Your hot water heater is probably the most underrated appliance in your home. Seriously – without the water heater, you wouldn’t have any of the following:
- Hot showers
- Warm baths
- Disinfected dishes
- Sanitized towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the power of the water heater, do you truly know much about it? We’re here to give you a couple things to remember when it comes to servicing, maintaining, and replacing your water heater.
The usual lifespan of residential water heaters is between ten and twelve years.
Natural gas and electric water heaters will typically last about a decade before you need to consider replacing the water heater. If you aren’t sure how old your water heater is, the date the equipment was manufactured will be displayed in the serial number which is located on the ID sticker on the water heater tank.
Older water heaters are nothing to ignore. A water heater that is ten years or older is at more risk of springing a leak and leading to water damage to your home. If your water heater sits in your attic or above the bottom floor, the potential for catastrophic damage rises. Be sure you have your water heater maintenance annually to avoid any leaks from damaging your home.
The most typical failure of residential water heaters that will need replacement is a leaking tank.
It is a good idea to have your plumbing expert install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain to the outside of your home and minimize the possibility of water damage. Every water heater should have a operational and accessible cut-off valve on the inlet water supply to the tank, and a ball-type valve on the gas supply. For electric water heaters, an electrical shut off should be placed within reach.
If a water heater is “undersized,” especially a gas water heater, the system will malfunction in a shorter amount of time.
When a gas water heater is consistently drained of hot water due to heavy hot water usage, the gas burner is set off more frequently which can result in heavy condensation on the outside of the tank. The condensation can produce more rapid decomposition of the steel tank. Furthermore, the severe heat from the gas burner on the bottom of the water heater tank can also deteriorate the glass lining on the inner section of the tank, which lowers the lifespan of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is an important replacement consideration.
The water supply cause all water heaters to be under pressure, and as water is heated, it grows creating even more pressure. When contemplating replacing a water heater, it’s typically better to go with a bigger 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, providing the location will fit the larger size. The larger tank will also supply you more hot water capacity.