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Why Is My Water Heater Making Noise?


Water Heater Making Noises

Is your water heater making strange noises every now and then? If yes, then you’ll be glad to learn that you’re not the only one experiencing this kind of problem. A water heater making noise is a common problem in many houses across the country.

These noises could be anything from subtle hums, rattling sounds to pops. Whatever the case, the noise could be pointing at an underlying issue with the water heater. Determining the cause of the noise may be your first step to repairing the issue.

In this piece, we’ll be looking at a few reasons why your heater is making those strange noises. We’ll also look at what steps you should take to keep the heater from making that noise.

Is It Normal for Water Heater to Make Noise?

As mentioned earlier, many homeowners across the country experience noise from their water heater at one point or another. So, water heater noise is normal, but you shouldn’t overlook it. Water heater noise could underscore a host of serious problems with the heater.

Why Is My Water Heater Making Noise?

You could attribute the noise from your water heater to several reasons. Here are a couple of reasons for the noise with your water heater.

Popping Sounds (Sediment Build-Up)

The most common explanation for water heater noise is sediment build-up. This sediment accumulates at the bottom of the heater. When you turn on the heater, this sediment makes a popping sound.

To prevent sediment from accumulating in your heater, you can do the following:-

Install a water softener – This sediment build-up is because of hard water passing through your heater. A water softener softens the water passing through the system; hence no sediment collects at the bottom of the heater.

Flush the heater regularly – Make a point of flushing the heater when you can to get rid of all sediment that has accumulated.

If you ignore this problem, the build-up could amount to devastating problems down the road. Your best move is to address the issue soonest before it worsens.

Rumbling Sounds (Debris in the Water Heater)

The reason your water heater makes rumbling sounds is because of debris in the water heater. When the expanding liquid goes through the debris, it makes a rumbling sound.

This debris is from the dirt that accumulates inside the tank. This dirt later reaches the water heater and remains there as residue. The louder the rumbling, the larger the amount of debris you have in your heater.

The only way you can fix this is by cleaning the dirt from your tank. Excessive debris in your heater damages it and also makes it less efficient.

Sizzling (Flow Problems and Water Leaks)

When the water is having problems flowing into the tank, then you’ll hear a sizzling sound from the heater. The problem is most likely with the valve, which doesn’t allow sufficient water to flow into the tank.

You can also hear sizzling noises when you have a leak in your water heater. The leaking water drips onto the burner, which makes it sizzle. A water leak is evident when you find water around the shower even though it’s not switched on

If you don’t have enough hot water, then there could be a leak with your water heater. A plumber can easily identify the source of the leak and fix it in no time. A leak in your water heater also signals it’s high time for water heater service.

Ticking (Sudden Pressure Changes)

If the water heater experiences drastic changes in pressure, it makes a ticking sound. Heater nipples are what connect the heater to pipes that convey water to and from it. It’s these nipples that prevent rapid expansion by storing heat.

If there’s a rapid change in pressure, the nipples tick because of the pressure fluctuation. If that’s the source of the tick, then you’ll need to change your current heater for a model without a heat trap.

Humming Noises (Loose Water Heater Elements)

The humming sounds from your water heater shouldn’t be such a huge cause of alarm.

The humming sound is annoying, but it doesn’t affect the operation of the heater. All you have to do is take a wrench and tighten the heater. Doing so takes care of the noises.

Popping Sound (Anode Rods Reacting With Chlorinated Water)

Most regions with soft water use heaters with aluminum anode rods. These rods are cheaper than magnesium anode rods but have a shorter life span.

Another problem with aluminum anode rods is that they react with chlorinated water. That’s because the water will have a high pH level, hence the reaction. The reaction leads to the formation of a gel that covers both the rod and the tank.

If that’s the case, you’ll have to remove the aluminum rod and replace it with a magnesium rod. This takes care of the popping sounds. Alternatively, you could use water that’s not chlorinated, but that’s impractical.

Don’t Ignore Your Water Heater Noises

Hopefully, your water heater making noise won’t be something so foreign to you. You can also pinpoint the exact cause of the noise. From there, you can take the necessary steps to prevent the issue from worsening.

In most cases, you’ll need a home service company, but not just any company. For your water heater, only the best can do. That’s why you should contact us if you need any water heater service or repair.

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