Figuring Out if it's Time for a New Water Heater

March 8, 2016

With time,corrosion of internal parts, buildup of minerals, and several other factors cause the efficiency of your water heater to start declining. You don't have to wait until it fails completely or causes damage to your property before thinking of replacing it. Here are the telltale signs you need a new water heater.

Age
Water heaters have an average life expectancy of 10 to 15 years. If your water heater is more than 10 years, you should start thinking about replacing it. If it's in a location where it can cause massive damage if it develops a leak, you should seriously consider replacing it.

Banging or Rumbling Sounds
It's normal to hear some sounds as water heats. However, if you frequently hear bangs or rumbling noises, that's a sign of interaction between the heater's heating elements and accumulated sediment. The sediment that builds up over time inside the tank eventually hardens. The hardened sediment not only causes the irritating noises, but also makes your water heater less efficient and can cause more damage to the metal tank.

Rusty Water
If you find rusty water coming from only the hot side of your water heater, your unit may be rusting away from the inside and may soon start leaking. Rusty galvanized pipes could also be the cause. A good test you can carry out is draining a few buckets of hot water from the heater. If you still get rusty water in the third bucket, then most probably the water heater is to blame.

Leaking Water
If you notice water around your water heater, your tank may be having some holes or a fracture. Check if any leaks are coming from the fittings and connections to the tank. If all fittings and connections are dry, it may be best to replace your water heater. When looking for a new water heater, you should consider the dimensions, gallon capacity, recovery rate and efficiency ratings.

For more information on replacing, installing or maintaining a water heater, contact us at Lozier Heating & Cooling. We've proudly served the Des Moines area since 1906. Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Des Moines, Iowa area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: "Carlos Amarillo/Shutterstock"