Tankless Water Heater How Long Do They Last?

How Long Is a Tankless Water Heater Supposed to Last?

Purchasing a hot water heater is a long-term investment that should provide years of service. Traditional water heaters with tanks that can keep and heat significant volumes of water have a lifespan of around 13 years, however tankless or ″on-demand″ heaters – whether gas or electrically powered – can last as long as 20 years.

What They Do

Investing in a hot water heater is a long-term investment that should provide years of service and satisfaction. However, tankless or ″on-demand″ heaters, which can be either gas or electrically powered, can last up to 20 years, whereas typical ones with tanks that keep and heat vast volumes of water last roughly 13 years.

Why They Last

  1. Water heaters in the standard configuration are constantly exposed to moisture, which promotes corrosion.
  2. While certain parts may be replaced to extend the life of the heater, the quality of the water and the amount of minerals in it can also have an impact on how quickly corrosion occurs and whether or not the heater is still in working condition.
  3. Tankless types can be influenced by water quality, although they have a lower risk of corrosion than traditional devices.

Supply Issues

At the time of publishing, household tankless heaters were capable of producing 5 gallons of hot water per minute that was heated to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. For a household of four who requires hot water for showers, laundry, and a dishwasher – especially if more than one item is running at the same time – this will not be enough hot water.

Enjoy lower energy bills—as well as uninterrupted access to hot showers—by keeping tabs on your hot water heater’s age and condition so you’ll know when to replace it. 

Image courtesy of istockphoto.com

Q. We just bought a house, and the previous owners told us that the water heater is about 6 years old. Does that mean we’ll have to replace it soon? How long do water heaters last?

  1. A.
  2. As long as it’s still heating water adequately and making no unusual noises, you should be able to get a few more years of use out of it.
  3. The usable life of a water heater varies based on the kind of water heater, the quality of the device, and how well it has been maintained.
  4. When it comes to water heaters, you may be thinking, ″How long do they last?″ Continue reading to learn about the indications of aging and what to consider when replacing an old water heater.

A Water Heater’s Life Expectancy

  1. There are a variety of elements that influence the life expectancy of a water heater.
  2. In addition to the age of the water heater and whether or not it receives regular maintenance, the quality of the water and the amount of water that is used on a regular basis have an impact on its longevity.
  3. However, while a water heater may be able to outlive normal projections, there are expectations for how long a water heater will survive dependent on the type of water heater used.

A traditional tank-type water heater lasts an average of 8 to 12 years.

  1. An anode rod is installed within the tank to preserve the internal lining by drawing all corrosive particles to itself through a process known as electrolysis, which is performed on the rod.
  2. The particles from the rod’s corrosion accumulate in the bottom of the water tank, where they may ultimately degrade or damage the tank’s lining.
  3. When this occurs, the rod is no longer effective at its task.
  4. Once corrosion begins to occur within the tank, the water heater has reached the end of its useful life.
  5. Related: Best Water Heaters for Homeownersistockphoto.comistockphoto.comistockphoto.comistockphoto.com

A tankless water heater can last up to 20 years, sometimes even longer.

  1. Known as ″on-demand″ water heaters, these appliances do not operate continually to ensure a constant supply of hot water, allowing them to survive far longer than their tank-style counterparts in the process.
  2. Tankless water heaters (which do not employ anode rods) may, at some point, succumb to corrosion and require replacement of their components.
  3. Istockphoto.com has a great list of the best tankless water heaters for 2021.

Your existing water heater’s serial number holds the clue to its age.

  1. The serial number of your water heater, which consists of a letter followed by a series of numbers and is situated on the upper section of the water heater, can help you establish when it was made even if you can’t locate the original documentation for your appliance at the time of purchase.
  2. Typically, the letter represents the month—for example, ″A″ represents January, ″B″ represents February, and so on, up to ″L″ representing December—and the next two digits represent the year it was created.
  3. For example, a serial number that begins with ″A10″ indicates that it was made in January 2010.
  4. This rule of thumb applies to the majority of hot water heater manufacturers, but if you have any questions, you may double-check the information on the company’s website.

Electric Water Heaters: Which Is Better for You?

Signs Your Water Heater Might Be on Its Last Legs

  • It’s necessary to monitor the performance of your hot water heater on a frequent basis to ensure that it’s operating at peak efficiency. This goes beyond simply following the manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations. If you observe any of the following indicators in your appliance, it’s a good idea to start looking for a replacement right away, even though all appliances have an average lifespan based on normal use. When a water heater is nearing the end of its useful life, it is common to hear banging or rumbling sounds. Few individuals actually follow the manufacturer’s recommendation to flush a tank-style water heater on an annual basis, resulting in calcium buildup from hard water collecting at the bottom of the tank. This is a necessity for maintaining the warranty on the water heater. During usage, the sediment accumulates, hardens, and finally creates a thick crust, which can cause the water heater to creak and bang when it heats the water.
  • The hot water has a weird fragrance about it. If the hot water has a strange odor or flavor to it, it is possible that something is polluting the water storage tank. Metal that has been absorbed by the water or bacteria that has gathered inside the tank might be the cause of this odor. Alternatively, if cleaning the tank does not resolve the issue, it may be necessary to hire a plumber.
  • Rust might be present in any faucet that produces colored hot water, whether it be red or filthy yellow. It’s critical to evaluate whether the discolouration shows while the cold water is flowing as well as when it’s not. A corrosion problem is more likely to begin inside the water heater rather than within any rusting galvanized pipework, if this is the case
  • It is possible that the water temperature will decline. This indicates that the water heater is approaching the end of its service life if the water does not heat up as quickly or does not remain at the correct temperature for as long as it once did
  • there is less hot water available than in the past. Over time, silt can accumulate inside the water tank, reducing the amount of space available for water storage within the tank. If the hot water is running out more quickly, it is possible that the tank has to be emptied and cleaned. Waiting too long to clean the tank may result in the tank having to be replaced.
  • The presence of water accumulating around the base of a water heater tank is also a bad omen. First, verify sure the leak isn’t coming from a fitting or valve that simply needs to be tightened or replaced by a qualified professional. Engage the services of an expert to investigate the issue and conduct any necessary maintenance. If you discover that the source of the leak is the tank itself, it is possible that the tank is fractured or rusted within.
  • The hardness of the water is influencing the quality of the water. Hard water can cause significant damage to a water heater, shortening its service life by two or more years. If you find white limescale accumulating on plumbing surfaces, it is possible that the water heater may need to be changed more frequently.
  • The location of the heater might have an impact on its longevity. It takes more energy to heat water in a garage or crawl area since the temperature dips substantially lower there. As a result, water heaters in these locations tend to wear out more rapidly than those in a temperature-controlled home. It is recommended that you begin looking for end-of-life warning indications sooner than the manufacturer suggests if either of these factors applies to your system.

