Plumber checking list for water heater problems

Common Gas and Electric Water Heater Problems

No matter the season or time of year, your water heater functioning properly is essential. Summer or winter, your clothes need to be washed, your shower needs to be warm, and your sink needs to sanitize those dishes.


How do you know if your water heater is experiencing problems and affecting usage and efficiency, or causing damage to your home?


Let’s break down the most common problems homeowners experience with gas and electric water heater systems. (And how to fix them!)


Common Gas Water Heater Issues

Gas water heaters utilize a burner to heat water, located at the bottom of the water heater. Gas water heaters have a tank and require airflow. The temperature of the water heater can be set based on the size of the home and the number of hot water users living there.


Heat is transferred by the combustion of propane gas, ignited by a pilot light. Gas water heaters require an exhaust system funneled outside so as to remove dangerous carbon dioxide fumes from the home.


Gas water heaters should be handled with caution and expertise, especially when dealing with a number of system problems.


1. Not Enough Hot Water

One of the most common problems encountered with gas water heaters is that there doesn’t seem to be enough hot water to go around. Thankfully, this is fairly easy to fix; simply turn up the water temperature on your water heater. Be cautious not to turn it up too high, as this can be a burning hazard.


If the problem persists, it may be due to an improper thermostat setting or a malfunctioning gas valve. Both of these circumstances require the intervention of a professional plumber.


2. No Hot Water

If your home has a gas water heater and there is no hot water accessible from any sources in your home, it may have something to do with the pilot light or flow of gas. You may be able to reignite the pilot light using an ignitor or following the specific instructions found in your water heater manual.


3. Water Heater Clicking/Making Noise

If your water heater is making unfamiliar noises, it’s a sign of something potentially dangerous. It’s likely that your water heater is “clicking” because there is a build-up of sediment at the bottom of the machine, preventing the water from being heated properly. This can result in overheating, and therefore should be addressed by a professional.


For prevention, your water heater should be flushed, inspected, cleaned, and maintained by a plumbing expert at least once per year.


4. Leaking Water Heater

If you observe a leak coming from your water heater, call a trained plumbing professional immediately. The water heater either needs to be repaired or replaced, and will cause further damage if not properly attended to. After placing the call to your plumber, follow these steps:


  • Locate the source of the leak
  • Turn off power to your water heater
  • Turn off water supply
  • Remove valuables from the flow of water and ensure the area is clear of pets, children, etc


5. Smelly Hot Water

If you’re smelling something resembling rotten eggs coming from your water heater, or from your hot water tap, it’s likely that there is bacterial growth occurring in your water heater. The solution is fairly simple (flushing with a cleaning solution), but if you’re not trained to do this, it’s time to call the pros (a plumber).


Common Electric Water Heater Problems

While gas and electric water heaters look similar, the main difference between the two is that an electric water heater is powered by electric upper and lower heating elements which protrude into the tank to heat the water.


If your electric water heater is showcasing any of the above water heater problems, the solution will likely look different than that of a gas water heater issue.


Before proceeding with any diagnosis or investigation of your electric water heater problems, be advised to turn off the power to your electric heater using your home’s breaker system.


1. No Hot Water

If your electric water heater isn’t producing hot water in your home, it’s likely not receiving power or a failed heating element. To troubleshoot, check the heater’s circuit breaker to ensure power is still flowing. Try switching it off and on again.


If there is a malfunctioning heating element, it may be time to call in the pros for repair or complete replacement.


2. Not Enough Hot Water

If your home’s hot water supply doesn’t seem to be meeting the demand of those living inside, it may be that the unit isn’t large enough to satisfy the water needs of your family. You can mitigate this by limiting the length of hot showers and spreading out other hot water uses (dishwasher, laundry, etc) throughout the day.


If the issue persists, there may be one or more heating elements beginning to lose efficiency, in which case it’s best to schedule an appointment with a water heater repair expert.


3. Water Temperature is Too Hot

While one wouldn’t assume this is a problem, water temperature that is unbearably hot can be just as frustrating as no or not enough hot water. It’s possible that a setting on your electric water heater isn’t set properly. Follow the instructions specific to your unit and adjust one or more of the water heater’s thermostats.


