Why don’t I have any hot water? There are several reasons why you might not have any hot water. Lets us help you with the troubleshooting part and guide you through.
The most common reason that you might not have hot water is a power issue if you have an electric tank. This could mean no power or partial power to the tank. In any case it will not work correctly.
15 Reasons Why Don’t I Have Hot Water
- No Power To Hot Water Tank
- Breaker Keeps Tripping
- Fuse Keeps Blowing
- Only Have Partial Power
- Too Much Usage
- Bad Element Inside Tank
- Faulty Thermostat
- No Water Pressure From Cold Line
- Tank Blockage In Line
- Tank Could Be Leaking
- Other Fuel Sources
- Faulty Element Relay
- Only Have Warm Water
- Tripped Limit Switch
- Breaker Or Fuse Looks Good Trick
1.Why Don’t I Have Hot Water
No power to hot water tank. The number one reason why you would have no hot water would be loss of power to the electric hot water tank.
The electric hot water tank needs to have 240 V in order for it to operate correctly.
If you lose partial power or complete power it will simply not work. Furthermore to add to the mix sometimes there is more than one PowerPoint on the hot water tank.
What we mean is it may be on a breaker at your panel. It also may be on a separate shut off switch next to the hot water tank.
If any part of that circuit break than hot water tank will not work.
It could be a faulty breaker or a bad fuse in your disconnect switch.
Read more through the following steps so that you can determine the problem.
2. Breaker Keeps Tripping
If your breaker keeps tripping then this is a sign of two things.
One you either have a low overload condition or two you have a short circuit condition.
You can determine this by how fast the breaker trips. If the breaker trips instantaneously that is a sure sign of a short circuit condition. If the breaker trips periodically and take some time to trip that is a sure sign of an overload condition.
An overload condition could be caused by a bad element or an element partially gone to ground.
Since the element inside the hot water tank is submerged in water it wouldn’t take much for a break in the element to ground out and trip the breaker.
In other conditions if the breaker trips instantaneously this is a sure sign that you have a direct short in one of the components.
Inside of the hot water tank this could be the thermostat, the overloads, or the element, at the element brakes and goes directly to ground inside the tank then the breaker will trip instantaneously.
At this point you will need a technician to come to further investigate the problem.
3. Fuse Keeps Blowing
You will need a technician to come to further investigate the problem.
If the fuse keeps blowing then you will most likely need a technician because it is probably one of the issues as stated above.
However often more times than not to our surprise we find out that it is actually the fuse holder itself causing the issue.
If you have fuses and they are installed in a fuse block that fuse block would naturally cause heat when the hot water tank is drying power to heat it up.
After time the fuse block will become worn from its natural operation.
What does causes is the metal inserts inside of the fuse blocks to become warm.
Once they become warm they tend to bend. When they bend it causes a loose connection. This thing causes heat and arcing. The result is the fuse blowing.
This fuse blowing can be very annoying because there’s no rhyme or reason to it it will simply do it periodically. This is when you should get an electrician involved to come and replace the fuse block or repair it.
4. Only Have Partial Power To The Tank
A common sign of only having partial power to your tank is just warm water instead of hot.
The hot water tank is based on 240 V voltage. If one of the elements become partially broken or worn out.
Or you lose partial power to your tank causing it to have 120 V instead of 240v.
This will result in the power production being much less to the tank.
Although the tank still will work it will take for time as long to heat up. There a result in you only getting warm water instead of hot.
5. Too Much Usage
Do you have teenage girls living in the house? How much hot water are you actually using?
Did you know that a typical 40 gallon domestic hot water tank will only produce about 20 minutes of pure hot water.
If you mix it with partially cold then you can get 30 to 40 minutes. However the average teenage girl takes a 45 minute shower.
We know this because most of our electricians have teenage daughters.
This is a common discussion topic at our shop in the mornings about why our power bills are so high and why we keep running out of hot water.
There is a valve that you can purchase that will open and close the hot water line which you can control by your phone.
