It’s Not Getting Hot in Here: 5 Reasons Your Water Isn’t Heating and How to Fix It

Copper heating pipes system close up

When you live in a place with weather as thankless as that of Minnesota, the thought of your water heater being in disrepair is both very real and very scary. If you’ve ever found yourself thinking that your water isn’t getting quite as hot as it should quite as fast as it should, don’t freak out. It could be one of a number of problems we’ve listed for you below – and, no matter the problem, we’ve got the answers for how to fix it.  

Your pilot light is off.

The pilot light is what ignites your water heater’s burner. Suffice it to say, if it’s not working, your water isn’t going to be heating up. You’ll have to remove your water heater’s cover to check whether or not it’s on. Finding out whether or not it’s on is fairly simple: just look at the control knob. If you’re lucky, all you’ll have to do is switch it to the on position. If it is already on the on position and your water still isn’t hot, your problem likely lies elsewhere.

Something’s wrong with the gas control valve.

Give your water heater a sniff. Does it smell bad, like a particularly pungent fart or a garbage bin full of rotten eggs? If your answer to that question is “ugh, yes,” then the culprit for your lack of water heater heat is a leak in your gas line. This is a dangerous problem that can put you and your family in danger, so if you find yourself smelling the telltale stench, contact professionals to address the issue immediately. They’ll be able to get the gas line fixed and your home back in safe, working order in no time.

Sediment has built up in your heater.

Just like any other regularly used home apparatus or appliance, water heaters can get dirty. They need to be cleaned at least every few months, but water softeners can be added to help reduce the rate of build up so you don’t have to get in there and scrub quite as often.

Your dip tube is defective.

I bet you’re wondering, “What the heck is a dip tube?” Don’t worry, we’ve all been there – a dip tube is the thing that converts cold water at the top of your heater to the bottom of the tank where water gets heated. If there’s a crack in this tube, that means cold water is leaking into areas it shouldn’t be and affecting your overall water temperature. Unfortunately, if this is your problem, it’s a pricey fix and more often than not it’s more financially prudent to opt for a brand new water heater.

One of your heating elements has burnt out.

Most water heaters contain two separate heating elements. If you notice a consistent drop in water temperature, not necessarily only cold water but just water that doesn’t quite get warm enough, we recommend getting in contact with professionals to see if one of the elements has burnt out. If you wait too long, you might have to go through the second burning out and only cold water being available until you’re able to get it fixed. We don’t know about you, but just the idea of cold showers in a Minnesota fall or winter gives us goose bumps.

No matter what the issue may be, if your water heater isn’t working to your standards, the professionals at Ben Franklin Plumbing MN can help you find it and fix it in no time. Contact us to schedule a service today.

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