Noise From The Heater
Another way to know that you need to change your water heater is if there is noise from the tank. As the heater gets older, the rumbling noise will get louder and louder as the tank heats up water. If your home consumes a lot of water then the problem would be likely to be even more pronounced once the cause takes hold. Noise from water heaters are generally based on these causes:
With the water heater aging as it is continually used to reheat water, sediment starts to form on the bottom of the tank. In time the sediments harden and grow thick along the tank floor. The sediment can wear a water heater down rapid based on these problems:
- Inefficiency: The water heater with sediment buildup consumes more energy due to the increased strain on heating water.
- Accelerated Damage: The added time that the tank needs to heat water can cause the metal to turn brittle and this can lead to a crack formation.
The noise that you hear is caused by the sediment buildup and it is an indicator that the tank would leak. You can stop the damage caused by sediments by the following method:
Flush the Heater
Drain The Water Heater Tank
Attach a garden hose to the drain valve near the bottom of the water heater. Open the nearest hot water faucet, such as in the bathroom, to prevent suction in the line that can slow the draining. Place the other end of the hose over a floor drain or run it outdoors.
Open the drain valve slowly so that sediment does not clog the drain valve. Let the tank drain completely, then turn off the valve and remove the hose.
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Is Replacing A Water Heater Difficult
Replacing your water heater can seem like a daunting task, but it doesnt have to be. With a little planning and the right tools, you can have your new water heater up and running in no time.
The first step is to determine the type of water heater you need. Depending on your homes size and needs, you may want a traditional storage-tank water heater or a more efficient tankless model.
When youve decided on the right model, its time to select a location for installation. If youre replacing an existing water heater, youll want to install the new one in the same spot. This will make installation simpler and help to minimize any plumbing changes that may be necessary.
Finally, its time to connect your new water heater to your homes water supply and gas lines. Once everything is properly connected, youll be able to test your new water heater and enjoy its benefits for years to come.
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Sediment Buildup In Your Tank
Sediment can build up at the bottom of the water tank in older appliances and affect the heating elements that give you consistent hot water. Large amounts of sediment buildup decrease the space inside the tank for water.
Sediment buildup also can cause a tell-tale signal of a dying water heater the calcium deposits harden and form a thick crust that causes the water heater to make creaks and rumbling noises during use.
You can call a repair person to clean out the sediment and flush your system which could help alleviate the issue. If its an older appliance it may be best to consider a replacement.
Age Of Your Water Heater
If you have a water heater that is over a decade old, yet it’s still performing fine without any issues, you may find a nagging question that keeps popping in your head. “How long will my water heater last?”
The truth is, with proper maintenance and reasonable use, it could last up to 20 years. But for every water heater that exceeds it’s expected service life, there’s another newer model that failed far too early.
The average service life of a water heater is 8 to 12 years. So if your unit is pushing the 10 year mark it’s only a matter of time before a water heater replacement is in your future.
Some homeowners choose to purchase a new energy efficient model when their current heater hits the 10 year mark. Others like to wait until their water heater fails.
Regardless, of your preference, if your water heater is 10 to 12 years old you should watch it closely for leaks and other issues. In fact, we highly recommend purchasing a water heater leak detector. They are inexpensive and easy to use, and they can save you a major headache and a huge mess if your tank begins to leak.
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How Much Does It Cost To Replace An Electric Water Heater
Electric water heaters cost between $400 and $1,600. You can expect to pay $100 to $200 more for gas water heaters. Replacing an existing unit will generally cost less than installing a system from scratch since many of the electric and gas hookups will already be set. However, if youre converting from one power source to another, there will be additional costs, such as adding electrical wiring , installing gas lines or installing a water line . If the water heater needs to be moved, there may also be costs to repair and install drywall or build new framing . You may also need to pay for permitting depending on the extent of the work and the state you live in.
Cost To Convert From Electric To Gas Water Heater
Converting from an electric to gas water heater costs $355 to $2,000+, depending on if there’s an existing gas supply line. The average cost to convert from a gas to electric water heater is $200 to $500+ for a new dedicated circuit and wiring.
Switching the fuel source also requires plumbing, venting, and electrical modifications due to different connections.
- Gas line installation costs$350 to $750 to run a line from an existing connection or $500 to $2,000 to run a new gas line from the meter.
- Replacing plumbing pipes costs$450 to $1,800.
