Get the Most Out of Your Electric Water Heater
If you are one of the 40% of Americans who have an electric water heater (53% have gas water heaters), you will want to tune in to the information presented here. Learn how to extend the life of your water heater, how to tell how old your electric water heater is, and what to do when it comes time to replace that valuable part of your home: the trusty water heater.
How Long Does an Electric Water Heater Last?
While gas water heaters typically last 8-12 years, electric water heaters have a longer life expectancy, lasting on average 10-15 years.
How Can I Tell How Old My Electric Water Heater Is?
It's easy to find out how old your water heater (once someone teaches you a trick or two!) Start by watching this video:
To determine how old your water heater is:
1. Find the label.
2. Decode the label by finding out (chart below) how your brand of water heater documents the manufacturing date within the serial number on the label.
Water heater manufacturers document the month and year or year and week of manufacturing as part of the serial numbers on the water heater. Check this chart to find the brand water heater you have. Then use the description to decode the serial number.
Determine the Age of Your Water Heater By Decoding the Serial Number
Serial # Ex.
(Prior to 2001, American was owned by GSW Corporation and manufactured water heaters for nearly 50 different brands. American was acquired by A.O. Smith in 2001 and currently only manufactures American, American-Pro-line, Premium Plus, U.S. Craftmaster and Whirlpool brand water heaters.)
|American||9746******(46th week of 1997)||American uses a 2-digit year followed by a 2-digit week |
|Earl’s Energy Saver|
|XCL-Energy Saver |
Serial # Ex.
|A.O. Smith||Before 2008*H06******Since about 2008 |
|Prior to 2008, the 2nd letter in the series is the month followed by the 2-digit year. A thru N = Jan thru Dec (excludes I).Since 2008, they use an 11-digit alpha-numeric serial number. The first two positions are the year followed by a two digit week.|
|Bradford White||D*******F(June 1967) |
B-W uses a 20-year letter code cycle to designate the year.
The first letter is the year and the second is the month.
Letter A = 1964, 1984 and 2004
A thru N = Jan thru Dec
(Excludes I, O, Q, R, U & V)
|Rheem||0794******(July 1994) |
Rheem uses a 2-digit month followed by a 2-digit year
|Coast to Coast|
|Intertherm & Miller|
|State Industries(State industries was acquired by A.O. Smith in 2008. A.O. Smith now uses this code.)||State/Kenmore||0904*******(April 2009) |
Prior to 2008, State used a 1-letter month followed by a 2-digit year
A thru N = Jan thru Dec
(Excludes the letter I)
Beginning 2008, State uses an 11-digit alpha-numeric serial number. The first two positions are the year followed by a two digit week. Position 5 is a letter followed by 6 numbers.
How Can I Extend the Life of my Electric Water Heater?
The best way to make a water heater live longer is to drain it annually and replace the anode rod once every three years. Learn how here:
Help! My Water Heater is on It's Last Legs!
We hear you! Give us a call and we'll help you decide what type and brand of water heater is best for you. We'll discuss gas versus electric, tank versus tankless. In the end, you get the best water heater for your money. We look forward to working with you!
Quick question & answer: How long does an electric water heater last?
An electric water heater lasts 10-15 years on average. To find out how old your water heater is, first find the label. Then, decode the label by finding out how your brand of water heater documents the manufacturing date within the serial number on the label, via the attached chart.