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Did you know that heating your water accounts for about 20% of your home’s energy use?  

You may not think about it much, but your water heater is one of the household appliances that you use every day. So, when problems arise, it can be disheartening and extremely inconvenient. 

This post walks you through common water heater problems and how to fix them. 

1. Leaking Water 

If you have a dripping faucet in your bathroom or kitchen, you may have a leaky flange. A flange is a metal pipe that connects the drain pipe to the sink or tub.  

The most common reason for this problem is corrosion at the joint between the faucet and sink or tub. You can usually fix this by replacing the washers on both sides of the faucet stem with new ones purchased from your local hardware store or home improvement center. 

2. Rusty Water 

Rusty water can indicate a lot of different problems with your water heating system, but fortunately, many are easy to fix.  

One common cause is sediment buildup inside your tank that has turned red or brown because of exposure to air and moisture. To remove this sediment from your tank, make sure you have plenty of cold water available before starting so that there’s no pressure build-up when using hot water later on.  

Then flush out all the hot water from your tank by running it through a cold-water tap for about three minutes. If you still have problems with rusty water after flushing out your tank, try cleaning the sediment out of the bottom of your tank with a wire brush or other soft-bristled brush. 

3. Leaking Pan 

If you see water in the basement or crawlspace under your water heater, there’s a good chance that a pan has sprung a leak.  

The easiest way to fix this is to buy a new pan from your local hardware store and then follow the instructions on how to install it in your owner’s manual. If you can’t find your owner’s manual or don’t want to mess with removing the old one, call a plumber for help. 

4. No Hot Water 

The most common reason for no hot water is an improperly set thermostat or a pilot light that isn’t lit or burning correctly. If either of these things is wrong, you won’t get any hot water at all, even if you turn up the temperature control as high as it goes.  

Adjusting the thermostat requires taking off its cover plate, which will be different depending on whether your water heater has gas or electric elements. Then adjust the screw inside until it lights up blue when turned on again. 

Use These Tips and Tricks to Fix Your Water Heater Problems 

A water heater can last you many years if you take care of it. Fortunately, if something goes wrong, a little knowledge and effort will help you keep your water heater problems at bay. 

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