It’s likely that you rarely think about your hot water heater. It’s down in your utility room, working away and you haven’t had any problems with it. When you do have a problem with your hot water heater it’s usually a big one that can’t be ignored! A failing hot water heater could mean a lot more than not having hot water. If your tank is more than 10 years old, it is likely starting to deteriorate and could cause a major flood in your home.
Here are 5 signs you need a new hot water heater:
1. Your hot water heater is leaking.
A leaky tank is a pretty obvious sign that it needs replacing. Deposits, rust and general wear and tear could cause the seams within your hot water tank, or even the bottom part of the tank itself, to start to leak. If your hot water tank is leaking from somewhere near the top of the tank, it is possible to have it repaired. If it is leaking from the bottom, it likely means you need a replacement.
If you notice water pooling in your utility room, do not wait to have your hot water heater replaced or repaired! It is not uncommon for older hot water tanks to blow out their bottoms completely. This will cause a major flood in your basement and extensive water damage to your home.
2. No hot water.
If you don’t have any hot water, it’s obvious your hot water heater is not doing its job. The first thing you should do is check that the pilot light is still lit. Learn how to light a hot water heater pilot light. If it looks like it’s operating properly but still not heating water, then you should call in a plumber to take a look and determine if you need a repair or replacement.
3. Noticeable rust and corrosion.
Most hot water tanks can withstand rust and corrosion for the length of their warranty, however homeowners tend to hang onto their old hot water heaters much longer. Overtime, any hot water heater can start to rust inside the tank. One common sign of this is a slight rust colouring or even a rust taste in your hot water. Since you can’t see what is happening inside your tank, it’s best to get it replaced if you see, smell or taste rust.
4. Your hot water heater is very old.
Most hot water heaters come with a warranty between 7 to 10 years depending on the manufacturer. There are some exceptions but generally older hot water tanks generally don’t last much longer than their warranty. If you have an older tank, or you’ve moved into an older house and don’t actually know how old your hot water heater is, you should have it checked by a plumber. Once you start to notice any of the above warning signs, you know it’s definitely time for a hot water heater replacement.
5. You don’t have enough hot water for your growing family.
Sometimes you don’t have to wait for your hot water heater to kick the bucket before considering a replacement. If you have a growing family and have noticed that your smaller tank isn’t providing enough hot water for your daily needs, you should consider replacing it with a larger tank or with a tankless hot water heater. Check out this helpful hot water heater buying guide to help you get started.
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