Related: The Best Tankless Gas Water Heaters of 2021istockphoto.comistockphoto.comistockphoto.com

Planning Ahead to Replace a Water Heater

  1. A hot water heater replacement is not an uncommon undertaking, but it is one that requires careful preparation and consideration.
  2. Depending on whether you have a regular tank water heater or a specialist electric tankless water heater, the time it takes to order a replacement might differ.
  3. Additionally, scheduling a time with a professional plumber to make the switch when it is not an emergency will save you money on additional installation expenses.
  4. Most importantly, knowing the precise hot water heater that will be needed before the present one reaches the end of its useful life may help the procedure run much more easily and efficiently.

Think 2 years beyond the predicted lifespan of your water heater. 

  1. When considering the normal water heater life expectancy for the present model, keep the following in mind: A tank-style water heater should be replaced when it reaches the age of 8 to 10 years, and a tankless water heater should be replaced when it reaches the age of 15 to 18 years.
  2. The inconvenience of a broken pipe and the inconvenience of running out of hot water will be avoided, and unnecessary energy consumption will be minimized as a result of doing so.

Take advantage of the energy-saving tech features newer models offer. 

  1. After several years of use, either kind of water heater is susceptible to mineral deposits and silt accumulation, which can increase the amount of energy required to heat the water, hence decreasing the overall efficiency of the device.
  2. Install a replacement, on the other hand, and the combination of a decade’s worth of technological advancements and the new model’s clean interior will almost certainly result in a reduction in your power bill in the months to come.
  3. IN CONNECTION WITH: The Best Propane Tankless Water Heaters for Your House

Start looking for a new water heater before it’s needed.

  1. The procedure of replacing a water heater might become more complex and expensive if you wait until it becomes an emergency or is exceedingly inconvenient.
  2. If your present water heater is exhibiting symptoms of wear and tear, begin investigating replacement choices and speaking with a professional about arranging an appointment for an evaluation and possible replacement.
  3. A conventional water heater can be delivered in a few days and replaced in a few hours by a professional, but having a plan in place before your water heater breaks can be extremely beneficial.

Call the manufacturer if the water heater is still under warranty.

  1. While a variety of problems might indicate that a water heater is nearing the end of its useful life, if your unit is only a few years old, the problem may be repairable and covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.
  2. Before purchasing a new appliance, it may be worthwhile to contact the manufacturer or a plumber to have the item inspected.
  3. Repairing an older unit will also provide you more time to choose a replacement unit when the time comes.
  4. RELATED: The problem has been resolved!
  5. How to Choose the Most Appropriate Water Heater Sizeistockphoto.com

Final Thoughts

  1. Hot water heaters have become indispensable components of the contemporary house, yet they are rarely given much thought until something goes wrong.
  2. It’s crucial to check on the functioning of your home’s functional parts on a regular basis, just like you would with your roof, windows, electricity, and stairs.
  3. This will help you avoid a potential problem.
  4. Knowing the critical warning signals that suggest that a hot water heater may need to be replaced soon, as well as what to look for when replacing a hot water heater, will help you save time, worry, and money on your next hot water heater installation.

FAQs About Water Heaters and How Long They Last

Q. How long does it take to install a water heater?

The majority of competent plumbers can complete the installation of a water heater in a few hours.

Q. Can a water heater last 30 years?

30 years is an unusually long time for a used water heater to operate. Most tank water heaters have an average lifespan of 8 to 12 years, but tankless water heaters can have a lifespan of up to 20 years or more.

Q. How much does it typically cost to replace a hot water heater?

The cost of replacing a used water heater varies depending on your location, where the heater is located in the home, the type of hot water heater being installed, and whether or not the replacement is an emergency situation. Typically, the price range begins at approximately $1,000.

Q. Is it possible to repair a leaking water heater?

  1. It is feasible to repair certain water heater leaks, and this is something we recommend.
  2. There might be an easy explanation for a leak coming from the pressure relief valve or drain valve, such as a buildup of minerals caused by hard water.
  3. A simple adjustment such as tightening a connection or changing a washer may suffice, but a more intricate fix that requires the expertise of a professional may be required.
  4. Always turn off the water supply before messing with a hot water heater for the sake of safety.

Q. How many showers can you take with a 50-gallon water heater?

  1. How long the showers last is determined by the duration of the showers.
  2. A 50-gallon water heater has the capacity to provide around 35 gallons of hot water in an hour.
  3. A typical shower consumes around 2 gallons of water every minute, for a total of approximately 17 gallons of water.
  4. Get free, no-obligation repair quotes from licensed plumbers in your area by filling out the form on this page.