4. Leaking Water Heater

As with a gas water heater, this is a highly problematic situation. If you notice water coming from your water heater, call a professional right away. The leak could be due to tank corrosion or a loose heating element. After calling your local emergency plumber, do the following:


  • Turn off power to your electric water heater
  • Turn off water supply
  • Locate the source of the leak
  • Evacuate the area
  • If knowledgeable and confident enough, you may begin draining the tank


5. Colored Water, Bad Odor, Or Noisy Tank

The procedures for addressing these issues in an electric water heater are the same as mitigating them for a gas water heater. It’s time to tap in your local professional plumbing team!


NoCo’s Team of HVAC and Plumbing Experts

If you’re in need of professional plumbing services, be sure to call the team that will provide you with individualized solutions and excellent customer service.


Good Guys Home Services is fully equipped and trained to mitigate any problem your gas or electric water heater might throw our way. We can handle leaks, malfunctioning heating elements, build-up, bacteria in your tank, and more! Whether your home is in need of maintenance, repairs, replacement, or an inspection, you need a team of plumbing experts!

When you need heating, plumbing, and air conditioning services, be sure to call a business that allows you to talk to find the solution right now. Enjoy quality, speedy service and 24/7 availability every time you call Good Guys Home Services. Reach out today!

Plumber fixing piping in ground

What Do Plumbers Do? The Heroes of Unwanted Projects

Have you ever wondered what it is that plumbers really do? Interestingly enough, they wear a lot of hats!

Plumbers aren’t only known for the “plumber’s crack”. 

They don’t just run Drano to unclog your pipes. Plumbers also don’t just clean out your garbage disposal after someone decided to throw the chicken bones down the drain. There are many other services plumbers deal with on a day-to-day basis, which is what makes them a valuable asset for your home or business.

Being a plumber is a very physically taxing job as they have to deal with staying on their knees for hours, holding equipment, and working with tools that you sometimes won’t recognize. Plumbers offer personal home and business services to make your life easier and less messy. There are three main categories that plumbers work in and each requires a lot of experience and skill.

1. Plumbers Install and Fix Water Piping Systems

Commercial water piping system

This is the most obvious service that plumbers offer. The fixing of water piping systems is the common category of work that plumbers are requested to perform. Plumbers are hired to fix pipes that could cause damages to the rest of the home or building. Pipes may be backing up, causing flooding or bursting from intense pressure or build up.

There are many reasons why a plumber may be hired to fix your piping system. Here is a list of the most common requests for a plumber to fix piping systems.

  1. Unclogging toilets, showers, and kitchen drains
  2. Fixing dripping faucets
  3. Fixing leaky pipes
  4. Adjusting water pressure
  5. Fixing pipes that have burst
  6. Installing new piping and draining systems
  7. Fixing previous work from inexperienced plumbers
  8. Installing water heaters
  9. Fixing water heaters and boilers
  10. Installing appliances
  11. Draining and unclogging pools, ponds, and other man-made bodies of water
  12. Sewage clean up

You’ll call on a plumber to fix any problems you may be facing with your water piping systems. Plumbers are also useful for the installation process of new piping systems and the removal of old piping systems.

If you have a new house or business build, a plumber would also be the go-to hire for the installation of piping for any part of the home or building’s structure.

5 Things Plumbers Don’t Want You to Do

To make your life easier and to make the piping system project less complicated for the plumber, here are a few tips for what plumbers recommend you don’t do.

  1. Don’t dump large amounts of food in your kitchen drain all at once. This can clog the drain and stop the disposal from working.
  2. Don’t flush plastics or other non-decomposable materials in the toilet. If they can’t decompose, they will get stuck without reaching the septic tank.
  3. Don’t flush large amounts of hair down the shower drain. This will inevitably clog the drain and could cause flooding in your bathtub.
  4. Don’t perform DIY projects to your piping system unless you know what you’re doing. YouTube can be a great resource for homeowners, but that doesn’t mean each piping system is the same. You may have a simple problem that can turn into a complicated problem if you try “fixing” the piping issue. Rely on the professionals to fix the problem.
  5. Don’t freeze your pipes! Pipes will typically freeze if the heater is left off in the house or building. To avoid freezing your pipes, keep the temperature of each room at a minimum of 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit. If pipes freeze, they can burst, which can leak water into other parts of the foundation causing a worse issue.

