hot water heater

Repairing or Replacing Your Hot Water Heater: Which is the Better Choice?

hot water heaterWhen your hot water heater suddenly decides to throw in the towel, it’s decision time: repair or replace? Let’s dive into this common homeowner conundrum.

To Repair or Replace Your Hot Water Heater

First off, it’s important to understand the lifespan of a water tank. Typically, these units last between 10 to 15 years, but several factors such as

  • maintenance
  • installation quality
  • water quality can influence this.

Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty.

Here’s a simple litmus test: the 50% rule. If the cost of repairs hits the 50% mark of what you’d shell out for a brand-new unit, opting for replacement is likely the smarter move. However, don’t disregard the age of your water heater and how long it’s been on the fritz.

The Replacement Route: Going Green and Efficient

Over time, water minerals can wreak havoc on steel, leading to corrosion in water heater tanks. Once leaks spring up, repairs become a moot point. Enter modern water heaters: more energy-efficient, thanks to innovative designs and materials like glass liners that resist corrosion.

But that’s not all. Upgrading opens doors to larger tank options and other modern features. Plus, energy-efficient models can be real money-savers in the long run.

Ever heard of tankless, heat pump, or solar water heaters in Myrtle Beach? Not only do these alternatives offer significant savings, but they might also qualify you for a sweet federal tax credit. However, keep in mind that they may require a hefty upfront investment, so weigh the pros and cons carefully.

water heaterThe Repair Route: Prolonging the Lifespan

If you’re leaning towards repair, there are steps you can take to squeeze more life out of your current water heater. Start by scheduling an annual flush by a professional plumber in Myrtle Beach to rid the tank of sediment buildup, a common culprit for corrosion.

Test the pressure relief valve regularly and replace it if needed. And don’t forget to adjust the thermostat to a moderate temperature to prevent overheating, which can damage the tank.

However, if the tank itself is the source of the leak, it’s usually a sign that replacement is the way to go. But if the leak is coming from elsewhere, repair might still be on the table.

The Bottom Line: Regular Maintenance is Key

Whether you choose repair or replacement, the key to a long-lasting water heater lies in regular maintenance. By staying on top of upkeep, you’ll not only extend the lifespan of your unit but also save yourself time, money, and headaches down the road.

So, when it comes to your hot water heater, don’t leave its fate to chance. Make an informed decision, keep up with maintenance, and enjoy uninterrupted hot showers for years to come.

Ready to Make a Decision?

If you’re ready to tackle your hot water heater dilemma, take the next step. Whether it’s scheduling a plumbing maintenance check or exploring replacement options, don’t wait until it’s too late. Your future self will thank you for it!

Call Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC. now. Let us take care of your hot water heater needs. Our team is ready to assist you.

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Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC.
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 267-9733

Serving all of Horry County including Myrtle BeachNorth Myrtle BeachLittle RiverMurrells Inlet/Garden CitySurfside BeachCarolina Forest/ForestbrookConway/Aynor

hot water heater

Signs You Need To Replace Your Hot Water Heater

hot water heaterYour home’s hot water heater, like all major appliances, will eventually become less efficient and need to be replaced. It is important to replace your water heater before it breaks down. This will not only ensure your comfort but also your safety.

A standard water heater should last approximately ten years before it needs to be replaced. However, there are many factors that can reduce or increase the life expectancy of your appliance. Regular maintenance and the use of a water softener will increase your appliance’s lifespan. However, hard water, damp climates, and extreme temperatures could make it more costly to repair.

This post will help you recognize the warning signs of a failing heater and give you plenty of time to plan for replacement. Contact a Myrtle Beach plumber immediately if you need assistance with hot water heater repair or water heater replacement.

1. Appliance Age

Your water heater’s age is the most obvious sign it is time to replace it. Regular maintenance can prolong the life of your water heater, but it is best to budget for a new heater installation once your heater has reached ten years. This lifespan is only an estimate. Your unit could age faster if it is in a humid environment or near extreme temperatures. Your water heater may age faster if it is exposed to water with a high mineral content.

