problem is to flush out the tank. You can flush the tank yourself if you know how to.
If you don't feel comfortable flushing your water heater, call a plumber to do the job for you. This also gives the plumber a chance to make sure that's the only problem and that you don't need other forms of water heater repairs too.
It can be frightening to hear loud noises coming from your water heater since the tank is under pressure, so call a plumber when you notice something unusual with your water heater. The problem might not be anything dangerous, but just in case it is, the sooner you get help, the better.