After installing a new water heater, you expect to enjoy using hot water throughout. However, this can be short-lived when the water heater runs out of hot water. This can be frustrating and inconvenient at the same time.

Your new water heater can run out of hot water quickly if there’s a water pressure problem, a poorly insulated tank, or a dirty heater element. It could also be a wrong thermostat setting, plumbing issues, or a clogged water heater vent. 

The good news is that all these causes have easy fixes, so there is no need to panic. Read on and understand all these problems in detail and their solution.

Low Water Pressure

When the water pressure is too low than it should be or it keeps fluctuating, it can make your water heater run out of hot water. Also, if the water pressure regulator isn’t the right match for the water heater, it can lead to this problem. And if you are experiencing water shortage or the area is prone to regular water shortage, then your water heater will keep producing cold water.

To solve this, ensure you set the water pressure regulator to 40 pounds per square inch. But work with an expert before making the changes as it could be for a different reason.

A Broken Dip Tube

You can also experience this problem when the dip tube is broken. The dip tube help deliver cold water to the bottom of the tank, where it’s heated. But the cold water won’t reach the intended area when the tube has issues. Instead, it will mix with the hot water on top of the tank affecting the temperature of the water.

A dip tube can cause these problems when it’s faulty or old, breaking unexpectedly. You can replace the dip tube with a new one and have the water heater produce hot water as before.

Wrong Thermostat Settings

Your water heater might also run out of hot water because of the wrong thermostat settings. If the thermostat is set too high or low, it will run out of hot water faster than it should. You can know this if your shower head is warm or when room temperature air mixes with the stream.

Check the thermostat settings and set it to the right settings. It should be 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Poorly Insulated Tank

Water heater tanks have insulations to keep the hot water hot for a long and reduce heating costs. However, if there is poor insulation, the water heater will run out of hot water. To solve this problem, ensure the water heater tank is insulated at least 90% on the outer surface and all sides.

You can use insulating blankets to achieve this. Work with a professional to fix this to avoid having the problem recurring.

Dirty Heater Elements

At times this could be a problem caused by dirty elements in the water heater. When the elements are dirty, water will run out of the tank faster than it should, not giving it enough time to become hot. The elements could have sediment buildup or rusty particles that prevent BTUs from producing adequate water temperature.

Ensure that the electric resistance elements and hot ignition devices are clean to avoid running out of hot water. Clean an electric water heater yearly, while the gas water heater shouldn’t stay more than three years before cleaning. Also, replace the filters regularly as they let dirty water into the water heater with time, affecting how they work.

Blocked Water Heater Vent

When the water heater vent is clogged, it can result in excessive water flow or no hot water production. Your energy consumption might also increase as the heater tries to increase the water temperature.

You should check if there is any blockage in the water heater vents on top of the tank or under it. If it has leaves, grass, or dirt accumulation, it will affect the air pressure in the furnace hence no hot water coming from the water heater. You should clean out the vents regularly to avoid experiencing such issues.

Plumbing Issues

If there are plumbing issues, your water heater will also have challenges producing hot water. When the water heater can’t get any water supply, it will not produce hot water for long. Furthermore, when water flow reduces, you will run out of hot water faster as there is insufficient water to maintain the continuous heating process.

Check if your home has old pipes that can interfere with water flow. The old pipes have poor insulation and can leak when exposed to high-temperature water. This will make you pay more bills but not get the desired water from your shower or tap.

To prevent this, change all the old pipes in the home and repair faulty plumbing elements.

Using Several Appliances

Sometimes you may run out of hot water when you are using several hot water appliances at the same time. For example, if you are washing plates in the kitchen and someone else is showering simultaneously, it will affect the hot water reaching either side.

You should avoid using hot water appliances simultaneously to stop running out of hot water. The dishwasher and washing machine are the main hot water appliances that bring up this issue.

You Have a Smaller Water Heater Tank

If the water heater tank in your home is smaller than your household needs, it may run out of hot water. This issue happens if you have guests or your family have grown in numbers.

You should make plans on how to upgrade to a bigger water heater tank that will supply enough hot water for the whole family. Ensure you consider the hot water projects in your home before deciding on the right water heater tank.

Bottom Line

A water heater makes using water enjoyable, especially in the cold seasons or days when touching cold water is a nightmare. So, it will be frustrating when your new water heater runs out of hot water quickly. But you can solve this by finding the root cause of the problem and then taking the appropriate actions to prevent the issue from re-occurring.