2. Leaking/Seeping

Water heaters should be replaced if there is any evidence of water pooling or dampness around the heater. The water heater’s metal tank is constantly exposed to extreme temperatures. The metal’s natural response is to expand and contract in accordance with temperature fluctuations. These repeated contractions can lead to metal cracking as the heater ages. It is important to immediately contact a professional plumber in Myrtle Beach if you see water seeping from your heater or spot damp areas. If not addressed promptly, small leaks can quickly escalate into serious and dangerous ruptures.

Your water heater will begin to age and bits of the tank metal may seep into your water. It is possible that your water heater needs to be replaced if you notice or smell rusty water coming out of your faucets.

4. Fluctuating water temperature

Water heaters age and supply lines can become partially blocked, which reduces the unit’s ability to supply water. Extreme temperature fluctuations can occur when this happens. This could be a sudden surge of cold water during a hot shower or hot water that fluctuates between boiling hot and freezing while you run.

5. Visible Rust

Over time, the metal tank and connections to your old water heater will begin corroding. You may see rust around the connections that connect the water heater’s inlet and outlet pipes. You may notice rusty flakes or water that is rusty-colored in your tubs, sinks, or faucets if the corrosion has occurred inside the tank. Any visible signs of rust should be considered a sign that your water heater needs to be replaced.

6. Rising utility bills

Over time, a water heater that is older will lose its effectiveness. The unit will require more energy to heat water consistently as it becomes less efficient. Water heaters may be more likely to cycle between heating phases, which can lead to significant increases in energy bills. A water heater that is corroded or has begun to deteriorate may cause a buildup of debris in the pipes connecting to the unit. Reduced water flow can lead to reduced water usage, which could result in higher water utility bills. You may have noticed an unrelated rise in your energy or water utility bills. It is time to get professional help for hot water heater replacement.

For professional plumbers

Many people try to delay the purchase of a new water heater. This is understandable. However, an old water heater is more than an inconvenience. An aging water heater tank, or corroded connections, can cause sudden leaks or even rupture. These events can cause serious damage to nearby structures and items, and hot water can lead to serious injury if it ruptures while someone is in the vicinity.

Watch out for signs that your older water heater is about to go bad. You should immediately contact a professional plumber if you notice any of these symptoms.

Call Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC now and let us help you with all your plumbing problems.

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Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC
4201 Carolina Exchange Drive Suite 202
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 267-9733

Home – Myrtle Beach Plumber

Serving all of Horry County including Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Little River, Murrells Inlet/Garden City, Surfside Beach, Carolina Forest/Forestbrook, Conway/Aynor

hot water heater

Hot Water Heater Leaking? Here are the Best Times to Call a Plumber

Hot water heaters are one of the most important household appliances. It should be checked regularly to ensure there aren’t any problems. A minor hot water heater leak can cause damage to your floors, walls and personal property.

Regular inspection of your hot water heater is important to avoid any serious issues in the future. Here are steps you can take to repair your hot water heater before it causes damage and expensive repairs.

Find the origin of the leak

The first step in repairing a hot water heater leak is to identify the source of the problem. Below are the most common causes of water heater leaks:

Broken Drain Valves

Most of the water heater drain valves could be made out of plastic, brass, or composite material. Plastic is the most expensive option but it is also the most susceptible to bursting and leaks. Composite and brass are more durable and can withstand higher temperatures.


Although water heaters are designed to resist corrosion to some degree, eventually water heaters will be more susceptible to corrosion as it ages. Water heater leaks can be caused by corroded tanks.

Connectivity to the water main

Leaks could also occur in the tubes that bring cold water to your hot-water heater, and those that carry hot water out to your sink and shower. The valve must be replaced if it is damaged. Otherwise, the fittings on the pipes can be tightened.

Broken Temperature/Pressure Valves

This horizontal lever is the water heater component. It is located at the tank’s top at the water outlet joint. The expansion of water causes steam to be released. Temperature and pressure valves allow excess water and steam to escape from the hot water heater, preventing it from exploding. It is usually easy to replace a leaking pressure or temperature valve.

Here are some steps you can take if you find a hot water heater leaks

Once you have examined the origin of the leak and determined the reasons for it, you need to decide whether to repair it or buy a new water heater. While some hot water heater leaks can be fixed quickly and without the need for a plumber, others may require more time and money.

