What Does a Corroded Water Heater Look Like? Causes, Signs, and Consequences - Plumbing-United
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What Does a Corroded Water Heater Look Like? Causes, Signs, and Consequences

February 1, 2024

Your water heater is a crucial appliance that ensures you have a steady supply of hot water for various household activities. Over time, however, water heaters can face the issue of corrosion, particularly when iron pipes are involved in the plumbing system. In this article, we’ll explore what a corroded water heater looks like, the causes of corrosion, how to identify it, and the potential consequences.

Causes of Corrosion: Galvanized Pipes

One of the primary culprits behind water heater corrosion is the presence of galvanized pipes in the plumbing system. While galvanized pipes are durable, they are susceptible to rust over time, especially in the presence of oxygen and moisture. As water circulates through these pipes, the iron can oxidize, leading to the formation of rust particles. These particles can find their way into the water heater, causing corrosion within the tank.

The Limitations of Filters with galvanized Pipes:

If your plumbing system includes galvanized pipes, relying solely on water filters may not provide an effective solution to prevent corrosion. Filters are designed to trap impurities, but they may not be entirely effective in removing microscopic rust particles generated by corroded galvanized pipes. In such cases, preventive measures and regular maintenance become crucial.

Signs of a Corroded Water Heater:

Brown Water: One of the most noticeable signs of water heater corrosion is brown or discolored water. The presence of rust particles in the water gives it a brownish tint, indicating that corrosion is occurring within the system.

Debris in Water: Corroded galvanized pipes can release various debris into the water supply. If you notice sediment or particles in your hot water, it may be an indication that corrosion is affecting your water heater.

Low Water Pressure: Corrosion can lead to the accumulation of rust and sediment in the pipes, causing a reduction in water pressure. If you experience a noticeable drop in water pressure, it could be a sign of corrosion within the water heater.

Consequences of Corrosion:

Deterioration of Water Quality: Corrosion compromises the quality of the water by introducing rust particles and other contaminants. This can impact the taste and safety of your water. 

Tank Corrosion: The interior of the water heater tank is vulnerable to corrosion. Over time, this corrosion can weaken the tank structure, potentially leading to leaks and water damage.

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Nancy Ghodrat
Nancy Ghodrat
2023-12-09
Bella is very knowledgeable about tankless water heaters. She determined that the heater that I purchased from Amazon was the wrong model. She went above and beyond the call of duty. She drove me in her car to the UPS store so I can return the heater and then drove me to the supplier store in San Jose (Pace Supply) so I can buy the correct one. She is very honest and showed me the wholesale price of the heater and used her coupon to get me the wholesale price. Umed, the technician, is an expert and did a great job installing the unit. He arrived on time, was very polite, and cleaned the area after his work was done. Bella and Umed put the customer first and provided an excellent service. I highly recommend United Plumbing because of Bella and Umed, their honesty, great service and expertise.
Catherine Hu
Catherine Hu
2023-11-24
Technician Beck came on thanksgiving day, working from 3pm till almost 9pm, to replace a new water heater. In the middle of the installment, he even had to go back to his office and pick up new parts. It was very difficult to set up the tubes at my place since the space for the tubes/water heater was limited. Technician was very patient and friendly the whole time. The pipes after Beck’s work are better designed. I am very grateful they are willing to come on a big holiday like thanksgiving, getting the challenging work done without any complaints. Otherwise it would be a cold shower thanksgiving for us. Highly recommend.
DR BLOCK (DRBLOCK)
DR BLOCK (DRBLOCK)
2023-10-31
United was quick to do an inspection and quote to replace our 20 year old tank water heater for a tankless and was able to start the job the same day. Professional and great service and the price was the lowest I received out of 3 or 4. Highly recommend!
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gzarris
2023-10-30
Quality work. Respectful of the property, and clean. Showed up on time. Alex gave good advice, answered numerous questions and only charged for the work performed per agreement. We will call them again.
Alvin & Mae Reyes
Alvin & Mae Reyes
2023-10-21
Yuri was great! Yuri came to inspect the pipes that were hearing while the water is running but unfortunately we weren’t able to hear anything at the time of the inspection. Yuri was able to install a new faucet in my kids bathroom. If you are looking for a plumbing company use United Plumbing, from the office to the field the service was great! I will definitely use Yuri and United plumbing again in the future.
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Eugene Shoykhet
2023-10-18
Amazing service for my low water pressure problem. Highly professional and timely
CB Chang
CB Chang
2023-10-07
Very quick responses with quality service, flexibility to adopt schedule change is good. Technician is professional and friendly. Services charge is very reasonable. I will definitely utilize their services in the future.
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Anil Nanda (AKN)
2023-10-03
They are professional. To the point. Fair transaction. And they provide warranty on their work which is great.
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ted schram
2023-10-03
They were able to come the same day I called. Service was quick and to the point, and the price was reasonable.
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