Water Heaters – Repair or Replacement

Water Heaters

Leaking from the base or the top?
Water not getting hot enough?
Running out of hot water too soon?
Pilot light keeps going out?

Call CENTURY PLUMBING - a repair or replacement may be necessary.

Common Water Heater issues:

Water heater leaking from the base / top:

-  No fix for this - replace water heater

Water heater leaking from the T/P (Temperature/Pressure) relief valve:

-  This is an important safety device - replace immediately. Then watch carefully. If the replacement

starts leaking again, replace water heater.

Water not getting hot enough:

- There could be several reasons for this. Thermostat may be set incorrectly, may be faulty, or may

be coated with minerals. Call CENTURY PLUMBING to determine if repair or replacement is necessary.

Running out of hot water too soon:

-  Water heater may be filling with hard water minerals/scale, reducing the amount of hot water available.

There is no cost-effective way to fix this. Replacement is necessary.

-  Water heater dip tube may be breaking down and may need replaced. (This was a problem 12-15 years

ago. Water heater manufacturers have since fixed this problem.)

-  Water heater may be 'undersized' for the current number of occupants or usage pattern. Alter usage

patterns (when doing laundry, when taking showers, etc.) see if this solves the problem. If not, a larger

water heater may be necessary.

NOTE: This is in no way a comprehensive list of water heater issues


CENTURY PLUMBING recommends the following national brands:

- A.O. Smith - Very reliable. A nice look. Standard 6-year manufacturer's warranty.

- Rheem - Very reliable. Standard look. Standard 6-year manufacturer's warranty.

Call CENTURY PLUMBING (319)358-8106 for more information.

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Now, a little about water heaters. In the Iowa City / Coralville area, there are 3 main types of water heaters;  gas-fired storage tank-type (natural gas or propane), electric storage tank-type, and tankless. There are benefits and drawbacks to each.

Gas-fired tank-type - Probably the most common in this area and nationwide. Generally, this model is the least efficient. And requires venting of gases to the outside atmosphere. But you still have hot water if you have a power outage. And the price of natural gas is generally somewhat reasonable.

Electric tank-type - Not as common as the gas-fired water heaters. But generally much more efficient. The efficiency can easily offset the utility cost of the electricity usage for the average-sized family.

Tankless - While not as common as a tank-type water heater, it is gaining in popularity. Probably the most efficient because it only heats the water as it is needed, based on demand. However, these have been known to require regular maintenance by authorized technicians - which can be costly over time. And these water heaters are generally more expensive to purchase. They can also fail to regulate temperature properly if the the coils or thermostats get coated with minerals, thus requiring maintenance. I've been told that it is generally not a good idea to install tankless heaters in a home where the water supply has a hardness level greater than 4 (grains of hardness). Although, having said that,  I have seen them function perfectly fine for years on hard water well systems with NO softener or filtration.

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