Are you wondering if you need a new water heater? While waking up to no more hot water is an obvious sign you’ve got water heater problems, it’s usually not that obvious. The following are signs you need a new water heater sometime in the near future:
You need a new water heater if:
- Your hot water heater is as old as dirt (gas hot water heaters usually last 8-12 years, and electric hot water heaters usually last 10-15 years, and tankless water heaters last longer than either of these other options)
- Your water is rusty or colored funny (that’s a sure sign that you either need a new heater or something is going on in your pipe work)
- You don’t get very hot water or very much hot water (hot water heater efficiency decreases over time)
- You’ve seen moisture around the base of the water heater (which could mean a leak)
- The water is cold, then hot for a while, then cold again (this means your heater is not working properly)
- You’ve got a flood (which means a definite leak)
How Much Hot Water Does My Household Require Each Day?
When choosing a new hot water heater, you’ll want to make sure the new appliance is going to be able to keep up with your household’s demands for hot water. It can be tempting to go with a smaller, less expensive water heater, but you’ll regret it if you don’t invest in something powerful enough to meet your family’s needs. You can calculate out how much hot water your family will need by doing a little math.
The following activities use up the following amounts of hot water (on average):
- Taking a shower – 20 gallons
- Taking a bath – 20 gallons
- Shaving – 2 gallons
- Washing dishes by hand – 4 gallons
- Washing dishes in the dishwasher – 10 gallons
- Washing clothes in the washing machine – 32 gallons
- Washing up in morning/ before bed (face, hands, brushing teeth) – 2 gallons
- Preparing meals – 5 gallons
Now figure out when your peak water usage times are. For example, if you are married and have three kids who take baths at night, and your wife is running the dishwasher and a load of clothes in the washer, you might have a whopping 102 gallons of water in use in a one-hour period! Or, if there’s just the two of you in the house, and you each take quick showers in the morning and run your dishwasher and laundry at night, you may only need to have 45 gallons of hot water available at a time.
ER Plumbing, Charlotte NC Water Heaters
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