Your hot water heater is probably the most underappreciated appliance in your home. Really – without a water heater, you wouldn’t have any of these perks:
- Steamy showers
- Warm baths
- Disinfected dishes
- Clean towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the importance of the water heater, do you really know much about it? We’re here with some things to think about when it comes to maintaining, servicing, and replacing your water heater.
The typical lifespan of residential water heaters is about ten to twelve years.
Natural gas and electric water heaters will commonly last about a decade before you need to consider replacing the system. If you are unsure how old your water heater is, the date the system was manufactured will be reflected in the serial number which you can find on the ID sticker on the water heater tank.
Aging water heaters are nothing to ignore. A water heater that is ten years or older is at more risk of springing a leak and causing water damage to your home. If your water heater is positioned in your attic or above the ground floor, the potential for catastrophic damage rises. Be sure you have your water heater maintenance every year to prevent any leaks from causing damage to your home.
The most common malfunction of residential water heaters that will entail 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 allows the pan to drain outside of your home and minimize the probability of water damage. All water heaters should have a functional and obtainable shut-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 cut off should be placed close by.
If a water heater is “undersized,” particularly a gas water heater, the equipment will breakdown in a shorter amount of time.
When a gas water heater is consistently emptied of hot water due to significant hot water utilization, the gas burner discharges more often which can produce heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can cause more rapid deterioration of the steel tank. Furthermore, the exceptional heat from the gas burner on the base of the water heater tank can also cause damage to the glass lining on the inside of the tank, which reduces the life expectancy of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is an important replacement factor.
All water heaters are under pressure from the water supply, 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 sizable 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, presuming the location will accommodate the larger size. The bigger tank will also supply you more hot water capacity.