6 Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Natural Gas Water Heater

When your natural gas water heater isn’t working as well as it usually does, it can be hard to tell whether you need a repair or a whole new system. We’re here to help you decide how to use your hard-earned dollars when the time comes to decide the future of your unit.

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1. It’s more than 10 years old.

With proper maintenance, a natural gas water heater tank typically lasts 6 to 12 years. So, if yours is more than 10 years old, it may be time to give up on repairs and research new tank options. If you’re not sure how old your water heater is, you can check the serial number to find out.

2. No hot water, but high bills.

Have you noticed that your hot showers haven’t been lasting as long as usual? A lower volume of hot water might mean it’s time to replace, especially if you are also noticing higher natural gas bills.

3. You hear strange noises.

Mysterious banging or hissing noises coming from your natural gas water heater could be a sign that something has broken beyond repair.

4. You see rust.

Whether on the unit or in your water lines, corrosion is never a good sign. Rust can appear visibly on the tank or in the form of red or brown tap water and seeing it could mean your natural gas water heater has reached the end of its life.

5. Your unit is leaking.

A leak in your water heater may seem like your unit is just in need of repair. However, if it’s leaking to the point that puddles are forming around your natural gas water heater, it may be time to look for a new unit.

6. You’ve already done multiple repairs.

If you have your repairperson on speed dial, it’s probably time to stop repairing and start with a new system. The cost of a new unit will likely be balanced out by the decrease in repairs and your lowered natural gas bill, which is important to note when considering the cost of replacing your natural gas heater.

Repair vs. Replace

To avoid the cost of replacing your natural gas heater, you can first try to troubleshoot any issues on your own. Here are a few things to do before you call for repairs or purchase a new system:

  • Ensure the gas is properly connected and the pilot light is on.
  • Flush the heater to remove sediment from the tank.
  • Clean the gas burner.
  • Raise the temperature setting.
  • Test the pressure relief valve.

If you’ve done all of this and you still have issues, it’s time to call a contractor or start researching a new system.

Make Your Natural Gas Water Heater Last

A new natural gas water heater is a big investment, and we want to help you make it last as long as possible. Here are some maintenance tips to prolong the life of your system:

  • Drain the tank twice a year to flood out sediment and improve efficiency.
  • Lower the temperature setting to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Insulate your pipes.
  • Ensure you place your water heater tank in the right position. Research regulations and tips for placement in your area.

Whether you’re able to repair or have to replace, we hope we’ve helped you get the most out of your natural gas water heater.

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