Water heaters naturally produce natural condensation. If the hot water tank is damaged or rusty, the heater might not be worth saving.

It is possible that your hot water heater leaks from the temperature relief valve. If this is the case, it should be tightened. It is important to tighten the valve securely, but not over-fasten. Lift the lever to check if the T&V valve is operating. Water should be emitted from the vent pipe that runs down the side of the hot water heater. You can also tighten loose connections to the water lines with a wrench. The tubing could be loose, which can be easily repaired.

If the pressure or drain valve breaks, these can be replaced cheaply. To prevent further damage from hot temperatures, it is safer to replace a leaky plastic valve.

These fixes are easy to do yourself and not too expensive. However, corrosion can require a more complicated repair. Repairs to hot water tanks or valves that have suffered from corrosion or rust will require the services of a plumbing contractor in Myrtle Beach.

If your water heater is severely damaged, it is best to have it checked by professionals from Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC. Leaking or heavily corroded water heaters are not problems that you can ignore. Repair or replacement is almost always necessary for such damages.

Schedule water heater repair

You should never take lightly a leaking hot water heater. Hot water heater leaks can cause serious damage to your hot-water tank and lead to mold-growing fungi. Sometimes, the water can seep through walls or under floors and reach unseen areas.

It is best to call a professional plumber or attempt a DIY repair on your leaking water heater as soon as possible. If you see signs of corrosion or rust, it is time to call a plumber. Rust can cause serious damage and will require a complete water tank replacement. An experienced plumbing contractor in Myrtle Beach will be able to inspect your hot water heater to determine if you need to replace it.

Are you concerned that your hot water heater is leaking? Call Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC now if you need the help of a professional plumber.

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Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC
4201 Carolina Exchange Drive Suite 202
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 267-9733

Home – Myrtle Beach Plumber

Serving all of Horry County including Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Little River, Murrells Inlet/Garden City, Surfside Beach, Carolina Forest/Forestbrook, Conway/Aynor

Hot water heater

Why Is My Water Taking Too Long To Heat?

Nobody wants to wait when it comes to hot water in the house. There are things you can do if your hot water isn’t heating up quickly. Here are some hot water heater tips you need to know.

Hot Water Heater Tips

5 Reasons Your Waiting For Hot Water 

Distance: Hot water will take longer to reach your desired location if it is farther from the shower or faucet where it should flow.

Low volume restrictor: A low volume restrictor can be installed on fixtures like your shower to delay water delivery.

End of Service Life: A failing hot water heater is a heater that has reached the end of its service life. They can fail quickly or be less efficient at heating water. Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC is a professional plumber who can inspect and repair your water heater. They will also determine whether it’s time to replace it.

Sediment buildup. When dissolved minerals like calcium and magnesium settle on the tank’s bottom, it can cause a blockage of heat transfer. The tank won’t be able to produce hot water as fast as it once could due to a thick crust of sediment that blocks heat transfer. A plumbing contractor can flush the hot water heater and remove sediment to improve performance and efficiency.

A small water heater: You may have installed a heater years ago, when there were only two of you living in the house. Your family may have grown over the years and your water heater might not be able to keep up with your needs. You might be able to solve your problem by upgrading to a bigger unit.

How Long Will It Take To Get Hot Water?

Storage water heaters have a specific recovery time. This time is how long it takes for hot water to be delivered again from the tank after it has been used up. There are factors that can have an impact on the recovery time:

Tank size: Larger tanks will have longer recovery time.

Rating for the first hour: The faster the FHR is, the quicker the water heater will recover.

Type of fuel: It takes twice as long for electric water heaters to heat up than gas models.

Temperature rise: It takes more time to heat cold water than warm water.

It takes an average 80-gallon gas heater approximately an hour to recover.


Hot Water Recirculation Systems

Hot water recirculation systems can help reduce water waste while you wait for the water to heat up at the tap. Recirculating systems:

Water moves faster from the hot water heater to your desired tap

You can recirculate your water back to the heater, and keep hot water close by the faucets.

It is activated by a thermostat or a timer

You can mount the recirculation system near your faucet, or attach it to your water heater. Attached to the water heater, this version includes a pump and timer to circulate hot water.

