A fully-functioning water heater’s vital for a household’s hot water needs. From showering to doing the laundry, hot water’s a staple in our everyday lives.

And while most water heaters are designed to last for a good 10 years, that doesn’t mean you can turn a blind eye while it sits in your basement unattended.

A heater that needs constant repairs or spurts out rusty hot water every time you turn on the faucet can leave you feeling frustrated. After all, you deserve a hot bath that will help you work out the knots in your shoulders!

If you’re wondering whether your heater’s breathing its last few breaths, here are some signs to be on the lookout for.

1. Erratic Temperature of Water

You’re showering after a long hard day at work when the stream suddenly turns cold. Freezing, you turn the dial up and down, to no avail. If this has happened too many times for you to count, there’s an underlying issue with your water heater.

When the temperature of water starts becoming inconsistent—hot one minute and ice cold the other—your heater’s in need of a replacement. Inconsistency in water temperatures is usually a sign of either a damaged heat element or a broken thermocouple.

2.  Discolored Hot Water

If you’re greeted by the sight of hot rusty water as you turn on the faucet, it’s a telltale sign that your water heater’s gasping for its last breaths.

With time, as the interior of your water heater starts to corrode, rust deposits itself around the tank seams, water supply pipes, and valves. This means when you turn on the hot water faucet, the rust and sediment buildup mixes with your clear hot water to pollute it.

Erratic Temperature of Water

3. Pooled Water Around The Heater

Metal tanks tend to expand and contract with changes in temperature. As time goes on, the body of your heater can develop cracks and hairline fractures. When that happens, water can begin to seep out and pool around the heater.

If you start noticing pooled water around your water heater, it’s probably a sign of an internal failure. Water heater leaks should never be taken casually. A cracked heater will only cause further damage to your basement or home.

4. Constant Loud Noises

When it comes to your water heater, you don’t need to worry about every single noise that’s coming from it. Instead, it’s perfectly normal for your water heater to make sounds while it heats up the water for your use. But know when to draw the line!

Sounds like pops or cracks aren’t normal. Instead, they’re a sign of heavy sediment buildup in your water heater tank. So when the accumulated sediment comes in direct contact with the heating element, it tends to crack loudly. To avoid further damage to your heater and home, it’s best to contact a professional on time.

The author’s an active and enterprising individual of the blogging community at Your1Plumber. When he isn’t busy with the daily grind, he can be found sharing his expertise through blogs related to household plumbing. The author thrives on learning about all things plumbing, and is passionate about connecting homeowners with the local plumbing company in their area. For more information on contracting the services of plumbers in Columbia, MD, contact us at (888)-540-7586.