No homeowner looks forward to replacing appliances but, unfortunately, it’s a necessary aspect of the American dream. No appliance will run efficiently forever, no matter how well built it may be. The problem, however, isn’t always replacing the appliance; it’s knowing when it needs to be replaced.
As plumbers, we’ve seen many water heaters go bad and want to educate you to the warning signs to ensure the quality of your water.
Your water heater is more than ten years old.
As a general rule, plumbers suggest you start monitoring your water heater’s efficiency when it gets to be about ten years old. While some water heaters may fail before then, and others after, ten years is when the majority begin to go bad. That being said, if you notice any of the following warning signs before the ten-year mark, don’t ignore them and wait for the magic number ten.
Your water looks rusty or muddy.
If your water quality has deteriorated due to your water heater, it’s time for a replacement. How do you know your water heater is to blame for lower quality water? If your water quality only decreases when the hot water is on, your water heater is likely to blame. The heater is essentially rusting from the inside out, causing impure water to flow to your faucet. If left untreated, the water heater will eventually begin to leak. And, in the meantime, no one likes using dirty water.
You hear an unusual noise coming from the water heater.
Are you starting to hear strange rumbling or clanking noises from your water heater? That’s not a good sign. Over time, sediment builds at the bottom of the water heater’s tank and, after being heated and reheated repetitively, the sediment will harden. Not only is the noise annoying, it will also lead to less efficiency and more damage.
The water heater is leaking.
Any standing water around your water heater indicates that you need to contact a professional right away. The constant heating and reheating of the tank causes tiny fractures to form over time, allowing water to leak out. We hope you have a drain nearby or you may have a flooded basement on your hands.
As you can see, there are multiple warning signs your water heater may be going bad. If you still aren’t sure, always make sure to contact your local plumber to have the heater looked at by a professional.