Gas hot water heater problems can be annoying but many of these problems have an easy solution.
First of all, gas water heater troubleshooting isn’t any more difficult than electric water heater troubleshooting, though it can be more dangerous if things go wrong. (You can also visit our other post for a general overview of hot water heater problems.)
There are a few differences between gas and electric water heaters to keep in mind.
The biggest difference between a gas water heater and an electric water heater is the pilot light on the gas models. Depending on your model and its age, the pilot light is either constant or electronic.
A constant pilot should always be lit. An electronic pilot light shoots sparks to ignite the gas as it passes. In either case, if you enter the room and you smell gas, leave your house immediately and call a plumber or your local utility company.
A common complaint is that there isn’t enough hot water for a bath or last through a shower. Check the temperature thermostat on the unit and adjust accordingly. If your tank is already turned up high, it may be time to replace your current unit with a higher capacity unit.
On the other hand, too high of a water temperature inside the tank can cause a build up of pressure causing the pressure release valve to release water. Too much water pressure can also cause problems with the pressure release valve from the water supply line. Installing a pressure-reducing valve in the supply line can solve this.
Gas hot water heater problems are sometimes very obvious. A faulty valve itself may cause a leak from the pressure release valve. If this is the case, replace the pressure release valve immediately. A faulty pressure relief valve can cause serious damage to your water heater, including the possibility of it exploding.
One of the most important lessons you can learn as a homeowner is when it is best to tackle a project yourself and when it is best to call a professional.
Gas hot water heater problems can have very serious consequences if ignored or improperly fixed. If you are not 100% certain that you can do the job correctly, call a plumber.