Like most of your household utilities, you only really have to think about them when something goes wrong. When it comes to your hot water system, knowing when it’s time to skip the repairs and upgrade will save money and inconvenience in the long run.
Fortunately, it’s easy to identify when your hot water system is on its way out. Feel confident knowing you have chosen the right time to upgrade by watching out for these warning signs.
Of course, if you are ever unsure about a plumbing-related issue, get in touch with Oldmate ACT for reliable plumbing services in Canberra.
Where’s the Heat?
When you realise your hot water is not as hot as it should be it is a clear sign that something is up. This is made even worse when you discover that your hot water has ceased to heat up at all.
Here are the most common reasons as to how this can occur:
Broken Dip Tube –
The dip tube is where the incoming cold water enters the water heater tank. When it’s working properly, it allows cold water to safely travel to the bottom of the tank and start to heat up. When the dip tube fails, it leaves water at the top of the tank and is therefore unable to travel to the bottom to heat up, leaving you with cold tap water.
Sediment build-up in the tank –
Water that enters the water heater tank will often bring with it dissolved minerals along with sand and other debris. As the water is heating up in the tank, the debris settles at the bottom and over time it can affect the tank’s ability to heat up water.
Faulty water heater –
If you have an ageing water heater (around 8 – 12 years or older) or it has not been through a routine maintenance, any one of its many components inside can fail, including the thermal switch, heating element, or thermostat. Depending on the age and condition of your water heater, a licensed plumber may be able to diagnose and replace these individual parts without the need to upgrade the whole system.
An effective way to diagnose and fix the problem is to refer to the troubleshooting guide for your relevant make and model. Depending on the brand, you will find this info either on the company’s official website or in a physical copy of your instruction manual. You can also contact the manufacturer directly for further guidance.
If you are unable to find an answer and fix the problem yourself, contact your local plumber in Canberra for help. They will quickly diagnose and repair the source of the problem so you can enjoy a consistent source of hot water all year round.
What if your hot water system is near the end of its life? They will recommend a reliable and energy-efficient hot water system at the best possible price.
Popping and Rumbling Noises:
Your hot water system will naturally emit some noise as it generates heat. However, if you start to hear frequent popping and rumbling noises, it is an issue worth investigating. Fortunately, there is a simple answer for this problem.
Remember the issue of sediment build-up that was previously mentioned? Well, when the sediment drops to the bottom of the tank and the burner starts to heat it up, it results in a notable ‘popping’ noise. While the sound itself is not harmful, over the time the sediment will damage the heating element and/or weaken the steel tank and cause it to leak.
How do you fix such an issue? One way is to flush the electric heater tank. To do this, you have to flush out the old dirty water, and then allow a fresh supply of cold water to flow through the tank until the remaining sediment is removed.
Can you flush the tank yourself? Yes. However, the process itself can be a bit time-consuming. So if you don’t have the time or inclination to bother, then request a professional plumbing service in Canberra, who will gladly service your hot water system at an affordable price.
Another thing to remember is that flushing your hot water tank is not a replacement for a routine maintenance service. Always have your hot water system serviced at least once a year to ensure it is running at optimal efficiency and you get the maximum possible life out of your system.
Cloudy or Discoloured Water:
If you notice red, brown, or cloudy water coming out of the taps, it could be due to rust or corrosion either in the storage tank or the system’s pipes. Aside from being visually unappealing, having rust in your water supply is unhealthy to drink and it can even discolour your dishes and laundry.
Before you jump to the conclusion that your hot water system is the culprit, check to see if your neighbour’s water supply is also discolouring. If so, then it could be an issue with the community water supply, and it should eventually resolve itself after you let the faucet’s run for around 15 to 20 minutes.
However, if the problem is isolated to only your home, the problem is either a rusty pipe or a build-up of rust in your hot water system. One way to resolve the issue is to flush out your hot water heater and clear out all the sediment at the bottom of the tank. If the water is still discoloured after you do this, then it may be time to replace the whole system.
Of course, you should not rule out the possibility that a rusty pipe is the root of the problem. Regardless, you will need to call a licensed plumber to either investigate the pipe or upgrade your hot water system.
On a suitable day and time, an Oldmate ACT plumber will investigate your plumbing system, locate the source of the problem, and propose a fast and effective solution – allowing you to enjoy a consistently fresh supply of water again.
Got a hot water issue? For a professional and reliable plumbing service in Canberra, call 02 6254 6576. Alternatively, fill out the online form to get a fast and friendly response.