How to Extend the Life of Your Water Heater

how to extend the life of your water heater

Reckon you’re getting a bit edgy at the mere thought of your water heater packing it in? Fair dinkum, you’re not on your lonesome there. Plenty of us Aussies get a real sense of dread about the prospect of an untimely cold shower when our trusty hot water system starts chucking a wobble.

It’s not just about losing your morning comfort ritual; fixing or forking out cash for a new one can really wallop the wallet.

Out in our own digs, we’ve copped that icy surprise and been gobsmacked by those hefty bills. But rather than just chow down on humble pie, we’ve knocked our heads together and done some hard yakka digging into ways to keep our water heaters cranking efficiently for yonks longer.

From dead-set simple upkeep tricks to cottoning on to little tell-tale signs before they blow up into big-ticket dramas, this yarn is chockers with clever tips that’ll help you stretch out the lifespan of your hot water setup by heaps.

And a fair shake of the sauce bottle – some fixes are more ridgy-didge straightforward than you’d reckon! Hang tight; let’s jump in boots and all and make sure that soothing warmth keeps rippling through your taps without a hitch.

Key Takeaways

  • Flush your water heater tank regularly to remove sediment and prevent damage.
  • Check the pressure relief valve and water pressure often to keep the system safe and efficient.
  • Improve your water quality with filters or softeners to reduce wear on the heater.
  • Listen for strange noises, monitor temperature changes, and check for leaks or rust as warning signs of issues.
  • If your unit is old or repairs are costly, consider replacing it with a new energy – efficient model.

Factors Affecting Water Heater Lifespan

The type and quality of your water heater, along with regular maintenance and the overall water quality in your area, all play a significant role in determining the lifespan of your unit.

Understanding these factors can help you make informed decisions to extend the life of your water heater.

Type of water heater

Your water heater could be gas, electric, or tankless. Each kind has its own lifespan. Gas hot water systems are great for quick heating and energy savings. Electric models often last longer but might cost more to run.

Tankless units heat on demand and don’t store water, so there’s less wear and tear.

We need to consider the type when planning maintenance or looking at durability. For instance, tankless hot water maintenance techniques differ from those used on traditional storage tanks.

Proper care keeps them running efficiently for years. No matter your unit’s type, sticking to a regular check-up schedule is key in extending its life.

Quality of unit

Choose a high-quality water heater for better longevity. Ensure it is energy-efficient, well-insulated, and equipped with corrosion prevention features. Look for reputable brands with good warranty coverage.


To ensure the longevity of your hot water system, it’s crucial to prioritise regular maintenance. Begin by scheduling routine tank flushing to eliminate sediment buildup and prolong the life of your water heater.

It’s also essential to check the pressure relief valve periodically and test the water pressure for optimal functioning. Furthermore, investing in better water quality can significantly increase the lifespan of your hot water unit.

By implementing these DIY maintenance tips, you can effectively extend the durability and efficiency of your water heater, saving both time and money in the long run.

Water quality

To maintain a healthy water heater, ensure good water quality. Sediment and minerals in the water can build up in the tank and reduce efficiency. Installing a water softener or filtration system can help improve the lifespan of your hot water unit.

Regularly test your water quality to identify any issues early on. If you notice a change in smell, taste, or appearance of your hot water, it’s best to get it tested and address any problems promptly.

Making sure that the water entering your heater is of high quality will go a long way in extending its lifespan.

Tips for Extending Water Heater Lifespan

Regular tank flushing, checking the pressure relief valve, testing water pressure, and investing in better water quality are essential to extending the lifespan of your water

tips for extending water heater lifespan

heater. To learn more about these tips and how they can benefit your hot water system, read our full blog post!

Regular tank flushing

To maintain your hot water unit’s efficiency, we recommend regular tank flushing. This simple task helps to remove sediment build-up and improve the

heater’s performance. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Turn off the power or gas supply to the water heater.
  2. Connect a hose to the drain valve at the base of the tank and place the other end in a suitable drainage area.
  3. Open a hot water tap in your home to allow air into the system and then open the drain valve.
  4. Let the water drain from the tank until it runs clear, indicating that sediment has been flushed out.
  5. Close the drain valve and remove the hose before turning the power or gas supply back on.

Checking pressure relief valve

To ensure your water heater’s longevity, regularly check the pressure relief valve for proper function. Here are essential steps for checking the pressure relief valve:

  1. Turn off the power or gas supply to the water heater.
  2. Locate the pressure relief valve on the side of the water heater, usually near the top.
  3. Place a bucket under the discharge pipe connected to the valve to catch any water that may be released during testing.
  4. Gently lift and lower the test lever on the valve. You should hear a slight rush of air and see some water discharge into the bucket.
  5. If no water comes out or if it continues to drip after closing, it may be faulty and require replacement.
  6. Slowly release the test lever to allow it to snap back into place.

Testing water pressure

To ensure your water heater continues to function efficiently, it’s essential to regularly test the water pressure. Here’s how you can do this:

  1. Attach a pressure gauge to a faucet near the water heater.
  2. Turn on the faucet to measure the water pressure.
  3. Compare the reading to the recommended pressure for your system, usually between 40 – 60 psi.
  4. If the pressure is too high, consider installing a pressure regulator.
  5. Low pressure may indicate sediment buildup or a faulty pressure – reducing valve, which should be addressed promptly.

