- June 22, 2017
- Mrinmoy Bhattacharjee
Abhijit Banshelkikar, head R&D – Racold Thermo Private Limited, shares insights on the signs to identify a failing electric water heater
An electric water heater is just like any other home appliance. It is a fairly durable appliance if maintained well. The average life of a water heater is around 4-5 years. Warranty is offered by most manufacturers on product, on heating element and on the inner tank.
Product performance or life span of a water heater depends upon the water quality in respective areas. More hardness in water (measured in ppm) or chloride content will lead to scale build up inside the tank which in turn leads to lesser hot water output, more energy consumption and premature corrosion of tank. Periodic maintenance of the unit from authorised service personnel should be done to avoid any such occurrence. A comprehensive annual maintenance contract is also offered by most manufacturers which can ensure periodic check up of the water heater.
Here are some of the tips to identify the signs of a failing water heater:
- Less hot water output: In areas where the hardness of water is high, there is a scale build up on the heating element of the water heater. Sometimes the opening area of the outlet pipe gets blocked due to scale build. In such cases, more energy in consumed to heat the water. The indication is a visibly reduced hot water output which should raise an alarm that water heater is failing.
- Water heater making noise: Sometimes the user experiences hissing noise or bubbling noise from the water heater. This is due to excess scale build up inside the unit. Upon getting heated, the sediment gets stirred resulting in the noise.
- Water dripping from safety valve: Most of the water heaters are designed to sustain 6.5 to 8 bar pressure. The function of a safety valve is to release the excess pressure built up inside thus protecting the tank from getting burst (same as a pressure cooker). Water leakage happens in apartments in multi-storey buildings where inlet water pressure goes beyond 3 to 3.5 bar. The leakage from a water heater is a sure shot sign of failure and should be brought to urgent attention of an authorised service technician.
- Muddy or reddish water: Over a period of time the metal tank of the water heater begins to rust. The rust gets mixed up inside the unit or settles down at bottom of the tank. When you see the muddy water from the unit, call for an authorised service technician.
- Foul burning smell: This happens due to burning of plug/wire or harness on account of improper wiring at the users’ house. This also leads to electric shock to the user. Getting proper wiring to bear the required electric load usage of standard recommended plugs and sockets plugs, sockets, proper earthing, MCB, etc, are some of the preventive measures that should be taken to avoid this.
The next time you notice any of the signs above; please call the authorised service technician to get the water heater checked. The preventive measures should be taken to have a problem free long lasting water heater.