New Hot Water Heater Water Smells Like Plastic? (Fixed)

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Written By John Roe Stephen

When it comes to the things we have in our homes, it’s easy to take the things we use the most for granted. Numerous everyday activities are dependent on clean, safe drinking water. We use it for everything from washing dishes to cleaning our houses to washing our clothes—and the list continues.

Water that is dirty or smells bad is a significant inconvenience and a health threat. Your home’s water heater is a typical cause of water-related problems.

A smelly water heater may be caused by various difficulties, including technical breakdowns and bacteria buildup. This post will look at some of the most prevalent causes of water heater odors like plastic.

Water Heater Odors: What Causes Them?

If you detect a strange odor coming from your water heater, you will know what’s wrong with it. The following are some of the most typical reasons for these occurrences.

Electrical Wiring Problem

Shorts may occur in electric water heaters. When stray wires come into touch, heat is generated. If your heater is experiencing this problem, the odor of burning wiring may be noticeable. Wires that have their insulation melting may smell like burned plastic.

It is not uncommon for this kind of heater breakdown to occur out of the blue. Do not try to fix an electrical problem with your water heater on your own.

To prevent a fire or more damage, unplug your heater first. Submit a claim if you have a heater home manufacturer guarantees. Call a qualified technician if you don’t have access to a service provider that does.

There Are A Lot Of Gas Leaks

Like any other gas-powered item, gas water heaters may develop a leak. If you detect a gas odor near your water heater, immediately turn off the device and alert the authorities. Do not use the gas if you do not know how to turn it off.

However, you should avoid fiddling with anything until you are sure of your actions. To get your water heater repaired, speak with your warranty carrier or a repairman once the gas has been cut off and safety has been verified.

Sand And Dirt

Dust, grit, and grime may build upon more than a decade-old water heater. You may sense a burning odor if dust or other material comes into touch with a hot section.

Most of the time, this is a straightforward remedy. If the water in your heater seems too warm to the touch, turn it off. Wipe it down with a moist towel after that. Contact a specialist if the odor continues.

Reactions Between Bacteria And The Rod Anode

The Anode Rod is an essential part of your electric heater that you may not be aware of. Discoloured water, a foul-smelling odor, air in the pipes, and sporadic hot water are symptoms of a faulty anode rod.

If you notice a rotten egg smell, no heat, or unusual noises coming from your electric water heater’s tank, it’s time to replace the anode rod. The anode rod is a critical component in tank-style electric water heaters. Magnesium or aluminum anode rods are used in electrolysis.

Magnesium anodes are more effective than aluminum anodes because of their capacity to give ions more easily. Sediment is removed from the tank by the rod. If you have a water heater, the anode rods will help it last longer and keep your plumbing running smoothly.

Use an aluminum/zinc alloy anode rod instead of magnesium or aluminum to prevent the odor.

Some Other Reasons And Their Solutions

An issue with foul-smelling water might appear out of nowhere. Your cleanliness, your capacity to welcome visitors, and even your fundamental drinking habits may all be harmed by tap water that has an unpleasant taste. From the faucet, you may be able to smell several various aromas:

Smells Like Sewage

The smell may be horrendous and unpleasant when garbage, filth, and grime contaminate your water source. Bacteria from food and soap might be the cause of your clogged drain. If your sink has an unpleasant odor, it’s likely not sewage coming from your faucet.

It is more likely the stench is coming from bacteria in your drain. It’s possible that the water in your heater has been sitting there for an extended period and now smells like sewage.

Did you turn it off while gone for a lengthy period to save energy? While the heater was switched down or off, bacteria were able to grow in lower temperatures. This might be the source of the odor. The odor might quickly become overpowering.

What You Need To Do

The cold and hot taps on the faucet may be used to fill two cups of water at once while you keep your nose plugged. Take a sip from each of the water cups you’ve just taken out of the sink in another room. When both glasses of water smell regular, the stink in your drain pipe is most likely to blame.

