Your hot water system is perhaps one of the most valued and relied upon items in your home. Hot water is a god sent for washing dishes or clothes and of course a steaming hot shower to start or end the day. The kids may love to frolic in a nice warm bath to wash away the day’s adventures, whilst a blissful soak in the tub may help other occupants of the home unwind and relax after a stressful day.
There may be times when the trusted tank isn’t doing quite what she should be doing. It might be time to call your local Plumbers In Town to investigate the matter and repair the issues or it could be the exact moment you need to get rid of the old and bring in a shiny new system.
As much as we may view the giant tank out back as being indestructible and long lasting, they do have use by dates. Here are some reasons you may need to get out with the old and in the new.
1. She’s a bit of an old duck.
Generally, most residential hot water systems have a shelf life of approximately 10 years. Check the date of installation on the sticker residing on the top half of the system. Although she might still be kicking along a few years after this date, there may be other signs she’s not doing so well. After the 12-year mark, issues may start to occur and from then it’s often a downward spiral.
2. The water isn’t quite getting hot enough.
If you’ve adjusted your thermostat and the water is still warm or cold rather than hot, then it’s indicative that the heating element might be on its last legs.
3. The water flow is low.
If you’re noticing reduced flow in your taps and showers when you turn on the hot water, it might be a sign of either plumbing issues or sediment build up in your hot water tank. It generally means the water is struggling to make the journey through all the pipes and into your plumbing area. This might be blocked drains or other issues, but if it’s multiple taps and the shower, it’s more likely your hot water system.
4. The water smells, has a strange colour or contains rust.
If you start to notice odd and offensive smells emitting from your hot water taps in your bath, shower or sinks, it can be due to a variety of reasons. It might be some rust or bacteria located in your water tank or it may be an issue with the internal anode rod.
5. She’s making all kinds of weird noises.
If you hear your hot water system make lots of rumbling, cracking, gurgling and clanking noises, it’s usually a sign that the system is about to expire. These sounds may mean that the system is struggling to operate due to a buildup of sediment around the heater and it’s the sediment making the sounds as it gets hot.
6. There are puddles around your hot water system.
This is a safety hazard as well as probable major issue with your hot water system. Hot water systems are not meant to leak. E sure to check exactly where the water is coming from. It might be connectors or pressure overflow pipes which can be repaired. But, if it’s the unit itself, it’s time to invest in a new one.
7. The drain valve isn’t doing what it’s meant to.
As the years pass by, the bottom of your hot water system will be beginning to get sediment. As this build up grows it can begin to eat away at the inside of the tank and block the drain valve and stop water from coming out. If this can’t be rectified by opening the drain valve, then bite the bullet and purchase a new one.
8. The water tastes and smells metallic.
If you drink your tap water and begin to notice a change in the way the water smells and tastes, such as metallic or just different, it might be due to corrosion inside the tank or the heating elements beginning to rust. This is not good for your health or for your system. Call the professionals and get them to install a brand spanking new hot water system.
9. She’s always in need of some TLC.
A little repair here and there can extend the life of your hot water system, but if you find you’re needing this often and the system is a bit aged, it might be more worthwhile to get an upgrade.
10. She’s a bit on the rusty side.
If you’re noticing rust either in the outside or inside of the system or coming with the water out of the taps, it’s definitely time to retire the old lady. This rust can be quite corrosive and may damage your plumbing system, pipes as well as other items such as your dishwasher or washing machine.
This can result in some very costly repairs and upgrades as well as a new hot water system. It might be an idea to avoid the extra hassle and cost and call in the professionals.
11. Your needs have changed.
It might have been feasible having a smaller system when you were single or there were just two of you. But if you have a growing family and have upgraded other appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines to suit the increased number of household occupants, your system might not be able to keep up.
A sign of this might be that there is no hot water left at the end of the day or that you need to restrict the amount of hot water you use to prevent running out, you may need to get a bigger one put in.