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How to Fix a Water Heater with No Hot Water: Troubleshooting for Homeowners

16 April 2024

When you open the hot tap, you expect heated water to flow out eventually, even if you must wait a few seconds for the cold water to clear the line. If you open the tap and the water stays cold, it’s a sure sign that there’s something wrong somewhere in the system. In this post, we’ll explore some of the simplest fixes for a water heater with no hot water.

Check the Usage

The first and probably simplest explanation for no hot water in your water heater is that someone’s just used it all up. This is common in large households, as well as in situations where someone might have run the dishwasher while another family member was taking a shower.

An easy way to determine if this is the cause of your situation is to do a little math. Take the water heater’s capacity and then subtract the amount of water used in the last hour or so. You likely won’t have an exact figure and that’s fine. You’re just interested in rough numbers here. If the water usage exceeds the water heater’s capacity, you’ve found the most likely reason you have no hot water.

Check the Electricity

The next most common reason for no hot water is a problem with the electricity going to your water heater. You can check this in several ways.

The first thing to check is the circuit breaker in your fuse panel. If the breaker is tripped, reset it. Watch to see if it trips again. If it does, there’s likely an underlying electrical issue that should be investigated. If it doesn’t, it could be a one-off event.

If the breaker isn’t tripped, it could be a fuse on the water heater itself. Depending on the model, you may have one or more fuses. Check each and replace any that are blown.

Note that if your unit is gas-fired, this can still be an issue, but there’s a chance that you’re dealing with a safety problem. If you smell gas, shut it off if you can and call for emergency help.

Investigate the Thermostat

A thermostat controls your water heater. It allows you to set a temperature that’s high enough to kill off bacteria, but low enough that children aren’t at risk of scalds from hot water. However, it can also be a source of trouble.

First, check that the thermostat is set correctly. If it is not, reset it and then check it periodically to ensure that it stays set. Even if the thermostat is set correctly, a defective unit could still be causing the problem. We recommend having it tested by a professional.

There you have them – three easy ways to determine why you have no hot water and what to do about each. If none of these works for your situation, contact us at EasyFlow. We can quickly diagnose the problem and we carry the most commonly required parts on our trucks at all times, so there’s usually no wait to restore hot water.


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