Water heaters are an essential addition to every home. However, since water contains numerous impurities and minerals, these units corrode with time. If you notice your water heater is malfunctioning, should you repair or replace it? Below are some factors you should consider to help you decide on whether to replace or repair your unit.
Extent of Damage
The type and extent of damage on your water heater also determine whether you need to replace or fix it. Therefore, you need to call a plumber to inspect your unit and give their professional opinion. If your water heater has begun leaking, the chances of a repair fixing it are minimal. However, common problems like the water not heating or heating too slowly are issues you can fix.
How Old Is Your Water Heater?
How long have you been using your water heater? A water heater has an average lifespan of ten years. Therefore, if you have been using it for ten or more years, replacing is a suitable option. On the other hand, repairing it is the right call if you have had your water heater for a few months or years.
However, a water heater's lifespan depends on several factors, such as the brand, its location, and how well you maintain it. Therefore, ten years is a mere estimate and not a rule. Should you notice corrosion or accumulated rust, you don't need to wait ten years to replace it.
How Effective Is the Heater?
Since water heaters have an averagely long life span, they remain functional as the household changes. For example, a household can grow after installing their water heater, or their demand for hot water can grow. Alternatively, some people may have moved out of the house, and the demand for hot water has reduced.
Did the heater meet your needs before it had a mechanical issue? Was there too much hot water that you thought you were wasting resources on heating or was the water inadequate? If the amount of hot water was satisfactory, repairing is a good option. However, if you noticed you started waiting for longer for water to heat and take a shower, consider a replacement.
The main factor to consider is your budget. How much will it cost to repair or replace? Can you meet the cost? As much as your budget is a determining factor, the rule is always to consider a replacement if the repair cost is half or more than the replacement cost.
Besides considering your budget and if it meets the costs, you also need to consider the system's effectiveness after repairs. If you repair the unit, how many more months or years do you expect to serve you?
The Heater's Efficiency
When buying a water heater, it's essential to consider its R-value. The R-value is a measure of the ability of your water heater to resist heat. The higher the R-value, your heater will be better insulated and have more resistance.
If your water heater is beginning to feel hot when you touch it, replacing wins over repairing. Insufficient insulation means higher energy bills to heat the water. Contact a heating contractor to learn more.