Uh-oh! You’ve turned on the shower, you’ve waited, and you’ve waited some more. There’s still no hot water, so you check the sink faucet. And then the one in the kitchen.
Seems like your water heater might be on the fritz. Are you looking for water heater repair or a total replacement? Here’s how to tell.
What’s Wrong With Your Water Heater Exactly?
There are several issues that can cause your water heater to conk out, and some of them are very simple (and inexpensive!) fixes. So don’t panic.
See if you can diagnose the problem yourself before resigning yourself to a water heater replacement.
The Pilot Light is Out
If you’ve ever had a gas stove, you know that sometimes a pilot light can just be extinguished. Some water heaters have a push-button style pilot light, while others require you to get down on hands and knees with a barbecue lighter.
Is your water heater electric? Check the breaker. Many heaters are hooked up to their own power box, so it’s possible you’ve lost current to the heater but not to anything else in the home (like your lights!).
If flipping the breaker does the trick, you’ve spared yourself water heater repair and replacement. In some cases, the breaker might keep tripping, which is probably due to elements within the heater itself that are burned out. You will want to call in the pros for this fix.
Faulty wiring in a thermostat can result in little or no hot water. Unless someone turned the thermostat down without your knowledge, a malfunctioning thermostat can only be addressed by water heater repair.
You’ve Got Leaks
Leaks don’t necessarily mean your water heater is beyond repair. If the tank itself is leaking, then yes, you are probably looking at a replacement. Corrosion caused by mineral deposits, as well as general wear-and-tear, will eventually require you to spring for a new water heater.
Yet the pipes, the gaskets, and the pressure relief valve are all possible sources of leaks, and these are relatively easy for a plumber to remedy.
How Old Is the Heater?
Can’t remember the last time you replaced your heater?If you have to think — or check your records — it was probably at least a decade ago. A water heater that’s older than 10 or 12 years will likely need to be replaced.
Of course, you can call a plumber for a water heater repair, but that’s a gamble. If you find yourself in the same predicament six months or a year from now, you’ll wish you hadn’t taken the risk. Sometimes the old heater is just done, and needs to be replaced.
Any Other Problems?
If you have noticed that your water is dirty, foul-smelling, or rusty, that may be a sign that you need a new water heater. Nasty water can be caused by other problems, though, so have a pro come check things out.
Suspect You Need Water Heater Repair?
Your family depends on a steady supply of hot water for hygiene and comfort. If the water’s only running cold and you’ve tried all the simple DIY steps we mentioned, you may be due for heater repair or replacement.
Give us a call, day or night!We can help you determine the best course of action.