There is nothing worse than hopping in a warm shower only to have to quickly rinse off in water that feels like its straight from the Arctic. While it may be a funny story to tell, hot water tank problems are no joke, and lack of hot water could be just the beginning of many problems. Understanding common hot water tank problems and how they can be fixed by a professional could save you from icy showers in the future.
Problem 1: Leaks
The first indication that your hot water tank has a leak is a puddle of water either near the tank or coming through the ceiling under the tank. The severity of the problem depends as much on the age of the reservoir as it does on the reason for the leak. Once a hot water tank reaches six years, most leaks are irreversible. Often the cause of the problem is either a slit in the sidewall seam or a welding joint. Other possible causes include a rusted-through steel thread.
In any case, the only sensible repair is to have the water tank replaced. In newer water tanks, it is more common for the problem to be associated with loose joints between the pipes leading to and from your hot water tank or with the pressure relief valve. In this case, the problem can be fixed by a professional who can check and tighten any joints between pipes, and replace the pressure valve if needed.
Problem 2: No Hot Water
Once you have recovered from your early morning freeze, it is time to find out why you suddenly have no hot water. The first thing to check, is that you have power; no power means no way to heat the water in your tank. If power is not the problem, then it is time to look at the tank itself. The most common hot water tank problems are either a faulty pilot or problems with the thermocouple. Your first step should be to try to relight the pilot. This is something you can do yourself; however if it won’t relight, you should contact an expert. Continued problems with the pilot light may mean that the control valve needs replacing.
If the pilot is not the problem, the thermocouple may need to be tightened, repositioned or replaced. It is best to let an expert handle this operation.
Problem 3: Not Enough Hot Water
If you are constantly running out of the hot water, the first thing to consider is whether your tank is suitable for you and your family’s needs. If your water needs have changed, consider a new water heating system that is more suitable. If your needs have not changed, the problem could be either faulty plumbing or a damaged dip tube. Faulty plumbing can allow the hot and cold water connections to become crossed, and when you are expecting hot water you are getting cold and vice versa. You can check this by tracing back your pipes from either a tap or your household appliances. If your appliances are wrongly plumbed, this could be a simple self-fix. For faucets or showers however, it is safer to get an expert who knows exactly what they are doing.
Hot water tank problems are often easy to fix, so don’t hesitate to contact Climate Experts today for more information, advice, or a free quote.