We all need hot water for cooking, bathing and washing. However, water heaters sometimes malfunction and this can be uncomfortable, especially during the colder season. Thankfully, there are signs to look out for when the water heater is about to fail. We’ll talk about them in this article but if you’re already having issues with your water heater, please don’t hesitate to contact an emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX.
Signs It’s Time to Get a Water Heater Repair
How do you know it’s time to call an emergency plumber for water heater repair? Watch out for the signs below:
Age of the Water Heater
A tank-type water heater can last 7-10 years while a tankless water heater can last up to 20 years. If yours is more than seven years old, we recommend calling an emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX, for an inspection. We can help you determine if it’s best to keep your old water heater or get a new one.
You can extend the life of your water heater with proper maintenance. It usually involves draining the unit to get rid of the sediment buildup in the tank. The mineral buildup can affect the efficiency of your water heater and reduce its lifespan. In a worst-case scenario, it can damage the tank and lead to a catastrophic leak.
You Run Out of Water
If you don’t get hot water at all, that’s a clear indication your water heater could be failing. We recommend calling an emergency plumber immediately for assistance. The minerals settling at the bottom of the tank can also leave you with less hot water. It could also lead to clogged or corroded valves, which can result in an even bigger problem. To avoid calling a plumber for a costly repair or replacement, know how to properly care for your water heater. It’s also best to get it professionally maintained.
A leaky water heater tank can do catastrophic damage to your basement. It doesn’t just involve buying and installing a new tank, but you will have to deal with mold and repairing/buying appliances stored in your basement.
If you see water near your water heater, it’s an indication that it’s failing. It’s possible for the leak to come from the pipes, and in this case, there is no need to replace the water heater. If the tank is damaged, you will have no choice but to get a new unit. This is why we advise homeowners to properly care for their water heater. If you neglect proper maintenance, expect to pay more for repairs and replacement.
If you’re worried about leaks in the basement, consider getting a tankless water heater for your home. These units can be mounted on the bathroom wall, saving you space. While they cost more than the conventional water heater, you conserve more energy as it’s a heat-on-demand. You save more money in the long run.
Fluctuating Water Temperature
When your hot water is inconsistent, the problem could either be the thermostat or your unit. To help you determine what’s causing the problem, check first if you’ve already drained the mineral buildup in your tank. The problem could also be due to an aging water heater. Replace a water heater that’s more than 10 years old. Call an emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX, for the installation.
The heating elements of your water heater could be broken when there are noises coming from the unit. It’s best to immediately call a plumber for an inspection. Our team can give you a proper diagnosis and cost-effective plumbing solutions.
Low Water Pressure
This could only be the sediment buildup in your tank. Drain your water heater to fix the problem. If it doesn’t work, contact an emergency plumber, for assistance. There could be a leak somewhere in your plumbing as well. We recommend checking for any leaks or hiring a plumber for professional leak detection.
The water that comes out of your tap or shower should be odorless. When it smells like rotten eggs or rust, we suggest calling a professional plumber to inspect your water heater. But before you do this, consider draining your water heater first. Call a professional if it doesn’t correct the problem.
It’s okay to contact an emergency plumber for water heater repair once in a while, but if you keep calling for repairs, it might be more cost-effective to get a replacement. Speak with a professional for an inspection. We can help you determine if it’s best to keep your water heater or buy a new one.
What Type of Water Heater Should I Install in My Home?
If you’re thinking of getting a water heater replacement, below are some of your options. For installation, please make sure to only hire a licensed emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX.
Conventional water heater – You need a storage tank for storing the water. This type of unit isn’t the most energy-efficient because you are using energy to constantly heat the water. One of its advantages though is the cost — compared to other types of water heater, the tank type is the most affordable. For installation, please only hire a licensed emergency plumber in your area.
Tankless water heater – Also called an on-demand water heater, you only heat the water as you need it. Compared to the conventional water heater, this unit is more energy-efficient. There is no standby heat loss as you are not constantly heating the water.
Solar water heaters – Instead of using electricity or gas, you use the sun’s heat for your hot water. It’s a more energy-efficient option for homeowners.
Heat pump water heaters – This type of unit doesn’t generate heat directly; instead, it moves heat from one place to another. It’s another energy-efficient option for homeowners.
If you have more questions about your water heater, please don’t hesitate to contact an emergency plumber in your area.