Investing in better water quality

Investing in better water quality is essential for prolonging the life of your water heater. Here are some ways to achieve this:

  1. Install a whole – house water filtration system to remove impurities and sediment.
  2. Use a water softener to reduce mineral buildup in the tank and pipes.
  3. Consider adding a corrosion control system to prevent rust and corrosion.
  4. Regularly test your water quality to monitor changes and take necessary measures.

Warning Signs of a Failing Water Heater

If you start hearing strange noises coming from your water heater, notice a sudden change in water temperature, or see visible leaks or rust, these could be warning signs of a failing water heater.

It’s important to address these issues promptly to avoid potential damage and inconvenience.

Strange noises

Strange noises coming from your water heater can be an indication of sediment buildup or a failing heating element. These sounds could include popping, rumbling, or banging, and they usually signal that it’s time to flush the tank to remove the sediment buildup.

Neglecting these noises can lead to reduced efficiency and even permanent damage to the unit. It’s crucial for home owners to address strange noises promptly by flushing the hot water tank and possibly seeking professional assistance if the issue persists.

If you notice unusual sounds emanating from your water heater, it’s important not to ignore them as doing so can lead to further problems down the line. Regular maintenance such as flushing the tank will help prevent sediment buildup and maintain your hot water system’s longevity.

Changes in water temperature

If the water temperature fluctuates frequently, it could be a sign of an issue with your hot water system. Sudden changes in temperature, from hot to cold or vice versa, may indicate a malfunctioning thermostat, sediment buildup, or a failing heating element.

This inconsistency can affect your daily routines and increase energy consumption as the system works harder to maintain the desired temperature. It’s essential to address these fluctuations promptly by seeking professional assistance to diagnose and resolve the underlying problem.

Regular monitoring of the water temperature is crucial in identifying potential issues early on and maintaining an efficient hot water system. By addressing changes in temperature promptly, you can prevent further damage and ensure that your unit operates optimally for an extended lifespan.

Visible leaks or rust

If you notice any visible leaks or rust on your water heater, it’s crucial to address them promptly. Leaks can indicate a failing tank, while rust can signal corrosion that compromises the unit’s integrity and efficiency.

Both issues should be inspected by a professional plumber immediately to prevent potential water damage and to ensure that your water heater continues to function optimally over time.

Regular inspections for leaks and signs of rust are essential in maintaining the longevity of your hot water system.

When to Replace Your Water Heater

If repairs are becoming frequent or the unit is approaching its warranty end, it may be time to replace your water heater. Learn more about water heater maintenance and

replacement in our full blog post!

Age of unit

The age of your water heater is crucial in determining its lifespan. As a rule of thumb, most hot water units last around 8 to 12 years. Keep an eye on the manufacturer’s warranty period as it gives a good indication of how long the unit

when to replace your water heater

should function optimally. If repairs become more frequent and the unit is nearing or over a decade old, it may be time to start considering a replacement, especially if you want to avoid unexpected breakdowns and potential water damage.

Consider investing in a new energy-efficient model that will not only provide better performance but also save you money in the long run. Regularly keeping track of your water heater’s age allows timely planning for an upgrade without causing any inconvenience or emergencies with your hot water system.

Warranty information

Check your water heater’s warranty for details on coverage and duration. Look for information about the age of the unit, repairs, and replacements. Keep the warranty documentation in a safe place for easy access when needed.

If unsure about any terms or conditions, contact the manufacturer directly to clarify.

Remember to review the warranty regularly and understand the coverage it provides. Be proactive in maintaining your water heater to avoid voiding the warranty due to neglect or improper care.

Cost of repairs

When considering the cost of repairs, it’s essential to factor in the age of your water heater and whether it is still under warranty. Older units may require more frequent and expensive repairs, impacting the overall cost-effectiveness.

It’s also important to assess potential repair costs against the price of a new unit, taking into account any energy efficiency incentives or rebates that may be available. By keeping an eye on maintenance and promptly addressing any issues, you can minimise unexpected repair expenses and prolong the life of your water heater.

As homeowners, being mindful about potential repair costs helps us make informed decisions about maintaining or replacing our water heaters without breaking the bank. Regular maintenance and early intervention can save money in the long run while ensuring our hot water system remains efficient and reliable for years to come.

Professional installation

After considering the cost of repairs and weighing your options, it’s crucial to emphasise the importance of professional installation when replacing your water heater. Engaging a qualified plumber ensures that the new unit is correctly installed, maximising its lifespan and efficiency.

It also guarantees compliance with manufacturer specifications, which is essential for maintaining any warranty coverage. Professional installation affords peace of mind knowing that your investment in a new water heater is handled expertly.

Expert plumbers are equipped to handle all types of water heaters – gas, electric, or tankless – ensuring precise installation according to local regulations and safety standards. This proficiency diminishes the risk of future issues and optimises performance, safeguarding your home’s hot water system for years to come.

Contact Us for Valuable Insights on Maintaining and Extending Your Water Heater’s Life

By following these maintenance tips and strategies, you can effectively extend the lifespan of your water heater. Implementing these practical methods is simple and efficient, ensuring that your hot water system remains in optimal condition for a longer period.

The importance of regular maintenance cannot be overstated as it directly impacts the durability and performance of your water heater. Take action now to maximise the longevity of your unit and avoid unnecessary expenses in the future.

Explore further resources or professional services if needed to enhance your understanding and application of these techniques. Remember, taking proactive steps today will lead to prolonged efficiency and satisfaction with your hot water system.