It may be summer, but we know that doesn’t mean you want to take an ice-bath or wash dishes in frozen water. Summer is just as important a time as any for hot water: it kills germs, disinfects, and gets you and your home as clean as possible.
So, if you are in hot water with your hot water, here are some helpful hints thanks to professional plumbers and the folks at Michigan State University.
When You Have No Hot Water
It might be too old.
Most hot water heaters last over a decade. If yours is older, that might be your problem. An old hot water heater is going to cause problems and may not be worth the financial investment of fixing it. Many experts suggest replacing them entirely every 7 years. If you feel like yours is still useful but leaking, it might be an easy fix, or you could have a defective model.
It might be your thermostat.
We know, it sounds obvious but you know the old saying about hoof beats? Think horses, not zebras. The thermostat is the biggest horse. If the number on your thermostat does not match the outcome you are feeling in your water, you’ll want to check your thermostat. Older models should not spin like loose wheels, they should settle on specific temperatures. If you live in an apartment, check with other tenants to see how they are fairing if you share a thermostat. If they are suffering too, and the thermostat is set to the wrong temperature be sure to test your thermostat throughout the year and replace it if necessary to avoid problems.
There may not be enough water.
Just like with video games, sometimes you need an old school do-over. Depending on the model of your thermostat and water heater, there is likely a “reset” button. You may need to push the reset button on the high temperature cutoff. After the water heater has been reset, hopefully the hot water will return.
You’ve got build-up
Sometimes nasty sediment can build up in your water tank and your heater’s effectiveness and longevity suffers. This can happen over years of wear and tear and unfortunately, by the time you’ve diagnosed the problem, it may be too late. Like your health, sediment build up is about prevention to avoid future damage. You can slow down hard water build up by lowering the water temperature to 130 degrees. If you are too late, you may need to have the water heater replaced.