4 Super Common Hot Water Heater Problems

A hot shower or bath after a long day is one of life’s little luxuries. But what happens if you turn on the faucet and the water is lukewarm at best? And when you go inspect the hot water heater, you find that the tank has seen better days.

How can you tell that your tank is in need of some good old TLC in the form of hot water heater repair? It’s not as tricky as it might seem. Check out the 4 common hot water heater problems below.

  1. It’s reaching the end of the hot water heater lifespan.

Most hot water heaters last around 10 years or so. If yours is nearing hot water heater old age, it’s time to start thinking about replacing it–even if you haven’t noticed any of the other problems listed below. Of course, regular maintenance and check-ups can increase longevity.

Not sure exactly how old yours is? Check out the serial number on the tank; it will include the manufacture date. Unfortunately, it’s not simply listed in a month/day/year format.

The serial number might look like this: “F071832983.” The letter, “F” is the sixth letter of the alphabet. This stands for the sixth month in the year, or, June. The next two numbers, “07,” stand for the year it was manufactured. So a hot water heater with this serial number was manufactured in June 2007.

Most serial numbers will follow this format, but it can depend on the manufacturer. If you’re unsure, contact the manufacturer.

  1. There are unusual noises coming from the closet.

No, it’s not a scary monster hiding in there. If you hear clanking or thumping noises emanating from your hot water heater, it could be caused by a couple of things. A malfunctioning tank could mean that valves could be shutting on and off, causing strange noises. Another cause could be sediment buildup, which leads to rumbling noises when the water heats up.

  1. Sediment buildup is bad (but normal!) news.

As your water heater ages, it’s perfectly normal for sediment to accumulate on the bottom of the tank. The sediment will harden and cause a whole slew of issues that come between you and a relaxing, hot shower.

In addition to causing strange noises, the sediment buildup makes your hot water heater less efficient. It requires more energy to heat up the water and eventually will limit the hot water your tank can create. Ever experienced rapid changes in water temperature and hot water that runs out quickly? Sediment buildup is a likely culprit.

  1. Cloudy water, rusty water, leaky tanks, oh my!

If you turn on the hot water and notice cloudy water, this is likely caused by calcium and magnesium deposits in the tank. Notice rusty water? That’s caused by–you guessed it–rust in your tank. And if you spot a pool of water underneath the tank, there’s a leak. All of these issues signify that it’s time to replace your hot water heater.

Call Flatley’s Plumbing Express today

Do any of these common hot water heater problems apply to you? Don’t stress. Just call the experts at Flatley’s Plumbing Express.

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