2. Plumbers Work on Garbage Waste Disposal

Kitchen sink garbage disposal with running water

Plumbers are experienced in working on waste disposal systems. Your garbage disposal can become clogged, overused, and aged. Plumbers can fix the garbage disposal for missing blades, piping issues, and the removal of substances causing clogging. They can also remove and install a new garbage disposal system if your current garbage disposal is old or burned out. 

Garbage disposals can become damaged if non-food and liquid items are put in the drain. For example, you wouldn’t want to leave forks in the sink because they can fall down the drain. If a utensil is hidden from your view and you turn the garbage disposal on, the metal can dull the blades or the fork could become jammed.

Other food items can cause damages as well! Bones, rice, grease, and other dense foods can lead to clogging and damages. It’s best to hire a plumber to deal with the removal of waste stuck in the garbage disposal since they have the proper equipment for the job.

3. Plumbers Assist with HVAC Systems

Commercial building HVAC air conditioning units

Did you know that your local HVAC guy is a plumber? HVAC systems refer to your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning units in your house and business. Plumbers who have experience with HVAC systems are your real service experts! They work to fix, repair, and install furnaces, boilers, air conditioning units, and other ventilation systems.

If you’re wondering why it’s so hot in your home, your air conditioning unit could be out of commission. Or if it’s not warm enough in your commercial building during the winter season, then maybe your furnace is failing. Plumbers are unique in knowing most things about your house and business construct. If you don’t know where the problem is, a plumber will find it!

What Are the Qualifications to Become a Plumber?

You can’t just put a shirt and hat on to call yourself a plumber. Holding a toolbox full of wrenches and pipe parts also doesn’t qualify you as a plumber. In order to become a plumber, there are certain qualifications you must acquire.

First, you need a have experience in understanding math, physics, and drafting or blueprinting. Piping can be super complex depending on the building or local region. If a plumber doesn’t have a foundation in physics, it would be very difficult to find where the source of damage is located and where it could have spread to. If they can’t read a blueprint, how are they supposed to know where to find the piping in the home or building?

Next, you need to attend vocational classes specific to the plumbing expertise. Plumbers need to know how to work with the city’s water supply and drainage systems. They also need to know what the appropriate tools are to deal with each unique situation.

Finally, a plumber must acquire licensing to work in a state. This isn’t just important for them to understand how the water supply and drainage systems work in your state and region, it provides you safety. If you hire a plumber that doesn’t have a license, they become a huge liability due to inadequate experience that can lead to negligence and possibly more damages. Never hire a plumber that doesn’t have proof of licensing.

Why Should I Hire a Plumber Instead of Doing the Job Myself?

Let’s address the question as to why a plumber is your best solution to your home and business service needs. If the above information about how a plumber must be very experienced to work on piping and HVAC systems doesn’t prove their worth, then let’s lay it all out here.

When an amateur works on a piping system, garbage waste disposal, or HVAC system, the chances are much higher for further problems to occur. What if the issue that was “fixed” was only just a small part of the great scheme of things?

Just because one part of the piping system is leaking, doesn’t mean there isn’t a larger leak somewhere else. If further damages occur, this could affect much more of the house or building than just the pipes. It could cause molding, electrical shortages, insulation problems, corrosion, rusting, and other foundational problems.

If you’re thinking about trusting yourself to perform a DIY plumbing-related project, we implore you to think first about all of the information listed above. Is it just a dripping faucet or is there loose equipment causing faulty water pressure? You might think you can accomplish the job “good enough”, but a professional plumber will make sure your fixes and repairs are long-lasting solutions.

Good Guys Home Services offers inspections to review the plumbing problem, run diagnostics, and find the solution your home or business needs. We are Colorado’s best plumbing service company with years of experience in dealing with piping, water supply, waste disposal, and HVAC systems.

If you need a plumber you can trust to get the job done without lying to you about pricing or scheming you to pay for more than the necessary installations or fixes, then give us a call today at (970) 818-8008. We are licensed emergency plumbers ready for any project!

