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

November 17, 2016

Your water heater is probably the most underrated system in your home. Think about it – without the water heater, you wouldn’t have any of the following:

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

Given the significance of the water heater, do you really know a good amount about it? We’re here with a couple things to remember 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 typically last about a decade before you need to look into replacing the appliance. If you aren’t sure what age your water heater is, the date the equipment was manufactured will be shown in the serial number which you can find on the identification tag on the water heater tank.

Aging water heaters are nothing to ignore. A water heater that is 10 years or older is at greater risk of producing a leak and resulting in water damage to your home. If your water heater sits in your attic or above the ground floor, the chance of catastrophic damage increases. Be sure you have your water heater maintenance annually to keep any leaks from causing damage to your home.

The most common failure 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 enables the pan to drain to the outside of your home and minimize the potential of water damage. All water heaters should have a operational and accessible 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 cut off should be positioned nearby.

If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the system will fail in a shorter time span.

When a gas water heater is regularly emptied of hot water due to significant hot water utilization, the gas burner discharges more often which can result in heavy condensation on the tank exterior. The condensation can create more expeditious breakdown of the steel tank. Additionally, the exceptional heat from the gas burner on the bottom of the water heater tank can also take its toll on the glass lining on the inside of the tank, which lowers the life cycle of the water heater.

Water Heater sizing is an essential replacement issue.

The water supply cause all water heaters to be under pressure, and as water is heated, it grows creating even more pressure. When considering replacement of a water heater, it’s generally better to go with a bigger 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, providing the location will accept the larger size. The larger tank will also supply you more hot water capacity.

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