Signs You Need a New Water Heater

Your home’s water heater is the most expensive component of your plumbing system. Checking for simple problems can sometimes help determine if a new water heater is needed and if it’s time to call a professional plumber. If you experience any of the following issues, or have questions regarding your water heater, call Mike Wilson Plumbing for expert water heater advice, installation and repair in Midlothian and Chesterfield, VA at (804) 641-6570 or visit

Noise Problems

Hot water heaters can bang, knock, creak and whine. These noises can be caused by sediment that builds up inside the water tank. The debris comes in contact with the heating element, which makes the loud noises as it burns the sediment away. Flushing the tank usually corrects the issue. You will typically need an experienced plumber to do this correctly. At the very least, you should call a professional for advice on the proper way to do this.

Another issue that may be causing loud noise in you hot water heater may be the burning out of the heating element. If the water heater has been flushed out and the sediment has been removed, but strange noises persist, it could be time to replace the heating element.

Temperature Problems

If you experience lukewarm water or your water is getting too hot, fixing the problem is usually involves adjusting the thermostat on the unit.  For most homeowners, the ideal temperature for hot water is between 120 to 140 degrees.

If there is no hot water coming from your water heater tank, you could have a broken heating element.  If you have a device powered by natural gas, you could have a broken gas thermocouple. These components are easy to replace on your own and should restore your hot water supply right away. If in doubt, about how or when to replace your elements, always consult your local Midlothian plumber.

Is it Time to Replace Your Water Heater?

Here are things to consider when determining if it’s time to replace your hot water heater:

Usage and Water Quality:


If you have a growing family, you can expect your water heater needs to change as your family grows. This can impact the life cycle of your hot water heater. If you live in an area with hard water, mineral buildup inside the tank can clog plumbing lines. This may shorten the life of the water heater as well. If you have been experiencing problems with your water heating, it may be time to replace your tank.



Most residential water heaters come with a 5 or 10-year warranty. A new water heater should last at least that long. If you purchased an older home with an aging water heater, even common problems could be a warning that it’s time to replace it. A water heater that is more than 20 years old, making noises, failing to produce hot water, unable to maintain a constant water temperature, or unable to produce hot water consistently, has probably reached the end of its life.



There is no easy or quick fix for a leaking hot water tank. If you have noticed standing water anywhere near the unit, you should call a professional residential plumber like Mike Wilson Plumbing, immediately! You will need to replace the tank as soon as possible to prevent further damage and flooding to your home or garage.

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