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Old 02-28-2012, 04:45 PM   #1
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average life of a hot water heater??


Got a 12 year old hot water heater....40gallon....still kicks out hot water? should I be expecting this thing to crap out soon? Whats the average life?
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Old 02-28-2012, 05:17 PM   #2
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average life of a hot water heater??


depends on how much you use it and the water conditions in your area etc. doubt it will last much longer but if it is near a floor drain so nothing gets damaged when it leaks you may get more use out of it.
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Old 02-28-2012, 05:20 PM   #3
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average life of a hot water heater??


We get about a 11 year average on a plumbers grade HWT in a low sedment, soft water area if....

The house water pressure stays below 70 psi,
The unit has been transported carefully to the site (the glass liner is thin!!),
If nobody applies a torch to the fittings immediately connected to the tank. &
If the tank isn't seriously undersized for the home demand.

But we also have tanks that leak as soon as they are filled and those that last 25 years.

Last edited by how; 02-28-2012 at 06:01 PM.
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Old 02-28-2012, 05:41 PM   #4
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average life of a hot water heater??


going on 22yrs with my 40 gallon gas fired ...flushing it every fall
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:38 PM   #5
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average life of a hot water heater??


Average life in this area--about 12 years----mine is 23--knock on wood---
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Old 02-28-2012, 08:40 PM   #6
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average life of a hot water heater??


over a 30 yr span we logged 10-12 yrs average life of water heaters...
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Old 02-28-2012, 09:12 PM   #7
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average life of a hot water heater??


Two 40 gal direct vent gas heaters in tandem - 22 years and still going strong.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:32 AM   #8
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average life of a hot water heater??


When water is heated, it becomes very reactive and wants to bond with whatever is easiest. In the case of water heaters, it would be the glass lining or the metal behind the glass lining if it there is a crack/flaw. To prevent this, Water heaters typically have an anode/sacrificial rod for just such an occasion. Instead of attacking the tank itself, the hot water will corrode the rod.

The rod can be eaten away in as little as 4 to 5 years. If you start to notice a sulfur smell to the water, it may mean that your anode rod has been fully corroded and the water may now be starting to attack the tank itself.


I think it also depends on the type of water heater. My parents have an electric water heater and that thing blows every 7 to 10 years. I've owned a home where the Gas water heater was 12+ years old and it was still going strong when I sold the house.

You can remove the anode for inspection and/or replacement. They typically run from $20 to $50 depending on the size/type.

I found a pretty good write-up on them at http://www.mrrooterci.com/blog/bid/61998/What-is-a-Water-Heater-Anode-Rod.

Also a few google searches should yield some videos on replacing them which should help your water heater last longer
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:56 AM   #9
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average life of a hot water heater??


Quote:
Originally Posted by Remod11 View Post
Got a 12 year old hot water heater....40gallon....still kicks out hot water? should I be expecting this thing to crap out soon? Whats the average life?
Have a Bradford White 50 gallon Natural gas power vented that is 15 years old and still producing.
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:00 AM   #10
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average life of a hot water heater??


Mine is manufactured in 1969, but I might be in the minority here. I can't get myself to get rid of it - friggin thing is 10 yrs older than me.
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Old 03-01-2012, 02:52 PM   #11
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average life of a hot water heater??


I just thought of another factor to consider. Do you have city water or well water? Public water is notoriously high pressure, even with pressure limiters, it can get much higher than well water which could contribute to a failure faster.
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Old 03-01-2012, 07:44 PM   #12
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average life of a hot water heater??


there are factors to consider....temp setting, pressure,,water quality,even thermal expanison due to tempeture change.... usage...
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:13 PM   #13
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average life of a hot water heater??


I tend not to heat my already hot water.

but checking the anode and replacing is a great idea. I need to flush/check soon again myself.
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Old 03-01-2012, 10:18 PM   #14
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average life of a hot water heater??


if you do any piping work might want to swet in unions on the cold/hot out of the top ...never have to solder again easy clean out of that hot line or rod change out.
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Old 03-01-2012, 11:09 PM   #15
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average life of a hot water heater??


hey Biggies
Unions would be great in theory if the same manufactures didn't keep changing every dimension imaginable/ higher-lower/ or wider that pushes them further from walls or gas lines/ or inlet-outlet positions in relationship to the P&T valve and now the electronic gas valves that stick out further than they used to. Now throw in earthquake strapping requirements or exp tank allowances????
When I change a tank these days and have it line up the way it used to and get to think it's still in the best position possible...I call that luck.

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