Whether your New Orleans home has an electric water heater or a gas one, it’s possible for your hot water to run out fast due to any number of causes. These causes can range from the size of your heater to a developing problem. When your hot water runs out fast and is becoming a nuisance, a certified plumber can help uncover the underlying cause and suggest solutions so you can shower, do laundry, and more without running out of heated water. Keep reading to learn a little about how the inside of your water heater works and some of the most common causes behind why hot water runs out fast in many homes.
The Anatomy of a Water Heater
Most homes in the New Orleans area have a tank water heater powered by either gas or electricity. These water heaters can be gas or electric.
Gas Water Heaters
Gas water heaters have a tank filled by an attached cold water line. A gas-powered burner sits at the bottom of the tank, which heats the water and holds it at a steady high temperature. The water heater also features a thermostat for changing and maintaining the water temperature, a temperature-pressure relief valve that releases pressure from the tank, and a vent that allows combustible gasses to escape.
Pro Tip: Regularly check the vent to ensure it’s clear and allows for easy ventilation, especially if your tank is stored in an enclosed closet.
Electric Water Heaters
Electric heaters are very similar to gas-powered heaters. The key difference is that it uses electricity, rather than gas, to power the burner that heats the water.
Two of the most important parts of water heaters to consider if you’re running out of hot water frequently are the tank and the thermostat. The tank may be too small for your needs, or the thermostat may be set too low for your preferences.
Possible Reasons Your Hot Water Runs Out Fast
Many homeowners feel like their hot water runs out fast — sometimes even faster than it used to. If you frequently notice this problem, consider these common reasons why people run out of heated water.
Too Many Appliances
If you have your dishwasher and clothes washer running simultaneously, jumping into the shower may overwhelm the system. Either you’ll have cold water running directly to one of the systems, or you’ll quickly deplete the ready supply of heated water, and your water heater won’t be able to heat the new water quickly enough to keep up.
If your home has soft water (like many New Orleans, LA, homes do), then sediment will build up in the bottom of the tank. Too much sediment will eventually hamper the performance of your water heater, causing malfunctions, inferior heating capabilities, and more. Draining your tank once a year can help you manage this issue.
Old Water Heater
Water heaters go bad over time. Most units have a lifespan of ten years; while your unit may not have broken down, the burner will become less effective and less efficient over time. The thermostat could also become buggy.
Wrong Water Heater for Your Home
Some homes need more hot water. If you have a small tank or a lot of occupants in your home, it may be time to upgrade to a larger unit. You could even switch to tankless water heaters at each of your showers and major appliances.
What Can I Do If My Hot Water Runs Out Fast?
Make sure you always have hot water when you need it in New Orleans, LA. The local team at Rooter Man is here to help resolve water heater problems, plumbing problems, and everything in between. When your hot water runs out fast, don’t wait. Contact us today to schedule a convenient service call at your New Orleans, LA, home.