01 June A person testing the temperature of the water in a shower

6 Reasons Why No Hot Water Is Coming Out of the Tap

Posted by PlumbWize

The first step to solving this annoying problem is isolating the reason why no water is coming out of your tap. Having some idea of what’s going on will make the process go much quicker when you decide to call an expert to come and fix things.

Here are six reasons why your hot water might be giving you the cold shoulder:

Table of Contents:

Why Is No Hot Water Coming Out of the Tap?

1. Thermostat Malfunction

The ideal temperature for a water heater is somewhere between 120⁰ F to 140⁰ F. In some instances, all you have to do is readjust the temperature or hit the reset button to get your hot water running again.

However, it’s possible your thermostat is damaged and requires a repair or replacement. A faulty thermostat is usually caused by the lack of regular maintenance, and can cause sediment build-up inside your water heater that impedes its proper functioning.

If this is the case, a quick drain and clean should do the trick.

2. A Defective Diverter Valve

If you’ve checked your water heater and it’s working like a well-oiled machine, you should turn your attention to your boiler.

The diverter valve does exactly what its name suggests: diverts hot water from the boiler to parts of your house, such as taps, sinks, and showers.

However, it’s worth noting that these valves are only found in combi boilers that heat water on demand. System and conventional boilers store hot water in a tank, negating the need for a diverter valve to disperse it throughout the house.

A water heater tank on a rooftop

3. Leaking Water Heater Tank

This one is pretty easy to assess. If you see water on the ground surrounding the base of your hot water tank, you can likely attribute your dilemma to a leaky tank.

More often than not, you will unfortunately find that this type of damage calls for a probably long-overdue replacement rather than a simple repair.

4. A Burned-Out Pilot Light

If your home has a gas-powered water heater, then the reason no hot water is coming out of your tap could be a burnt-out pilot light.

Pilot lights are little flames responsible for lighting gas as it leaves the main burner, heating the water inside the heater. Peek through the small window on the front of your water heater: if you see the flame, then everything is good.

In most cases, re-lighting your pilot light is a simple task you can do yourself. However, you should first assess for a potential gas leak. A sulfuric smell (like raw eggs) or a hissing sound coming from the water heater are warning signs of a dangerous leak and should prompt you to leave home and call the fire department.

Important note: A yellow flame inside your water heater can be a sign of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is toxic and requires immediate emergency attention.

5. A Small Water Tank

Sometimes, a lack of hot water corresponds to the size of your water tank.

If your water consumption has gone up or your family has grown over the years, it’s possible your water tank is just too small. As a result, you might find there is no water coming out of the tap because there is just not enough to go around.

Repeatedly finding yourself in this situation means it’s time to upgrade your water heater tank to something larger that can better accommodate your needs.

6. Bad Weather

Unfortunately, as many Canadians are aware, extremely cold weather can have an effect on your plumbing in the winter.

When temperatures drop, added pressure is placed on your water heater as it has to work harder to do its job. This inefficiency can spike your energy costs, and put you in a situation where you’re waiting for water.

Insulating your water heater tank is a preventative step to consider taking, as helping the device stay warm is in your best interest.

A plumber in blue overalls inspecting a water heater tank

You Deserve Better Than Cold Water

When there is no hot water coming out of the tap, you’re liable to find yourself uncomfortable and frustrated in your own home—and you deserve better than that!

Fortunately, the expert team at PlumbWize is ready and able to help you through your plumbing emergency at all hours of the day. Whether it’s an issue with your water heater or a problem with your boiler, you can rest assured that our commitment to restoring your home’s hot water supply is just one call away.

Give us a call to book a quote today!


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