failed water heater

Water Heater Acting Up

Is My Water Heater Acting Up?

As a plumber’s wife, I hear all the stories… You’ll never guess the things that have been flushed down toilets or lost down the drain. My husband has sent me pictures of himself or a colleague neck deep in a hole they dug that day or contorted into a tight space to fix an issue. These stories are entertaining to say the least and makes our conversations at the day’s end pretty lively, but then there are the other stories too. The other stories are much sadder: pipes bursting, major water leaks, and water heaters exploding. So many people’s lives affected in such a negative way. I’m thankful for my husband who’s able to go in and put back at least some of the pieces for these people to get their lives back to normal. Unfortunately, there are the pieces he can’t fix though too; the flooring that now must be replaced, the drywall and trying to figure out what paint matches which room, the family photo albums that were accidentally left on the floor…

Underground plumbing repair

How Old is Too Old?

I know that life always throws you the unexpected, and there’s no way you can plan for every emergency. But as a plumber’s wife, I’d like to take a minute to talk about something important. The preventable catastrophes. Today, let’s discuss water heaters. I know this probably isn’t something you give much thought to. If you have hot water in your house, it’s working and chances are you’re not thinking about the upkeep. Here’s the problem though: Water heaters are built to last for about a decade. Some will last longer and some will give out before then. I want to tell you about the signs of wear and tear to watch out for. The following signs typically indicate that you should consider replacing yours before it stops working or causes damage to your home.

Water Heater Noise

Bradford White hot water heater

Most water heaters operate quietly when they’re in good condition. If yours is making rumbling or popping sounds, it can mean that there’s a lot of sediment in the tank. When this sediment becomes hard, it can lead to loud banging sounds when your water heater is running. Sediment buildup causes it to run less efficiently over time while being subjected to more wear and tear, and this is a huge problem for us in Southern Arizona. Although you might be able to manage this problem by flushing the tank, too much buildup can be difficult to remove.


Water heaters that are deteriorating can end up leaking and causing considerable water damage to your home. Leaks usually happen when parts of the water heater have weakened. If you notice water around your unit, have a professional technician inspect at it as soon as you can.

failed water heater

Temperature Problems


Water heaters that don’t produce hot water at all or that aren’t able to maintain a constant temperature typically need to be replaced. Usually, this happens with older units that have experienced too much wear and tear to run efficiently. This happens most frequently in areas that have hard water, since the minerals in the water can build up inside the tank and cause faster deterioration. Water heaters can also wear out faster in homes that use high amounts of hot water.


If you’re experiencing any of these issues, or you know that your water heater is past its prime, don’t take chances. It’s not worth it in the long run. Our family at Cal’s Plumbing has seen so many disasters that could have ideally been adverted. Give us a call for an inspection. Cal’s Plumbing has been here in Tucson since 1948 and specializes in all types of water heaters including tankless, and traditional gas and electric water heaters. Our knowledgeable technicians will be able to give you an honest outlook and peace of mind.