Hot Water Heater Troubleshooting

Troubleshooting Loss of Hot Water

Nothing is more frustrating and alarming than having your hot morning shower suddenly shift to a cold one. Especially if you are the first one to use the hot water in the morning and there is no reason it should be running low. Though this problem can leave you in a bit of a pickle, there is a good chance you may be able to troubleshoot this issue at home without needing to call in a technician or even replace your water heating unit. Always remember to turn off the power to your water heater before attempting any troubleshooting. This will eliminate any safety hazards of working around an electrical unit with water.

At EVAM Canada we understand that having hot water is a must. If your DIY troubleshooting is not helping you get your hot water back on, contact us. We offer emergency water heater repair to help make your life easier and ensure you can rely on having hot water when you need it. For all hot water heater problems including leaking or flooding, call us today. With more than 25 years of experience in hot water heater repair, we are the experts you need to get your hot water on again.

Why Is My Hot Water Not Working?

Not having hot water is a major inconvenience and can even become a health and safety issue if left unfixed for a length of time. When your hot water is not working, you are likely to be wondering what is going on and why the water has gone out. There are a few common reasons for a hot water heater to stop working that we see regularly. The most common reasons for your hot water heater not working include:

  1. Loss of power to the water heater – loss of power to your water heater for any length of time will result in cold water. Ensure that your water heater is properly plugged in and there is no damage to any cords. Keep the area around your water heater clean and clear from any debris.
  2. A tripped switch – a tripped switch is typically a simple fix when it comes to getting your hot water working again. Simply go to the service panel in your home and switch the breaker off and then back on again. This should resolve the problem.=
  3. The water heater needs to be reset – like any other electrical appliance in our home, sometimes a water heater might simply need to be reset to get things working properly again. Follow our steps below if you feel resetting your water heater may solve your problem.
  4. Failure of a heating element – the failure of a heating element will require a technician to replace the part. If you have tried our DIY troubleshooting issues and your water heater is still not working, call us to help identify and repair the issue.

5 Quick DIY Fixes for Your Water Heater Not Working

This inconvenience leads us to seek out DIY solutions to the most common water heater issues. So, if you’ve got a hot water heater not working, try the following fixes to see if you can get it heating your water again:

  1. Turn it On This may seem obvious, but turning your water heater on may just do the trick. If you have an electric water heater, check to see that the breaker has not been tripped and reset it if it has. If you have a gas hot water heater, be sure that the gas is indeed turned on.
  2. Relight the Pilot Light If the pilot light has gone out in your gas water heater, attempt to relight it following the instructions found in your owner’s manual.
  3. Check the Thermostat Your hot water heater may be fully operational, but its temperature setting is too low to provide enough hot water for your liking. Turn the thermostat to a hotter setting (around 120 degrees Fahrenheit) and wait for an hour before you check the water temperature again.
  4. Check the Gas Line Your gas may have inadvertently been shut off further down the line. Follow the gas line from your hot water heater until you find the shutoff valve, and ensure it is set to the “on” position in addition to the one located on your unit.
  5. Examine the Thermocouple If your water heater’s thermocouple is damaged or defective, it can shut off the gas flow to your water heater and cause it to stop working entirely. This part may require replacement. See our article, How to Replace a Hot Water Heater Thermocouple to learn more.

How to Reset an Electric Hot Water Heater & Flush a Tank?

Resetting your water heater may be all you need to do to get your hot water working again. Most of us do not interact with our water heater very often so this task can be unfamiliar and possibly a little intimidating. Thankfully, it is a relatively simple task.

  1. Turn off the power to the water heater at the service panel in your home.
  2. Remove the access panel to the upper heating element.
  3. Remove any insulation or safety guards around the panel of the water heater. Be careful not to touch any wires in the unit.
  4. Press the red button located above the upper thermostat.
  5. Replace the safety guard and insulation. Close the access panel.
  6. Turn on circuit breaker back on and ensure your water heater has power.

This process may get your hot water working again. If not, contact us. A technician would be pleased to help you troubleshoot your water heater issues.

What’s Happening When I Run Out of Hot Water?

If you are experiencing issues with your water heater running out of hot water too quickly there could be a few things going on. Your water heater may simply be too small to keep up with the demands of your household. Or your water heater may have sediment causing a lack of efficiency in your water heater. In the case of sediment, you may be able to troubleshoot this issue by flushing the water tank in an effort to remove the sediment.      

How Do I Flush a Hot Water Heater?

If you are wondering how to flush a water heater these simple steps can help you troubleshoot your issue on your own.

  1. Turn off the power to the water heater at the service panel in your home.
  2. Turn the cold water valve off to stop water from coming into the tank.
  3. Let the water cool. This may take a few hours.
  4. Attach a drain to the drain valve at the side of your tank.
  5. Place the drain end into a buck or the drain in your floor.
  6. Turn a few faucets in your home on.
  7. Drain your tank by ruing on the drain valve.
  8. Once the draining is complete. Turn off the drain valve, remove the hose and turn the cold-water valve back on.
  9. Turn the power to your water heater back on and allow the tank to fill and re-heat.

What Should I Do If I Am Experiencing Problems with My Hot Water Tank?

It is likely that you do not think about your water heater at all until it stops working. Thankfully there a few DIY options that you can try to get your hot water working again without the help of a technician. If you have tried our tips and it still is not working, or DIY simply is not your thing, give us a call. We have would be pleased to assist you with your water heater troubleshooting and repair. If needed, we also provide water heater installation services to ensure you have a dependable and adequately sized water heater in your home. With more than 25 years of experience, the experts at EVAM Canada are here to help.