How to Select the Right Unit to Install in Your Home
There are factors to consider when choosing the most suitable water heater for your household needs:
Size – You need to purchase the right size to provide you with enough hot water and maximize energy efficiency. We recommend calling an emergency plumber for assistance.
Fuel type, cost, availability – Choosing the fuel type affects the efficiency of your water heater. Call an emergency plumber to help you with this.
Energy-efficiency – If you want to save money, get an energy-efficient water heater. To know more about your options, contact an emergency plumber today.
Cost – While the price matters, it’s not the main factor to consider. For example, the tankless water heater may cost more in purchasing the unit and installing it. However, you get to also save money in the long run because it’s more energy-efficient.
What’s the Best Fuel Type for My Water Heater?
Some of these fuel types below may not be available in some areas.
Electricity – Widely available for tank-type heaters, tankless water heaters and heat pump water heaters.
Fuel oil – Some areas in the US use fuel oil for their conventional water heaters.
Natural gas – Available in most areas for tank-type heaters and tankless water heaters.
Geothermal – Ideal if you already have a geothermal heat pump system installed in your home.
Solar energy – Available in the US but this can be expensive.
Speak with an emergency plumber to help you decide what fuel type is best for your water heater.
Should You Switch to Tankless Water Heaters?
Water heaters don’t last forever; you will have to replace them at some point. If your goal is to maximize energy savings, we recommend installing a tankless water heater. For installation, hire a licensed emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX, to ensure the unit is properly installed.
Benefits of tankless water heaters:
You get instant hot water – One of the advantages of tankless water heaters is you get hot water instantly. Compared to conventional water heaters, there is no need to wait for several minutes for your hot water. Hot water is available as soon as you turn on the tap or the shower.
However, it’s still important to install the right size to ensure you never run out of hot water. We recommend speaking with an emergency plumber today to help you decide on the flow rate that your family needs.
Lasts longer – Compared to the tank-type water heaters, the tankless version can last up to 20 years, especially when it’s properly maintained. This means there is no need to keep buying a water heater every 7 or 10 years. For installation, do make sure to only hire a licensed emergency plumber. Problems can also arise for water heaters that were not properly installed.
The only downside is that they cost more than conventional water heaters. But because they are more energy-efficient, you get to save more money in the long run.
No standby heat loss – If you have a storage tank at home, you know it’s important to constantly heat your water. Otherwise, it will take forever to get hot water in your home. With the tankless version, the water is heated only when you need it. You conserve more energy as a result. This means lower utility bills every month and the savings can add up.
Saves space – No need to worry about freeing up space in the basement; you can mount the tankless water heater on your bathroom wall.
Some homeowners prefer to install tankless water heaters to avoid catastrophic water heater leaks in the basement. With this installed in your home, you don’t have to worry about leaks in your basement. We do recommend you install a sump pump especially when you live in a high-risk area. Contact an emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX, to help with the installation.
Tax breaks – Are you aware that you may be able to save on the installation cost when you purchase an Energy Star water heater? Speak to a professional if this is available in your area.
Longer warranties – Because they last longer, this means you get a longer warranty too. Just make sure to get professional installation or your warranty may be void. Don’t install the water heater on your own as you might end up damaging your unit.
To maximize your savings, consider installing low-flow plumbing fixtures including a dual flush toilet. Also, invest in an energy-efficient washing machine or dishwasher. It may cost you more but you get to save money in the long run. For installation, please only hire a licensed plumber.
Why Contact bluefrog Plumbing + Drain + HVAC of San Antonio for Water Heater Installation?
Tankless water heaters may require a higher upfront investment on the unit and installation. But remember, you conserve more energy with the tankless water heater. The savings can add up over time and you won’t have to buy another unit every few years. We do recommend that you only hire a licensed emergency plumber in San Antonio, TX, for the installation of your new unit.
And this is where we come in. bluefrog Plumbing + Drain + HVAC of San Antonio is a trusted and leading plumbing company in your area serving both residents and businesses. Our plumbers can help you make an informed decision on what water heater is suitable for your home; we can help you find the right size and fuel type. Most importantly, we can help you correctly install the unit.
In addition to water heaters, our team can help with any plumbing repairs, installation and maintenance. We can help with professional drain cleaning and leak detection as well. Let us know what you need and we will quickly send a plumber to your location. Call today for an appointment.