Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Water Heater

signs it's time to replace your water heater

Is your morning shower not packing the same punch it used to? You might be tempted to just cop it sweet, but a less-than-lukewarm wake-up splash could mean your water heater’s throwing a wobbly.

We all know that feeling – prepped for a soothing torrent of heat, only to be met with a bracing jolt. Crikey, nobody needs that kind of surprise first thing in the arvo.

We totally understand because we’ve copped our fair share of frosty showers as well and recognise how crucial a trusty hot water system is in any Aussie home. Here’s something you might not know: the average domestic water heater kicks the bucket after about 8-12 years.

So it pays to keep an eagle eye on signs that yours is starting to spit the dummy before it chucks in the towel completely. Our yarn will guide you through dead giveaways that you’re due for an upgrade, plus what happens if you drag your feet over getting a new one sorted.

And we’ll throw in some ripper advice on picking your next unit too. Let’s get cracking; those days of playing roulette with your shower temps are coming to an end!

Key Takeaways

  • Water heaters typically last 8-12 years. Look for signs like rusty water, strange noises, leaks, or if it’s over 10-15 years old.
  • Replacing an inefficient heater saves money on energy bills and prevents damage to your home from potential leaks or rust.
  • Consider energy efficiency, size, and  capacity, when choosing a new heater. Tankless options can be more efficient and save space.

Indications That Your Water Heater Needs Replacement

If you’ve had your water heater for over 10-15 years, it may be time to consider a replacement. Rusty or discoloured water, strange noises coming from the unit, leaks, and

indications that your water heater needs replacement

insufficient hot water are all signs that your heater could be on its last legs.

Age of the heater

Most water heaters last between 8 to 12 years. Once we hit that mark, it’s smart to watch for signs it’s time to replace your hot water system. An old unit won’t work as well and can cost you more in repairs or

energy bills. If our heater is close to the decade mark, check its serial number. This will tell us when the manufacturer made it. Often, this date is hidden in a code but a quick look at the manual or online should help decode it.

Knowing the age helps us decide if replacement is due soon.

Rusty water

Rusty water coming from your hot water tap can be a clear sign that it’s time to replace your water heater. This rust can indicate corrosion inside the tank, which could lead to leaks and ultimately, failure of the entire system.

If you notice discoloured water when using hot taps or running appliances, such as dishwashers or washing machines, it’s important to consider replacing your aging unit before further damage occurs.

Ignoring this warning sign may result in more significant issues down the track.

Strange noises

If your water heater is making strange noises such as popping, rumbling, or clanging, it could indicate a buildup of sediment at the bottom of the tank. This accumulation can cause overheating and create unusual sounds as the heating element tries to function.

Ignoring these noises can lead to potential damage and reduced efficiency in your hot water system.

Addressing strange noises promptly by scheduling a professional inspection will help prevent further issues and potential breakdowns. Additionally, it’s an opportunity to assess if a replacement may be necessary based on the condition of your current unit.


If your water heater is leaking, it’s a clear indication that something is wrong. Leaks can lead to water damage and mould growth in your home. It’s essential to address leaks promptly to avoid potential structural damage or health hazards associated with damp environments.

To prevent further issues, it’s crucial to schedule a replacement as soon as possible. Ignoring leaks can result in costly repairs and inconvenience down the line. Keep an eye out for this warning sign, and don’t hesitate to take action if you notice any leakage from your water heater.

Insufficient hot water

Leaking water from your hot water system can lead to an insufficient supply of hot water. This issue significantly affects your daily routines and makes it challenging to carry out essential tasks like showering or doing dishes, causing inconvenience and frustration for the entire household.

Don’t wait too long to address this as it could indicate a failing hot water unit requiring replacement.

Inadequate hot water can disrupt your daily activities, making it necessary to take quick showers or experience sudden cold bursts while washing dishes. It’s important not to ignore these signs and consider scheduling a replacement for your water heater promptly.

