Virtually any gas-powered water heater built in the past 20 years can be considered a modern unit capable of effectively and reliably heating water. Today’s manufacturers of gas-powered water heaters have gone to extreme lengths to build highly precise, specially engineered water heaters that are likely to work well for 8-10 years.
However, even the best-built water heater is going to need replacement eventually. It’s just a matter of time before things like corrosion, leaky components, and failing internal parts contribute to premature system breakdown. This all raises the question, “When is it time to replace an old water heater?”
In this week’s post, we’re addressing this question head-on, giving you some things to think about if you believe your own water heater may be in need of replacement.
Why Gas-Powered Water Heaters Fail
There are many reasons why gas-powered water heaters fail over time.
For some units, there can be manufacturing defects that don’t surface until well after the warranty period expires. For other units, the natural degradation of seals or other structural materials will be to blame. For yet others, water heating can become so inefficient that not replacing the water heater could be more expensive than pulling the trigger and proceeding with a replacement.
Some of the signs and symptoms of a gas-powered water heater that may need to be replaced include:
- Aging beyond ten years. For the most part, gas-powered water heaters have an operational shelf life of about a decade. The reason for this because constantly heating water in the same pressurized container—and using combusted natural gas to do so—will, over time, physically wear down key components.
If your gas-powered water heater is more than ten years old, it might be time to start thinking about replacing it.
- Visible rust on the tank or other external surfaces. When a water heater starts to show rust on the outside, it’s likely there’s rust on the inside, too. After all, this piece of equipment is constantly being exposed to water, and even the best-protected piece of steel will begin to rust eventually.
If your gas-powered water heater is showing signs of rust, it could be in danger of springing a leak, which could result in costly damages. Another telltale sign of internal rust is rust-colored water that comes from taps or spigots in the building.
- Strange noises, especially when there’s more than one. It’s normal for most water heaters to produce a low amount of sound when they’re actively heating water or when the water pump is activated.
However, gurgling, chugging, or hissing sounds are almost never normal, and if you’re hearing these kinds of noises coming from your water heater, consider calling Front Range HVAC for an on-site evaluation.
- Water taking much longer than normal to heat and distribute. One of the most common culprits of gas-powered water heater breakdown is sediment buildup, which causes the water heater to take longer and longer to do its job.
Residual chemicals in water—things like fluoride, magnesium, and iron—can accumulate within the holding tank of the water heater. If this sediment isn’t flushed out at least once every year or so, the buildup can cause serious operational issues, sometimes resulting in a defunct water heater that needs to be replaced.
If your water heater is experiencing any of the above, then don’t worry: you’ve got a team of water heating professionals just a phone call away, at Front Range HVAC!
Front Range HVAC Specializes in Water Heater Replacement
We know it’s rarely ever convenient to have to replace an old or broken water heater. And, we know that the expense of doing so is rarely ever planned. So, we make it as easy as possible to choose from a variety of high-efficiency water heaters and get it installed on a day and time that works best for you.
What’s more, we’ll even remove the old water heater for you, recycling it using environmentally friendly methods. And, we’ll keep it snappy—most units can be installed within just a few hours.
Is it time to replace that old, gas-powered water heater in your home or commercial building? Don’t let a water heater that is malfunctioning or past its prime turn into a potentially costly water leak. Trust your home or office building to a team of qualified, proven HVAC professionals that know how to keep the hot water flowing efficiently and reliably.