A hot water heater needs to be replaced about once every 10 years, though some newer models can last as long as 15–20 years with proper annual maintenance.
The most common sign that there’s a problem in your hot water heater is if you notice your hot water supply dropping sharply or if it doesn’t last nearly as long as it once did.
The easiest way to keep your water heater running to its maximum performance is with regular maintenance and sediment removal. Over time, sediment that builds up in your tank can include debris from your pipes or hard metals like iron and lead. It’s not unsafe, but it can reduce the efficiency of your system substantially. This type of cleaning should be done at least once a year to avoid corrosion or wearing down of the parts inside the heater.
The default setting on many hot water heaters is 140°F, but that’s actually about 20°F warmer than is necessary for household tasks like showering, washing dishes, or cleaning clothes. We recommend setting the temperature to 120°F.
An easy way to reduce your hot water costs is to insulate your water tank. Insulation can significantly reduce the amount of energy required to heat your hot water. Proper insulation should be used to avoid any potential fire hazards and to reduce heat loss. Our expert technicians can help you choose the right insulation for your particular system.
If you have a heat pump installed, you can use the excess energy drawn from your home during the summer months to heat your hot water. Many hot water tanks provide a way to introduce alternative energy sources to the heating elements. Make sure to ask about this option when your technician installs your hot water heater or during a regular maintenance visit. It may reduce the cost of hot water for 2–4 months out of the year.