How Long Does a Tankless Water Heater Last?

  • Tankless water heaters are increasingly displacing tank water heaters as the primary water heater of choice in modern houses, according to industry experts. As compared to a standard tank heater, they are more energy efficient, save money, and take up less space. However, you may be asking if they have a longer lifespan than storage tank units. So, how long does a tankless water heater last before it has to be replaced? A tankless water heater has a lifespan of around 20 years in most situations. Manufacturers do not guarantee a product’s life expectancy beyond about 10 years. Tankless water heaters, on the other hand, can endure for 20 years or longer if they are properly maintained. Do you require the services of a Licensed Plumber? We can assist you! In your location, you may get a free estimate from plumbers that are top-rated, vetted, and licensed. Detailed explanation of the solution to this query will be provided in the next article. Tankless water heaters have a longer life expectancy than traditional tank water heaters. Learn how to properly maintain your tankless water heater. We’ll also discuss the advantages and disadvantages of tankless water heaters vs. tank water heaters, as well as the differences between electric tankless units and gas-powered tankless units
  • and how to choose the right tankless water heater for your home.
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Why Tankless Water Heaters Last Longer than Tank Water Heaters

In the market for a water heater that will last longer than a tank water heater? A tankless water heater is a better option than a tank water heater for you. The reason for this is due to a number of factors.

Less corrosion

  1. The majority of tank water heaters are constructed of steel, which is a material that is very susceptible to rust and corrosion.
  2. Sacrificial anode rods are used in tank water heaters to avoid corrosion.
  3. A sacrificial anode rod is a cylindrical piece of metal that is placed in the water heater tank and rusts in lieu of the metal tank shell.
  4. Most of the time, these rods will need to be changed every few years.
  5. In the case of a tank water heater, one of the most common concerns is neglecting to change the sacrificial anode rod, which can cause your tank to rust and leak as a result.

If you have a tankless water heater, you won’t have to worry about this.In the absence of a tank where water might collect and rust, there is no need for a sacrificial anode rod, which you might forget to replace if the tank is full of water.That is not to claim that tankless water heaters are incapable of corroding.

  • Corrosion is always a possibility in any environment where water and metal come into contact for a lengthy period of time.
  • Tankless heaters, on the other hand, have a substantially reduced danger of corrosion than conventional heaters.

Less sediment buildup

  • The accumulation of silt in tank water heaters is another reason they fail. As the water in the tank heats up, minerals such as calcium and magnesium separate from the water and accumulate at the bottom of the tank’s water level. Excessive sediment buildup can result in a variety of issues, including: Water temperature that is inconsistent (constantly varies between tepid and hot)
  • increased energy expenses
  • annoying popping sounds that occur while the heating process is taking place.
  1. To avoid problems caused by sediment buildup, you should clean your water heater at least once a year, or more frequently if necessary.
  2. Despite the fact that this is a reasonably easy operation that does not need the assistance of a professional, it is another maintenance activity that you should remember to complete on a regular basis.
  3. If you neglect to do so, you run the danger of significantly shortening the lifespan of your tank water heater.
  4. Because tankless water heaters do not have storage tanks, you will not have to worry with the silt accumulation that can cause such serious problems.
  5. That is not to suggest, however, that tankless water heaters are completely immune to silt buildup.

Water from a hard source will cause problems, and your tankless heater will need to be ″descaled″ on a regular basis to remove mineral deposits.

What can Harm a Tankless Water Heater’s Longevity?

Even while tankless water heaters have much fewer potentially serious flaws than traditional tank water heaters, they are not infallible devices. Breakdown and decrease of the lifespan of your water heater are both possible outcomes of several potential concerns.


While tankless water heaters have many fewer potentially severe flaws than tank water heaters, they are not infallible devices in every respect. Breakdown and decrease of the lifespan of your water heater are both possible outcomes of several factors.

Improper installation

  1. A water heater that has not been installed properly is a water heater that is susceptible to a variety of major problems.
  2. The installation might have problems if it was done by someone who does not have a professional plumbing license or if it was done by someone who does not have one.
  3. A defective connection to the gas supply line in the case of a gas-powered tankless heater is one possibility during installation.
  4. A severe gas leak might occur if there are any faults in the connection between the gas supply line and the house.
  5. When you combine the gas vapors with the igniting flame from the water heater, you have a severe chance of an explosion……….

To ensure that your present wiring in your home is capable of handling the energy demands placed on it by an electric tankless heater, you must first determine if the wiring is capable of supporting the heater’s energy demands.If it is unable to do so, there is a minor possibility that the wire will short and cause an electric fire.

Cost of repair

  1. Because tankless water heaters do not store water, their interior workings are often more sophisticated and computerized than those of their tank counterparts.
  2. Even while tankless heaters are more energy efficient than tank heaters due to the contemporary components, they also put a bigger burden on your cash when it comes time to repair or replace them.
  3. If you’re strapped for cash, it’s possible that changing some of your tankless water heater components is a cost you can’t afford.
  4. If your heater was not installed by a competent plumber, you’ll also have to worry about the expense of repairs down the road.
  5. Many water heater manufacturers will not fulfill their warranties if the unit was not installed by a professional, and you may be forced to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars for a surprise repair that you assumed would be covered by the warranty.

