The Tank › Hot Water Odor
- June 23, 2015 at 12:32 pm #22092Water OdorParticipant
We live in the country on well water that is very hard (we have a water softener as well). We have never had any problem with a smell in the water (hot or cold). We recently added an inlaw unit in our basement with it’s own hot water tank (electric) and all of the hot water in the inlaw suite smells like rotten eggs (sulfur), but the water in the main house is still fine. We have tried everything we can think of. We have shocked the well, added a filter, put peroxide in the tank and even changed out the hot water tank in the unit trying to solve the problem. Prior to changing it out we had tried changing the rod in the tank to one more compatible with our water (softener) – that didn’t help either. We even left bleach in the lines for 3 days while the person living there was away, but the smell came back. The smell goes away for a few weeks after we try each thing, but always comes back. Any suggestions?June 23, 2015 at 4:58 pm #22093Randy SchuylerKeymaster
If bleach fixed the problem temporarily, then you know it’s the water heater. You need a powered anode. Aluminum/zinc anodes sometimes work in softened water, but often not. I’m guessing the heater in the main house is several years old and its anode is probably mostly consumed. If it’s anywhere where its breaking could cause a mess, you ought to check its condition. Odds are, though, if you replace its anode with another sacrificial one, you’ll have odor there, too.
Randy SchuylerJune 23, 2015 at 5:07 pm #22094Water OdorParticipant
Thanks for the reply. We built the house about 10 yrs ago and it is still the original tank in the main house. We will definitely check it! We will also check into the power anode.June 24, 2015 at 8:20 am #22095KJParticipant
we are having the same issue since we purchased a new Rheem electric hot water tank – the chlorination process only lasts about 3-4 weeks and the odor returns. We have never had this issue until replacing the water heater. we have well water with a softener system and it is only the hot water with the odor and from all hot water faucets. Is there any difference in the brands of water heaters? our next step is to replace the anode but from what I am reading this will most likely not help either??? We purchased this new tank in November 2014 and have bleached the tank 4 times already. 🙁June 24, 2015 at 8:29 am #22096Randy SchuylerKeymaster
I suggest you read my smelly water page, using the link on the left side of the Tank topics index. That will answer most or all of your questions.
Also, beware of UV, chlorination and filter systems. They are all the rage and mostly don’t work.
Randy SchuylerNovember 28, 2015 at 9:46 am #22454Todd47Participant
My electric water heater crapped out after 20 years of faithful service at my West Virginia weekend house. Rotten egg odor was a problem. I’d drain the heater and refill. Problem fixed – for a day or two. When I replaced the original W.H. with a new one – same problem. The well water system has softened water, and a whole house water filter. The water was soft and clean, but hot water was smelly. I did a web search and found this site. Best thing I ever did. Randy Schuyler took the time to walk me through all the options to fix the problem on the system with a new W.H. What I did was install the powered anode. Problem solved. It’s been close to a year now, and absolutely no odor. If installing, follow the instructions completely – not difficult, but safe. I used an air-powered impact wrench to just break the rod loose. Don’t over do it or the old anode with fly around inside the tank like an out-of-control helicopter blade – and do some serious damage! The W.H. is never drained upon leaving, just powered off. The powered anode is left on always. I love the green LED on the top to let you know at a glance that it’s under full power. Kudos to WaterHeaterRescue!November 28, 2015 at 9:51 am #22455Todd47Participant
Do yourself a favor an install a powered anode. Worth every penny in not having to horse around draining and refilling to temporarily remove the smell. I keep the aluminum anode from my then newly replaced electric water heater as a door stop.:D
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.