Things to Keep in Mind When It Comes to Your Water Heater

November 17, 2016

The water heater is probably the most underappreciated appliance in your home. Really – without your water heater, you don’t have any of these luxuries:

  • Hot showers
  • Hot baths
  • Disinfected dishes
  • Sanitized towels and sheets
  • Hot water, period.

Given the power of the water heater, do you really know a good amount about it? We’re here with a few things to think about when it comes to maintaining, servicing, and replacing your water heater.

The typical lifespan of residential water heaters is between ten and 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 unit was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which can be found on the identification tag 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 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 possibility of catastrophic damage goes up. Always have your water heater maintenance annually to keep any leaks from damaging your home.

The most usual failure 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 allows the pan to drain to the outside of your home and lower the possibility of water damage. Every water heater 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 shut off should be located nearby.

If a water heater is “undersized,” especially a gas water heater, the equipment will breakdown in a shorter amount of time.

When a gas water heater is consistently depleted of hot water due to significant hot water utilization, the gas burner fires more frequently which can result in heavy condensation on the exterior of the tank. The condensation can result in more speedy breakdown of the steel tank. Furthermore, the severe 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 life cycle of the water heater.

Water Heater sizing is a significant replacement factor.

The water supply cause all water heaters to be under pressure, and as water is heated, it expands creating even more pressure. When contemplating replacing a water heater, it’s generally better to go with a bigger 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, presuming the location will fit the larger size. The bigger tank will also provide you more hot water capacity.

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