How to Increase Your Tankless Water Heater’s lifespan 

We all wish water heaters were the sort of gadget that could be turned on and left alone, but that isn’t the case, especially if you want your tankless unit to survive the full 20 years that the manufacturer guarantees it to do so. If you want to help your heater live to a ripe old age, here’s a maintenance chore you should complete:

Descale your heater regularly

  • The descaling of your water heater will be the most crucial maintenance activity you’ll have to complete in the future. Despite the fact that calcium accumulation is far less of a concern in tankless heaters than it is in tank heaters, it can still cause issues. While descaling is a necessary maintenance activity, it is not at all difficult to accomplish. If you have the following supplies, you can do the project yourself: 90 minutes of unstructured time
  • 1 gallon white vinegar or professional descaling solution
  • 4 gallons of water
  • 1 set of drain hoses (you’ll normally need a 3/4-inch connector for this)
  • 2 drain hoses
  • A 5-gallon pail of water
  • A descaling pump for a tankless water heater

All of these materials may be purchased separately, but it is more convenient to get a comprehensive descaling kit that includes everything you need to remove water heater sediment. If you don’t have the necessary supplies, I propose that you get this My PlumbingStuff – Tankless Water Heater Flushing Kit on Amazon (available on Amazon).

Step 1: Cut power to the water heater. 

You should go to your circuit panel and turn off the electricity to your heater if you have one of those. It is also possible to cut off the electricity to the heater itself for further safety, but this is not required. If you have a gas-powered heater, just flip the valves in the opposite direction of the clock to cut off the gas supply.

Step 2: Shut off the water supply valves.

After that, you must close the water heater’s input and output water supply valves, which are often located below the water heater. If your heater is equipped with a drain valve, you should open it to allow any water that has accumulated inside the unit to drain out.

Step 3: Attach the hoses.

Take one hose and hook one end of it to the input valve on the compressor. Connect the other end of the hose to the pump. The other hose should be attached to the output valve at this point. Place the other end of this hose into the bucket you’ve prepared.

Step 4: Add the solution

Fill the bucket halfway with your descaling solution and set it aside. Place the pump in the bucket and close the lid.

Step 5: Open the hot water valves and turn on the pump. 

  1. Start by turning on the hot water valves on your heater.
  2. Once it is completed, turn on the pump.
  3. It’s possible that your pump will not have an on/off switch and will instead turn on when you plug it into a wall outlet.
  4. The pump should be submerged in the bucket of solution prior to commencing the procedure for this reason.
  5. Once the pump is turned on, allow it to operate for approximately 45 minutes.

After that period of time has expired, switch off the pump.Make careful to let any residual vinegar to drain from the heater and into a bucket before continuing with the process.

Step 6: Rinse the water heater.

  1. Once the descaling solution has departed the heater, you must thoroughly clean the interior of the heater several times to ensure that all traces of the descaling solution have been removed.
  2. Empty the pail of solution that has been resting there.
  3. Remove the hose from the cold water heater and re-enable the input valve to complete the process.
  4. Please turn on the cold water and let it to fill your bucket all the way to the brim with water.
  5. This should remove any remaining descaling solution that may have remained.

Step 7: Turn on the water heater. 

Unplug the other hose and reconnect it to your heater’s usual fittings before turning on your power supply. After a few minutes, hot water should start flowing again, and any sediment accumulation in your water heater should have been removed.

Tankless Water Heaters vs. Tank Water Heaters: Advantages & Disadvantages

Tankless water heaters provide a number of advantages over traditional storage tank water heaters, in addition to their longer lifespan.

Tankless water heater advantages

Tankless water heaters take up less space

  1. Compared to the huge storage tank units that the industry is migrating away from, most tankless units are around the size of a compact suitcase and take up far less space.
  2. They can also be installed outside the property, whereas storage tank units must be installed within the residence.
  3. For those who are concerned about space constraints in their house, a tankless unit is a far more appealing option……………………..

Tankless water heaters use less energy

The majority of storage tank heaters have a capacity of 30 to 50 gallons of water.That water must be heated continuously in order to ensure that hot water is accessible at all times.Maintaining so much water at a high temperature on a consistent basis consumes a significant amount of energy, which will be shown on your electric or gas statement.Tankless heaters, sometimes known as ″on-demand″ heaters, do not require a big body of water to be continually heated, as is the case with traditional heaters.

  • They consume substantially less energy than storage tank units since they only heat water when it is required.
  • This reduction in energy use is beneficial to the environment and also results in a reduction in your energy bill.

A tankless water heater won’t run out of hot water

After a time of prolonged usage, one of the most common complaints regarding tank units is that they run out of hot water, which is understandable.This is a problem that is particularly severe for bigger families.When a large number of people take showers at the same time, the person at the end of the line may be left with nothing but cold water.Households using tankless water heaters are not affected by this issue.

  • You will never run out of hot water as long as the tankless heater in your home is capable of handling the flow rate and energy consumption of the volume of hot water you are requesting.

Tankless water heaters last longer

For the reasons we’ve discussed previously in this post, tankless water heaters have a substantially longer lifespan than storage tank water heaters. A tankless water heater will heat your water for 20-30 years if it is properly maintained. This is substantially longer than the typical 15-year lifespan of most storage tank water heaters, which is significantly lower.

Tankless water heater disadvantages

Tankless heaters provide a number of advantages, but they also have certain disadvantages that you should be aware of before purchasing one.

Tankless water heaters are more expensive to purchase

The cost of a tank water heater is between $500 and $800 on average.When compared to the average tankless water heater, which may cost anywhere between $1,700 and $4,500, this is a significant savings (installation costs included).Although the lower running expenses associated with utilizing a tankless heater imply that you will almost certainly save money in the long run, the initial investment may be more than you can afford at this time.

Some tankless heaters can’t keep up with your hot water demand

If you plan to be utilizing a number of hot water devices at the same time, you must ensure that the flow rate of your tankless heater is sufficient for the task.Some tankless water heaters have a strict limit on the number of gallons per minute they can deliver.If your hot water use exceeds the capacity of your heater’s flow rate, some of your appliances or faucets will not be receiving the hot water you expect them to receive.

