Your hot water heater is probably the most underestimated machine in your home. Think about it – without a water heater, you don’t have any of these perks:
- Steamy showers
- Hot baths
- Sanitized dishes
- Clean towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the power of the water heater, do you really know enough about it? We’re here to give you some 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 usually last about a decade before you need to look into replacing the system. If you are unsure what age your water heater is, the date the system was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which is located on the ID sticker on the water heater tank.
Maturing water heaters are nothing to take lightly. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at higher risk of producing a leak and resulting in water damage to your home. If your water heater is positioned in your attic or above the ground floor, the possibility of catastrophic damage increases. Make sure you have your water heater maintenance every year to prevent any leaks from creating damage in your home.
The most usual failure of residential water heaters that will entail replacement is a leaking tank.
It is a good idea to have your plumber install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain outside your home and lower the potential of water damage. Each water heater should have a functional 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 shut off should be placed nearby.
If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the system will fail in a shorter time span.
When a gas water heater is routinely drained of hot water due to substantial hot water utilization, the gas burner fires more often which can produce heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can cause more expeditious breakdown of the steel tank. Additionally, the exceptional heat from the gas burner on the base of the water heater tank can also deteriorate the glass lining on the inner section of the tank, which reduces the life cycle of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is a crucial replacement issue.
The water supply creates pressure for all water heaters, and as water is heated, it grows creating even more pressure. When considering replacement of a water heater, it’s typically better to go with a bigger 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, as long as the location will fit the larger size. The 50 gallon tank will also provide you more hot water capacity.