People rely on a steady hot water supply whether at home, in the office, or just about anywhere. This explains why a hot water heater is one of the most essential things. However, like anything else, it cannot serve you forever. Inevitably, there will be a time when you will need to repair it and a time when you will have to replace it.
But how long should a hot water heater last? The average service life is 10 to 15 years. For a commercial water heater, it should be up to 20 years. If properly maintained, it may last even longer than expected. If you have been using your water heater for many years, then you should start preparing a budget for its replacement. Not sure how old your tank is? Check the serial number. Now, aside from age, there are other warning signs to watch out for.
Banging and Cracking Noises
Water has sediments. Over time, these sediments create a scale inside the tank. If you are hearing banging or cracking noises from the tank, there is a huge possibility that the build-up is severe. This could mean you need a new hot water heater.
Water is Lukewarm or Not Hot At All
Water heaters are designed to do one thing: heat water. When the water coming out of your shower or faucet is lukewarm or even cold, it’s a huge indicator that the water heating system is already in decline. Hence, it must be replaced.
Discolored Water with Rusty Taste
These are some of the biggest signs of a faulty water heater that is already beyond repair. The water has a metallic color and a rusty taste because the tank has corrosion inside. This issue is challenging and expensive to fix. It’s better to replace than to repair.
Tips to Make Hot Water Heaters Last Longer
Do you want to get the most out of your water heater before it fails? Do these things:
- Perform Regular Tune-Ups – Maintenance is key to extending the life of any appliance. So, don’t ever miss out on scheduled tune-ups. Through inspections, you can spot potential issues and fix them before they get out of hand.
- Use a Scale Inhibitor – This filter is especially recommended for those who are in areas with hard water. The scale inhibitor can prevent mineral deposits from harming the water heater. You may also use whole-home water filters and softeners.
- Flush the Water Heater Once or Twice a Year – Every manufacturer recommends flushing or draining hot water systems at least once a year. This method clears out sediment buildup that can block drain valves and prevents other issues. You can do this on your own or opt to hire a professional technician.
- Replace Anode – One of the things that can corrode the inside of your tank is the anode. That’s because this metal rod attracts minerals and ions found in water. If you notice that the anode has deteriorated, have it replaced. You can also consider installing another anode for added protection and to extend the life of your tank.