Tankless water heaters may be difficult to repair

Even though tankless water heaters require less maintenance, they are not completely maintenance-free.It will emit an audible beeping sound and display an error code if a problem is detected by a tankless water heater.Replaceable components will most likely not be available at your local hardware shop while you are without power.It is probable that replacement components will need to be obtained.

  • It is possible that you will be without hot water for several days as a result of this.
  • During a power outage, a backup battery can assist in keeping a tankless water heater operational.
  • If your problem number has nothing to do with electrical power, this may or may not be of use.
  • Backup batteries are useful in situations where the power is out due to a loss of electrical power caused by blackouts or bad weather conditions.
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Gas Tankless Water Heaters vs. Electric Tankless Water Heaters

Some significant differences exist between gas tankless units and electric tankless units, which are listed below.

Electric tankless units are more efficient

The energy efficiency of gas-powered tankless water heaters reaches a maximum of 85 percent. The majority of electric tankless heaters are at least 98 percent efficient, making them more energy-saving solutions for the environmentally conscious homeowner.

Electric tankless units are less expensive

  • Electric tankless heaters are often less costly than their gas-powered equivalents. They are also more efficient. Because the initial purchase is less expensive, and because installation is less difficult and consequently less expensive,
  • Maintenance is less complicated and, as a result, less expensive.
  • It is possible that electricity is a more cost-effective source of energy than natural gas, depending on your location. Furthermore, even if power is more expensive, the better efficiency rate may still result in an electric device being less expensive to operate.

Electric tankless units require less maintenance

  • Electric tankless heaters require two types of maintenance: preventative and corrective. Remove the intake filter screen and clean it.
  • Every 6-12 months, descale the interior of the house.

In addition to the two duties listed above, gas-powered tankless heaters require a slew of extra maintenance activities.If you have a gas-powered water heater, you should have a professional come out once a year to examine it from top to bottom, and you should do it immediately.The reason for this is that gas-powered units pose a number of safety dangers that are not present in electric units, and frequent inspections are required if you want to protect the safety of you and your family.

Electric tankless units have a longer service life

The service life of tankless units driven by electricity and gas is the final significant difference between the two types of units.Because electric heaters are simpler technologies than gas heaters, they often survive longer than gas heaters.In addition to making it easier to detect and repair problems, their simplicity also means that there are fewer operating elements that are at danger of failing.Unless you have a special requirement for a gas-powered tankless heater, an electric unit is likely to be the most cost-effective solution.

Disadvantages of electric tankless water heaters

Electric tankless water heaters are designed to boost the temperature of the water by only 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on the model.In order to achieve the necessary water temperature of 120 degrees, the water supply entering the heater would need to be roughly 60 degrees Fahrenheit.It is possible that electric tankless water heaters will be unable to raise water temperatures sufficiently to offer an adequate supply of hot water in colder areas.Electric tankless heaters also have a rather large electric power consumption in order for the water heater to heat up and sustain a continuous supply of hot water for an extended period of time.

  • Larger electric tankless water heaters can require up to three 220volt circuits, with one 220volt circuit per element in the case of the elements.
  • Electric tankless water heaters are better suited for smaller places where the water supply does not have to be transported long distances.
  • Installing an electric tankless water heater in a single bathroom, for example, will only supply the fixtures in that particular bathroom.
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How Long Does a Tankless Water Heater Last? – Lifespan FAQs

Has a tankless water heating system been installed in your home?A tankless water heater’s lifespan is something to consider whether you have recently acquired one or have made the decision to purchase one in the near future.In general, the tankless unit has a longer lifespan than a regular unit.They require very little upkeep, so you won’t have to invest a lot of time and effort into them.

  • On average, a tankless water heating device will last 15 to 20 years in your home.
  • Conventional water heaters have a lifespan of roughly ten years or less.
  • Tankless water heating devices have shown to be extremely effective and energy-efficient during the course of their existence.
  • It is imperative that you consider replacing your standard storage-type water heater with a tankless water heater if you are intending to improve your household appliances this year.
  • These devices have a high initial installation cost, but the advantages outweigh the initial investment in the long term.
  • You may simply operate this unit on your own because the maintenance needs for these devices are not difficult to understand.
  • Maintenance on these equipment should be performed on a regular basis.

Factors Affecting the Lifespan of Tankless Water Heater

It is possible for a tankless water heater to outlive its tank due to a variety of circumstances. Let’s go through the specifics of each element to have a better understanding of those variables as well as how we may extend the life of our tankless heating equipment.

Water Hardness

The water going through the pipes is heated by a heating element.If the water is hard, minerals will build up inside the system, leading it to become clogged and ineffective.When this mineral is deposited on the heating element, it has the potential to reduce the element’s water heating capability.The water will be lukewarm and not at all what you had hoped for.

  • Descalement is required on a yearly basis to remove the mineral accumulation.
  • A professional plumber or the property owner might take care of the yearly maintenance on his or her own.
  • Because this is not a particularly expensive operation, it is simple to enlist the assistance of a professional.


When used on a regular basis, a unit will last around 20 years.If you use a lot of water, the unit will last for a shorter period of time than normal.Whenever possible, it is recommended to put many units in a row in high-demand households.The ideal solution is to use a separate water heater for each faucet.

  • Due to the decreased weight, the water is able to reach the desired temperature more quickly and efficiently.
  • Tank-less water heaters are utilized for fixtures that require a lot of water, such as the shower, dishwashing sink, and laundry faucet, which are all separate.
  • The size and capacity of a unit should be determined by the number of people in your household and the demands they have.
  • Choosing the most appropriate unit is a difficult undertaking for which you must devote some time to learning about the fundamental components and their functions.

What makes Tankless Water Heaters Last Long?

