You are very familiar with the sounds of your home, the drone of the refrigerator, the hum of the heater, the buzz of the lights.  These are the little white noises that comprise our day.  One of these familiar sounds is the occasional sound of the water heater running.  But what happens when this sound never stops?  Is it OK for the water heater tank to be running all the time?

In most instances, the answer to our last question is no.  If your water heater is constantly running, there is probably a problem.  Here are a few potential problems you could be having and a few steps you could take before calling the plumber.

You might have a leak – A leak would be a constant drain on the hot water supply within the tank.  To make up for the loss of hot water, your tank would need to run more frequently to keep the same level of hot water as before.  If your water heater is constantly running the first thing you should do is check the unit and the pipes immediately around it for leaks.

You might have insufficient insulation – If the water heater is not properly insulated, it will be unable to maintain the water temperature.  If this is the issue you can purchase an insulating wrap at any local hardware store.

You might have sediment build-up – Over time sediment builds up in the bottom of your water heater.  If you haven’t drained your tank in a while, sediment may be causing your tank to function inefficiently.  Draining the tank will clean it out and fix the efficiency problem. We provide advice on how to do it yourself, or if you want to avoid the time and mess of doing it yourself, give us a call.

Your tank might be old – Of course, your water heater issues might simply be from a tank that needs replacing.  Older tanks will have to run more frequently to maintain a good water temperature.  Solution: buy a new tank.

Plumbing Repair Services

Quality 1st Plumbing Repair is a full-service plumbing contractor serving Metro Denver.  We are licensed and insured, and our technicians are professionally trained in the repair and installation of all plumbing systems and fixtures. We are Colorado’s FIRST Licensed and Accredited GreenPlumbers! Visit our website


3 Responses to “Should My Hot Water Heater Tank Be Running All The Time?”

  1. Mike on December 14th, 2012 9:42 am

    It sounds like our hot water heater is running all the time, and we have hot spots on our ceramic tile floors in key areas downstairs. Our hot water heater is upstairs in our attic. We are wondering if the water heater is the problem, or could pipes be broken inside the conrete slab of our home?

  2. Jim on March 29th, 2013 7:14 pm

    I recently moved my golf shop in my garage and Im spending about 6 hours a day out there. I hear the water heater going all day and wonder why. The water heater is 5 years old, Whirlpool. I live in Arizona and would thing hot water would be no problem. I have not drained it. What do you think.?? Thanks. Jim

  3. mike on September 17th, 2013 8:45 am

    but what happens when the tenant constantly runs the tank set to it’s max.?beside the fact of scalding children and adults.what does it do to the tank in the long run?are there any other safety factors involved?i need to explain this to hard headed people.

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