Your hot water heater is probably the most underappreciated machine in your home. Really – without your water heater, you wouldn’t have any of these luxuries:
- Steamy showers
- Toasty baths
- Disinfected dishes
- Sanitized towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the significance of the water heater, do you truly know enough about it? We’re here to provide a few things to remember when it comes to replacing, maintaining, and servicing 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 water heater. If you aren’t sure what age your water heater is, the date the equipment was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which you can find on the ID sticker on the water heater tank.
Maturing water heaters are nothing to mess around with. A water heater that is ten years or older is at greater risk of getting a leak and leading to water damage to your home. If your water heater is in your attic or above the first floor, the potential for catastrophic damage rises. Make sure you have your water heater maintenance every year to prevent any leaks from creating damage in your home.
The most typical failure of residential water heaters that will need replacement is a leaking tank.
It is best to have your plumbing expert install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that lets the pan to drain outside of your home and decrease the potential of water damage. All water heaters 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 switch off should be positioned within reach.
If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the system will fail in a shorter period of time.
When a gas water heater is routinely depleted of hot water due to heavy hot water use, the gas burner fires repeatedly which can produce heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can produce more rapid deterioration of the steel tank. Furthermore, the exceptional heat from the gas burner on the underside of the water heater tank can also deteriorate the glass lining on the inner section of the tank, which decreases the lifespan of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is a significant replacement factor.
All water heaters are under pressure from the water supply, and as water is heated, it expands creating even more pressure. When contemplating replacing a water heater, it’s usually better to go with a sizable 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, presuming the location will accept the larger size. The bigger tank will also provide you more hot water capacity.