The fact that there is no storage tank is the most significant advantage of a tankless water heater.Sediment accumulates on the heating element in the tank of a conventional water heating system.The silt buildup will eventually cause the tank to fail.As soon as the tank ruptures, the entire machine is rendered inoperable and must be replaced.

  • A tank-less water heater is likewise susceptible to mineral accumulation, but the consequences are not as severe as they are in the case of a standard tank-style water heater.
  • Furthermore, a tankless water heater is capable of operating even with a corroded heating element.
  • When cared for properly, a tankless water heater can live up to twice as long as a typical water heater unit.

What Can Cause a Shorter Lifespan for a Tankless Water Heating Unit

Tankless water heaters are a fantastic technological advancement.They are unquestionably quite useful and make a wonderful addition to your house.Their lifespan is expected to be greater than that of regular ones, and this is true when they are properly maintained.These tank-less water heaters, like any other machine, are not without flaws, and they can occasionally fail to perform properly.

  • A variety of things might have an impact on the water heater’s ability to perform properly.
  • They are stated after that, along with a full explanation, so that you can be certain that your unit is properly cared for.
  • This aids in the prevention of early damage and the extension of the appliance’s service life.


This is a serious concern for owners of traditional water heaters, however tank-less water heaters are not affected by this problem in the least.In addition, mineral build-up can occur in a tank-less water heating system.Tank-less water heaters are compact machines with a tiny footprint.They are composed of a large number of tiny electrical components.

  • If any element of the device leaks, it will have a significant impact on the electronic components.
  • If there is a considerable amount of leakage, the heating system itself may be destroyed, and you will be required to replace the entire unit in such case.
  • The problem may be more serious in the case of a gas-fueled water heater.
  • Excess mineral can accumulate on the surface of the gas burner itself.
  • As a result, the burner is unable to adequately heat the water.
  • Condensation has the potential to entirely or partially shut off the gas supply.
  • In this way, the accumulation of hard minerals will keep the water heater operational until it is replaced with a new one.
  • When a water heater is located outside in the case of an RV, it will wear out far sooner than it should.
  • Due to the deposition of dirt from the surroundings onto the internal components of the tankless water heater, this is the case.

Defective Installation

When compared to a typical water heating unit, the installation of a tankless water heating unit is significantly more complicated.The installation of tankless water heaters, whether gas or electric, is a complicated operation.The installation procedure will be twice as expensive as it would be for a regular water storage tank.Some customers choose to install the unit themselves as a result of the greater cost of installation in this case.

  • This may result in an incorrect installation of the product.
  • A water heater that has not been installed appropriately can experience a variety of major problems.
  • The most typical problem with a gas-fueled tankless water heater is a faulty gas supply line connection, which can occur in a variety of situations.
  • Severe problems, such as gas leaking, can arise.
  • Those gas vapours have the potential to ignite when they come into touch with the ignition flame, causing widespread devastation.
  • If you have installed an electric water heating unit, make sure that the electric supply is efficient enough to provide the machine with the power it requires to function properly.
  • In the event that electricity is insufficient to meet demand, a short circuit may occur, resulting in the ignition of neighboring electrical equipment.
  • For all of these potentially disastrous possibilities to be avoided, it is critical that the unit is installed correctly by a licensed professional plumber.
  • The method will be expensive in the short term, but it will have a low operating cost in the long run.

Repair Expense

  • When a tankless water heater is in operation, electronic components are utilized, making the process more complex. When these components are broken, they are quite expensive to restore. These electrical components increase the efficiency of your device, but any damage to them can place a pressure on your financial situation. If a problem emerges because the item was not installed by a licensed plumber, the manufacturer will not give a guarantee. In this scenario, you will be required to spend a significant amount of money on the repair of your tankless water heater on your own time and expense. You may also be interested in: Best Point-of-Use Tankless Water Heaters
  • Tankless Water Heater Maintenance Tips
  • How Much Electricity Does a Tankless Water Heater Consume
  • and Best Tankless Water Heaters.

Tips to Increase the Life of a Tankless Water Heating Unit

Do you want the device to last as long as possible? When purchasing a high-priced unit, the goal is to extend the life of the device as much as possible. Putting in the effort to ensure that your water heating equipment lasts for 20 years will pay you in the end.

Descaling Regularly

Mineral build-up is the most prevalent problem with water heaters, therefore descale your device on a regular basis to keep this from occurring.Descaling is a straightforward procedure that may be completed in a short period of time.Descaling can be accomplished using common household items such as vinegar, or a descaling kit can be purchased to make the process easier.Another option is to install a water softener at the water supply line’s input.

  • This eliminates all of the minerals from the water, resulting in water that is free of calcium and other minerals that might create a buildup on the heating element when it reaches the distribution pipes.

Descaling Process

  • If you wish to undertake this work on your own, we’ve detailed all of the stages below to make it easier for you to follow along with it. Shut down your water heater’s water, gas, and electricity supplies
  • One hose should be connected to the input valve and pump. Connection of the second hose to the output valve and placement of the other end in a bucket
  • In a bucket, fill it halfway with descaling solution and set the pump inside
  • Turn on the hot water valve and the pump for 45 minutes after opening the hot water valve.
  • Start by turning on the cold water valve and filling the bucket with cold water.
  • Disconnect the hose from the other end as well. Make all of the connections again and re-connect the gas, water, and electric supplies. The device will restart and function as it did previously. Recent Posts by the Author

I’ve been working in the water heater and plumbing industries for several years. Providing relevant information regarding tankless water heaters is my goal, and I’m here to assist my readers in doing so. Adam’s most recent blog entries (see all)

How Long Do Tankless Water Heaters Last?

It is necessary to monitor the water heater closely in order to prevent receiving unexpected and frequently unpleasant dosages of cold water. The fact that you should be able to predict the outflow rate of the water from the tank is of special relevance to you. Our purpose in these talks is to provide you with the information you need to achieve just that.

