When Is It Time to Replace Your Water Heater?

Most homes in modern cities depend heavily on water heaters. The average heater consumes roughly $438 a year, which isn’t a lot.

Modern water heaters are efficient, and most homeowners can afford to use them for several hours a day.

But because the dependence on water heaters has grown, these appliances are more likely to wear out.

Your first response to a worn-out or malfunctioning heater is to perform repairs. However, sometimes, repairs are not enough. Sometimes, you have to replace the water heater.

This raises a question. When is the right time to replace a water heater? This question matters because heaters are expensive.

The average consumer cannot afford to replace their heater on a whim, which is why they prefer to wait until they don’t have a choice.

But what are the signs of a heater that has reached the end of its lifespan?

Four Signs That It Is Time To Replace the Water Heat:

1) Age

You can extend the life of a water heater by performing regular maintenance.

But even with proper care, heaters have a limited lifespan. They cannot last forever.

People usually panic when they observe leaks, noises, rust, and other problematic signs.

However, you can always fix those issues in a younger heater.

But if your heater is old, you should replace it even though it hasn’t manifested any significant signs of trouble.

You don’t want the heater to stop working suddenly when you need it the most.

That can happen with water heaters that have exceeded their lifespan. A heater’s average lifespan is eight to twelve years.

So if you bought yours 15 or more years ago, get a new one.

If your heater came with the house, look for the serial number. Manufacturers usually print this information on a sticker attached to the heater.

Use the serial number to identify the year it was manufactured.

You can’t fix natural wear and tear. So once the appliance exceeds its lifespan, save some time by getting a new one.

2) Temperature

At the end of its lifespan, a heater won’t heat the water to your preferred temperature. Instead, it will generate lukewarm water, or the volume of hot water will drop.

A heater that once accommodated six or seven people before it ran out of hot water will only satisfy one or two people.

So before you panic, check the thermostat. You should also hire an expert to investigate the heating element.

These problems have easy solutions. However, in the absence of such simple answers, you should replace the heater.

3) Energy Bills

Are your bills rising? Your heater could be the problem.

Modern heaters use the most efficient methods possible to heat water, which is why you can use them for several hours each day without seeing a significant spike in your energy bill.

If your energy bill is rising even though your activities have remained largely unchanged, you need a new heater, especially if the appliance is old.

Ask a professional to troubleshoot it. They can take certain steps to increase a heater’s efficiency. That includes flushing the device.

But if they have to perform these tasks several times a year, you need a new heater.

4) Rust

Rust is going to appear in heaters that have exceeded their lifespan. You can’t avoid this outcome. On its own, rust is tricky because it doesn’t always originate from the tank.

Sometimes, the water supply is to blame. But, on many occasions, the pipes are the problem.

You need an expert to scrutinize your system with a fine-toothed comb to identify the exact source of the rust.

But even if the water was tainted by rust from your supplier, the expert will still compel you to get a new heater if the old one has exceeded its lifespan.

Why Replace A Water Heater Before It Fails?

water heater broken

That sounds like a foolish question, but it isn’t if you take a moment to think about it.

You may be wondering if it isn’t better to wait for the water heater to fail. After all, why replace the appliance when it still works? There are two important reasons.

1) Convenience

A dead water heater will deny you access to hot water. This is true for a tankless water heater and the traditional variety – learn more here.

You can use competent HVAC service providers to secure a water heater in an emergency.

But what happens when things go wrong? What if they can’t get to you because of a blizzard or flooding?

What if your bathroom requires extensive renovations before they can install the new heater?

You could spend several days without hot water. This is why you are better off replacing the heater before it stops working.

Your plumber can analyze the situation, identify complications, and schedule a convenient day to install the new heater before the old one dies. This reduces or eliminates delays.

2) Energy Bill

Malfunctioning heaters are inefficient. Either they won’t heat the water to the temperature you need, or they will use more electricity than usual to satisfy your demands.

Either way, your energy bills may skyrocket. The longer it takes you to replace the heater, the more money you will spend.

If your energy bill is not high enough to warrant concern, a corroded heater is a danger to your house and its inhabitants.

It could flood your property, causing irreversible damage to walls, floors, furniture, and carpets.


Most homeowners are reluctant to replace water heaters because the appliances are expensive. But this attitude does more harm than good.

A new heater will pay for itself by reducing your bills. If you buy a new one now, it will serve you for the next decade.

Secondly, a faulty heater can cause serious damage to your home. Using an appliance that has reached the end of its lifespan puts you and your family in danger.

Therefore, get a new one before the old heater burns your house to the ground.

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