A broken water heater thermostat is an easy problem to fix. Follow these simple steps for a DIY water heater thermostat repair, and be sure to always turn off the power at the main breakers before you attempt any kind of work that deals with electricity. To avoid any and all risk altogether, get in touch with our team today.
If you aren’t comfortable working with live wires or plumbing that contains pressurized water, it is best to contact a professional. Rick’s Plumbing always places your satisfaction above all else. Contact us for all your water heater thermostat issues.
When Should You Repair Your Water Heater Thermostat?
If you are noticing that the water coming out of your faucet isn’t as hot as it once was, suspect a problem with the thermostat. A broken water heater thermostat can cause elevated electricity bills since an inefficient heating mechanism is constantly running. It also decreases the unit’s lifespan, so be sure to check it at the first sign of trouble!
Your Water is Too Hot
Your water heater has a temperature and pressure release valve. This is a safety mechanism to ensure that the boiler can safely vent built-up gases in case of a system malfunction. Sometimes, sediment will accumulate in the valves over time, causing them to stick or remain closed. This can cause high internal steam pressure, which inevitably leads to an explosion of boiling water and scalding steam. If the valve is stuck open, your water may steadily be getting hotter and hotter as it flows through the system. A professional repairman can help you sort this out.
There’s Not Enough Hot Water
When you first flip the circuit breaker on before turning on your hot water faucet, the electric current runs through two wires and completes a circuit to the heating mechanism of the water heater. If the thermostat isn’t sensing that it is not hot enough, electricity will not run through those wires, and no heat will be produced.
Water Takes Too Long to Reheat
When you turn on your hot water in the shower and it isn’t hot within a few seconds, this is likely because the thermostat isn’t allowing electricity to run through to the heating mechanism. Since there’s no heat, the water takes longer than normal to reheat.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Repair a Water Heater Thermostat
Turn Off Power at Main Breakers
1. Remove the thermostat cover and set it aside.
2. Unscrew or unclip the wires from the thermostat, taking care not to pull them by their thin wire coating. If you can’t detach them with your fingers, use a thin pair of needle-nose pliers or tweezers.
3. Turn off the power from your circuit breakers so that no electricity will run through to the heater while you work on it.
How to Fix a Water Heater Thermostat in 5 Steps
1. Find both the upper and lower thermostats.
2. Check them for power supply.
3. Press the button to reset the faulty thermostat to find out if it will work.
4. Replace the thermostat if the upper system has no power.
5. If your upper system receives power but you still do not have hot water, then you should replace the upper heating element.
Replace The Faulty Thermostat
1. Unscrew the faulty thermostat by hand or with a pair of pliers if necessary.
2. Take this faulty thermostat to a hardware store, home center, or plumber’s wholesaler. At these locations, you can find various models of water heater thermostats that are meant to fit your exact unit.
3. Install the new thermostat just as you removed the faulty one by screwing it into place with fingers or wrenches/pliers.
4. Attach the wires to the thermostat in the same position where you detached them in Step One. Be sure to attach them tightly so that electricity will be able to complete a circuit through the system when you turn on your power again.
Turn Power Back On at Breakers
1. Once you have tested the new thermostat and are sure it is working, turn your power back on.
2. Once the water heater has finished heating up, let a little bit of hot water run from a tap in order to recalibrate the thermostat.
3. Check all around your home for hot water. If you’ve followed the steps correctly, the hot water should be back to what it was before.
The Steps You Shouldn’t Take
1. Do not touch any wiring while you have the power on. Electricity is dangerous and can kill if handled carelessly.
2. Never mix parts from different water heater thermostats; this could damage your unit and could be dangerous.
3. If your water heater thermostat is broken and you’re unsure you can handle it on your own, you should hire a professional who has the correct tools and expertise to complete the job safely.
When to Repair or Replace A Water Heater Thermostat
Thermostat Leaks, Hazards Can Arise
If your water heater thermostat is leaking, you should not attempt to fix it on your own. A leaky unit can lead to a number of serious safety hazards that only a trained professional should deal with.
Water leaks from water heaters can cause damage to floors and walls as well as pose a serious safety hazard from electrocution for anyone in the vicinity of the unit while it is powering on.
If you smell gas around your water heater, turn off all appliances that are connected to the unit. If there’s any form of a leak from your broken water heater thermostat, contact Rick’s Plumbing to replace or repair it for you as soon as possible.
Get In Touch With Our Team Today For Top-Notch Thermostat Repair
At Rick’s Plumbing, we’ve been the go-to plumbers and heating technicians for over 25 years. No matter what problem you need to address – from a leaky sink or toilet to complicated heating or air conditioning issues – we can help.
Owned and operated by Richard G. Jurzyk, Jr., our company is dedicated to providing personable service that leaves you feeling happy with the work we’ve done. Contact us at 203-874-6629 for more information. We’re looking forward to hearing from you soon!