Risks of Not Replacing Your Water Heater

Ignoring the signs of a failing water heater can lead to higher energy bills, potential damage to your home, and inconvenience from not having consistent access to hot water. It’s important to address any issues with your water heater as soon as possible to avoid

these risks.

Higher energy bills

As your water heater gets older, it becomes less efficient at heating water, leading to higher energy bills. A new, energy-efficient water heater can help lower your electricity or gas costs and save you money in the long run.

risks of not replacing your water heater

Upgrading to a modern system can reduce wastage and ensure that you only use the energy needed to heat the water.

Ignoring signs of a failing water heater such as rusty water, leaks, or strange noises could lead to increased energy consumption and rising utility bills. Newer models are designed with improved insulation and better technology, providing cost savings while also delivering hot water more efficiently.

Damage to your home

Leaking water heaters can cause significant damage to your home, leading to costly repairs and potential structural issues. Rusty water from the heater may stain your fixtures and laundry.

Ignoring these signs could result in water damage to your floors, walls, and belongings, impacting the safety and value of your property.

Insufficient hot water could disrupt daily activities like showering or dishwashing. Additionally, a failing water heater may lead to mold growth and mildew, creating an unhealthy environment for you and your family.


Dealing with a failing water heater can bring unnecessary inconvenience into your daily life. Picture waking up to find rusty, lukewarm water streaming from the shower when you least expect it.

On top of that, having to constantly live with the fear of leaks and unexpected loud noises coming from your water heater can be quite disruptive. A faulty hot water system may also lead to sudden interruptions in your household activities, making it challenging for everyone at home.

Don’t let these inconveniences disrupt your routine any longer.

What to Consider When Replacing Your Water Heater

When replacing your water heater, it’s important to consider the size and capacity that best suits your household’s needs, as well as the energy efficiency of the new unit. Additionally, you may want to explore different types of water heaters such as tankless

what to consider when replacing your water heater

options for improved performance and cost savings.

Energy efficiency

When choosing a new water heater, it’s important to consider energy efficiency. Look for a model with a high energy star rating to save on electricity costs over the long term. Opting for an energy-efficient

water heater can also reduce your environmental impact by using less power to heat your water.

It’s worth considering tankless options as they only heat water when you need it, reducing standby energy losses. This means you’ll have hot water on demand without continually heating and reheating stored water.

Prioritise models that use efficient insulation to minimise heat loss and maximise overall performance, helping you save money while enjoying reliable hot water supply.

Size and capacity

Consider the size and capacity of your new water heater to ensure it meets your household’s hot water demands. Assess the number of people in your home and their hot water usage patterns to determine the right tank size or flow rate for a tankless system.

Adequate sizing will provide sufficient hot water while optimising energy efficiency and reducing running costs.

When choosing a replacement, it’s crucial to consider the size and capacity of your new water heater. Matching it with your household’s needs will ensure an adequate supply of hot water without unnecessary energy waste or inconvenience.

Type of water heater (tank vs. tankless)

Tank Water Heaters

  1. Store and heat water in a large tank
  2. Suitable for homes with high hot water demand
  3. Typically lower initial cost
  4. Occupies more space

Tankless Water Heaters

  1. Heat water only when needed
  2. More energy – efficient
  3. Compact design, saving space
  4. Higher upfront cost but potential long – term savings

Consider Your Needs

  1. Evaluate your household’s hot water usage
  2. Determine the size and capacity required for consistent hot water supply

Energy Efficiency

  1. Compare energy ratings between tank and tankless options
  2. Consider long – term energy savings and environmental impact

Installation Considerations

  1. Assess installation feasibility based on your home’s layout and existing plumbing
  2. Factor in any additional costs associated with installation requirements

Schedule a Replacement Today

In conclusion, the signs of needing a water heater replacement include age, rusty water, strange noises, leaks, and insufficient hot water. Replacing your water heater can lead to lower energy bills, prevent home damage, and avoid inconvenience.

Consider the size, capacity, energy efficiency, and type of water heater when replacing it. Are you ready to upgrade your water heating system for better efficiency? Don’t delay – take action today for a reliable hot water supply in your home!