Understanding Plumbing Basics
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Understanding Plumbing Basics

As a new homeowner, I can tell you that things aren't always as simple as they appear. I started thinking about it a few years ago, and I realized that there were some serious problems with our plumbing system. We had issues with drains working correctly and toilets flushing like they should, so I started focusing more heavily on understanding the basics of our plumbing system. Within a few short months the entire system was operating more fluidly because of a few changes that I made, so I wanted to create a blog all about my journey. Check out these articles to learn more about the plumbing basics.


Understanding Plumbing Basics

What Can Go Wrong With A Condensing Water Heater?

Jorge Alexander

For years, engineers have tinkered with the basic water-heating idea to create and revolutionize home water heaters. What started out as a crude appliance that was not all that efficient has evolved into a number of highly efficient water heating units. Condensing water heaters are the perfect example of a revolutionized water heater. These unique appliances are designed to utilize unused natural gas or propane emissions from your water heater's burner to heat water through an exchanger, which is no doubt an efficient thing to do.

While efficient, condensing water heaters can have their fair share of problems. Take a look at a few reasons you may need water heater repair for your condensing water heater. 

Failed Heat Exchanger 

In a condensing water heater, a heat exchanger is hanging out inside of the water holding tank. The exchanger is quite large, spiral-shaped, and hard to access. While the component may work for years without incident, issues with a breakdown can mean the exchanger has to be replaced. The location of the exchanger can make this particular repair process quite intimidating, so you will definitely want a professional for help. 

Condensate Drainage Problems 

Condensate drainage happens as a result of the heat exchange process within the tank. Therefore, the water heater has an additional drainage line that usually leads from within the lines in the tank and out and down the side of the tank. If the drainage stops flowing properly, you can get backflow in the heated lines of the exchanger in the tank. This problem lowers the overall efficiency of the unit. therefore, you will need a water heater repair pro to tackle the problem. 

Failed Combustion Burners 

Combustion burners on condensing water heaters are situated at the base of the appliance like most water heaters. However, the combustion mechanism is not open and visible; it is enclosed in an airtight chamber. Therefore, when a combustion burner goes bad, the bottom housing of the water heater has to be disassembled for replacement.

Combustion Intake Problems 

Condensing water heaters have an intake vent on the top that leads down into the lower combustion chamber for proper venting. Without this vent line, the combustion action will not work. So essentially, something as small as a blocked vent line can mean you won't be able to get hot water from your unit. While the problem sounds simple enough, you will need a water heater service because the vent line may only be accessible by disassembling the tank. 

Reach out to a local water heater repair service for more information.