- Adding a new vent for gas exhaust costs $100 to $600.
- Electrical wiring installation costs$1.56 to $3.75 per square foot to run wire to a new electric water heater.
- Installing a new dedicated electrical circuit costs $150 to $200.
- The cost to upgrade an electrical panel is $850 to $2,500 and may be necessary to support a new electric unit.
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Reasons To Replace Your Water Heater Now
1. Youll Save Money in the Long Run.
A new Bradford White Water Heater is likely to be MUCH more efficient than your old water heater. Bradford White has many models that are ENERGY STAR® rated for year-round energy savings.
For example, Bradford Whites AeroTherm® Heat Pump Water Heater will save the average family about $300 a year on their utility bill.*
Even better, your new water heater may qualify for state and local utility rebates and tax incentives. Check out rebates in your area.
*Based on DOE test procedure and comparison of a standard electric tank water heater using 3493 kWh per year vs. the AeroTherm® heat pump water heater using 1003 kWh per year and the national average electricity rate of 12 cents per kWh.
Instead of waiting for your old water heater to completely fail probably at the worst possible moment contact your plumber to replace your water heater when its convenient for you.
At Bradford White, we believe our quality water heater deserves a quality, professional installation. A plumbing pro can help you find the best water heater solution for your needs and ensure it will be installed and maintained correctly for perfect performance and a long lifespan.
Find a dependable Pro now who sells and installs Bradford White water heaters. Our contractor finder service makes it easy.
3. Better Performance.
4. Avoid Damage.
5. Better Fit Your Familys Needs.
When To Replace Your Water Heater In Austin
While some water heaters can last much longer, the national average life of a conventional water heater is about 10 years. If your water heater is nearing the 10 year mark, it is a good indication that you should start to look for signs of wear and tear. What if you do not know how old your water heater is? Simple: Look at your water heaters serial number or model number on the tank itself. You can typically find the year it was built in the first or last two digits. If its ten years past or longer, its likely time to start looking for the following signs to replace it.
Have a tankless water heater? A tankless water heater can last up to 20 years before it needs to be replaced.
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Signs Your Water Heater Might Fail
There are a lot of things you may notice when your water heater heads towards failure. You are more likely to experience failure if your unit is older, but there are many other signs.
Sometimes, youll just need repairs, but serious issues call for replacement. For example, a 30-year-old water heater certainly needs to be replaced, but a younger one with a minor problem may be able to get by with some simple repairs.
Some signs its time to replace your water heater include:
Gas Water Heater Cost Vs Electric
Gas water heater installation costs $600 to $2,800 total for a standard tank or $700 to $4,600 for a tankless. Gas water heaters cost $100 to $700 more than electric up front, but cost $220 less per year to operate.
Electric water heater installation costs $500 to $2,100 total for a standard tank or $600 to $2,500 for a tankless. Electric water heaters are cheaper to replace than gas and last 2 to 3 years longer.
**Prices and factors are for a standard tank replacement.
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Here Are Some Clues You May Need To Replace Your Water Heater:
- Rusting & Corrosion If there is heavy corrosion and rusting, something might be leaking or broken!
- Drainage Have you ever drained your water heater using the valve at the bottom? If not, try to do that, if it does not drain there is too much sediment at the bottom. It should be drained yearly!
- Leaking This may seem obvious but thoroughly check around the water heater and touch valves/pipes for leaking water.
- Not Working Is your water just not hot? It might just need a new element.
- Age If your water heater is 10 years old, it might be time to replace.
Damage: What Is Causing Your Water Heater Issues
The type of damage will also impact the hot water heater repair vs replace debate. Its always worth it to call a technician who can inspect your hot water heater and give you a quote for repair or replacement. If you have a leak, its unlikely youll be able to get away with repair. Other types of problems, like your water heating too slowly might have less expensive solutions.
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Other Ways To Save Hot Water
Besides the thermostat, you should pay attention to your water heater’s pipes and tank too. Insulating the tank and pipes can save heat during times you’re not using hot water. You can also install low flow faucets and shower heads, which will reduce the amount of hot water you use without impacting your experience.
