How Long Does A Water Heater Last ? 5 Tips To Know When It’s Time To Replace

Is your water heater going out of order too frequently? Do you need to call plumber too often to repair your water heater? Are you confused as to how long does a water heater last? If yes, you’re not alone!


Water heater just like any other appliance in your home tends to break down over a period of time and would require replacement. You definitely won’t like having showers in cold water. Would you? Further, it might even create bigger problems for you including the like of large leaks which could damage your home and electrical lines. Thus, to stay safe, it is better to get your water heater replaced before it completely gives up!

But how would you exactly know if your water heater needs replacement? Well, read the article further to find out!

​How old is your water heater?

​The older your water heater is, the more likely it is to stop functioning in the near future. As a rule of thumb, the tank type water heaters will last for a decade on an average. The electrical water heaters generally last for up to 10 years. Moreover, the gas water heaters have a lifespan that ranges from 5 to 7 years.

​However, if you are the one who cares for their things very dearly, then your water heater may be able to outlive its lifespan by almost doubling it. No matter how closely you watch out for your water heater, there is always a possibility of a breakdown in a 10-year time. Therefore, it is always better to get it replaced within the specified time period.

Is It For Your Water Heater To Get Replaced ?

Bonus tip: If you are buying a new unit, make sure that it is a tankless model. This is especially necessary when your household do not require a large amount of water. The tankless water heaters have considerably a longer life span. Some of the manufacturers even give lifetime warranty against issues like the leaking of the unit.

​Is your water heater corroded?

Brown Water Comes From a Rusty Tank of Water Heater

​Check the tank of a water heater for rust or corrosion on a regular interval. Most of the hot water tanks are made up of steel and there is a greater possibility of rusting.

If the rust is on a higher side, then you might even notice the traces of rust in the hot water provided by the heater. If you ever noticed this happening to you, then it is an indication that your tank is rusting. This should indicate you to replace your water heater as soon as possible.

​Is your drain valve in top notch condition?

Are you facing difficulty in draining water through the drain valve? Well, it simply means that sediment builds have settled down at the bottom of the tank. Do you use a gas water heater? If so, that cracking sound you hear every time you ignite the burner is a sure shot indication of sediment build up.

Sediment build up, however, happens in all types of electric water heaters and breaks down the interior of a tank which eventually leads to blocking the drain valves. If you add more years to the life of your water heater, it is highly recommended to flush your water heater at least once in a year.

Water Heater Drain Valve

​By following the above step, you might be able to clear your drain valves by yourself. However, nothing is assured, and you might need to replace your water heater as soon as possible.

Is your water heater leaking?

Water Heater Leaking

The leakage of water from the interiors of your water heater as a result of breakage or wear and tear might not be repairable. This might give you a reason to replace water heater, however, ensure that the water is leaking from the water heater tank itself.

​​​In such a case, you should turn off the power and water supply to the heater and seek the assistance of a professional plumber.

​Is the provided water just lukewarm or not at all?

Have a Shower With Luckwarm Water In Cold Weather

​Well, this is a no-brainer! Do you find that the water provided by the water heater is not as hot as it used to be, or worse of all, it is not hot at all?

If so, it is a clear indication that everything is not well with your water heater. There might be a problem in its heating element or thermostat, or breakage in the pipe within the heater and might require immediate replacement.

​Over to You

If you are noticing any of the above-mentioned signs, well, you should make plans for getting a new water heater. It is thus better to seek the assistance of an expert plumber and see if it could be repaired or would need a complete replacement.

Did you face any of the above-listed problems? How did you handle it? Let us know in the comments!

Abigail Jones

Hi, I'm Abigail. I like spending time tearing my house apart and putting it together back again. Join me on home improvement tutorials, tips on my blog.