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How Long Do Water Heaters Last?

How long do water heaters last? This is a common question asked by homeowners. When your water heater starts to fail, it can impact your energy bill and water temperature. Here is some information about the average water heater lifespan and how to tell when you need a water heater replacement.

Average Water Heater Lifespan

Most tank-type water heaters have a maximum lifespan of 12 years. However, tankless water heaters can last up to 20 years with proper care and maintenance. Your water quality and frequency of use will also impact the lifespan of your water heater.

How to Determine the Age of Your Water Heater

If you just moved into a new home with an existing water heater, you can determine its age by looking at the serial number. The letter will correspond with a month, and the number will indicate the year it was manufactured. For example, the serial number “B12” indicates that the water heater was made in February of 2012. If the water heater is new, you don’t need to worry about replacing it right away. If you have an older unit, you should watch out for signs it is going bad.

Signs Your Water Heater Needs to Be Replaced

Are you still wondering “how long do water heaters last?” While water heaters are meant to last for many years, age alone can’t determine whether or not your water heater needs to be replaced. You should keep an eye out for these telltale signs to determine if you need a new water heater.

• Loud Noises

If you hear a loud banging noise coming from your water heater, this is a sign that it is about to fail. This noise is caused by calcium deposits in the bottom of the tank. If the water heater hasn’t been flushed annually, this is a problem that may occur at the end of the unit’s life.

• Strange Smells

Foul-smelling water can also be a sign that your water heater is on its way out. Odors can be caused by a buildup of metals or bacteria inside of the tank. If cleaning the tank doesn’t eliminate this problem, you need to replace the unit.

• Dirty Water

Have you noticed yellow or rust-colored water when you run the hot tap? Tinted hot water is a sign of corrosion inside the tank. If you have this problem, it’s time to replace your water heater.

• Cold Water

There’s nothing worse than receiving a sudden blast of cold water when you are in the middle of a relaxing shower. This is one of the most obvious and annoying signs you need to replace your water heater soon.

• Leaks and Water Damage

If your water heater is damaged, there may be a pool of water around the unit. You may also have signs of water damage like rotting wood and mold. These issues should not be ignored, and you should contact a water heater replacement professional as soon as possible.

Contact Sanks Mechanical for a Water Heater Replacement Estimate

If you live in the Montgomery, Bucks, or Philadelphia areas, you can rely on our family-owned company for water heater replacement services. When asking yourself, “how long do water heaters last?”, you can trust the experts at Sanks because we specialize in professional water heater installation and replacement services. Contact Sanks Mechanical today for a water heater replacement estimate.


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