Age and leaking are two of the most obvious ways to tell if your water heater needs to be replaced. If your unit is over 10 years old, you should be aware of the common signs associated with water heater failure. The HVAC experts at Precision Heating & Air have put together a few other, less noticeable ways you can tell your water heater may be on its way out.

Rusty Water

If you turn on the hot water in your sink or shower and it comes out tinged red or brown, this might be a sign that your water heater is rusting inside and may leak soon. Units that are rusting on the inside have thinner walls, increasing the risk of the sides of the tank leaking.

Metallic Taste

Though invisible, a metallic taste or smell to the water coming out of your water heater can indicate that it needs to be replaced. The metallic taste and smell can be a sign that the metal components in your water heater are breaking down. This breakdown can lead to a leak, which, depending on the location of your water heater, can cause significant damage to the rest of your home.


Moisture around your water heater might appear to be simple condensation, but it can indicate small leaks in the tank. Tiny fractures in your water heater might only leak when the unit is in use — the metal expands when heated (when the tank is in use), opening the fractures, and constricting as it cools, closing them back up. Failing to act on these leaks can cause big problems down the road.


If you notice loud clunking or rumbling noises coming from your water heater tank, it might be time to replace it. Over the years, sediment builds up in the tank, eventually solidifying. When you use the heater, the sediment moves around, making the noises you hear. Sediment in your tank makes it less efficient and can wear on the tank, causing holes and leaks.

Replace Your Water Heater

If you notice any of these signs, don’t hesitate to call the water heater experts at Precision Heating & Air. Replacing your tank before it leaks can save you thousands in other home repairs. Reach out to us at (770) 758-4552 or fill out our online form to schedule your service call.

In the meantime, take a look at our water heater resource page to learn about your replacement options.

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