When Hot Water Heaters decide it’s time to quit, they don’t always send in a quiet resignation letter – sometimes they stand up and scream, “I’M DONE!”. While they may be persuaded to work a while longer, other times they’re gone for good. They might leave a flood of water to be cleaned up on their way out the door, too.

* How do you know if your hot water heater is thinking about quitting?
* No hot water, of course, is a sure sign.
* Water on the floor around the hot water heater (hopefully, not all of the water).
* The water has an odd smell or is off-colored.
* Noisy complaining, whining, rumbling or popping sounds.

Hot Water Heaters usually outlast their 5-year warranties, and some give good service for as long as 15 years. Maintenance is key. Having an annual inspection can go a long way to ensuring that there will be plenty of hot water when it’s needed. Repairs are cheaper than replacing the unit.

Annual flushing of the unit cleans out accumulated sediment. If the unit will not be used for an extended period, it’s an excellent idea to have it drained. The pipes that connect to the hot water heater should also be checked periodically, as well as the temperature and pressure valve. Insulating the pipes will save energy also.

Replacing the old unit is the best answer if the tank is seriously corroded. In that case, it’s a good idea to consider if the old tank was the correct size for the family. Growing families (especially if there are teens!) use more hot water. Also, older units typically cost more to operate than newer water heaters.

Tankless water heaters are becoming more common in the US, although they are already very popular in Europe and Asia. These units save money, provide as much hot water as anyone could ever want and take up less space. They do this by heating the water very quickly as it’s needed. It’s impossible to run out of hot water.

M.A. Williams Inc. Drain Cleaning & Plumbing are specialists at repairing hot water heaters. If the unit needs replacing, they can provide either standard or tankless water heaters for their Richmond, VA, area customers. They stand by their work and their products. Visit their website for more information.