See also:  How Deep Can A Hand Pump Draw Water?

How Long Do Tankless Water Heaters Last?

Before we can get into the specifics of how long a tankless water heater will survive, we must first examine the elements that influence its lifespan. In order to ensure long-term and general durability of the tanks, the following criteria must be taken into consideration:

Water Quality

The quality of the water is by far the most important factor in determining the overall lifespan of the water storage tank.Unlike clean water, muddy, brackish, or salty water has the tendency to corrode tanks far more quickly than pure water.This is due to the high concentrations of pollutants in the water, which dissolve when exposed to sunlight.They have a tendency to wear down the structural components of the tanks in such a way that they cause some harm to the tanks’ structural components.

  • In addition, they impose greater levels of electrical energy consumption on the public.

Frequency of Usage

The frequency with which you utilize your water tanks has an impact on their lifetime as well.It is almost certain that a tank that is used on a regular basis will deteriorate considerably more quickly than a tank that is only used once in awhile.If you intend to make excellent use of your tank for an extended period of time, you should consider utilizing it in a moderate manner.You will do the least amount of harm to the structures and ensure their long-term usage in this manner.

Maintenance and Cleanliness

Another solid strategy to extend the life of a water tank, in addition to moderate use, is to keep it clean and maintain it regularly.By cleaning it on a regular basis, you can ensure that all pollutants are removed and the performance is improved.Because of lower levels of contaminants, there are fewer instances of corrosion, which in turn slows the rate at which materials deteriorate.As a result, tanks that have been washed tend to endure longer than tanks that have not been.

Structural Makeup

The kind of materials that are employed in the construction of the tank also have an impact on its overall lifetime.Those composed of durable materials such as stainless steel and aluminum tend to survive longer since they are more resistant to corrosion and wear over time.However, those that are made of plastic or variants of plastic tend to have a shorter lifespan than those that are made of metal or other durable materials.It is in your best interests to choose the one that is most likely to withstand the test of time, rather than the other way around.

Climate and Weather Patterns

Some weather patterns have been seen to have a negative influence on the lifetime of water heaters, according to the research.Climates with a high degree of variability are the most significant factors to the premature aging of these equipment.This is due to the fact that when substances expand and contract on their own, they are more likely to produce fractures and leaks.If and when they continue to spread unchecked, they have a tendency to wear down the buildings in such a way that they become too old and out of date too quickly.

Year of Manufacture/Serial Number

Finally, the year in which the water heater was manufactured is useful information.In the serial number that is displayed on the product, this information is stored securely.A typical serial number begins with a letter and is followed by a series of numerals to form the number.The letter signifies the month of manufacturing.

  • For instance ‘A’ for January, ‘B’ for February and ‘C’ for March and so on.
  • The following numbers, on the other hand, denote the year in which the item was manufactured.
  • BY skimming the serial number, you will be able to identify when the tank was constructed and when it will likely become outdated.


A brand new and original tankless water heater should last you for around 20 years when all aspects are taken into consideration.It is possible to prolong its lifespan to 25-30 years if the broken parts and components are changed on a regular basis.The storage tank, on the other hand, has a lifespan of just 10-15 years, which is in stark contrast to the duration we have specified.You now have all of the knowledge you need to keep your tanks in optimal operating condition.

  • You haven’t, have you?
  • Go ahead and make the most of yours for the betterment of yourself!

How Long Should Your Tankless Water Heater Last For?

How long will a tankless water heater last is one of the most often asked questions by consumers concerning tankless water heaters.Depending on how well it is maintained and operated, a tankless water heater can last anywhere between 15 and 20 years.A typical tank water heater, on the other hand, has a functional life of 10 years or less on average.What is the operation of tankless water heaters?

  • Tankless water heaters heat water only when it is required.
  • When you switch on a hot water faucet, the water from the tankless unit will begin to flow through the faucet.
  • Because of this, the heating components will be activated, rapidly heating the water.
  • The water that comes out of your faucet will be hot in a very short period of time.
  • A tank water heater, on the other hand, stores gallons of heated water in preparation of future hot water need.
  • The constant boiling and reheating of water is inefficient and might result in an increase in your energy expenditures over time.
  • Why Do Tankless Water Heaters Have a Longer Lifespan than Traditional Water Heaters?
  • The tank itself is the most common point of failure in a standard water heater.
  • During the heating process, minerals in the water separate and float to the bottom of your tank, where they adhere to the heating components and cause them to malfunction.
  • Because of this, silt accumulates in the tank body, which might lead to a failure of the tank body.
  • Once the tank has ruptured, the complete water heater must be replaced with a new one.
  • A tankless heater must still struggle with the corrosion that is induced by the presence of water.
  1. It, on the other hand, does not run the danger of tank failure.
  2. An efficient tankless water heater may last up to twice as long as a conventional tank water heater when properly maintained.
  3. Our mission at Sobieski Services, Inc.
  4. is to assist our clients in the states of Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Jersey in becoming more knowledgeable about energy and home comfort concerns.
  5. We want people to save money while also living in houses that are healthier and more comfortable.

wwarby through Compfight cc is the photographer for this image.

Unsure if it’s time to replace the water heater? Here are some signs for homeowners to know if they should replace their heater.

Image courtesy of istockphoto.com

Q: I moved into my home several years ago, and we haven’t changed the hot water heater in that time. How do I know when to replace the water heater?

A: For the majority of households, having hot, running water is a luxury they don’t take for granted.In the average household, warm water is used up to 20 times per day by the average individual.Homeowners, on the other hand, should always be proactive in the maintenance of their water heaters.But when is it time to completely replace the water heater?

