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

November 17, 2016

Your water heater is probably the most underappreciated machine in your home. Really – without your water heater, you wouldn’t have any of the following:

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

Given the significance of the water heater, do you truly know much about it? We’re here to provide a couple things to think about when it comes to replacing, maintaining, and servicing your water heater.

The typical lifespan of residential water heaters is about ten to twelve years.

Natural gas and electric water heaters will commonly 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 unit was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which is located on the label on the water heater tank.

Maturing water heaters are nothing to take lightly. A water heater that is a decade or older is at greater risk of getting a leak and causing water damage to your home. If your water heater is positioned in your attic or above the bottom floor, the possibility of catastrophic damage goes up. Make sure you have your water heater maintenance yearly to avoid any leaks from creating damage in 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 installer place the water heater in a drain pan with piping that allows the pan to drain outside your home and minimize the possibility of water damage. All water heaters should have a working and reachable 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 cut off should be placed within reach.

If a water heater is “undersized,” especially a gas water heater, the tank will malfunction in a shorter period of time.

When a gas water heater is regularly drained of hot water due to substantial hot water use, the gas burner fires repeatedly which can create heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can create more speedy breakdown of the steel tank. Additionally, 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 inside of the tank, which reduces the lifespan of the water heater.

Water Heater sizing is a significant replacement consideration.

The water supply cause all water heaters to be under pressure, and as water is heated, it expands creating even more pressure. When thinking about 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 accommodate the larger size. The 50 gallon tank will also provide you more hot water capacity.

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