When you have your water heater go down, the most common reason is the pilot light going out. In this case it is not really a broken water heater but simply a flame that went out. Some people can and do fix this on their own. However, anymore than this and you should call in a professional to perform the water heater repair.
One of the main reasons you will want to call in a professional rather than attempt this on your own is because of the potential for mistakes that are costly and even dangerous. For example, there is venting on the top of the water heater that ties into the venting system from your furnace (in most cases). This venting is constructed with special double-wall material that is designed to protect you from the dangerous gases and prevent fires. However, the angle at which that is done is critical to the safety of you and your family. There must be a continuous upward angle with a minimum angle in order to ensure it will vent properly. If you do not do this you could cause carbon monoxide to vent back into the home, potentially killing everyone in the house. While it is not particularly hard to undo and redo the venting, it is important that you know some of these things to make sure that you do not have any problems after you repair the water heater. This is why you call in the experienced professional.
If your water heater goes out and you are able to determine that the issue is not the pilot light, call us and we will be able to help quickly, almost always the same day that you call. We want to make sure that you get quick attention because we know how important it is to you to have hot water back just as soon as possible. While we are there, you are more than welcome to ask questions about the repairs we are doing and even watch the whole thing. We are also going to be very honest with you and if we feel, in our professional opinion, that the repairs we are making are not going to last very long because there are larger issues with the water heater, we will let you know so that you can make the best decision. We do not want to cost you any more money than what is necessary, so when we see that the best choice may be a new water heater rather than a water heater repair, we will tell you so. Keep in mind that the average life expectancy of a water heater is 11 years – under optimal conditions. Better to replace one on your own time frame than have it suddenly go out due to a catastrophic failure.
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