Having a hot bath after a long day could be pretty relaxing or when it is really cold outside – its importance should never be underestimated. However, our life-saving machine could become a ticking bomb if proper care and preventive measures are not taken.
Water heaters, just like every other home appliance, are prone to doing just more than malfunctioning and needing repair. Your water heater can literally explode – this isn’t just an expression. They can leave a hole in your wall and cause a whole lot of damages to your house and the people living in it. Water heater explosion is a master of mass destruction and you can’t be too careless.
Well, the good news is, your water heater isn’t just going to explode without informing you. There are a few signs it’ll show to let you know its time is almost up, and you’d absolutely need to do a thorough checkup.
5 Common Signs That Your Water Heater Is Going to Explode
Here are some of the basic and obvious signs to look out for, so you don’t cause any serious harm;
1. Gas smell
It is almost impossible not to notice when there’s a gas leak – it smells like rotten eggs; your olfactory lobes would find it really difficult to ignore this foul smell. We all know the dangers of having a gas leak and its reaction to open flame. If you don’t, I’ll give you a short description of what is expected to happen – an explosion, that’s what.
Whenever you notice a gas leak, turn your water heater off and leave it that way until an expert comes to your rescue. Most importantly, do not keep any form of fire away from that area – it’ll lead to a terrible explosion that might destroy properties and claim lives.
2. Steady popping and rumbling noises
Your water heater isn’t particularly quiet when it is in good condition, but the noise coming from the water heater is a popping noise and an indication that it is in bad shape. Popping sounds are usually caused by sediments that build-up at the bottom of the tank, where the burner heating the water is located. The sediments insulate the burner, causing it to work for a longer period of time. The excess heat it produces causes the tank to heat up too, making it more prone to a catastrophic explosion. Popping noises are caused by trapped pockets of water trying to escape.
3. Leaking pressure relief valve
The design of a water heater isn’t oblivious about the possible dangers of owning a water heater can cause, so a T & P was added. The pressure relief valve – at the top of the tank is used to reduce the pressure inside a water heater. It opens and closes frequently, to let go of the excess pressure, which is totally normal until it is constantly open. When the T & P open for a long time, it is a sign that your water heater is under a lot of pressure, and leaving its valve open is the easiest way for it to release excess pressure.
Whenever you notice this, quit using your water heater until an expert fixes it. Putting your water under a lot of pressure would definitely cause it to explode quickly.
4. Cloudy Water
You know there’s rust whenever your water heater has a reddish-brown color and smells like metal instead of coming in a colorless and odorless form. Rust can cause your water heater to damage quicker than you think. Cloudy water is dangerous to the health and is usually associated with the rusting of your water heater’s pipes and the tank.
You should always watch out for the above-listed signs so you don’t put lives and properties in danger. These signs should never be ignored, and contacting an expert to help out is the best thing to do, any little mistake or display of ignorance can make your water tank burst open. A lot of homeowners keep asking “can a water heater explosion kill you”, and the answer is a big YES, without doubts.
5. Bad installation
Having a fault in the installation process seems to be the beginning of the entire problem in the first place. Firstly, you need to understand that installing a water heater isn’t child’s play. You’d be needing an expert to help with the installation. If you’re going to be doing the installation, you’ll be needing an expert to put you through. Bad installation is the beginning of every other problem you might be facing in the long run.
How to Tell If Your Water Heater Is Leaking
To avoid possible explosions or an increase in your water bill, making sure your hot water heater isn’t leaking is a good way to start. Here’s how to tell if your water heater is leaking;
Most times, a leak is associated with a sound and listening closely is the only possible way to find out. Move close enough to the water heater and make sure the bathroom is as quiet as possible – it makes it easier to tell.
Watch out for leaks
Another way to confirm if there’s a leak is seeing signs of a leak. There’s usually water on the bathroom floor whenever there’s a leak. It is also possible to hear a leak and not see it – this only happens when there’s a problem from inside the tank, and the only way to fix this is to replace the tank.
The two places to watch out for leaks are the top and bottom of your water heater. At the top, watch out for the pipes and tubes entering the tank, and the pressure relief valve.
While checking the bottom, a lot of water on the bathroom floor is an obvious sign that there’s a leak. Asides from water on the floor, checking the drain valve for a leak is just the right thing to do.
Your water heater is very important, especially during winter. Paying close attention to it and carrying out frequent routine checks is the best way to keep it in good condition. Remember not to try fixing the water heater yourself – contact an expert and keep your water heater inactive till it has been fixed to prevent it from exploding.