Your hot water heater is probably the most underrated system in your home. Seriously – without your water heater, you couldn’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 to provide some things to keep in mind when it comes to replacing, maintaining, and servicing your water heater.
The usual lifespan of residential water heaters is between ten and twelve years.
Natural gas and electric water heaters will typically last about a decade before you need to look into replacing the water heater. If you are not sure 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 mess around with. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at greater risk of getting a leak and resulting in water damage to your home. If your water heater is positioned in your attic or above the first floor, the chance of catastrophic damage rises. Be sure you have your water heater maintenance yearly to avoid any leaks from damaging your home.
The most common breakdown 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 allows the pan to drain outside your home and decrease the potential of water damage. All water heaters should have a operational and reachable 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 disconnect should be located within reach.
If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the equipment will breakdown in a shorter amount of time.
When a gas water heater is routinely emptied of hot water due to significant hot water use, the gas burner discharges more frequently which can result in 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 take its toll on the glass lining on the interior of the tank, which decreases the lifespan of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is an essential replacement consideration.
The water supply cause all water heaters to be under pressure, and as water is heated, it grows creating even more pressure. When contemplating replacing a water heater, it’s generally better to go with a larger 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.