Most of us don't think about our water heater often. Out of sight, out of mind, right? But if your unit is getting older or is acting up, you may start to wonder when you need to replace your water heater.
Truthfully, ignoring problems with your water heater can cause significant damage down the road. It may be time to take a look and evaluate the health of your unit. While maintenance can extend the life of the unit, if you see water on the floor or discoloration in your water, it may be time to replace it. In this blog, we will discuss the signs you should look out for and when to replace your water heater.
If you are thinking it may be time to replace your water heater, it is important to know what type you have and how old it is. If you don't know how old your water heater is, you can typically locate the manufacturing date on the back of the unit (located near the serial number). You can also go to the calculator on Rheem's website, enter the serial number from your water heater and it will let you knnow the age.
If you aren't sure whether to repair or replace your water heater, click here to learn more.
Water can leak from multiple parts of your water heater, and it's important to keep an eye on it. If you see water leaking from the bottom of the tank, this can be caused by sediment built up at the bottom of the tank. Without annual maintenance, the buildup can erode through the exterior. A leak in the bottom of your unit is a sign your water heater is at the end of its life.
Water discoloration is a clear message that something is wrong. If you notice rust in your faucet water, cloudy water, or a metallic odor, there may be erosion inside the tank. Typically, this needs to be addressed quickly for safety reasons.
Impurities in hard water, called sediment, build up on the bottom of the tank over time. Sediment is a hard, rock-like formation that bangs around when the tank is working to heat up. It not only hurts your unit in the long term, but it also forces your water heater to work harder each time it heats up, raising your energy bills.
Over time, the sediment wears down the tank lining and eventually creates small holes and cracks on the exterior. There is no way to repair the interior lining, which means it is time to replace the water heater.
You can extend the life of your water heater with maintenance every one to two years. A professional plumber will drain your water heater and ensure it's working properly. Maintenance can help your system live longer and catch small problems before they turn into big ones.