Reliance Water Heater Problems: A Comprehensive Guide

Reliance water heaters are a popular choice among Indian households due to their affordable pricing and energy efficiency claims. However, like any appliance, Reliance water heaters can develop issues over time that affect performance and longevity.

In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss the most common Reliance water heater problems reported by users, explain their causes, and provide troubleshooting tips to resolve them.

Now let’s look at some of the most reported problems with Reliance water heaters.

Problems With Reliance Water Heater

Here is a list of those problems:

  • Heater Not Turning On
  • Not Enough Hot Water
  • Water Not Hot Enough
  • Rust Colored Water
  • Water Odor
  • Water Leakage

Let’s elaborate these problems.

Heater Not Turning On

If your Reliance water heater is not turning on at all, there could be a few possible causes:

Reliance Water Heater
  • Tripped Circuit Breaker: For electric heaters, a tripped breaker is one of the most common reasons it won’t turn on. Check your electrical panel and reset the circuit breaker controlling the water heater.
  • No Power: Check if the wall socket supplying power to the unit is working. Plug in another appliance to test. Also check if the water heater’s plug is damaged.
  • Faulty Thermostat: The thermostat regulates water temperature by switching the heating element on and off. A bad thermostat can prevent the heater from turning on. Test it with a multi-meter or replace if faulty.
  • Heating Element Failure: If the thermostat is fine but the heating element does not heat up, it could be defective and need replacement. This also applies to gas water heaters where a faulty gas valve can cause a ‘no heat’ situation.
  • Wiring Issues: Faulty internal wiring or loose connections can prevent the heater from turning on. Check all connections and terminals and repair wires if damaged.

Not Enough Hot Water

If your Reliance water heater provides hot water but runs out too quickly, there are several factors at play:

  • Thermostat Setting: Check the temperature setting on the thermostat. A very low setting can limit hot water supply. Increase to an optimal 50-60°C setting.
  • Sediment Buildup: Scale and mineral deposits on the heating element can reduce its efficiency. Descale the heater annually to maximize hot water output.
  • Small Tank Size: Your usage requirements may have increased over time. Consider upgrading to a water heater with a higher storage capacity.
  • Leaky Fixtures: Leaking taps and showers can drain hot water from the tank faster than it can heat new water. Identify and fix all leaks.
  • Faulty Elements: One or more heating elements not heating efficiently due to age or mineral buildup. Replace old elements.
  • Thermostat Issues: A bad thermostat can fail to signal the elements to heat up and maintain set temperature. Test or replace it if necessary.

Water Not Hot Enough

If the water temperature is below your comfort and needs, check for these issues:

Reliance Water Heater
  • Low Thermostat Setting: Ensure the temperature is set between 50-60°C. Higher settings risks scalding but improves hot water supply.
  • Thermostat Accuracy: The thermostat may be calibrated incorrectly so the temperature is lower than displayed. Test with a thermometer and recalibrate if needed.
  • Heating Element Problem: Scale buildup or faulty elements unable to heat water to the desired temperature. Inspect and descale or replace elements.
  • Insulation Deterioration: If the tank insulation degrades over time, it can lead to greater standby heat loss and reduce hot water supply. Replace old insulation.
  • Wrong Power Input: Electric heaters have varying power inputs e.g. 2000W or 4000W. Using a model with too low wattage can result in tepid water.
  • Gas Burner Issue: For gas heaters, an undersized burner, faulty gas valve or clogged burner tubes can reduce water temperature. Service the gas components.

Rust Colored Water

Rust-colored or brownish water usually indicates corroded internal components, especially if you have a metallic tank. Some common reasons include:

  • Sacrificial Anode Rod: This metal rod inside the tank corrodes over time to prevent corrosion damage to the tank itself. Replace it when minerals appear in water.
  • Internal Tank Rust: If the anode rod fails, the steel tank starts corroding from exposure to water minerals. Tank repair or replacement may be needed in severe cases.
  • Heating Elements: High mineral content in water can corrode electric heating elements. Inspect elements and replace if corroded.
  • Pipe Corrosion: Age, minerals and interactions between dissimilar metals can corrode inlet/outlet pipes and fittings leading to debris in water. Replace damaged parts.
  • Loose Scale: Corrosion and scale buildup in the tank dislodges over time, contaminating the water. Drain and flush the tank thoroughly to clear loose scale.

Water Odor

Foul-smelling hot water is often caused by:

Reliance Water Heater
  • Sulfur Odors: Sulfur-reducing bacteria can grow in the tank and produce hydrogen sulfide gas causing a rotten egg smell. Shock disinfect the tank.
  • Anode Rod Corrosion: Corroding metal anode rods create a metallic smell. If rod is excessively worn out, replace it.
  • Organic Buildup: Microorganisms and organic matter can multiply over time, especially if water temperature is set too low. Flush the tank and increase temperature.
  • Chemical Reactions: Certain chemicals present in water can react with the tank and parts to generate smells. A water treatment system may help remove odors.
  • Old Water: If heaters are unused for extended durations, bacteria grows over time producing nasty odors. Drain and refill the stale water.

Water Leakage

Water leaking from the tank or connections requires immediate attention to prevent more damage:

  • Worn Seals: Age and mineral deposits make tank seals brittle over time. Replace leaky seals and gaskets.
  • Loose Pipes: Inlet and outlet piping can loosen at the threaded joints and cause leaks. Tighten connections or reseal with thread tape.
  • Tank Corrosion: Corroded areas like weld joints may start leaking after prolonged use. Attempt patch repairs or replace tank.
  • Valve Issues: Leaks near valves usually indicate worn washers or issues with valve seats. Service the valves.
  • Tank Fracture: Hairline cracks in inner tank lining expand over time and cause leaks. Confirm with tank draining and replacement.

