When will I know that it’s time to consider a new hot water heater?
Do you find you don’t get hot water like you used to? Maybe it’s just really slow to heat or it runs out of hot water well before you’re ready to get out of the shower. Maybe you’re not getting any hot water at all. No matter what the problem is with your hot water heater, we are here to help.
Please remember that hot water heaters are designed to have a 10 to 15-year lifespan if you have a tankless hot water heater they are designed to last for about 20 years. If your heater is getting close to this age range it might be time to just replace it all together, sometimes it’s actually cheaper to replace the hot water heater than it is to repair it.
Common repairs for hot water heaters in Alberta are usually pretty simple. The most common is that the pilot light has gone out on tanks that are a few years old. This is a simple fix, usually, a thermocouple will have to be replaced and that’s it. Sometimes the burner itself is corroded and needs to be replaced or the gas valve is sticking and no longer works properly. In the latter two cases, it might be cheaper to just replace the hot water tank altogether. A new hot water tank is much more efficient than one that was put in 10 to 15 years ago, you could save as much as 30% on your water heating gas bills.
Do some research
If you’re like most people, you’re not thinking about replacing your hot water tank anytime soon. Most likely you’re going to wait until your existing hot water tank completely fails or bursts before replacing it. You might want to consider a little bit of research first so you know what type of hot water heater you want and will work for you.
What size hot water heater do you need?
Not all households are created equal, this means that our water usage is going to be different from house to house. Some homes that only have two occupants will only require a smaller water heater versus a home that has five or six people. The load on the hot water tank is increased by more showers, running the dishwasher more often, more laundry, and other factors.
Think about how much hot water you need and choose a heater based on your requirements.
What types of water heaters are there?
Storage Water Heater –The most common type of water heater is the storage water heater. They range in size anywhere from 20 to 80 gallons and can be fueled by electricity, propane, oil or most common in Alberta, Natural Gas. storage type water heaters will heat water inside an insulated tank. As you naturally use the hot water in your home it is replaced with cold water in the tank and reheated to the desired temperature. Hot water is always in the tank but can run out with excessive usage and continues to use energy to heat it even when it’s not in use.
Demand water heaters – This type of water heater does not have a storage tank, rather the gas or an electric burner will heat the water only when there is a demand for it. One of the main benefits of this type of system is that you will never run out of hot water as long as you have gas or electricity to heat it. One drawback is that the amount of hot water may be limited by the flow rate of the system. Typically they can supply a boat 5 gallons of water per minute.
There are benefits and drawbacks to all the different types of water heaters that are available, this is a small example but the most commonly used models in Alberta. If you are thinking about repairing or replacing your hot water heater give us a call, we will be happy to send out a qualified, professional plumber to assess the situation.