Water Heater Troubleshooting: Scale on Burner Water Heater Troubleshooting: Scale on Burner

What You'll Need
De-limer chemical
Vinegar
Screwdrivers

Water heater troubleshooting can include removing scales. Often the burner inside your hot water heater can develop a buildup of lime, silt and sediment. This is especially true if you have hard water. If this scale becomes enough of a problem, it can cause the heater to lose efficiency or even to fail. But there are ways of both removing and preventing scale buildup.

Step 1 - Remove the Scale

First, be sure to turn off the power to the water heater and drain the tank. You can use chemical de-limer, but only if you are using an acid specifically recommended for use on water heaters. Otherwise using a chemical agent in the water can be very dangerous. Another choice is to remove the electrodes from the tank and soak them in vinegar to dissolve the scale. Then return the electrodes to the inside of the water heater and refill the tank. Be sure to check for leaks before you reconnect the power to the water heater.

Step 2 - Prevent Future Buildup

You can prevent future scale buildup by treating or softening your water. Additionally you may want to periodically flush the water out of your water heater to remove silt and mineral deposits that can cause scale to build up on the burner.

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