Five Signs You Need To Replace Your Water Heater

Five Signs You Need To Replace Your Water


It is very hard to predict when you will need your water heater replaced. There are certain things to watch for.

By following some simple steps, you can avoid the inconvenience and frustration of a leaking water heater. Here are five signs that a water heater repair just won’t cut it and it is time to replace the entire unit:

1. Check the age of your water heater?

It’s crucial to know the age of your water heater. Find the age by looking for the serial number on the manufacturer’s sticker on the upper portion of the water heater

The serial number represents the date that the water heater was made. But it won’t look the way a date is normally written. Instead, the serial number will have a date code. Each manufacturer has a similar date code, and they can vary; check the manufacturer’s website to learn more.

The average life expectancy of most residential water heaters is 10-15 years old. Anything beyond this you are pushing your luck.. Even if your water heater is in a location where it will not cause damage, you should never wait until it develops a leak before replacing it.

If your water heater is in a location that will cause damage to your home, you should strongly consider replacing it and install a safety drain pan so any future leaks won’t cause damage.

2. Yellow or Brown water

If you find the water coming out of the hot side of the tape is discolored, this can be a sign that your water heater is starting to deteriorate on the inside and it may begin to leak soon.

A good test is to drain some hot water out of the water heater drain valve. If the water from your heater is coming out rusty, then most likely it’s time for a new water heater.

3. Rumbling and popping noises

As a water heater heats water, minerals in the water will separate and settle at the bottom of the tank. If this sediment build up on the bottom of the tank is not removed periodically, it eventually will harden. When this happens, you can often hear rumbling or banging sounds coming from the water heater as it is heating up. This is a sign that the water heater needs to be thoroughly cleaned or replaced.

Excess sediment means:

Less efficiency — the heater will have to use more gas or electricity to heat the water through the blanket of sediment.

Increased damage — the extra time spent heating the water will cause more wear on the metal tank and lead to more brittle metal that can crack and develop tiny holes.

If you start to hear popping noises coming from your water heater, it’s time to seek a water heater repair expert to flush the tank or replace it.

4. Moisture around the water heater

If you notice water around your water heater, you may have a small leak or a fracture in the tank. As the metal heats, it expands and if there are slight fractures, water may leak from the tank. Once the metal has cooled the inner tank will stop leaking. However, before replacing your water heater, make sure there are no other leaks coming from either the fittings or connections to the tank. Also, make sure the temperature & pressure relief valve is not leaking. If all of the connections and fittings are dry, it may be time to replace the water heater.

5. Not enough hot water

Sometimes the existing water heater just isn’t big enough to meet your growing needs. This is not necessarily an emergency situation. The first thing you will want to do is contact a master plumber such as Absolute Plumbing & Boiler to perform several test on the unit to make sure there is nothing mechanically wrong causing your hot water shortage. If everything checks out it may be time to upgrade to a better water heater system.

If you are concerned about water heater failure or if you discover any of the signs above, contact  Absolute Plumbing & Boiler.