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8 worst mistakes when replacing a water heater

Replacing a water heater is typically an easy process, but it can quickly go south if the homeowner doesn’t take precautions. This blog post will cover some of the worst mistakes that homeowners make when replacing their water heaters and how to avoid them. 

One of the most common water heater issues is leakage. If water stains appears around the water heater it means you have some water leakage and water damage (usually mold and mildew) and your water heater needs to be replaced. Another common issue is when the water gets hot, but there is no pressure in the water lines. This usually happens due to sediment and calcium buildup in water lines; water heater also needs to be replaced. Sometimes water has a bad smell and the water smells like rotten eggs or sewer gas, this is usually caused by bacteria inside the water heater, which means you have to replace it as soon as possible before it starts growing hazardous chemicals inside the water heater.

In order to replace a water heater, a person needs to be handy and have previous water heating experience. If water heater is not properly handled, it can cause damage to the home’s structure and you will need to hire a pro who charges around $400 – $500 just to remove the water heater. Usually water heaters need replacing when they get older than 25 years.

“Ok, so water heater is old and needs replacing, but what do I need to do exactly?”

Here are the most common water heater replacement mistakes that could cost you money or water damage. 

1. You open water heater without turning off power supply! Why it’s wrong: Pressure relief valve releases water into the water lines and water heater, water will spray everywhere. It costs you water damage and water cleanup costs!

2. You do not purchase an energy efficient water heater How it’s wrong: There is a misconception that any water heater will save you money on gas because it uses less fuel than your old water heater. But this is not true because water heaters with water pressure-reducing valves will restrict water flow to water heater, reducing water temperature and limiting hot water production. Thus you will need longer showers or you have to run water in the sink just to get warm water. This is not good for your family time management skills, you will need more time for everything!

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If water pressure in your water heater is reduced, water will not be able to travel up water lines which results in low water pressure throughout the house. This also creates more problems for you, because now water distribution equipment (aka sprinklers) need more water pressure than usual, and if water pressure is below 40 psi (or 2 bars or kg/cm2), some of water sprinklers will not work properly, which means water damage to your home!

3. You do not purchase a water heater with water temperature setting How it’s wrong: Some water heaters do not have water temperature settings and this is by design; they usually switch water heating system on and off constantly during water heater operation. This can cause burns because water will be really hot while water heater is on, then water will get cold when water heating system turns off. If water heater has water temperature settings it’s the best option for you!

4. You purchase a water heater with water temperature setting but you do not turn up water temp How it’s wrong: When purchasing an electric water heater with water temperature settings, you need to remember that water at water heater needs to be hotter than usual water coming from your water heater. If water is not hot enough for your family, simply turn up water temp. But make sure you do not turn it up too much because if water gets too hot it can create scalding hazard.

5. You purchase water heater with water temperature settings but you do not clean water lines How it’s wrong: I know it is very hard to understand water lines and water valves, so let me explain.

Your water pipes are usually made of metal or plastic and they get dirty over time because of water sediment and calcium deposits. If water has a lot of water sediment and calcium, water will not go through water pipes smoothly and water pressure decreases or water stops flowing. So you need to clean water lines regularly! How often should you do it? I suggest at least once a year, more if your home is getting older than 10 years. When cleaning water lines, water flow gets restricted by buildup inside water lines, water may not reach water heater if water heater is located far away from water main. This can result in water damage to your home, especially basement!

6. You do not purchase water heater with small water holding capacity How it’s wrong: Replacing old water heater with new one that does not provide enough hot water for your family. This water heater can be water heater with large water temperature settings, water heater without water temperature settings, water heater with pressure-reducing valve or water heater with non-adjustable water temperature setting. With all these things you will need to take longer showers or run more hot water in the sink just to get hot enough water!

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7. You do not purchase water heater with large water holding capacity How it’s wrong: Small water heater is not suitable for your family if you have a lot of people in your house. In this case you need to purchase water heater with larger water heating capacity. However, water heaters with higher water heating capacities will be expensive.

8. You remove water heater with water temperature settings completely How it’s wrong: When you replace water heater, water heater with water temperature settings can greatly increase your water heating efficiency.

Conclusion:  We’ve talked about the 8 worst mistakes that can happen when replacing a water heater, and you should know what to avoid. If you feel like your current water heater is on its last leg or if you’re in need of one for your home, contact us All Star Plumbing and Restoration. Our team has been providing these services since 1990 so we have plenty of knowledge when it comes to this topic. Whether you want an expert opinion before purchasing anything, are looking to purchase a new unit yourself with our help, or want someone else to do all the work for you-we have packages available that will suit any budget!

Author Bio:- Laura Harnes 

Laura is a marketing manager at All Star Plumbing & Restoration. With years of experience in the plumbing industry, she loves to create awareness about the causes, problems, and repair solutions of water damage and slab leak. She shares expert tips to lower utility bills and keep your AC, heater, and other appliances in optimum condition leading to longer lifespan.

Check all the recent articles and know everything about water damage Repair, slab leak repair, tools to remove clogging, and HVAC appliances installation, maintenance, and repair.



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