Hot water is not a big issue when it’s the middle of the summer. However, with fall and winter, we start noticing that the hot water isn’t so hot anymore and that we may have an issue with a water heater or hot water tank. Water heaters are one of the most important elements of any home, as you can see here.
So, it’s important to pay attention to the signs of your water heater failing you early on so that you know when it’s time to fix it, replace it and get a new one. You don’t want to be caught off guard in the middle of the chilly winter.
Knowing when’s the right time to replace your water heater or fix it can make a huge difference between you spending a ton of time and money and not.
Here are some common situations with water heaters and how to deal with them.
No Hot Water
Have you ever taken a shower and just knew there won’t be enough hot water for the other person to shower too? Or washed the dishes and there was no hot water left over for you to shower?
That’s a common problem. It happens because the water heater is not big enough to serve all purposes in the home. It can be really annoying to anyone living with other people or needing water for multiple things. Your water heater may not be producing enough water as well, and here’s why: https://www.thespruce.com/water-heater-not-enough-hot-water-4103883
Of course, the logical explanation is to get a new water heater, a larger one, that can support your entire household. You could also call a professional and ask them to help you pick one or solve your problem. Your water heater can be draining your power and wasting your money. It could also cause problems and it can be dangerous, so call an expert as soon as possible.
A professional can also drain your water tank, clean it and improve its efficiency. They can replace any broken or worn out parts.
The Temperature Varies
This is another common issue. Do you often experience an even where the water is hot for a while, then cold and so on? These fluctuations are easy to ignore because sometimes they don’t even represent a problem. However, this can be a sign that there is a bigger issue.
Handling it right away prevents huge costs and a lot of trouble.
For one, you can make sure that your thermostat is set to the right temperature. So, you would lower the thermostat if it’s too hot. Remember the setting and check if the thermostat perhaps turned on its own.
If the temperature still varies between too hot or too cold – and nothing changed on the thermostat – you will likely have to replace the thermostat and possibly your water heater. It’s also bad if your showers are always mild, even when you try to turn it to hotter. In this case, there might be a problem with your upper water heater.
At this point, you should look for help from a professional.
You should also consider getting a bigger water heater if your water always runs out. For instance, households with more than three members should have a water heater of about 50 gallons.
Water Heater Leaking
If you notice that water is dripping from your water heater at any point, this can signal some serious trouble. This usually means that there’s a big problem.
There is nothing you could or should do. Safety is the most important thing, so you should contact a professional that can deal with this sort of issue. They will disconnect electricity or gas from the water heater and inspect it to see where the leak came from.
Their inspection will involve screws and connectors, pipes and inlets. These often come loose and they can be tightened back.
Condensation is normal but a bigger leak means that some serious work will have to be done.
Usually, your water heater will have to be replaced, as you can see here.
Reduced Water Flow
If your flow is slowing down, you are probably dealing with a sediment buildup. This can be located in the unit itself or in the pipes and plumbing. And even though it doesn’t sound too scary, it’s not something to be ignored. You need to deal with it as soon as possible.
Call a professional who will drain your tank and clean the sediment, inspect the pipes and fix any issues that might exist.
It might be worth to mention that having regular maintenance will prevent any issues and cleaning the sediment can be included in the maintenance.
If your water tank is making weird sounds, then there’s something wrong. Sounds can be anything from loud pops, cracks, bangs, boiling and so on. These are produced by the sediment which is burning inside the tank. It can also be a sign that your water heater needs replacement.
Boiling sounds may be the worst because they signal that there is some really bad overheating.
In this case, you may have to replace your water heater. There are good sources for that like Garry Richard’s Water Heaters Only, where you can find numerous types of water heaters. Calling a professional is always the best way to go as it can save you a lot of trouble and keep you safe.
If you notice any strange discolorations or odors, there might be bacteria in your water heater. The first step to fixing it is calling a professional that would check where the bacteria is coming from and then find a solution.
Finally, remember that electrical issues are not to be handled on your own. Your water heater needs care from someone who knows what they are doing, and you need to remain safe. So, as soon as you notice something abnormal, call someone skilled in dealing with water heaters and see what they have to say.