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

November 17, 2016

The water heater is probably the most underrated system in your home. Think about it – without a water heater, you don’t have any of these perks:

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

Given the significance of the water heater, do you truly know enough about it? We’re here to provide a few 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 consider replacing the system. If you aren’t sure how old your water heater is, the date the unit was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which is located on the identification tag on the water heater tank.

Aging water heaters are nothing to take lightly. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at higher risk of springing a leak and leading to water damage to your home. If your water heater is in your attic or above the bottom floor, the potential for catastrophic damage increases. Always have your water heater maintenance every year to prevent any leaks from damaging your home.

The most typical breakdown of residential water heaters that will need replacement is a leaking tank.

It is best to have your plumbing expert install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain outside of your home and decrease the potential of water damage. Each water heater should have a working and reachable 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 disconnect should be placed nearby.

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

When a gas water heater is regularly drained of hot water due to significant hot water use, the gas burner discharges more often which can create heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can result in more speedy deterioration of the steel tank. Also, the extreme heat from the gas burner on the base of the water heater tank can also cause damage to the glass lining on the interior of the tank, which decreases the life expectancy of the water heater.

Water Heater sizing is an essential 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 sizable 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, as long as the location will accept the larger size. The larger tank will also supply you more hot water capacity.

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