Install a tankless water heater

Another option is a tankless water heater, which can provide hot water on demand. Tankless water heaters provide an unlimited supply of hot water. They don’t require tanks to heat or store water. Instead, the water is heated by heating elements and passed through them.

This results in instant hot water access and lower heating costs. The tank doesn’t heat unused water.

There are point-of-use and whole-house tankless water heating units as well as tankless water heaters. These units can be mounted in a closet or sink cabinet and provide hot water for individual faucets. These units are an excellent option for homes where a hot water heater is not sufficient.

Learn if a tankless water heating system is right for you.

It is vital to choose an efficient water heater system that will also provide hot water. Water heaters can make up as much as 25% of homes’ energy consumption. Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC will help you find the right water heater for your needs.


Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC offers a wide range of water heater services. Our plumbers are available to help you with any water heater repair or tune-up.

Call Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC now if you need the help of a professional plumber.

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Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC
4201 Carolina Exchange Drive Suite 202
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 267-9733

Home – Myrtle Beach Plumber

Serving all of Horry County including Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Little River, Murrells Inlet/Garden City, Surfside Beach, Carolina Forest/Forestbrook, Conway/Aynor

hot water heater

How To Deal With A Hot Water Heater That Leaks

If you take care of your hot water heater, electric or gas, they will last between 8 and 12 years.

There is always the possibility that your water heater might leak. The good news is that most water heater leaks are small and can be fixed quickly.

The best part?

To make the process even simpler, there are several things you can do prior to calling a plumber.

Reasons For A Broken Hot Water Heater

Hot water heater leaks are most commonly due to the following:

Broken drain valves could trigger the water to leak from the bottom of the tank. You can easily fix them by replacing the damaged drain valve.

The buildup of sediment can cause cracking and corrosion in the tank’s bottom. It’s time to replace your water heater when this happens.

Leakage can be caused by loose water line connections. The problem can be corrected by replacing or tightening the worn water lines.

Broken pressure/temperature valves: These valves, as their name implies, monitor and regulate water heaters’ temperature and pressure. They can break and cause water leakage from the tank’s sides.

Water heater leaks can be caused by many other factors. Contacting a professional like Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC is the best way to find out what’s causing your leaky water heater and how to fix it.


According to expert plumbing contractors, here are the steps to take if your water heater leaks:

If you discover a hot water leak, you must immediately cut off the power. Turn off the power source that is causing the hot water leakage

Locate your gas water heater thermostat. There should be a small knob with three settings: OFF, ON, and PILOT. To turn off the gas, switch it to OFF/PILOT. This will make the heater safe for use.

Electric water heater: Look at your breaker panel for the breaker marked “water heater”. To turn off the unit’s power, switch it off.

Shut off the water. Locate the cold water line that leads to the heater and turn it off. The line should have a valve. Turn it to the right until the valve closes. This will shut off the water supply and allow you to move on to the next stage.

Drain your water tank: This is essential if you have a tank water heater. This is also the most difficult step.

Attach a garden hose or a drain valve to the bottom of your water heater.

Then, run the hose to a sump pit or floor drain.

Once the hose is in place, you could open up the valve. For an older hot water heater, this may appear like a standard tap; on newer systems, there’s a drain stem that accepts a screwdriver.

NOTE: If you open the drain valve, the water may not flow properly or stop flowing. This is due to a vacuum inside the water heater.

Open any hot water tap in your house to break the vacuum. This will allow air to enter the tank, allowing it to drain faster. The whole tank should drain within an hour after you have established a good flow.

After the water heater has been drained, call a plumber to get a hot water heater repair service. We will quickly locate the source of the leakage and fix it.

Call Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC now if you need help in fixing your hot water heater or other plumbing problems.

Like our Facebook page for more great info about plumbing services.

Blue Ribbon Plumbing LLC
4201 Carolina Exchange Drive Suite 202
Myrtle Beach, SC 29579
(843) 267-9733

Home – Myrtle Beach Plumber

Serving all of Horry County including Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Little River, Murrells Inlet/Garden City, Surfside Beach, Carolina Forest/Forestbrook, Conway/Aynor