Why Do I Have No Hot Water?

Why Do I Have No Hot Water?

Living on Chicago’s Northwest Side comes with some incredible perks but it has its challenges too. And one of those is the temperature for about half of the year. It gets cold and stays that way which means taking showers and doing dishes when it’s freezing outside. That takes hot water so there’s almost nothing worse than going to turn it on and getting nothing but frigid water from the tap or shower head. So what gives? Why do you have no hot water?

At Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer, we know this is a frustrating and confusing place to find yourself on Chicago’s Northwest Side. What could be the problem? Why on earth is your hot water heater not doing its job for you? What can you do to rectify the situation? The answer to all of these questions can be found below or by calling Vanguard at (773) 633-6139 to schedule a visit from our to-rated plumbing team.

What Are The Most Common Causes Of No Hot Water?

While there are any number of potential reasons for your Northwest Chicago home not having hot water, most of them boil down (pun intended!) to the hot water heater itself as the root cause. And that makes logical sense as it is the source of all hot water in 99% of homes around Chicagoland. We don’t have geothermal vents on the shores of Lake Michigan, after all. So what are the biggest role players in no hot water? Let’s take a look:

Reason #1 For No Hot Water: Leaking Storage Tank

If your hot water heater is a storage tank model, your no hot water issue could be caused by a leaking storage tank. That makes sense right? The tank is where the water is stored when heated so if there’s a leak then there won’t be enough hot water to cover your needs. Even worse, the system will work overtime to try to make up for the leak and that’ll cost you more in energy bills.

To check for a leaking storage tank you’ll need to look at a couple of things. First, check the connections between your hot water heater and the valves. Are there leaks there? Signs of water pooling? Next you need to look at the tank’s compartment. If you see water in the bottom then it’s time for a new hot water heater from the pros at Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer.

Reason #2 For No Hot Water: A Gas Line Leak

Hot water heaters powered by natural gas can have a unique problem related to the gas line itself – specifically gas leaks. These are annoying and can be a danger to you and your Northwest Side home so they have to be addressed right away. If you smell gas around your hot water heater, or if you cannot identify any other reason for your lack of hot water, it may be time to call your gas company and have them send a technician out to check for leaks.

If they find one relating to the lines in your home then they’ll repair them to protect you and their infrastructure. If they feel it’s the hot water heater, you’ll need an expert opinion from the pros at Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer to know what options are available to you for hot water heater replacement.

Reason #3 For No Hot Water: Electric Malfunction

Today’s electric hot water heaters – many of them tankless models – are incredibly energy efficient and offer world-class operation year-round. At least they do when the electricity is flowing and the system is in alignment with the grid. When that gets out of whack for whatever reason you’re going to lose the ability to generate hot water in the home. Most models come with a reset button that can be used should a power outage occur. Usually this will resolve the issue but if it doesn’t you’ll have to contact a technician from the manufacturer to check the unit. That’s the only way to know if there’s something that can be done to repair it or if it’s a lost cause.

Should your work with the hot water heater manufacturer lead you down a blind alley in terms of satisfaction, you can call on the expert hot water heater plumbers from Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer for the highest rated hot water heater replacement service on Chicago’s Northwest Side. You’ll get outstanding results, a 100% satisfaction guarantee and a one-year labor warranty from the a team with more than 500 five-star reviews!

Reason #4 For No Hot Water: Bad Gas Valve

When you own a gas-powered hot water heater, it’s just logical that the gas supply must be constant for the unit to heat water effectively. Any interruptions to the gas supply – whether through the gas company’s infrastructure or your own home’s lines – will make an immediate impact on your ability to access hot water on demand. And while most people are worried about working with gas appliances – and rightfully so – it’s not difficult to check if your unit is having gas line issues. You just need to be extremely careful at all times when checking any gas-powered appliance.

The first thing to do is to check the lines themselves. Are they connected properly and tightly? Is the gas on? If all is well, check the pilot light. Is it burning steadily? If not, or if you find anything that causes you concern, you should call your gas company or Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer because t’s probably time to replace the unit or the lines.

Reason #5 For No Hot Water: Bad Thermostat

The thermostat is what controls the temperature of the water the hot water heart heats for your home. It’s the brain of the unit and when it goes bad all sorts of problems can arise. These include a complete and total lack of hot water when you want it and that’s a problem you can’t live with for long. You may even have issues with water being too hot to handle caused by a malfunctioning thermostat so you should have it checked at the first sign of trouble by either the manufacturer or a licensed plumbing contractor like Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer.

While it’s hard for a layperson to judge issues with a hot water heater thermostat, the expert plumbers from Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer can give you a definitive answer in no time flat with one single visit. It’s important to remember that you can protect your system’s thermostats by regularly flushing your hot water tank to prevent sediment buildup.

Reason #6 For No Hot Water: Tank’s Too Small

The final reason you may not have hot water in your Northwest Chicago home – the storage tank on your hot water heater is too small or the gallons-per-minute capacity of your tankless model isn’t up to your family’s needs. This is a problem for two reasons. First, you’re not going to have hot water when you want it at times. And second, you’re going to pay higher energy bills each month because the unit will struggle to deliver what you’re asking of it. That’s a headache you don’t want.

There’s only one surefire solution to a hot water heater that’s not up to the task because of lack of storage capacity or insufficient productivity – hot water heater replacement from Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer. That’s the only way to guarantee your family has all the hot water it ever needs on Chicago’s Northwest Side!

Our Plumbers Can Help You Have Hot Water At All Times!

Waking up for a shower and the water’s freezing cold is no fun. Trying to wash dishes in arctic temperatures is not easy. And none of it should be happening because you have a hot water heater in your Northwest Side home. It’s maddening and we understand that at Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer. That’s why we write articles like this to help our customers and site visitors. It’s why we offer the most effective and reliable hot water heater plumbing services on Chicago’s Northwest Side. And it’s why we have over 500 five-star reviews of our residential plumbing services across the web. Call (773) 633-6139 or submit a contact form for an estimate today!

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Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer is a local, family-owned plumbing company with decades of experience delivering the finest service to Chicago and its northern suburbs.

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Vanguard Plumbing

Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer
Phone: (773) 633-6139
Location: 4352 N. Kenneth Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60641


Business Hours:
Monday – Friday: 7:00 AM–5:00 PM
Saturday: 7:00 AM–3:00 PM
Sunday: Closed

City & State Licensing:
Chicago Sewer: #2422
Illinois Contractor: #055-043043
Chicago Contractor: #SBC196464