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Plumbing Articles from Aurora, CO
How Long Does a Water Heater Last on Average?
To this point, your water heater continues to get the job done. But you’ve had it for a while and you’re starting to wonder: how long does a water heater last?
It depends on a variety of different factors and can vary greatly from heater to heater. Looking for more info on the matter? Then read on. We’re going to cover it in detail below.
How Long Does a Water Heater Last?
The lifespans of water heaters can vary greatly based on a number of factors. That said, most water heaters last between 8 and 12 years. Once you get to around 10 years, you should start thinking about making a change, regardless of whether or not your heater is displaying problems.
Note, regular maintenance can help to get the most out of a water heater. While it can cost a bit of money upfront, it usually ends up paying itself off in the form of an increased water heater lifespan.
Signs That Your Water Heater is About to Fail
When determining how much life your water heater has left, there are a number of signs you can look for. The most prominent of these signs include the following.
Your Water Is Rusty
Does your water have a brown or orange tint to it? If so, there’s reason to suspect that your water heater is the culprit. This is particularly true if it only runs brown or orange when it’s hot.
See, over time, the inside of a water heater can rust. If this happens, the rust can flake off into the water, changing its color. Though rusty water is not dangerous for consumption, it does indicate that the water heater is rapidly deteriorating.
Before long, if nothing is done to rectify the problem, the water heater could spring a leak. This could lead to a variety of other troublesome problems. As such, if your heating unit is causing your water to become rusty, you’re advised to replace your water heater sooner rather than later.
You Lack Hot Water
Do your showers seem to run out of hot water halfway through them? Do you have trouble obtaining enough hot water to wash your clothes? If so, there is almost certainly something wrong with your water heating equipment.
While a number of different factors can lead to this problem, perhaps the most common of these factors is sediment buildup on the inside of the heater. See, over time, as water runs through a water heater, the minerals contained within it (iron, calcium, magnesium, etc.) can cling to the heater’s internal mechanisms. This can lead to clogs, preventing the water heater from performing its function in an efficient manner.
The result? A lack of hot water, of course.
Unfortunately, in most cases, this is not a problem that can be repaired. In all likelihood, you’re going to have to replace your water heater entirely.
Your Water Heater is Making Strange Noises
Not only can sediment buildup lead to a lack of hot water but it can also lead to your water heater making strange noises. These noises generally present themselves in the ways of rumbles and bangs. Note, though, that whistling or bubbling noises could occur as well.
Again, unfortunately, this is not a problem that can be repaired. If you’re dealing with this issue, you’re likely going to need to replace your water heater entirely.
There’s Water Pooling Around Your Water Heater
The most obvious sign that your water heater requires attention is that there’s water pooling around it. If this is happening, there’s no doubt about it: your water heater has sprung a leak.
The question, however, lies in where the leak exists. Is it in the tank? If so, you’re going to have to replace the water heater entirely.
Note, though, that if it’s in the pipes or the pipe fittings, a repair will probably suffice. In any case, you’re advised to call up your local plumber. He or she will assess the problem and make the necessary corrections.
Water Heater Maintenance
If you want to get the most out of your water heater, you have to furnish it with proper maintenance. Some maintenance measures to focus on include the following.
Drain the Tank
One of the most important things to do when it comes to water heater maintenance is to drain the tank. By draining the tank, you wash out a good deal of the sediment that exists within. This prevents undue wear and tear, thus allowing your water heater to last as long as possible.
Generally speaking, you should drain your water heater every 6 months. At the very least, drain it yearly.
Insulate the Heater
The less hard a water heater works, the longer it will last. As such, you have to remove as much strain from your water heater as possible.
One of the great ways to do this is to insulate your water heater. By wrapping your water heater in insulation, you keep its contents as hot as possible. Because of this, it doesn’t have to be constantly working; it can take it easy, making it as energy efficient as can be.
Change the Temperature
Maybe you’re going on a week-long vacation? Perhaps you don’t need your shower to be quite so hot? In either case, you’re highly advised to change the temperature on your water heater.
By lowering the temperature, you reduce the amount of work that your water heater has to do. This saves energy, reduces wear and tear and, ultimately, allows your water heater to last as long as possible.
In Need of a New Water Heater in Aurora, Colorado?
And there it is, an answer to the question of “how long does a water heater last?”. In need of a new water heater in Aurora, Colorado? If so, we here at Royalty Plumbing are the people to see.
We’ve installed water heaters in countless homes throughout the Aurora area. We’ll have hot water running through your pipes in no time.
Contact us now to get the process started!
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