Local plumber fixing piping in home

Best Tips for How to Choose a Local Plumber

A pipe bursts in your kitchen and now your house is flooding! What do you do? Call the right hero for the job, a plumber!


But wait, how do you know which plumber to choose? Should you go for a national plumbing company or a local neighborhood plumber? That pipe isn’t going to fix itself, so let’s go over the tips that will help you choose a plumber you can trust for the job.


Search For “plumber near me” Online

The internet has introduced us to a new form of research that makes choosing a plumber much easier than it used to be. No more looking through big books of numbers or driving past billboards noting the plumber as “best in town”. Search engines like Google are designed to provide you the best results when searching for literally any service!


One of the best ways to find a trustworthy plumber fast is by performing a search online!


On your computer or phone, head over to your search browser (Google Chrome, Firefox, Explorer, Safari, too many, etc) and type in “plumber near me” or “plumbing repair near me” or “plumber (my city)”. Typing in these searches will provide you with a list of results for plumbers that are near your area and are close enough to respond to your plumbing problem!


For example, type in “plumber fort collins” and you’ll be provided with a list of the top plumber services based on proximity.


Local plumber in Fort Collins on Google Maps


These are plumbers that either have offices near you or service the area you live in. If you aren’t keen on the choices that are provided to you first thing in your search, you can click on “more businesses” to see more choices of local plumbers in your area!


Plumber Fort Collins on Google Map Pack results


Check the Plumber’s Reviews

Once you’ve conducted your search online, you can see a list of all reviews for that plumber or plumbing company. Reviews are a great indicator of a plumber’s credibility, trustworthiness, and work experience. The higher the review score, the better! A good rating for finding the best plumber near you starts at 4 stars.


If a plumber is rated 4 stars and up, that means they’ve generally had good experiences with the jobs they’ve completed. However, don’t just choose a plumber based on only the better reviews. It’s a good idea to take a look at both positive and negative reviews to see what other customers are saying about the plumber. There is typically a reason for a lower score.


Another good way to look at reviews is by checking the number of reviews a plumber has received. The number of reviews tells you if the plumber has been around for a long time, building their portfolio of plumbing experience. Sometimes, the reviews will include pictures of the plumber’s work after the job!


Ask Family and Friends

Some of your family and friends have most likely used a plumber’s services before. Like the online reviews, testimonials from family and friends can help you in deciding on choosing a plumber for the project at hand. If, however, the plumbing project is an emergency, then contacting a family member or a friend probably won’t be fast enough. Online reviews are instant and can provide you with enough valuable information about the plumber. Think about how quickly you’ll need to hire a plumber first before you go about calling people you know for their plumber service experiences.


Ask the Plumber Questions

Once you’ve found a plumber that you think can get the job done, go ahead and give them a call! Use this line of questioning to gather the answers you need to ensure they’re the right plumber for you.


1. Are You a Licensed Plumber?

Depending on which state you live in, plumbers must be licensed. Each state will have different requirements for plumbers licensing, but a licensed plumber is an experienced plumber. Having a license means they are legally credentialed to work in your state and neighborhood as a plumber. The reason plumbers need to be licensed by the state they service out of is because of the piping, gas, or other systems they need to work with.


States (not all) have different piping, water, and sewer systems. These systems are crucial to work on with accuracy to ensure your pipe repairs or installs follow your state’s best and safe practices. Your kitchen sink should be easy enough to work with, but what if the problem is further within the foundation? A licensed plumber will know where to check and how to repair it without further complications.


2. Are You an Insured and Bonded Plumber?

Simply put, plumbers that aren’t insured are huge risk factors. Just because a plumber might be licensed, one mistake can cause property damage to the surrounding areas. Plumbing contractors should be both insured and bonded for overall efficiency and safety. However, just having insurance can be a powerful shield for you and your house in case the plumber did a horrible job or didn’t properly fix your issue.


Never hire a contractor that doesn’t have insurance. Save yourself from a major headache.


Liability insurance and worker’s compensation insurance are two forms of insurance that the plumbing contractor should have. At the very least, they need to have liability insurance. If your property gets damaged, you can be reimbursed for the plumber’s negligence. Worker’s compensation is for the plumber in case of an injury they incur on your property. A good company will have this type of insurance for their contractors.


