One of the most frequently asked questions when a technician is on-site undergoing an inspection, performing maintenance, or diagnosing an issue is whether you’re likely to need water heater repair or replacement. A severe problem, such as a carbon monoxide leak, might instantly set off alarm bells and have you worrying about the cost of replacing the faulty water heater in your home. However, it’s not always true that you’ll need to foot the bill for a water heater replacement. Instead, a qualified, professional technician can isolate and resolve the issue through a water heater service.
Before skilled water heater repair technicians advise you to repair or replace the water heater in your Universal City, TX home, they’ll inspect your heater thoroughly. They may also want to know some information from you, including the age of the water heater and whether you’ve had any persistent issues with it. While there are exceptions, if you’ve got a traditional storage-tank water heater that’s older than a decade, you may want to consider a replacement instead of repair. It might be desirable to get a replacement because most water heaters with storage tanks will last between 8-10 years. Although, you may need to consider replacement earlier if the water heater is overused or there’s poor water quality in your area. Technicians may also recommend water heater replacements due to manufacturer recalls or known defects.
Typically, whether you utilize a repair service or fork out for a replacement will depend on various factors. It can depend on the repair category, age of the water heater, the severity of the issue, your personal preference, and so much more.
Water Heater Repair Categories
When it comes to water heater repair in TX, there are three main categories:
Category 1: Issues that pose an immediate threat. Events in this category require urgent attention and classify as such because they involve health and safety measures. Some examples of problems that are of immediate concern include back-drafting, flame roll-out, exposed electrics, and high chemical readings. Also, if your water heater is missing a pressure release valve or safety discharge pipe, this will also fall under a category one heater repair service, as will improper flue venting.
Category 2: Issues that may pose a future threat. Minor water leaks that may cause mold or water damage, improper vent types, relief valves that vent in the wrong direction, and improperly installed discharge pipes all fall under a category 2 repair. As your technician undertakes a water heater service, they may note issues such as your water heater being installed at the wrong height. This is a violation and requires an engineer to move the water heater to the required level to ensure your water heater is up to code.
Category 3: Issues that don’t pose a threat. Cosmetic issues such as rusty exterior covers, for example, are an issue that won’t immediately require repair or replacement. Neither does using the incorrect piping; although, it may affect the efficiency of your heater.
High carbon monoxide levels are an immediate risk. While it requires urgent attention, water heater repair technicians can help lower carbon monoxide levels in various ways that don’t necessarily involve replacing an entire unit. Water heaters that leak carbon monoxide may do so for numerous reasons. Some areas that your repair technician will investigate include combustion by-product venting, draft hoods, and chimneys.
Scenario 1: The combustion by-products are not correctly vented to the outside.
Resolution: If the cause of improper ventilation is inadequate vent size, a technician will replace the vent with a more appropriate one. If the flu is blocked, a repair service can unblock it. Alternatively, if the flue design is outdated or inadequate, you may receive recommendations on how to improve it. A technician may also ensure that the supply of combustion air comes from outside the thermal boundary. In these cases, the attic flue might also need blocking to stop any insulation from falling onto the heater.
Scenario 2: There’s an issue with the draft hood.
Resolution: The resolution will depend on whether the draft hood is present. If not present, a technician will need to install one. If a draft hood is there, but it is out of alignment or restricted, in some way, a water heater repair service can realign the hood or help to clear unintended restrictions.
Scenario 3: The chimney is blocked.
Resolution: A blocked chimney will lead to carbon monoxide not having a route to escape outside safely. Cleaning the chimney could resolve the issue. Alternatively, if vents terminate inside the home, a technician may need to create an exit point.
Scenario 4: There is a back-draft.
Resolution: If your water heater is in a laundry room near a dryer, or the kitchen close to an oven exhaust fan or leaky air duct, you may want to consider moving nearby appliances. Ideally, water heaters should be in an isolated zone so that no other exhaust fans or ducts can cause chemicals in the air to recirculate inside your home rather than traveling outside. If it’s impossible to isolate a water heater, offset bypass grills or jump ducts can direct drafts to the right area. Leaky return air ducts can cause an unintended back-draft, so it’s crucial a technician seals a leaky duct appropriately.
Why Call bluefrog Plumbing + Drain If You Suspect A Leak?
At bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of San Antonio, we help you avoid the stress associated with water heater repair wherever possible. If you suspect a carbon monoxide leak, you mustn’t try to fix the issue yourself, as you might cause further damage and put yourself in unnecessary danger. Trust the technicians at bluefrog to inspect and conduct a repair. We will visit Universal City, TX, properties at no cost, and we’re available 24/7/365. Urgent water heater repair and callouts during unsociable hours don’t cost extra either. If you need immediate service, call us right away. For more information about our water heater repair service or to schedule an inspection appointment, contact us online.