Pour 14 cups of baking soda and 14 containers of white vinegar down the drain to get rid of drain odors. Even if it is going to boil up, give it 10 minutes. When you’re waiting, boil a kettle of water and afterward flush the drain. Your pipes will be disinfected, and the foul smell will be eliminated.

Flushing and cleaning your water heater with a bleach solution is advised if the hot water smells terrible. If cleaning the water heater does not fix the issue, a water treatment specialist may also do a hydrogen sulfide and pollutant test.

In the following section, you’ll learn more about rotten egg smell and hydrogen sulfide, but it’s easy to confuse the two.

 Smells Like Rotten Eggs

Water that smells like sulfur or rotten eggs is unpleasant to drink and is also unsafe. Sulfur bacteria or sulfur dioxide may be to blame if your water seems sulfurous. Hydrogen sulfide gas is formed by bacteria feasting on degrading organic materials, then trapped inside the plumbing system.

In and of itself, sulfur bacteria is not dangerous, but it encourages the development of iron bacteria, which may block wells, pipelines, and irrigation systems.

When hydrogen sulfide concentrations are too high, it may lead to various unpleasant symptoms, including nausea, headaches, disorientation, and even seizures.

What You Need To Do

The stench is likely coming from your water heater just when you run the relatively warm water from the tap. If this is the case, replace your mg anode, and call a water system expert for help. The top of the attachment has a socket attached to this attachment.

Hydrogen sulfide gas generation may be reduced by changing the existing anode rod. In reality, removing the rod would undoubtedly result in a shorter lifespan for your water heater.

The water heater may be flushed with chlorine bleach and water solution. So proceed with care while using this method. You should seek the advice of a professional. Installing an iron filter in your home’s water supply will lower hydrogen sulfide levels. An iron filter may reduce water staining to eliminate red and clear water iron.

Smells Musty

Your water should not smell like it has been lying in your cellar for a week, but rather fresh and clean. Even if your water doesn’t smell like mold, it may have a musty odor.

There is a possibility that organics are contaminating your water and making it smell musty.

What You Need To Do

A water treatment specialist can assist you in disinfecting your drainage system, including your softener, in removing the musty odor. Otherwise, use the instructions in your water softening system’s owner’s handbook to sanitize it.

Reverse osmosis (RO) systems from Brita Total 360 may minimize the musty odor in your drinking water if you notice it regularly.

Tastes Like Metal

You may be experiencing a metallic taste in your water because ancient metal pipes have slowly degraded your water supply over time. After years of usage, manganese, zinc, iron, or copper may be eroding. Although these metal traces are generally safe, they might impart a metallic taste to your water. It is well known that clear water iron has a metallic flavor.

Lead is also a potential in the water; however, lead has no taste or odor at average concentrations. In the 1920s, most major cities phased out lead plumbing due to its toxicity. However, it wasn’t until 1986 that lead pipes were outlawed under national plumbing standards.

Preserving your family’s health by reducing lead exposure in your house may be accomplished with the use of an effective filtering system. Your water may have a metallic taste since it has a weak pH level (less than 7).

Having a low pH indicates that your water is acid, which may lead to corrosion of your pipes and a metallic taste.

What You Need To Do

Installing an osmosis unit may remove your water supply’s metallic taste or lead. Softeners may also help remove the metallic taste of using clear water with iron in it.

A neutralizing filter may be necessary to bring your water supply to an average pH level.

Is It Safe To Drink Water That Smells Like Plastic?

Drinking water with such a flavor isn’t harmful, but it’s not pleasant either. Even if you’ve already done this and are still worried, you should speak with your water provider for more guidance.


Water heater odors have a detrimental impact on quality of life. Freshwater is essential for a safe and habitable house. Detecting and resolving issues with water heaters may be difficult for the average individual. There will be a lot of money spent on plumbing or electrical work. Fortunately, a home warranty can protect you against these unanticipated expenses.

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