You can purchase these on Amazon and we will show you the link here.
It may be a little extreme to shut the hot water off on someone when they’re in the shower however they will get the hint very quickly when it turns to cold.
6. Bad Element Inside Tank
If you happen to loose an element inside of your tank and it completely stops working and doesn’t happen to trip the breaker.
You will be down to one element inside your tank instead of two.
This will produce warm water, this is also one of the shore signs that you have lost an element.
7.Faulty Thermostat Issues
Inside the hot water tank there is an electric thermostat attached to the tank itself.
There’s actually two electric thermostats one for the top element and one for the bottom element.
These are normally set at 140°F. If this thermostat becomes faulty or stops working all together.
It will not tell the element to come on resulting in you getting no hot water. This is also a common issue.
8. No Water Pressure From Cold Line
If you turn the top on and you have no water pressure from the hotline this could be a result of the cold water not going into the tank.
Instead of checking the hot water tank we should just to check the cold water line going into the tank.
There could be a blockage somewhere inside the water pipe which could be due to mineral buildup overtime in the cold water line.
This can result if you don’t have a good water filter system installed in your home.
9. Tank Blockage In Line
After a period of time the hot water tank will naturally build up sediment and minerals inside of the tank.
Hot water tanks are only rated for 5 to 7 years.
If the sediment buildup inside the tank enough and releases into the hot water line this will cause a blockage resulting in low or no hot water.
This is due to not giving the appropriate mix with the cold water so that you can adjust the temperature to the setpoint in your shower.
10. Tank Could Be Leaking
Is your hot water tank installed in the dark damp basement.
Does the basement have a chance of flooding? Has your hot water tank ever been submerged in water?
Although you would never think the bottom of the tank with rust out they do quite frequently.
If the bottom of your tank rust out in the spring a leak this can cause you to lose hot water.
We find this an older homes where the hot water tank has been installed in the crawlspace or a dark wet basement.
The customer does not realize that they’re hot water tank is leaking.
We have actually seen them like so much that when you turn the hot water line on nothing comes out because it’s leaking out of the bottom of the tank.
11. Other Fuel Sources Out Of Fuel
Did you know that water tanks can be fired with more than one source.
They can be fired with propane natural gas and even oil.
Perhaps you just purchased a house and thought you had an electric water tank in fact you had a propane tank and you’re out of propane.
Although this sounds silly make sure to check this.
12. Faulty Element Relay
You could also have a faulty relay inside of your tank.
Us trades people refer to this as a flip-flop switch.
The tank element on the top actually heats first as hot water rises.
Once the top element has been satisfied to the setpoint it will then flop to the bottom element to heat the rest of the tank.
These flip-flops which is become faulty from time to time and need to be replaced.
13.Only Have Warm Water
If you have only a warm water it could be one of the several issues as listed above.
The key to figure out which issue is to see how often you have only warm water.
If it’s consistent then it is most likely a malfunction with the tank.
If it is only once in a while then maybe you have someone taking a shower that didn’t be honest with you.
Like a teenage daughter when you asked him how many showers they had today.
14. Tripped Limit Switch
Inside of the tank there is a button called a limit switch.
If this limit switch reaches its limit of overheating in any way from the tank going over at setpoint then it will stop the tank from heating.
This limit switch can be found under the top cover on the side of the tank and it is clearly marked in red which is what needs to be pushed in or depressed to get the tank to work again.
15. Breaker Or Fuse Looks Good Trick
More times than not we get service calls and the first thing we asked the customer is if they check the breaker or the fuse and they said yes it looks good.
Upon arrival we find out that even though the fuse didn’t look blown that it actually is.
Sometimes fuses or even breakers can trick you.
A breaker itself especially a mini break or can be tripped and not look like it’s tripped.
It usually goes into the halfway point between on and off but sometimes does not and can still be tripped.
We recommend shutting each breaker all the way off and turning them all the way back on until you hear them click.