Replacing Your Water Heater
If you decide that you need to replace your water heater, there are a few things you should consider:
- Will you replace your system with the same type? If you’ve been considering switching to a tankless water heater, this might be a good time
- Did the tank size of your old water heater meet your current household needs? If not, you may want to purchase a larger tank
- Will you hire a plumber or install the water heater yourself? If you do it yourself you’ll need to get rid of your old water heater, where a plumber will typically take care of that for you
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Use Two Wrenches To Attach The Gas Line
Reconnect the gas line. Coat the threaded ends with pipe joint compound and screw the first nipple into the gas valve. Use two pipe wrenches to avoid stressing the valve. Reassemble the remaining nipples, finishing up with the union . Then follow these four steps to fill the tank: Close the drain valve turn the water back on at the main shutoff and open the cold water valve to the water heater turn on a nearby hot water faucet until water comes out and inspect all the joints and fittings for water leaks.
Can A Homeowner Install A Water Heater
Most codes or ordinances allow a homeowner to install their own water heater, and some jurisdictions allow unlicensed individuals to install water heaters, but they still must pull a permit and have it inspected for safety. Its also a good idea to check out all the top home warranty companies out there to protect your systems and appliances.
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How Long Does It Take To Replace Water Heater
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Water heaters are an essential part of any home, providing hot water for showering, cooking, and cleaning. But when they break down, it can be a major inconvenience. Replacing a water heater can be a daunting task, but with careful planning and the right tools, it doesnt have to be.
Satisfaction: How Effective Is Your Unit
In the years since your hot water heater was first installed, you may have undergone some changes. Are you still using the same amount of hot water? If your family has grown, you may need a larger tank to accommodate extra loads of laundry, baths, and toilet usage. If people have moved out, you might be wasting money by heating water unnecessarily.
Before the current problem that caused you to consider the hot water heater repair vs replace dilemma, were you satisfied? Did you find that there was enough hot water to go around, and that your water heated up quickly enough? If you already had to stand around for several minutes as you waited for the water to get up to temperature, or plan showers around a schedule so everyone could get hot water, its probably time for a replacement.
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The Cost Of Replacing The Valve
Finally, we come to the valve. What is the average cost of replacing the gas control valve? This is one of the more expensive fixes for a gas heater. It may cost between $300 and $500.
A couple of notes: One, this is a harder task than the two we previously mentioned. Its less likely that you can do it on a DIY basis. Two, if you have a malfunctioning valve, that means your unit is dangerous. We recommend shutting off the gas supply. Then, call a plumber right away. This qualifies as an emergency service need.
When Should You Replace Your Water Heater
The water heater is one of the most overlooked appliances in the home. Typically, an unassuming cylindrical tank tucked out of the way – usually in the basement or garage – we dont think about it much, until we must. Suddenly, our hot showers dont last as long. Or the water coming out of the tap is more lukewarm than hot – or worse yetcompletely cold! Thats why replacing your water heater before its too late can help you avoid a major headache when it fails.
When thinking about a replacement, there are some compelling reasons to consider an ENERGY STAR certified electric heat pump water heater to save serious money and energy while helping the environment.
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Its Making Weird Sounds
If you hear popping, banging, crackling, or other strange sounds coming from your water heater, its not a good sign. Sounds like these are caused by a buildup of scale or sediment inside the water heater tank.
Minerals and debris settle to the bottom of the tank, and when the burner or heating elements begin to heat up, the sediment releases steam bubbles and moves around in the tank.
This is the source of any strange sounds you might hear coming from the water heater. Theres no need to panic, even though the sounds can be unsettling.
Its not going to blow up, but the sounds are a sign that theres a considerable amount of scale and sediment. If the water heater isnt drained so that scale and sediment can be cleaned away, its only a matter of time before it stops working.
- Read more about how scale and sediment damage your water heater here: How to Test Water Heater Element
- If youre willing to try draining and cleaning your water heater, you can find complete instructions here: How to Drain a Water Heater
Water Heater Inspection And Replacement Services In Portland
There are many factors that go into deciding when to replace your water heater and Jacobs Heating & Air Conditioning experts are here to guide you. We carry a variety of hot water heaters so that your home or business has the best and most efficient water heaters around.
Avoid extra costs and fewer repairs by scheduling a maintenance check for your existing water heating system before issues arise. No matter what you need, were always just a phone call away.
Whether you are in the market for a new water heater or simply have questions about your current one, Jacobs Heating & Air Conditioning is here to help. Weve been servicing the Portland area for over 70 years and our experience shows in the quality of our work. Give us a call today!
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