Only the abnormally tough or clinically insane enjoy a cold shower, so keeping your water heater in proper working condition is a must, especially once winter hits. If your water heater is working less than optimally or not at all, or if it is just too old, then it may be time to replace it.
On average, a water heater will last between 10 to 15 years, though some can last longer. Generally, electric water heaters will last a little longer than gas. Other factors may affect your water heater’s life span. For example, if you live in an area where the water has more sediment, the unit may require replacement sooner. On the other hand, if you regularly flush the unit and keep it properly maintained, it will last longer.
If your unit is older than 15 years, it is probably time to replace it, especially since newer models will be more energy efficient than older ones. This reduces energy costs and can even qualify you for a tax credit.
Symptoms of a Failed Heater
If you are not sure whether your water heater should be replaced, there are a few signs you can look for. These often indicate that the unit is no longer repairable and should be replaced.
- Rust: Rust and corrosion cannot be repaired, so if it begins to interfere with the unit’s functionality or leads to leaks, it is time for replacement.
- Not draining: Water heaters need to be regularly flushed in order to remove sediment buildup. If the unit goes too long without flushing, this sediment buildup can become irremovable and block the drainage valve. At this point, the unit should be replaced.
- Leaks: Leaks usually result from internal problems which can rarely be fixed. This is often due to minerals in the water reacting with the steel unit, causing corrosion and eventually leading to a sprung leak.
- No hot water: This is more than a simple lack of hot water for a few minutes in the morning. If your water heater can no longer give you any hot water at all, then it is likely time to start shopping for a new one. However, check first to make sure the problem is not due to an electrical issue (such as a tripped circuit breaker) before replacing.
If you detect any of these symptoms, it is likely time to start looking for a new water heater. Replacing it will not only make sure you have hot water again, but it can also save energy since newer units are built for higher efficiency than previous models.
Keeping your water heater working at its optimum is just part of keeping your home as energy efficient as possible. At Climate Tech Air Conditioning and Heating, we provide full analysis for your home’s AC and heating systems to make sure they are operating at their peak. Our skilled technicians are fully qualified to keep your HVAC systems in optimum working condition. For more information on our services or on how to save energy, contact us today.