Things to Keep in Mind When It Comes to Your Water Heater Published on November 17, 2016 Your hot water heater is probably the most underrated machine in your home. Think about it – without your water heater, you wouldn’t have any of these perks:Warm showersToasty bathsDisinfected dishesSanitized towels and sheetsHot water, period.Given the power of the water heater, do you really know much about it? We’re here to give you a few things to think about when it comes to replacing, maintaining, and servicing your water heater. The usual lifespan of residential water heaters is between ten and twelve years. Natural gas and electric water heaters will usually last about a decade before you need to consider replacing the appliance. If you are not sure how old your water heater is, the date the system was manufactured will be reflected in the serial number which you can find on the identification tag on the water heater tank. Maturing water heaters are nothing to ignore. A water heater that is a decade or older is at greater risk of getting a leak and resulting in water damage to your home. If your water heater is positioned in your attic or above the ground floor, the chance of catastrophic damage rises. Be sure you have your water heater maintenance yearly to prevent any leaks from damaging your home. The most common breakdown of residential water heaters that will require replacement is a leaking tank. It is highly recommended to have your plumbing expert install the water heater in a drain pan with piping that enables the pan to drain outside of your home and decrease the potential of water damage. Every water heater should have a working and obtainable shut-off valve on the inlet water supply to the tank, and a ball-type valve on the gas supply. For electric water heaters, an electrical cut off should be located nearby. If a water heater is “undersized,” in particular a gas water heater, the equipment will malfunction in a shorter time span. When a gas water heater is routinely depleted of hot water due to substantial hot water utilization, the gas burner discharges repeatedly which can create heavy condensation on the outside of the tank. The condensation can cause more expeditious breakdown of the steel tank. Furthermore, the exceptional heat from the gas burner on the underside of the water heater tank can also deteriorate the glass lining on the inner section of the tank, which decreases the lifespan of the water heater. Water Heater sizing is a significant replacement consideration. The water supply creates pressure for all water heaters, and as water is heated, it expands creating even more pressure. When considering replacement of a water heater, it’s usually better to go with a larger 50 gallon tank, rather than a 30 or 40 gallon tank, providing the location will accept the larger size. The 50 gallon tank will also provide you more hot water capacity.