This was the same question that Angele from the Gold Coast was pondering five days before Christmas.
The 50 litres Rheem hot water system had been installed in a cupboard in Angele’s apartment back in 2002. The system had been working without a problem for 17 years before a burst tank brought an end to this water heater.
This Rheem hot water system had faithfully provided Angele and her family hot water for showers, washing and dishwashing prior to the hot water tank bursting.
The unit had worked continuously without a day off for over 6000 days. Not a single, weekend sleep-in, rostered day off, sick leave or vacation during that entire 17 years of service.
The thermostat would have activated the heating element more than 120,000 times. The water heater would have worked for more than 38,000 hours.
Installed two years after the Sydney Olympics it is a far cry from the first water heater which was invented by a painter named Ben Maughan in London back in 1868. (To know more about the history of Hot water System, visit the blog “3 Types Of Hot Water Systems Explained“)
Angele’s Rheem hot water system would have heated over half a million litres of water during its years of service. In fact, the volume of water that this hot water system heated over its life could have filled a jumbo jet.
Then, at 3 am on the 20th of December, 5 days before Christmas, this unappreciated and unnoticed hero of our home relegated itself to recycling after the water heater tank burst.
How do we know that the hot water system burst at 3 am you ask??? Angele and her newborn baby were awake for an early morning feed when the hot water system went bang.
What do you do when your hot water system explodes? Great question! The first thing that Angele did was to turn the water off.
Shutting off the water to the system is simple. On a 50-litre hot water system, we installed it’s achieved by closing the blue handle on the valve. In fact, to remove any possible confusion, the blue handle is clearly marked with the direction in which to turn it.
The next thing to do is turn off the power to the hot water system. Isolating power is even easier. Just look for the main fuse box and switch off the breaker marked HWS.
Angele then searched the internet for a plumber and found Gold Coast Plumbing Company. It was an easy decision due to the hundreds of customer reviews on Google.
Angele sent Gold Coast Plumbing Company a message on Friday at 3:05 am and by 7:20 am Angele had an appointment for one of our tradespeople to visit her home and provide an upfront price to repair or replace the hot water system that same day.
Thankfully we have been installing hot water systems for a while and knew that the current model Rheem 50 litre water heaters are taller and would not fit. Angele’s cupboard would allow only one type of 50-litre hot water system to fit into the available space and that is a Thermann hot water system. More information is available here Thermann Hot Water Systems Review.
By 12:07 pm Angele had a new hot water system with valves and insulation making it compliant to Australian Standards and most importantly, a tempering valve was installed as well. A tempering valve blends hot with cold water to deliver 50º water at the hot tap. Water at a lower temperature takes longer to cause injury. Did you know that it takes 3 minutes for hot water to cause third-degree burns at 50º and only 3 seconds at 60º?!
Angele now has the peace of mind knowing the tempering valve will make bath time safe for her baby, and on top of that, her new hot water system is backed by Gold Coast Plumbing Company’s Lifetime Workmanship Warranty.
In fact, Angele was kind enough to provide some feedback through a Google review:
Gold Coast Plumbing Company responded to my early 3 am request promptly and got Brent out as soon as he was available. The service was amazing and everything was explained in detail and my old hot water unit had been replaced and installed within hours of attending. Would highly recommend to everyone.
Thanks for the feedback Angele, it’s how we improve.
Dane the owner