Water heaters are stalwart appliances, tirelessly providing a steady supply of hot water for years. The average water heater can last for over a decade provided it is properly installed and regularly maintained. Yet, despite regular maintenance, Father Time and Mother Nature take their toll. Knowing whether to repair or replace a hot water heater tank is crucial for ensuring uninterrupted access to hot water. 

In this brief article brought to you by Proline Rooter, we’ll look at some signs that indicate it’s time for a hot water heater tank repair. We’ll also share tell-tale signs that your water heater is on its last leg. If you need a uniformed plumber in the area, then call Proline Rooter to speak with a member of our team.


How to Know If You Should Repair or Replace Old Water Heater Tank

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Signs It’s Time for a Repair

Tank-style water heaters last about 8 to 12 years on average, but they can last for longer if you’re flushing the tank regularly, replacing corroded anode rods, and performing routine maintenance. Still, accidental and incidental damage is impossible to dodge. So, how do you know your water heater needs repair?

  1. Inconsistent Heating: Fluctuating water temperatures or cold bursts during hot water use could stem from a faulty heating element or thermostat.
  2. Leaking: Seepage or drips around the tank can indicate issues with fittings, valves, or a deteriorating tank.
  3. Strange Noises: Loud pops, cracks, or rumbling sounds coming from the tank can signal sediment buildup, potentially resolvable by flushing the tank.
  4. Faulty Pilot Light: Gas-powered heaters might experience problems with the pilot light, leading to inconsistent heating. Repairing or replacing the thermocouple or gas control valve could solve this.

If you’re regularly inspecting your water heater, then you’ll be able to notice unusual changes. Make sure to investigate and resolve such issues as soon as possible. Ignoring or overlooking small issues can allow them to develop into much bigger problems. Remember, a quick repair today is better than a complete replacement tomorrow!

Indications for Replacement

Most traditional tanks have a lifespan of about 8-12 years. If yours is approaching or surpassing this range, replacement might be more cost-effective in the long run than frequent repairs. We typically recommend a water heater replacement when the cost of repairs exceeds half the price of a new unit.

Another sign that it’s probably time for a replacement is rust and corrosion. Once rust appears, it's often an indication that the tank is deteriorating and that a replacement might be imminent. You might also notice leaks from the tank itself. In such cases, replacement is the only viable solution.

However, many property owners don’t wait to replace their water heaters. Some upgrade to a newer model only 5 to 8 years into their existing water heater. They sell the used water heater and use the funds to pay for a larger or more efficient water heater.

Hire a Uniformed Plumber Today

Are you looking for uniformed and experienced plumbers? If so, call Proline Rooter to schedule an appointment or request urgent assistance. We offer everything from water heater maintenance to a water heater replacement.


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