Hot Water Heater Problems
No matter how old the hot water heater is, no matter how carefully we avoid periodically draining the tank to prevent mineral sediment, it always comes as a bit of a shock when we turn on the shower and the hot water comes out… cold. Eventually, a hot water heater will have to be repaired or replaced. It's better if 'eventually' takes a long time to arrive.
There are three things which age a hot water heater tank. The first is pressure. In a previous blog, we mention the hot water expansion tank, a creative, yet simple way for hot water to expand and contract in the tank without causing damage to your hot water heater or pipes. This is now in the building code in most areas, since backflow prevention devices have made it impossible for hot water from the tank to back up into the municipal water supply.
Mineral sediment is another cause of hot water tank failure since it will compromise the heating element. Sediment can be minimized by draining the tank completely about once a year. Some tank manuals call for the siphoning off of one gallon, but this has to be done every month.
High heat is also hard on the hot water heater. Since heating is its job, you wouldn’t think that would be the case, but it is. This becomes obvious when the liner cracks and the water bleeds into the steel tank. This quickly rusts, which means the hot water can come out rust-colored.
Your hot water heater isn't bleeding to death, but it's rusty and not long for this world.
Sometimes hot water heaters show us when they’re at the end of their life. If they leak, that’s an obvious sign that they’re done providing us with endless buckets of hot water. But, if the water develops a funny taste or smell, this could also mean the tank is nearing the end of its life. In some cases, the water may not be as hot as it once was, or the recovery period might be greater than it was before. If the unit begins to make banging noises, this is also a symptom of ultimate demise.
When the time comes to replace the tank, an assessment of its performance is in order before replacing it with a new one. Whether the tank is gas or electric, the friendly, licensed and bonded local plumber can replace it.
If you need a licensed plumber for a repair or any other plumbing in your Phoenix, Arizona home, you can schedule an American Discount Plumbing expert online or give us a call at 602-883-2787