Noisy Operation

Unusual noises during heating cycles usually stem from:

  • Sediment Buildup: Scale and minerals in tank produce popping and cracking sounds as they expand from heat. Descale tank.
  • Water Pressure: High water pressure strains pipes and connections and causes vibrations. Install a pressure reducing valve.
  • Thermal Expansion: Increased water volume during heating cycles can manifest as popping noises. A thermal expansion tank can help.
  • Loose Parts: Internal components can sag and rattle over time. Tighten loose fasteners, supports and insulation.
  • Gas Burner Issues: Hissing, whistling or rumbling noises point to problems with gas burner assembly. Service gas valve and burner.
  • Electric Arcing: Buzzing and humming sounds caused by electricity arcing through insulation gaps or water. Have an electrician identify and resolve faults.

Slow Water Heating

It takes longer than usual for water to get hot if:

  • Insufficient Input Power: Upsize to a water heater with higher wattage heating elements for faster heating.
  • Scale Buildup: Thick mineral deposits act as insulation and slows heat transfer to water. Descale tank and elements.
  • Sediment Buildup: Accumulated sediment reduces tank capacity. Drain and flush sediment.
  • Lowered Thermostat: Check and increase the temperature setting to manufacturer recommended level.
  • Heating Element Problem: One or more elements may be defective. Test elements and replace if necessary.
  • Gas Burner Issue: Weak burner flames, faulty gas valve or clogged burner tubes can extend heating time. Service burner.
  • Improper Venting: Inadequate air supply due to blocked vents causes slow heating in gas heaters. Ensure proper venting.

Overheating Issues

Reliance water heaters overheating is dangerous and usually related to:

  • Thermostat Malfunction: Defective thermostats fail to shut off heating elements at set point leading to overheating. Replace thermostat.
  • Lowered Temperature Setting: A incorrectly set low temperature does not trip heating elements off in time. Set temperature between 50-60°C.
  • Sediment Buildup: Accumulated silt and limescale act as insulation causing overheating. Drain and flush tank.
  • Power Input Mismatch: Installing elements with higher wattage than specified leads to overheating. Install correct wattage elements.
  • Loose Wiring: Loose internal wiring can cause short circuit and overheating. Check all connections.
  • Incorrect Gas Pressure: Excess gas pressure to burner risks overheating in gas systems. Confirm rated gas pressure at inlet.
  • Lack of Maintenance: Regular maintenance like sediment flushing, descaling and anode rod replacement prevents overheating issues.

Troubleshooting Tips For Reliance Water Heater

Follow these general troubleshooting steps for Reliance water heater problems before calling a technician:

  • Isolate the problem and identify exactly what issue you are facing.
  • Check power supply, fuses, wiring, gas supply and basics first.
  • Inspect related parts like heating elements, thermostat, gas valve, burner, etc.
  • Review maintenance history and check tank interior when drained.
  • Consider age and usage levels – older heaters may need more repairs.
  • Try fixing minor DIY-level issues like descaling or anode rod replacement.
  • For complex repairs, ensure you isolate power supply and gas lines before working.
  • Call Reliance authorized service center if problem persists and report the issue.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are Reliance water heaters any good?

Reliance offers a range of decent water heating solutions for Indian homes at an affordable price point. Their electric and gas heater models have good storage capacity options ranging from 10L to 35L.
The glass-lined tanks provide good corrosion resistance and the polymer outer body is durable. Copper heating elements and adjustable capillary thermostats offer reliable temperature control. Overall, Reliance heaters make for a reasonably good choice for budget-minded buyers.

What is the life expectancy of a Reliance water heater?

The average lifespan of a properly maintained Reliance water heater is 8-10 years. Electric models may last a year or two longer compared to gas heaters.
With regular maintenance like annual flushing, anode rod replacement and periodic descaling, you can expect continued performance for at least a decade before needing major repairs or full replacement.

What are some common issues of a water heater?

1. Sediment buildup causing overheating and poor heating
2. Corroded/worn-out heating elements reducing hot water supply
3. Leaking inlet/outlet valves and connections
4. Thermostat problems leading to improper temperature regulation
5. Rusted internal tank causing contaminated water
6. Noisy operation from loose parts or sediment deposits
7. Gas burner problems in gas heaters impacting heating

What are signs your water heater is going bad?

1. Hot water supply is inadequate or slow
2. Water takes very long to heat up
3. Rust colored or odd smelling water
4. Loud noises during operation
5. Tank exterior rusting and corrosion
6. Frequent need to reset temperature
7. Dripping taps or wet areas around heater
8. Higher energy bills for same usage

Closing Remarks

Reliance offers capable water heating appliances but they can develop problems over time. This guide covers the most common Reliance water heater issues reported by users along with troubleshooting tips to resolve them.

Ensure periodic maintenance and follow the outlined best practices to maximize the performance and life of your Reliance water heater.

Clyde Mitchell

I run a hardware store nearby Court Anaheim, CA. Over the last 7 years, I have been blogging about home improvement and yes, I own ReliefInBath.com From me and this website, you can expect some useful tips on great ideas for a modern bathroom.

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