When Should I Replace My Water Heater?

Homeownership comes with a lot of perks, but it can also inspire lots of worries. For example, you may worry about the plumbing, or you may ask yourself, when should I replace my water heater? How can you know if your water heater needs work, or if it is about to blow? Don’t get too worried because we have the information you need to solve any issues you might be having.

Signs of a Broken Water Heater

Water heaters have exploded and that is very scary and it is a risk to your household. If you smell sulfur or rotten egg smell outside the tank, that is almost certainly a gas leak, but a sulfur smell emanating from your faucets is probably something else. If you have rusty or brown water there may be rust buildup that should be addressed as well. Pinging sounds are a cause for concern, too. Pressure building up in the unit itself is the main threat for causing a water heater explosion, though. Here are a few major causes of water heaters exploding:

  1. A broken valve
  2. Excessive sediment
  3. A bad anode rod
  4. Gas leak

How Long Does a Water Heater Last?

We know that with appropriate maintenance, a gas water heater tank will last 8-12 years. Electric tanks with appropriate maintenance can last up to 15 years and tankless water heaters can last an amazing 20 years. Individual units will vary so consult your plumber for the most accurate potential lifespan and keep up with that maintenance. 

Other Signs That the Water Heater Needs Replacing

Burst tanks aren’t the only concern for water heaters, and it is reassuring to know that they are very rare. Yearly maintenance ensures the safety of the unit and your house, and it keeps your water heater running smoothly, but there are some additional issues you want to know because they indicate your water heater could be having some trouble:

  • Insufficient Hot Water – if the water is consistently not able to heat properly it should be inspected not only because you want hot water sufficient for your needs, but also because it can be an early warning signal that something is going wrong, or it could be a quick fix that will improve your situation tremendously.
  • Strange Sounds – if it sounds like there is grumbling and rumbling and you are wondering what those weird sonorous sounds are, call the plumber and get the reassurance you need that the problem can be solved.
  • Smelly or Rusty Water – a definite sign of some kind of trouble that needs to be addressed for your health and safety and for the safety of the household in case the water heater is causing the issue.
  • Water Leaks – don’t ignore leaks. If they are a simple fix, your good plumber will help you take care of it right away. Ignoring will almost certainly mean bigger problems later.
  • Aging Water Heater – if your water heater is near those lifespan limits, it should be looked at because it is a risk of causing you headaches you don’t need, like leaks or breakdown that will cost you time and money. 

Water Heater Replacement

No matter what issue is affecting your water heater, if you give a reputable, qualified plumber, like Phend Plumbing, a call we can identify the issue before it causes you any genuine problems. It is a good feeling to catch these issues before they cause you to have to replace drywall or rescue items ruined in your garage or basement. Don’t wait until you need to file an insurance claim for damaged drywall! Just give us a quick call at 480-388-6093 or contact us.