  • The manufacturer’s recommended lifespan for a typical water heater is between eight and twelve years, depending on the model.
  • An energy-efficient tankless water heater can survive for up to 20 years before needing to be replaced.
  • Regardless of the type of water heater that is placed, it will corrode with time.
  • It is critical to keep an eye out for any of the difficulties listed below, especially if the water heater is in the second half of its lifespan.
  • Is it necessary to replace your water heater?
  • That is something a highly regarded local professional can handle for you.
  • Get free, no-obligation quotes from professionals in your area.
  • +

The water looks cloudy, sandy, or rusty.

Image courtesy of istockphoto.com Producing discolored water is a typical issue with older water heaters, which may be frustrating.There are a variety of reasons why this might happen, and it is possible that the water heater does not need to be replaced.When corrosion occurs, rust accumulates and has the potential to seep into the water supply.As a result, the water that comes out of the faucets is discolored.

  • It is recommended that homeowners run cold tap water for a few minutes before drawing any judgments regarding their water heater.
  • If the water in that container is likewise rusty, it is possible that the problem is with the pipes rather than the heater.
  • If it is not rusted, it is possible that it is time to replace the water heater.
  • It is possible that the water will seem hazy or sandy at times due to a buildup of particles in the heater tank.
  • By emptying and cleaning up the sediment in the tank, homeowners may resolve this problem.
  • Water that is sandy or hazy after it has been heated, however, requires replacement of the heater.

You’re not getting enough (or any) hot water, but your heating bill has gone up.

The most obvious reason to replace your hot water heater is a lack of warm water entering into your home through your faucets.This can result in the water not being as hot, the intervals of hot water not lasting as long, or the lack of any hot water at all, depending on the situation.If your heating expense is increasing at the same time, the situation becomes much worse.Is your water heater showing signs of wear and tear?

  • It can be replaced with a highly rated professional in your area.
  • Get no-obligation estimates from local specialists who are willing to work for free.
  • + It is possible that there is no or insufficient hot water due to a problem with the electrical thermostat.
  • The thermostat should be set between 120 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit on average in a house.
  • The heater does not need to be replaced if the thermostat has been reset and the hot water has been restored after that.
  • A faulty heating element within the water heater may also be to blame for a lack of hot water in the bathroom.
  • A plumber can simply resolve this problem, obtain the necessary parts, and have the heating system up and running in a matter of hours.
  • In certain circumstances, however, the parts needed to repair or replace an older water heater may not be easily accessible, and in others, it may be preferable to just replace the entire system.
  • Image courtesy of istockphoto.com

The water heater is making strange noises.

It is possible that as water heaters age, the rumbling noises they generate when heating water will get louder.This can be caused by a variety of factors, some of which are more serious indicators that the heater should be replaced.As previously stated, sediment can accumulate at the bottom of the tank over time due to evaporation.The sound of hardened silt hitting on the tank’s walls is the source of the noise created by sediment buildup.

  • If the sediment is not flushed out, it will harden and become thicker along the floor, eventually causing the water heater to break down.
  • This will reduce the efficiency of the heater and speed up the decomposition of the tank’s inside.
  • If a homeowner notices any strange noises coming from their water heater, they should investigate the cause of the disturbance.
  • Even if it is not yet time to replace your water heater, taking action as soon as possible will help you avoid long-term damage and extend the life of your heater.
  • Are you able to identify the red flags?
  • A highly rated local professional can decide whether or not your water heater needs to be repaired or replaced.
  • Get free, no-obligation quotes from professionals in your area.
  • +

You’ve noticed the water heater is leaking.

When they reach the end of their useful life, hot water heaters have a tendency to leak around the bottom of the tank.The homeowner may suffer from little to substantial property damage as a result of this.If you notice a leak in your water heater tank, it may be time to replace it.Leaks are typically produced by the expansion of metal in the tank, which causes the tank to rupture.

  • This type of expansion occurs as a result of the numerous heating cycles that occur over the tank’s lifetime.
  • In the event of a fracture caused by this expansion, water may flow out at the peak of each heating cycle.
  • Sometimes the leak is mild enough that it may be repaired, but this simply serves to postpone the final replacement.
  • Image courtesy of istockphoto.com

You’ve called in multiple repairs in recent years.

Water heaters may be delicate, and they may require regular repairs as a result.A homeowner who finds themselves hiring a plumber for a hot water heater repair on a regular basis may want to consider replacing the unit completely.Water heaters are becoming increasingly advanced with each passing year.Depending on the type of heater selected, it might endure for a longer period of time and perhaps give some energy efficiency in terms of power costs.

  • Is it necessary to replace your water heater?
  • That is something a highly regarded local professional can handle for you.
  • Get free, no-obligation quotes from professionals in your area.
  • +

Your water heater is old, or you’re not sure when it was last replaced.

When a person purchases a home, it is common for the water heater to have been installed some years before.Without any paperwork from the previous owner, it can be difficult to determine how old a water heater is and when it needs to be upgraded or replaced.Fortunately, the serial number on the water heater is often stamped with the date of manufacture.In most circumstances, the first letter of the serial number will reflect the month in which the item was created, with ″A″ representing January and progressing all the way to ″L″ representing December.

  • The year it was created will be indicated by the next two numbers.
  • Example: If the serial number begins with ″C19,″ the water heater was constructed in March 2019, according to the manufacturer.
  • Even if none of the concerns listed above are present, if a water heater is more than ten years old, the homeowner should get it serviced by a professional.
  • A professional plumber should be hired so that they can inspect the heater and determine whether or not there are any problems with it.
  • They can also provide their expert advice on when the heater should be replaced.
  • Consult with a professional Identify qualified plumbing professionals in your area and receive free, no-obligation estimates for your plumbing project.
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