A water heater is an essential appliance for your home that ensures a steady hot water supply for all your needs. It provides hot water for showers, baths, dishwashers, laundry, and other needs. But how long does a water heater last?
Unfortunately, there is no general answer to this question as it depends on many factors.
The lifespan of a water heater depends on its type, use, quality, and maintenance. A tankless water heater typically lasts longer than a conventional tank water heater.
Here we will learn how long does a water heater last, when to replace it, and what you can do to help it last longer.
How Long Does A Water Heater Last: Tank Water Heater
Generally, a water heater lasts an average of 12 years with proper maintenance and service. Tank water heaters last an average of 8-12 years, whereas tankless water heaters last up to 20 years. On the other hand, electric heaters last an average of 10-15 years, and gas water heaters last up to 8-12 years.
However, how long does a water heater last depends on certain factors. Here are they:
- Quality of your water (hard water reduces lifespan by 2 years or more)
- Whether the water heater is a tank or tankless
- Usage of the water heater
- Location of the water heater (water heater located in a basement or crawl space takes longer to heat up).
How Long Does A Water Heater Last: Signs That Signifies That Your Water Heater Needs Replacement
There are a few signs that signify how long does a water heater last. If the water heater is over 10 years old and you notice the following issues, it’s high time to replace it:
1. Sediment Buildup
Sediments sometimes form at the bottom of the water tank in older appliances. This can affect the heating elements that offer you consistent hot water. If there are large amounts of sediment buildup, it reduces the space inside the tank for water.
Sediment buildup causes a tell-tale signal of a dying water heater. The calcium deposits harden & form a thick crust, causing the water heater to make creaks & rumbling noises during use.
In this case, it’s better to call a repair person to clean out the sediment & flush your system. This may resolve the issue. However, if you are using an old appliance, replace it.
2. Not Getting Enough Water
Whether you’re receiving insufficient hot water through your faucets or shower or after a running shower, you’re only getting cold water within minutes. Then this could be a sign of excess sediment or mineral deposits in your water heater.
A water heater experiences difficulty heating water up consistently during its last stages. In addition, an old water heater can cause hot water to run out quickly.
3. Wear & Tear From Improper Maintenance
If your water heater leaks or makes knocking noises or rusty water runs through your faucets (with a 10-year-old tank), it’s better to get a new water heater.
Repairing a water heater can be expensive and may require the replacement of many parts.
Water heater repair can be costly, and numerous parts often need replacement. Therefore, if you have to make more than one repair on it, replace it, and make sure it gets the proper maintenance to last.
You should keep an eye out for more signals. If you find any of the following issues, you need to call a trusted plumber immediately:
- Limescale buildup on plumbing surfaces
- Odd-smelling or tasting hot water
- Water pooling around base of the heater
- Tinted red or yellow water
- Leakage from the hot water tank.
How Long Does A Water Heater Last: Plan To Replace Your Water Heater
According to Bob Vila, the lifespan of a water heater is estimated based on several factors, including location, usage, and whether the water is hard or not.
- Use New Technology
As years pass and new models come out, your 10-year-old water heater becomes incompetent and less efficient than new models. Your water heater might not be able to meet requirements or unnecessarily raise your utility bills due to inefficiency.
When you switch to a new water heater model, you’ll immediately notice how the technological developments made in the meantime will decrease your utility bill.
- Decide Two Years Ahead
To avoid a great deal of misery and distress, plan to replace your water heater at least two years before it dies. Once your tank-style water heater becomes 8-10 years old, start planning to replace it. Likewise, do the same when your tankless water heater has reached 15-18 years of age.
It’s better to budget for a new water heater if you know it is nearing the end of its lifespan. This way, you can avoid the pain of being without hot water while you wait for it to be repaired or replaced. You can also prevent the unexpected expense of a new water heater.
Lastly, you can research, figure out how long water heaters last, and choose one that meets your needs.
- Inquire About Warranties
If the water heater is still under warranty, it’s a good idea to contact the manufacturer. On the other hand, if your water heater is only a few years old, the issue might get fixed under warranty and save you a lot of money.
How Long Does A Water Heater Last: How To Make Water Heaters Last Longer
You can increase the lifespan of your water by following the given points:
Scale Inhibitor or Water Treatment
In Brampton, where limescale mineral deposits can damage conventional and tankless water heaters, hard water can wreak havoc. Your hot water may overheat suddenly because of these deposits.
Anodes (metal rod inside your water heater) prevents corrosion by attracting ions and minerals. For additional protection, install a second anode rod. After 2-3 years, check anodes annually and replace them if damaged.
It’s essential to have your water heater regularly maintained to make it last longer and function better. You will require a trained technician to spot warning signs that your water heater might be about to fail.
You need to flush your water heater tank every 6 – 12 months. It will clear sediment buildup. You can also call for professional help.
Best Brands Of Water Heaters In 2023
If you are looking for a new water heater, start with the type you want, whether you want a tank or tankless water heater, storage, or solar water heater.
Choose the type which is suitable for your home. You should also consider the brand’s price, reliability, and customer service. Here are some of the famous brands of water heaters:
- A.O. Smith
- Bradford White
Some of these brands are household names that have supplied top-quality appliances to homes for decades. Their reputation and quality may be enough to establish their position.
A.O. Smith, Bradford White, and Rheem are the most suitable choices if you’re searching for a compact set of water heaters, filters, and other plumbing equipment.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) On How Long Does A Water Heater Last
1. Can a hot water heater last 20 years?
A tankless water heater can last for 20 years or more. Standing water tanks on traditional water heaters last about 10 to 15 years before showing signs of aging.
2. What are the signs that your hot water heater is going out?
There are many signs that your hot water heater is going out:
- Shortage in hot water
- Making strange noises
- Age of water heater
- Getting rusty or cloudy water
- Varying water temperature
- Requiring expensive repairs.
3. How often do water heaters need to be replaced?
A tank water heater should last 6-12 years if properly maintained. If the water heater is over 10 years old, it may be time to replace it. A tankless water heater’s warranty may provide the most accurate timeline.
4. What is the normal life expectancy of a water heater?
The normal life expectancy of a water heater is about 10 years.
Summary: How Long Does A Water Heater Last
A water heater is an essential appliance for your home that ensures a steady hot water supply for all your needs. But how long does a water heater last?
A water heater lasts an average of 12 years with proper maintenance and service. Tank water heaters last an average of 8-12 years, whereas tankless water heaters last up to 20 years.
On the other hand, electric heaters last an average of 10-15 years, and gas water heaters last up to 8-12 years. If you think your water heater needs repair or replacement, it’s time to call the professionals.
I hope this article on how long does a water heater last sounds helpful!