There are several plumbing and other household issues which give off a few telltale signs before they go completely bad, and a great example here is water heaters. It’s rare for a water heater to fail without at least a couple common signs first.

At Whipple Plumbing, we’re here to provide all water heater repairs and services. Let’s go over a few of the simplest ways you can recognize a problem with your water heater.

Rusty Water

If you start to nice that rusty water is coming from the hot side piping in your home, this could be a sign that your water heater is rusting on the inside. Rust particles can break away from the wall of the water heater and make their way into you water supply, causing the issue.

However, if you have galvanized piping, this may be the real cause of rust. To test whether piping or rust in the water heater is causing issues, empty a few buckets of hot water from the water heater. If there’s still rust by about the third bucket, you know it’s an issue with the heater itself and not the pipes.


As water heaters age and sediment builds up in them, it will eventually harden in the tank. These deposits may bang against the walls of the heater, causing loud rumbling or banging sounds. This is typically a sign that your heater has too much sediment which will block heating functions, and needs a flush or a replacement.

Water Heater Leak

If you start to notice water pooling up around your water heater, this could be a sign of a small crack or leak. Make sure to confirm that these leaks are directly from the heater rather than fittings or tank connections before you call in the professionals.


It may not be a visible sign, but age is one of the largest factors in water heater health. You can find the age by looking for the serial number on the back of the water heater – most manufacturers list a code which begins with a single letter (corresponding with the month, so “A” means January, “B” means February, etc.) and then two numbers (corresponding with the year). If your heater is approaching or over 10 years old, you should be considering a replacement and checking diligently for any potential issues.

Want to learn more about water heater repair or any of our other services? The experts at Whipple are ready to assist you.

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