Your hot water heater is probably the most underappreciated appliance in your home. Really – without your water heater, you wouldn’t have any of the following:
- Steamy showers
- Toasty baths
- Clean dishes
- Clean towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the significance of the water heater, do you truly know enough about it? We’re here with a few things to remember when it comes to maintaining, servicing, and replacing your water heater.
The typical lifespan of residential water heaters is 10-12 years.
Natural gas and electric water heaters will usually last about a decade before you need to consider replacing the system. If you aren’t sure what age your water heater is, the date the unit was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which you can find on the label on the water heater tank.
Older water heaters are nothing to ignore. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at higher risk of producing a leak and causing water damage to your home. If your water heater sits in your attic or above the ground floor, the possibility of catastrophic damage rises. Always have your water heater maintenance yearly to prevent any leaks from creating damage in your home.
The most usual malfunction of residential water heaters that will entail replacement is a leaking tank.
It is best to have your plumber install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain outside your home and decrease the possibility of water damage. Every water heater should have a working and accessible turn-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 switch off should be placed close by.
If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the tank will breakdown in a shorter period of time.
When a gas water heater is routinely drained of hot water due to substantial hot water utilization, the gas burner discharges more often which can create heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can produce more speedy breakdown of the steel tank. Also, the extreme heat from the gas burner on the bottom of the water heater tank can also cause damage to the glass lining on the interior of the tank, which reduces the lifespan of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is an important replacement consideration.
The water supply creates pressure for all water heaters, and as water is heated, it expands creating even more pressure. When thinking about replacing a water heater, it’s typically better to go with a sizable 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, providing the location will accommodate the larger size. The 50 gallon tank will also supply you more hot water capacity.