Water Heater Banging Sound
The banging sound from a water heater can be worrying. Aside from the unpleasant sound that may disturb the family, you may wonder what is happening inside. Actually the banging noise, may resemble to a rumbling or roaring sound is cause by a sediment that builds up and settles in the bottom of a water heater. The sediment came from your tap water. It is the mineral, calcium carbonate and other solid materials that come from your water main source. Some tap water is considered hard water, meaning it has high mineral content. Unless you make an effort to purify your tap, over time this mineral will settle in the bottom of our water heater tank. It will shorten the life span of the water heater and affect its efficiency.
When sediment builds up in the bottom, it will create an insulation between the burner and the water heater. So when the burner turns on, the sediment will keep the heat from rising properly. The small amount of water under the sediment will steam up and will create a strange knocking sound. The sediment chunk inside the water tank can also be the cause of popping sound. It is very annoying and may frighten people.
This strange noise from your water heater is not the only problem you may need to address. Sediment that settles in the bottom can create several problems. Here are some to consider:
Over heating. The sediment that builds up in the bottom will slow down the water heating and the heat transfer. This will cause overheating the steel bottom of your water tank. It will weaken the steel and eventually shorten the efficiency of the water tank.
Bacteria. The sediment can be a good place for anaerobic bacteria. This kind of bacteria is not known to be harmful but will cause bad smell in your water. It will result to a poor water quality.
Clogging/Jamming. With sediment, there is possibility of clogging the drain valve with sediment chunks. Also, sediment can drift to affect the recirculation lines and jam the open check valves. It will cause water heater malfunction and inefficiency.
What should be done?
Flush your water tank. Flushing will minimize the rumbling sound, though it will not guarantee a hundred percent solution. Why? It is because there is possibility that the drain tube is already clogged with sediment debris. If it is clogged, you cannot flush all the water inside to clean the tank thoroughly. Also, the small chunks of sediment that will not be flushed causes popping sound as well. However, flushing will help a great deal especially if you do it twice a year.
Operate with regular maintenance. To avoid this problem to happen, you need to regularly maintain your water heater unit. Plumbing requires a monthly draining of water from a water heater. This will avoid building sludge or waste water solid . Regular maintenance will extend the life of a water heater unit and its efficiency. Regular draining will also help cut the heating cost due to sediment build up.
Install a water filter to trap sediment. A water filter will help trap the chunks and other solid materials from your water source. Especially if your water source is from the well.
Call a plumbing expert. Water heater check-up from a plumbing expert will help. An expert will tell you if you need a water heater replacement or repair. Also, if you can’t do the flushing properly, you can ask an expert to do it.