Water heaters are an important but unseen component of our daily lives. Water heaters, like any other appliance, require routine maintenance and repair.
It is critical to recognize a problem with your water heater. Not only will identifying a problem help you avoid losing hot water, but it will also help you extend the life of your tank or tankless water heater.
Here’s how to tell if your water heater needs to be repaired.
Your Water Heater is Leaking
Normal condensation on the outside of your water heater is caused by the temperature of the water and the room in which it is located. When there is a steady dripping down the side of the unit or a puddle of water at the base, you should be concerned.
When metal is heated, it expands, and if it expands too much or too little over time, a break can form. There are several consequences for failing to address a leak. Carpet or another flooring, as well as any items near the water heater, may be damaged depending on where the unit is located.
A plumbing professional can inspect the entire unit to determine the source of the leak.
Rust-Colored Hot Water
If the rusty water is only coming from the hot temperature, there could be a problem inside the water tank. The pole inside the heater is made of metal and, if damaged, can rust. Rust in your water can be harmful to your health. So, if you notice rust or discoloration, contact a plumber right away.
Cloudy water can also indicate a problem with the water heater. Pour water into a clear glass to see how it looks if you’re suspicious. Also, smell it to see if there is anything that smells metallic.
Many of these problems are caused by mineral deposits that accumulate over time. Rust, on the other hand, indicates a more serious problem. If you notice rust even when the water is cold, the source is most likely in your pipes.
No Hot Water
This is probably the most obvious reason for requiring water heater repair services. The primary function of the unit is to heat water and either store it (in a tank water heater) or direct it to your faucet or showerhead (as with a tankless heater). When hot water arrives late, is only lukewarm, or does not arrive at all, it’s time to call a water heater expert.
Other factors may include poor performance. If you reduced the temperature of your heater, it would not produce hot water. However, if your water heater is running out of water faster than usual, there could be a more serious problem. It could be the element or the burner, which would not only cause damage but would also be costly more with your energy bills.
Similarly, low water pressure could indicate a problem. Mineral deposits from frequent use of the unit will accumulate and clog pipes over time. Blocked pipes can reduce water pressure, but they are frequently resolved with a thorough cleaning.
When to Replace Your Water Heater
A repair won’t always bring your water heater back to life. Alternatively, you may be spending money on repairs that never seem to solve the problem. If this is the case, it is possible that it is time to replace your water heater. Also, if your unit is more than ten years old, you should think about replacing it before it fails.
A new water heater provides several advantages, including increased efficiency and performance. (If you haven’t already, you have the option of switching to a tankless heater.)
How long do water heaters normally last?
A residential hot water heater typically lasts between 6 and 13 years. You’re on borrowed time after 12 years!
Should I replace a 15-year-old water heater?
If your tank water heater is more than ten years old, it might be time to replace it. A tank water heater tank should last six to twelve years if properly maintained. A tankless water heater has a lifespan of over 20 years. For the most up-to-date timelines, consult your water heater’s warranty.
How do I know if my water heater needs to be replaced?
Here are five indications that your home requires a new water heater.
- Your old water heater is getting on in years.
- It’s making unusual noises.
- You’re getting rusty water from the faucet.
- Your hot water no longer lasts as long as it once did.
- There are puddles of water all around the unit.
Is it worth it to repair a hot water heater?
According to the 50% rule, if a repair costs 50% of what it would cost to replace it, you should replace it rather than repair it. Even if your current repair does not equal 50% of the cost of a new water heater, you should consider the frequency of repairs and the age of your water heater.
What is the average life of a water heater?
While the average water heater has a lifespan of about ten years, careful consideration of the factors affecting its lifespan can provide the InterNACHI home inspector and the homeowner with information about the potential costs of replacing the water heater.
Can I take a shower if my water heater is leaking?
If your water heater installation is leaking, avoid taking a shower until the problem is resolved. You can avoid any potential accidents or further damage to your home this way.
How long does a 50 gallon water heater last?
A 50-gallon water heater has a lifespan of 8 to 20 years, which is longer than the lifespan of most water heaters. A difference of 10 gallons may not appear to be significant. Choosing a 50-gallon water heater, on the other hand, means selecting a more cost-effective water heater.
What shortens the life of a water heater?
The hot water inside the tank quickly corrodes if there is no rod or if the rod is not properly functioning. This significantly reduces its lifespan.
Do water heaters normally leak?
Water heaters are durable, but even the best ones can leak. A leaking water heater does not necessitate replacement, but any leaks should be repaired as soon as possible. Even a small amount of water can cause significant damage, so assess the situation as soon as possible.
Does draining water heater help?
According to The Family Handyman, sediment accumulates in the bottom of a water heater over time, causing clogs. According to the DIY Network, draining a water heater helps flush out this sediment, which is usually made up of minerals and other debris and can cause it to malfunction.
Does flushing water heater extend life?
It can lead to premature problems over time. You can avoid these issues and extend the life of your water heater by draining and flushing it, which takes about 30 minutes and makes a significant difference in the efficiency of your tank water heater.
How do you break the sediment out of a hot water heater?
Sediment or scale can sometimes clog the drain valve, preventing water from draining. To remove all sediment, open and close the drain valve three times. Compressed air can also be used to force sediment out of the drain and back into the tank. If you are unsure what to do or are experiencing difficulties, contact a plumber.