Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Plumbing

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 03-25-2008, 07:58 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 4
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


I own a 1600sq ft condominium in coastal San Diego in a development of about 300 units. The management company in their latest newsletter suggested that owners replace their hot water heaters every 8-10yrs as some owners have been out of town and have come back to find their units flooded, causing damage to common walls, etc. They didn't specify how old the hot water heaters the people who had problems had or if they were full or part-time residents etc. Over the past 15 years, this hot water heater has probably received about two month of use per year--so 30 months of use. It is a Rheem electric hot water heater installed in 1993 and located upstairs in a separate room next to the pantry. I turn the unit off when I'm gone. I don't mind paying for a new unit, if it's really necessary, but are you supposed to replace it every 10years, even if it has received very slight use? If you all think it does need to be replaced, what brands are good, and should I go tankless or not?

Aquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2008, 08:14 PM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 650
Rewards Points: 500
Send a message via AIM to Marlin
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


The tank itself always has water in it unless you drain it when you are away so how frequently it is used isn't a big factor. I call ten years the safe period. The reason for that is almost all the leaky water heaters I remove are ten years old or older. That doesn't mean it's going to break tomorrow though. I've removed water heaters installed in the 70s which hadn't started to leak yet.
If the water heater is in a place where damage from a leak will be severe I always recommend replacing it after ten years.


Last edited by Marlin; 03-25-2008 at 08:16 PM.
Marlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2008, 08:19 PM   #3
Journeyman Plumber
 
Ron The Plumber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Eugene, Oregon
Posts: 1,994
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


What I'd like to know is why these heaters did not have pans under them and drain to the outside.
__________________
Fix it right the first time, so you won't have to fix it a 2nd time.

2008 Oregon Specialty Plumbing Codes
Ron The Plumber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2008, 09:44 PM   #4
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


You can always pull the anode and take a look at it.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2008, 11:15 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 650
Rewards Points: 500
Send a message via AIM to Marlin
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron The Plumber View Post
What I'd like to know is why these heaters did not have pans under them and drain to the outside.
I must have seen hundred if not thousands of water heaters and I've yet to see a pan. In some areas they just aren't used.
Marlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2008, 11:40 PM   #6
Journeyman Plumber
 
Ron The Plumber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Eugene, Oregon
Posts: 1,994
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


There required by code here if on 2nd florr and up, drain to outside.
__________________
Fix it right the first time, so you won't have to fix it a 2nd time.

2008 Oregon Specialty Plumbing Codes
Ron The Plumber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2008, 02:49 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Fountain Valley, CA 92708 (orange county)
Posts: 660
Rewards Points: 504
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


From what I heard, you should not go tankless unless you have done your research. There are some serious pros and cons to getting one.
darsunt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2008, 04:22 PM   #8
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


FYI: I had to replace my hot water heater after a semi-catastrophic failure (leaking 30+ gallons of water and 1-2 gallons of fuel oil). We spent three days analyzing our options before we made up our mind (we bunked with a friend).

In the end, we decided to get the same unit we had before (albeit 10 years newer). Our oil co. replaced the tank and motor, reusing the burner and control units to save some money. Ah! hot showers!

We stayed with our oil fired tanked system because a) it sips fuel oil, even at record high prices it is cheaper than electricity or natural gas; b) we are going to add solar augmentation when we replace our roof - so we need some sort of tanked system; c) lowest cost and d) I want to be able to do a load of laundry and have a shower at the same time.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2008, 11:14 PM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 207
Rewards Points: 150
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


Water sitting will rust even more faster. So if you can't run a camera down inside to check it, it may break when you least expect it.

It is not the anode, but the tank springing a leak that is the concern.

A pan with a drain and turning it off and turning off the water pressure to it are all good ideas if you want to wait the longest time.

Of course, the you have to replace it on emergency time rather than at your convenience.
kgphoto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2008, 11:24 PM   #10
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


The only way to go!
AtlPlumber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2008, 12:01 AM   #11
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 561
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Leah Frances View Post
FYI: I had to replace my hot water heater after a semi-catastrophic failure (leaking 30+ gallons of water and 1-2 gallons of fuel oil). We spent three days analyzing our options before we made up our mind (we bunked with a friend).

In the end, we decided to get the same unit we had before (albeit 10 years newer). Our oil co. replaced the tank and motor, reusing the burner and control units to save some money. Ah! hot showers!

We stayed with our oil fired tanked system because a) it sips fuel oil, even at record high prices it is cheaper than electricity or natural gas;
Unless there is some unusually high natural gas prices in your area, oil is hardly ever as cheap as natural gas. Your oil company probably did you a favor to not lose your business.

Quote:
b) we are going to add solar augmentation when we replace our roof - so we need some sort of tanked system;
Solar will require and entirely new tank with a stainless steel coin inside it to circulate the solar heated water within your tank to heat it, w/o mixing with the potable water inside the tank. Your present tank will be useless.

Quote:
c) lowest cost and d) I want to be able to do a load of laundry and have a shower at the same time.
Possible with any water heater, electric, gas, or oil.
LawnGuyLandSparky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2008, 11:03 AM   #12
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


Lawn Guy - Why the hate? I won't respond point by point to this sort of misinformed sniping. If anyone is interested in the real facts (and I am sure no one really is), PM me.

My bottom line - do your research, get everyone's opinion, then make up your own mind. It has been useful to me to hear what other people did when they made this sort of purchase - so I thought, I would share my experience.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2008, 11:22 AM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 561
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Replace 15yr old water heater or not?


Hate? Where?

LawnGuyLandSparky is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
No Expansion Tank for Water Heater vasanvasan Plumbing 4 12-14-2007 12:16 AM
Water heater problem bear1957 Plumbing 23 11-01-2007 04:53 PM
Which Part to Replace? on my Hot Water Heater? ssammiewh Plumbing 6 06-15-2007 11:37 AM
Periodic release from (I think) the T&P valve on the water heater alexz Plumbing 3 08-15-2006 11:31 AM
Draining a hot water heater singforsupper Plumbing 1 06-07-2006 07:01 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.