Your home's water heater is one of the central appliances of your plumbing system, and without it you wouldn't be able to do most of the everyday tasks that you take for granted, from taking a shower to cleaning your clothes. Like all other appliances, water heaters can begin to degrade over time, which can negatively affect their performance and make leaks and other plumbing related problems much more likely. Understanding the warning signs of a failing water heater can help you contact a plumber about replacing your unit before it fails completely.
Discolored Hot Water
If you notice that the hot water coming out of your plumbing is discolored, your water heater is likely on its last legs and should be replaced as soon as possible. This points to either a significant buildup of sediment and minerals within your water heater's tank, which can severely reduce the efficiency of your water heater and result in high energy bills and a smaller supply of hot water or significant amounts of rust in the tank, which can make a leak a likely possibility. Either way, both of these issues are serious and should be addressed by a professional plumber as soon as possible before they progress any further.
Another easily noticeable sign that you need to consider replacing your water heater is if you hear extremely loud banging, grinding, or bumping sounds coming out of your water storage tank every time you use hot water in your home. This usually points to a layer of sediment within your water heater's tank, that heats up and expands when your water heater's heating element turns on. This can cause severe structural damage to your water heater's tank, and can also severely reduce the ability of your water heater's heating element to actually heat up water, which can cause your monthly energy bills to increase as well.
Water Around the Tank
Finally, the clearest indication that you need to get in touch with a plumbing contractor to have your water heater replaced is if you notice water pooling around the base of your storage tank. This points to a leak or structural damage to the tank, either due to rust or sediment, and means that the area around the tank has likely suffered from water damage. You'll have to have the entire unit replaced and the area inspected to see if you need to have any damage to the interior of your home repaired as well.
Contact a company like Johns Plumbing INC for more information and assistance.