Bonding refers to a plumbing contractor who has acquired a surety bond. This bond helps in the case that the insurance they have doesn’t completely reimburse you for property damages or the contractor’s negligence. It can even help for stolen items from you and lost wages to the contractor.


3. Is the Plumbing Cost Fixed?

Depending on the plumber and their business, payment options differ. For example, some plumbing contractors may charge by the project type, hour, or other projections. You want to ask them right off the bat what their contractor costs are and what their estimation for the project will be.


Some plumbing companies, such as Good Guys Home Services, offer free estimations. If this is offered, take advantage of this part of the service to acquire an accurate price for the project. Also, ask them how long the project will take since they might be paid hourly.


Depending on the project, plumber costs can be anywhere from $175 to $450. However, this could be drastically higher for installing utilities such as water heaters.


4. How Much Experience Do You Have as a Plumber?

Asking how much experience the plumber has as servicing as a plumber and being in business can be crucial for complicated plumbing issues. An experienced plumber will know where to find the issue within the piping zone and what could have caused it. An inexperienced plumber could waste a lot of time trying to find the issue and fixing it, which can lead to more money out of your pocket.


5. Do You Have Emergency Plumbing Services?

A pipe bursting is an emergency. You can’t just wait 5 hours for the plumber to show up at your door if your house is flooding. Ask if the plumber has round-the-clock, 24/7 emergency services in case an urgent plumbing problem occurs. You’ll thank yourself later if there is a gas leak at 2 in the morning on a Saturday and you have their number on speed dial.


Hire a Local Plumber

If you want to be treated as a valued customer and want the best services in your area, hire a local plumber. Locally owned plumbing businesses will typically care more about how they handle your plumbing issue from the first point of contact to the last. While larger companies have the numbers to serve you, there’s nothing better than knowing your project means a lot to a local plumber. You’ll gain a relationship with a locally owned plumbing business and will receive the best treatment and service for your dollar.


If you ever find your pipes busted or need a plumber for any plumbing project, give Good Guys a call! We’ve got a great staff in Loveland, CO that services the Denver and Northern Colorado area for all your plumbing needs!


Now, let’s get that kitchen pipe fixed!

Plumber inspecting residential water heater

How to Choose a Water Heater Repair Contractor

When your water heater stops working, has a leak, making strange noises, or has an odd smell, it’s time to either get it repaired or to buy a new one. In either case, a water heater repair contractor can help you pinpoint the issue with your water heater, acquire the correct parts, install the parts accurately and safely, and can recommend the type of water heater you might need to purchase if all else fails.

However, finding a water heater repair contractor might be more difficult than you think. You want someone who is experienced and competent with water heaters so your repair or installation goes smoothly. After years of experience of dealing with water heaters and seeing what other contractors charge for their services, we’ve gathered a list of answers to help you find the right water heater repair contractor for the job. Read on to see our list of qualifications.

1. Is the Contractor Close to My House?

Hiring a local water heater repair contractor should be the first thing you consider. Plumbers are the most qualified and knowledgeable when it comes to water heater issues because of the piping involved.

Someone who is located close to your house will know the area well and can understand all of the problematic elements that come with a water heater in your home. For instance, if you are living in Fort Collins, Colorado, then a plumber that is located out of that city would know if the weather or environment is effecting your water heater or if it’s a problem directly with the water heater. Hire a plumber who is close enough to you so they can quickly arrive at the scene to get started.

The best way to locate a local plumber is to go directly to Google or another search engine and type in “water heater repair near me” and you’ll be provided with a huge list of plumbers that you can pick from.

Water heater repair near me Fort Collins Colorado Google search

2. What is the Plumber’s Reputation?

Good Guys Home Services Google My Business search on Google Maps

When hiring a plumber to come to your house, you’ll want to know if they can be trusted and if they have the right type of experience for your water heater’s problem(s). There are several ways to find out if the plumber is reputable.

