Water Heater Running Out of Hot Water? Here’s Why.

tank water heaterWhen you’re enjoying a warm and refreshing shower, one of the worst things that can happen is when the hot water suddenly runs out—leaving you freezing cold and demanding answers. There are a variety of factors which could lead to running out of hot water too quickly.

If your hot water runs out too fast, you may have an issue with:

  • Too much hot water demand from multiple sources at the same time
  • Sediment build up inside of your water heater tank
  • A broken dip tube
  • A water heater that is nearing the end of its lifespan
  • A faulty water heater thermostat

Let’s look at these problems in greater detail.

Multiple appliances using hot water running simultaneously

If someone is using hot water in the kitchen sink or in other areas of the home while you are showering, simultaneously running multiple hot water appliances at the same time can result in a freezing water pouring from your shower. Washing machines and dishwaters are the main culprits, so avoid using hot water appliances before you shower.

The build-up of sediment

Sediment from loose minerals such as sand and rust naturally deposits in our water supply and settles at the bottom of the water heater tank. However, sediment can sometimes take up too much space, which leaves less room for hot water. Additionally, these minerals insulate the tank water from the heating source located at the bottom of the tank. To resolve this issue, a professional can drain your water heater and flush all of the sediment out.

Broken dip tube

The dip tube causes the cold water in the water heater to move toward the bottom of the tank in order to be heated. If the dip tube is broken, the cold water will rise to the top of the tank, meaning it cannot be properly heated. If you discover small pieces of plastic in the shower head, strainers, and filter screens of water appliances, you may have a broken dip tube that must be replaced.

Old water heater

All appliances have a shelf life, including water heaters. If your shower runs out of hot water quickly and frequently, your water heater might be too old. On average, a water heater can last between eight to 12 years. If yours is ten years old or more, it’s time to replace your water heater.

Thermostat issue

Not only does your home have a thermostat, so does your water heater. When you run out of hot water, try resetting your water heater thermostat. If the issue persists, raise the thermostat temperature to see if your water heater is at the wrong temperature. If this doesn’t work, contact a plumber to determine the issue.

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What to Do if Your Hot Water is Not Lasting Long

If you want to avoid running out of hot water when you need it most, consider installing a tankless water heater. Not only will you have an unlimited supply of hot water whenever you need it, but you can also still access hot water while running multiple appliances—and even multiple showers—all at once. Furthermore, tankless water heaters save you more money over time compared to conventional models and have a longer lifespan.

If you are experiencing hot water issues or interested in installing a tankless water heater in your home, contact our Ontario plumbing team at All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electrical today.