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Our plumbers explain common hot water problems

Winter in Melbourne is still not over, as this week’s string of rainy days shows.

While it doesn’t quite get as cold down here as our friends in the northern hemisphere, our winters aren’t exactly a cakewalk either. One of the best ways to survive the remaining winter months is to prepare.

That means ensuring that your plumbing is healthy, year-round. In particular, it means checking your hot water system.

Just imagine a winter without hot water – or even a day without it. No thank you!

If your hot water is starting to show the following problems, (with several weeks of cold weather to go, mind you), we strongly recommend letting a plumber in Melbourne take a look at it and provide you with timely hot water repairs before it lets you down.

hot water repairs Melbourne

Need hot water repairs? Call our plumbers in Melbourne immediately!

As we always say, hot water repairs in Melbourne aren’t just about getting you through winter. We use hot water all year-round, which is why you can’t afford to neglect plumbing maintenance!

Even if your hot water system doesn’t fail completely, you may still have issues.

For example, a leaky water heater can waste water, while a problem with the heating coil can drive up your quarterly electricity or gas bill.

If you suspect something’s up with your system, give our hot water plumbers in Melbourne a call ASAP.

We’ll get you out of hot water (get it?), allowing you to enjoy warm water all year-round.

Some of the hot water issues our plumbers in Melbourne fix include…

No hot water

This is the most obvious sign of a faulty hot water system.

A complete absence of hot water suggests a total failure somewhere in your water heater.

In many cases, its heating elements may no longer be working as they should. In particular, you may be suffering from a faulty:

  • Heating coil
  • Thermostat
  • Thermal switch
  • Electrical or gas supply

Sometimes, our plumbers in Melbourne can restore the flow of hot water by replacing the affected part.

In others, your water heater may have reached the end of its life, and require complete replacement.

Either way, you’ll need a hot water plumber to fix it for you!

1) Water leaks

Leaks are another one of the most common hot water problems that many homeowners encounter.

The thing is, hot water heaters are complex systems with dozens of different parts. As such, there are many potential causes of leaks in your hot water, including…

A faulty pressure or temperature relief valve (PTRV) 

Hot water is dangerous – a second of direct exposure at 70°C can lead to a burn. It also generates a lot of pressure, which can cause damage should it build up.

To protect you, most hot water systems come with special valves designed to reduce the risk of either happening. These valves are responsible for reducing the amount of pressure and heat that builds up in your water heater.

The problem is that this valve puts up with a lot of stress. Over time, this may lead to parts of your hot water system wearing out, resulting in leaks.

Leaking hot water tank

Not all leaks are the result of a worn-out valve – sometimes, the problem lies with the tank itself!

If you see water leaking from the bottom of your hot water tank, it could be that your tank is old and worn-out. Sometimes, the problem is with one of the fittings coming loose or wearing out over time.Damaged drain valve

Drain valves are usually located at the bottom of your water tank. Like the name suggests, they are responsible for draining water out of your hot water system.

And like any other drain in your house, it’s also vulnerable to blockages. Water backs up, and then leaks out from the bottom of your hot water system.

Luckily, the act of fixing this is relatively straightforward.

However, it may often involve dismantling large parts of your hot water system first, which is why we suggest leaving it to a pro!Domestic plumbing Melbourne

2) Not enough hot water

Running out of hot water while showering can be very frustrating.

No matter how many people live in your home, your hot water system should provide enough hot water to keep everyone comfortable.

Let’s say you’ve recently extended the house. Alternatively, you’ve decided to rent out the spare room. You may even have recently welcomes a new family member.

Each of these can drive up your hot water usage, without enough hot water to go around.

In these cases, there’s nothing mechanically wrong with your hot water system itself – rather, it’s simply not large enough to provide enough water to meet the new demand.

In these cases, the best thing you can do is upgrade to a newer, bigger and more capable hot water tank.

Another option is to shift into a tankless water system.

These systems provide water depending on demand. Learn more about this type of hot water system, and whether or not it’s the right choice for your home today.

3) Low water pressure

We know what you’re thinking: how is this a hot water system problem?

While it might feel comfortable standing in a shower with extra pressure, it can also prematurely wear out your plumbing.

And in many cases, the root of the problem lies in your hot water system.

Have you noticed low water pressure whenever you turn on the hot water? Does using cold water provide the standard level of water pressure?

If so, this could be a sign that your hot water system may be clogged with water deposited minerals.

Water heating can often cause mineral deposits to get clogged in your pipes, reducing pressure when you turn on the hot water.

Problems like this are exactly why you should call a professional for regular plumbing maintenance, including hot water inspections.

4) Strange noises


In addition to affecting water pressure, mineral and sediment build-up in your hot water system can also cause a rumbling and high pitched sounds in your hot water tank.

Hot water is forced through a partially-clogged pipe, it may make a “popping” sound.

Screeching and hissing

In other cases, strange noises may be the result of the valves in your hot water system not opening or closing properly.


If you hear bubbling, we suggest calling a hot water plumber ASAP, as this is a major problem!

Usually, a bubbling noise means that the heater is overheating, or the pressure is reaching high levels.

This can be damaging to your hot water system, and can potentially be dangerous too.

If you hear bubbling coming from your hot water system, we suggest calling an emergency plumber at the first chance.

5) Smelly hot water

Water shouldn’t smell – by definition, water is odourless.

Smelling a foul and rotten odour of hot water is a clear sign that something’s wrong with your hot water system. In many cases, the problem is anaerobic bacteria.

This bacteria interacts with the sulfur, magnesium and aluminium sacrificial anodes that are present in most hot water systems.

Together, they create hydrogen sulfide gas, which comes with an unmissable rotten egg smell.

To fix this, you can flush your water heater, or temporarily disable temperature limiting valves to heat your hot water until it kills any bacteria that may be lingering in your hot water.

A plumber can even replace your aluminium anode rod. By cutting out that essential part of the recipe, you may be able to get rid of the awful smell for good.

Need hot water plumbers in Cheltenham?

Contact Watermaster for plumbing maintenance today!

If you’re torn between replacing or repairing your hot water system, we suggest consulting with our plumbers in Cheltenham.

Watermaster Plumbing is committed to delivering outstanding customer service on all hot water repairs and services.

With almost two decades of experience under our belts, you can trust the team from Watermaster to look after your hot water.

What’s more, you won’t even know we were there once we’re done. Our team work hard to clean up after ourselves and leave your home just as we found it.

Contact Watermaster Plumbing now on 1300 156 650 or request a no-obligation quote today.

2023-10-23T00:46:03+00:00 August 13th, 2019|Blog|