A broken dip tube is one of the most common reasons why water heater repair is needed. Unfortunately, this is a part that many homeowners have never heard of and are not familiar with. Here is everything that the average homeowner needs to know about broken dip tubes.
What a Dip Tube Is
In the center of a traditional hot water heater tank is a plastic pipe or tube. Housed within this tube is a part known as the dip tube. The dip tube is responsible for carrying cold water from the water supply to the bottom of the tank. The bottom of the tank is where water starts to get heated. As new water is added to the tank, the water that is warming gets pushed up, so the hottest water is at the top of the tank, where your hot water line pulls water from your hot water tank.
The Signs of a Broken Dip Tube
If the dip tube is broken or cracked, cold water will mix with hot water. In turn, this means that you will not have as much hot water streaming into your home, or your water may feel warm, but not hot, depending on where exactly the crack or break is in the tube. The tell-tale sign that it is a broken dip tube versus a heat exchange part is that the water will be warm, just not hot. If the problem were with your heat exchange, your water would be cold.
Whether a Broken Dip Tube Is a DIY Repair
A broken dip tube is not a do-it-yourself repair. In order to gain access to the dip tube, you need to remove the nipple and water supply line from the tube or pipe that houses the broken dip tube. If you do this incorrectly, you can cause more harm, and these parts way wind up needing to be repaired or replaced as well. As such, you should leave broken dip tube problems to the professionals.
How a Broken Dip Tube Is Repaired
A broken dip tube cannot be repaired. If the dip tube is broken or cracked, it must be replaced.
If you notice that your water is not as hot as it normally is, or hot water is not lasting as long as it typically does, a broken dip tube is likely the culprit. Contact your preferred water heater repair company to schedule an appointment to have your water heater inspected and repaired.