Maintaining a steady supply of hot water is a modern-day necessity wherever you are, but for those of us who live in cooler climates, having stable and reliable access to hot water is an absolute need. Especially for Melbourne residents, who endure colder temperatures than much of Australia, the thought of cold showers or washing up in freezing water is singularly unappealing.
Our hot water systems, chugging along day by day heating our water, are often not the first thing we think of when it comes to house maintenance, and we often don’t think about them at all until they break down. Unfortunately, all hot water systems will break down eventually, but we can be ready for the inevitable and prepare in advance, scheduling maintenance and upgrades as a routine part of maintaining the household.
Here’s how to seamlessly upgrade your next hot water system replacement, keeping you and your family warm with reliable hot water.
Signs It’s Time for Replacement
Even the best-maintained hot water system will break down eventually. It’s a fact of life, like a car, a TV, a computer or any other form of technology we rely on. However, like all technology, hot water systems do give warning signs before they’re about to break down, and recognising those signs can go a long way to making sure you and your family maintain an uninterrupted supply of hot water. By pre-empting the end of your system’s life cycle, you can organise a replacement before it shuts down for good, meaning the only time you won’t have hot water is when the technician is swapping out the systems.
Common signs of failing hot water systems include a decreased hot water supply. This can manifest as hot water that shuts off quicker than it used to (causing a cold end to a shower) or water that has become increasingly lukewarm over time. You can also inspect the system itself to see if there are any signs of wear and tear or aging. Signs of rust, corrosion, or leaks can all signal that it’s time to upgrade your system.
Choosing the Right Replacement System for Melbourne’s Climate
Melbourne is among the colder areas of Australia, and so, especially in the winter months, the demand and strain on your system may be greater than it would be in, for example, Queensland. While residents of the more northern states might not mind the occasional cold shower, few living in Melbourne in July would probably say the same, not to mention those year-round days that go from hot to cold and everything in between in mere hours. That means for those of us in Victoria’s capital, with its unpredictable weather, selecting a reliable appliance is essential to comfortable living.
The many ways to heat water
There are many types of water heating systems to consider when choosing an upgrade. Electric systems are your standard, run-of-the-mill types, which, while affordable to purchase, tend to come with larger running costs than other types. Gas systems are more affordable to run but obviously require a gas connection and, if placed indoors, need proper ventilation to keep the air safe. Heat pump systems are one of the more expensive systems for start-up costs and can struggle in consistently cold places, but have a small carbon footprint and can save you on operating costs. Solar systems are the most environmentally friendly option, powered by the sun to cause low or no emissions. They are incredibly cheap to operate and can make you eligible for government rebates or subsidies, though they do come with a higher up-front cost and require somewhere, ideally, the roof, for the solar panels to be installed.
Not sure which option is the best for you and your home? Talk to your local hot water services specialist to discuss whether tankless or storage, gas-boosted or solar-boosted options are right for you.
Local Regulations and Compliance
In Victoria, hot water must be kept and maintained at 60 °C to prevent bacteria growth, such as Legionella, which can cause the pneumonia-type illness Legionnaire’s disease. However, plumbing laws require water emerging from a tap or showerhead to be a maximum of 50 °C to prevent scalds. This is achieved through different ‘tempering’ methods, which licensed and registered plumbers will be able to provide advice on. While the difference may not seem like a lot, water at 68°C can cause an instantaneous scald, while at 50°C, burns can take five minutes to develop.
Finding the best service for you
While testing for bacteria and ensuring that temperature regulations are put in place is not the resident’s job, ensuring you work with a reputable, trusted and experienced hot water system company is. Only work with businesses that take their duty of care seriously when installing heaters. Check the company’s service history, the quality of their customers’ reviews, their staff experience, and if there has ever been an issue with their service. This will ensure the safety of you and your family, especially if there are any young children.
Cost Considerations for Melbourne Homeowners
Money is, of course, a major factor when choosing an installation upgrade. This central aspect of home life comes with variables to consider, such as the initial price, running and future repair costs, and the quality and longevity of the wide range of brands and units on offer. You may be asking yourself multiple questions. What is the most suitable system in the Melbourne metro area? What are the estimated costs for hot water repairs? What is the warranty on each model? Is a storage tank suitable, and how does it affect efficiency? Is the upfront price or long-term savings more important right now? What’s in a brand name? What’s the difference between a Rheem and a Bosch or a Rinnai, Vulcan or Aquamax?
Where to find the answers
A reputable hot water specialist can help you make sense of it all, providing more information on the products available for your hot water installations. For example, for budget-conscious homeowners, systems with lower up-front costs may be advisable, followed by a more expensive system with lower running costs in a few years. The pricing of solar hot water units might be a problem, but perhaps there are rebates or subsidies available in your area, or perhaps those same panels can contribute to powering the rest of your house
Reputable Service Providers in Melbourne
When looking for hot water specialists, it is always good to research the team and find the professionals that can meet your water heating system needs. Checking Google reviews for testimonials from past clients is a quick and transparent way of assessing hot water installation services or plumbing services. Even having a phone call with a company and discussing the process, location and current market for your property or site, whether in a unit or among regular homes. By contacting businesses directly, you can even collect a quote or two to see what you’re paying for.
It can also be important to determine if a company will provide a site inspection, what times they are available, and how quickly and easily an appointment can be made. What are their prices, and, as a business, do they have or work with a licensed and registered plumber? This also goes for tradesmen and technicians. Choosing a reputable hot water service means choosing trusted workmanship and ensuring that your hot water will continue to flow from your hot water unit with minimal issues.
Energy-Efficient Solutions for Melbourne
For Melbourne’s environmentally conscious community, the availability of energy-efficient hot water systems means a double benefit to both the environment and the conscience, but it goes beyond even these benefits to the long-term bottom line of hot water heater operation. Some systems, such as solar-powered systems, can bring operating costs down and even make you eligible for government subsidies and rebates in some areas. Water heaters are becoming more energy efficient by the year, and a timely upgrade means you are doing the best thing for your house, your wallet, and the environment.
Get in touch with the specialists in hot water heaters to find the best option for you and your household in terms of size and supply needs. Whether you are living alone, with a partner, or have a large family, in a unit or a house, we can help you find the right size so that you can minimise your electricity use while enjoying sustainable and reliable hot water.
Choose the experts in hot water service
Wherever you are in Melbourne City or in the suburbs, Same Day Hot Water Service can help you pick the perfect system for you and your household. We can work with you to discuss your price needs in the short term and long term, where you live, and whether heat pumps or solar, electricity or gas are the best options for your dwelling. Our Melbourne team knows the local conditions and is always on hand to provide you with the most up-to-date industry advice to keep the hot water flowing and the costs of running the systems down.
Contact Same Day Hot Water Service today to discuss replacing your hot water system, as well as choosing the right system for unique climate and regulations.