  1. You can talk to family and friends and ask which plumbers they’ve used (if any) for their water heater.
  2. Search Google to find a nearby plumber that has a list of high-rated reviews.
  3. Go on Yelp, Angie’s List, or Home Advisor and search for “water repair services” in your area. Again, you’ll want to go with one of the higher-rated plumbing companies/plumbers.

3. Choose a Plumber With Experience

Plumber inspecting residential water heater

The more experience the plumber has, the better the repair/installation of your water heater. Give them a call to inquire about their experience and list the problem(s) you’re having with your water heater. Ask them questions like:

  • Have you worked with water heaters in my area before?
  • What do you think the issue could be?
  • How long do you think it will take you to repair/install my water heater?
  • What should I do with my water heater right now?

Write down the answers to these questions and acquire the name of the contractor you speak with so you know who to talk to later on. An experienced plumber should be able to provide you with their approximations for your water heater issues based on their professional experience in the field.

4. Is the Plumber Licensed?

Plumber fixing a sink faucet

A licensed plumber means that they are legally allowed to work as a plumber within your state. The only states that don’t currently require a plumber to carry a license are Kansas, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, and Wyoming.

Why should a plumber have a license? Having a license means that the plumber who is working on your water heater has been approved by the state for understanding that state’s plumbing infrastructure and the complications of liability if an accident were to happen. The plumber most likely doesn’t carry insurance if they don’t hold a plumber’s license. This means that if anything happens to them while they are working on your repairs/installs, they could look to sue you.

At Good Guys Home Services, we ensure that our plumbers are licensed and insured because we know how important it is for you to have a trusted relationship with your plumber.

5. Is the Plumber Insured?

Three stacks of coins with plants

Insured plumbers are the best viable option in case of a mishap during your water heater’s repair/installation. If a plumber advertises that they are insured, this typically means they have obtained General Liability insurance (GL insurance).

What this means for you is that you’ll be reimbursed for any negligence on the plumber’s part during the repair or installation. If they didn’t repair or install the water heater accurately and there is a leak or a worse problem than before, then you can count on GL insurance to cover the new damages.

6. Look at the Plumber’s Appearance

Good Guys Home Services professional plumber

As funny as this may seem, a plumber’s appearance says a lot about how they handle themselves and their work. It’s understandable if they recently finished a project and have stains on their uniform/clothing, but they should still respectably carry themselves.

You’re allowing a stranger to come into your home, try finding some pictures online about what they should be wearing by visiting their website (if they have one) or searching for them on Google. If they are wearing old, dirty, tattered clothing that doesn’t resemble what’s in the photos, then you should be questioning if they are the right person for the job at hand.

A real water heater repair plumber cares about how they appear to their clients.

7. Get an Estimate

Woman talking on the phone with a plumber

A lot of plumbers offer free estimates if you call them. We at Good Guys Home Services offer a free estimation quote so you can be aware of the cost that you might be charged for the repair/installation. It can be difficult to acquire an accurate estimation depending on where your water heater is located. Don’t be surprised if you end up getting quoted one price and ending up with another that’s either higher or lower than the original quote.

To better understand how much you might be charged, you should talk to a couple of plumbers that are experienced with water heater repairs. Doing this will save you the hassle of potentially getting settled on a price that might be overestimated or worse, a scam.

An accurate quote comes from the inspection stage once you choose a plumber to come out and see your water heater’s issue, where it’s located, what parts are needed, and how much time it will take them. The average cost for an inspection is $165, however, this is dependent on factors such as location and if other project inspections are necessary upon your request.


Hiring a plumber to come and fix your water heater doesn’t need to be complicated. But you should do your homework before you end up regretting choosing the wrong person for the job. Hire someone with experience, integrity, honesty, and good work ethics. Cheaper doesn’t mean simpler.

By following these tips, we hope you understand how important it is to have an experienced plumber come into your home to work on your water heater. When installed or repaired improperly, water heaters can be extremely dangerous. Don’t let your life be put in jeopardy by choosing the wrong plumber.

If you’re living within the Fort Collins, Colorado area or in the surrounding cities such as Greeley, Loveland, Timnath, Windsor, or Ault, our experienced plumbers are available to help you with the necessary repairs for your water heater. Give us a call today at (970) 818-8008 for your free quote.