We get this question from our customers a lot. “How long does a water heater last?” Well, here’s your answer:
Water heater lifespan
When it comes to the life expectancy of your water heater, unfortunately, we can only give a broad estimate because conventional tank water heaters experience corrosion at different rates: Water heaters can last anywhere between 6 and 13 years. We know such a large range doesn’t tell you much! But it may help you a little bit to understand why the lifespan is so unpredictable.
How conventional tank water heaters work
The burner or element is at the bottom of the water tank, heating the water from below. This hot water stays in the tank, ready for you and your family to use it!
But hot water in a metal tank over a period of years and years eventually starts to take its toll. The heat begins to corrode the tank, basically eating itself from inside. There is a measure in place to prevent this. It’s called an “anode rod.” It has a magnetic pull that attracts corrosive particles and keeps them off the bottom of the tank. But this anode rod has a limited lifespan, and once the rod collects too many particles and starts to get eaten away, it doesn’t work anymore. Then, corrosion starts to attack the lining of the water tank.
Signs of an aging water heater
- Leak: As we just said, corrosion eats away at your water tank. That means water could start leaking through. This is the most obvious sign that you need a new water heater!
- Visible rust and corrosion: Take a look around your water heater and see any rust around the valves or the water inlet/outlet. If you see corrosion here, that means corrosion is almost certainly in the tank as well.
- Cold water: If you can’t get hot water at all, then it could be a problem with the water heater’s heating element, its thermostat, or possible corrosion. The first two problems are fixable, but as we said, the last one isn’t. You’ll need a professional from Weather Master to diagnose it!
Related reading: 3 Signs of Water Heater Damage
Dangers of an aging or broken water heater
We know there are many people who wait until their water heater breaks down before they replace it. But not only can this decision leave you without water for several days, which is a huge hassle … It could also cause immense damage to your home. (Not to mention the hassle of dealing with your insurance company to remedy that damage!)
A leaking water heater could damage floors and walls. Far worse, if your water heater bursts, that’s 50 gallons of water damage destroying your garage, or wherever the water heater is located. As we all know, water damage can become a bigger problem as a breeding ground for mold and mildew. We don’t want you to fear the worst, but we do want you to be prepared for it! And the best way to do that is by maintaining your water heater and keeping its replacement in mind.
Extending the lifespan of your water heater
What if there was a straightforward way to make sure your water heater lasts closer to 13 years than 6? Or even for 15 years or longer?
We have a solution… a water heater “flush n’ fill” maintenance from Weather Master! Every water heater needs to be washed out yearly. This is to get rid of the corrosive sediment at the bottom of the tank. Leaving the sediment to sit for years makes your water heater break down early, and it can also cause the heating element or thermostat to go bad.
Our “flush n’ fill” is a quick fix that saves you money in the long run. Just like you maintain your car or your heating and cooling system, you have to maintain your water heater too.
To learn more about extending the lifespan of your water heater and the water heater services and products we offer here in Raleigh, call now: (919) 853-7910