Your water heater is probably the most underestimated system in your home. Think about it – without the water heater, you wouldn’t have any of these luxuries:
- Hot showers
- Toasty baths
- Clean dishes
- Sanitized towels and sheets
- Hot water, period.
Given the importance of the water heater, do you really know much about it? We’re here to give you some things to remember when it comes to replacing, maintaining, and servicing your water heater.
The typical 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 system. If you are not sure about the age of your water heater, the date the system was manufactured will be reflected in the serial number which can be found on the ID sticker on the water heater tank.
Aging water heaters are nothing to mess around with. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at higher risk of springing a leak and resulting in water damage to your home. If your water heater sits in your attic or above the ground floor, the potential for catastrophic damage rises. Always have your water heater maintenance yearly to prevent any leaks from causing damage to your home.
The most typical breakdown of residential water heaters that will need replacement is a leaking tank.
It is highly recommended to have your plumber install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain to the outside of your home and decrease the probability of water damage. Every water heater 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 disconnect should be positioned close by.
If a water heater is “undersized,” especially a gas water heater, the tank will fail in a shorter period of time.
When a gas water heater is routinely drained of hot water due to heavy hot water usage, the gas burner is set off more often which can result in heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can create more speedy breakdown 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 reduces the lifespan of the water heater.
Water Heater sizing is a crucial replacement factor.
The water supply creates pressure for all water heaters, 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 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 supply you more hot water capacity.