It is essential to have warm, running water for everyday use in most households. An average person utilizes water of varying warmth at least 20 times per day for cooking, washing dishes, laundry, baths, and showers. When this is multiplied by the number of people in the household, the magnitude of water heater demands becomes clearer.
Eventually, you’ll see signs that the water heater needs replacing. Even the best traditional water heaters usually have a life span of no more than 12 years, though tankless models can last as long as 20. You can prolong the usefulness of your water heater through maintenance and timely repairs, but the chances are that you’ll soon need to replace your current tank if you’ve been using it for eight years or more. It is, therefore, essential for a Colorado homeowner to identify the signs that indicate it’s time for water heater replacement.
Water Heater Leak
As the water heater approaches the end of its life span, you may start seeing pools of water on the floor near the tank. If you see water, it can only mean that you have a leak. Depending on the location of the water heater in the house, water leaks can cause significant property damage. As such, a severe water heater leak could be a very problematic issue.
Cause of Water Leaks
Often, water leaks occur because of an expansion of the metal used to make the tank. The expansion happens over long periods when the inner body tank is exposed to countless heating cycles. When the tank gets a crack, the gap is usually not big enough to leak water, especially when the tank is not in use. But, when the tank starts to heat water, the metal expands, enlarging the crack where water leaks through.
A water leak could also be caused by loose fittings or connections to the tank. Check these areas for signs of a water leak. If you notice water around the connections or fittings, you must call in a plumber to assess the issue. You can turn to us at High 5 Plumbing in Denver to examine your water heater fittings and connections. If the problem is in the connections and fittings, it could be rectified by adjusting and tightening them, but a leaking water tank has no remedy except replacement.
While steel is among the most robust materials globally, it is prone to rust. When corrosion attacks a steel surface, it spreads and eats through the water heater tank in particular spots. Rust is a significant sign of looming leaks on steel water tanks and pipes. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to know if the rust is from the pipes leading to your faucet or the water heater. Rust is an urgent issue that needs an immediate remedy to sanitize your household water.
When hot water coming through bathtub and sink faucets is rusty, there is a high probability that the water heater itself is rusting out. Rusting is inevitable with heaters that are past their expiration date. It can occur in any water heater.
If you notice rust around the pressure relief valve or water inlet on your heater, the rust may have spread inside the tank. The best option is a tank replacement without delay. An aging water heater cannot be saved when rust is in the picture.
If your taps dispense rusty water, it could be a problem with the pipes. If your water pipes are made from galvanized steel, aging can cause the formation of rust on the inside. The problem can be noticed in tubs and sinks when it gets intense.
To determining if rust is coming from your water tank or pipes, drain a few buckets of hot water out of the tank. If rusty water still comes out by the third bucket, the problem is with the tank. It would be best to replace the water heater because you will soon notice water leaks as the rust continues to erode the steel.
Water Heater Noise
Another revealing sign of a faulty water heater is noise coming from the tank. After years of use, you will hear rumbling noises from the tank as it heats the water. If your household consumes large amounts hot water, the problem could be even more evident. Noise from the water heater is basically due to sediment buildup.
As an old water heater continues to heat and reheat water, sediment forms at the bottom of the tank. Eventually, the sediment grows thicker and hardens along the tank floor. Sediment rapidly wears on a water heater, leading to the device being inefficient.
Sediment buildup in a water heater makes it consume more energy because of increased strain when heating water. Also, the additional time to heat water can make the tank brittle, which hastens the probability of crack formation. When you hear noise from your water heater caused by sediment accumulation, it often indicates that the tank will leak.
However, you can stop the damage caused by sediment by flushing the heater. Your water heater tank should be flushed at least once a year by a professional plumber. This drains the sediment to enable the tank to work more efficiently. With an annual tank flush, the heater will probably function properly for its entire projected life span. It’s advisable to have licensed plumbing professionals like those from High 5 Plumbing do the flushing.
If there is still noise after flushing the sediment, the water heater has a more severe problem. Healthy water heaters do not make noise, and if one rumbles or creaks despite regular flushing, it’s probably on the verge of a leak or crack. Therefore, the water heater should be replaced with urgency.
A Variation in Water Temperature
Another sign that your heater needs replacing is a variation in the water temperature. Sediment buildup and issues with the heating element can cause the water heater to stop being reliable in producing hot water.
The most probable association between reduced water heat and a need for water heater replacement emerges when the tank gets too small for the household. Suppose there has been an increase in the number of people in the household over the past six months. You probably have a higher hot water demand than your water heater can deliver. If this is the case, now would be an excellent time to replace your water heater with another one better equipped to meet your current household’s usage demands.
Water Heater Replacement in Denver
Water is an essential resource that is used in every household. In many of these daily uses, the water is required to have some degree of warmth. So, when the water heater stops working for whatever reason, the problem should be resolved as soon as possible for the comfort of all the household’s members.
In Denver, CO, residents call High 5 Plumbing for issues with their plumbing needs. In areas surrounding Front Range communities, our service and maintenance crews help with your water heater, drains, sewer lines, and other components of your home plumbing system. Reach out to us when faced with a clogged toilet, blocked drain, or burst pipe. Call us today for any of your plumbing issues.