A home’s hot water heater will go through a lot of use to ensure you have regular access to hot water. Hot water heaters operate by using a thermostat, which detects the temperature of the water and when it needs warming up, the heater will engage. Hot water heaters in most homes will run quite often. Because they see so much use, hot water heaters can often need repair or must be replaced entirely to prevent water leaks.
Common Hot Water Heater Issues
Although hot water heaters can often last many years, there comes a time when their parts break down and they are at risk of complete failure. In these cases, you will need a professional plumber who can either repair existing parts, or replace your unit entirely.
The following are some of the most common hot water heater issues we encounter:
Water Temperature Problems
One of the most common problems you will encounter with your hot water heater is the water temperature becoming too cold or even too hot. If the water is not hot enough, then the issue may be as simple as replacing your heater’s thermostat, which is what regulates the water temperature.
Sometimes when you run the hot water in your home it may be warm, but not hot enough. This may occur if someone or several people just took a hot shower. Perhaps they used up all the hot water, and the water heater will take time to heat up more of it. An easy fix for this problem is to install a larger hot water heater tank. This will greatly increase the capacity of hot water that is available for your home.
If the water is coming out too hot, then it is likely that your heater’s thermostat is set too high. Simply lower it a bit until you reach the desired temperature for your water.
Leaking Hot Water Heater
Because your hot water heater tank holds a great deal of water there can be potential for leaks if certain parts begin to fail. There are many parts that can cause a leak if they become faulty such as a bad value, gasket or water connection. Any sort of water leak involving your hot water heater should be taken very seriously. If it becomes worse, all of the water contained in the tank may evacuate, which means all that water will be on your floor.
You may want to upgrade to a newer model hot water heater. Or, you can convert your home to a “tankless” hot water heating system. This system allows water to be heated as it flows through your hot water pipes, meaning no tank is needed. It also takes up much less space than a traditional hot water heater.
Water Discoloration Or Strange Noises
If you notice that your hot water is discolored, typically a rusty color, then this could indicate that there is corrosion within your water tank’s lining. This issue is typically caused by an anode rod going bad. Perhaps simply replacing this part will solve the problem, or you may need a new hot water heater.
Whenever you hear strange noises coming from your hot water heater you should take note of them. The most common cause is sediment building up within the hot water heater system. This may especially be a concern if you live in an area with hard water, meaning your water has an unusual amount of mineral in it. Flushing out your hot water heater may solve it, or the tank will need to be replaced.