Fall is the best time of year to replace an older water heater, especially if it is a unit that is showing its age. A couple things to think about if your water heater is over eight years old. Those are efficiency and reliability.
Water Heater Efficiency
Efficiency is a measurement of how well your water heater does its job and how much it costs you for your water heater to do its job. As units begin to age they begin to shed efficiency. It starts with a slight increase in your monthly gas or electric bill and then the cost begins to add up quicker. Sometimes all that needs to be done to correct an inefficient hot water heater is a service call. The burners sometimes become dirty, and just a good cleaning will help correct the problem. Sometimes there is a very slow leak that happens right over the burner, and that will cause the flame to go out or burn lower. You may or may not see water. If that is the case, your water heater needs to be replaced. Some units may only need a water tank replacement. Your plumber in Minneapolis can help show you all of your options.
An efficient water heater does its job cheaply and as often as you need it too. There are Energy Star models that are designed to run efficiently and cost less to do the same amount of work that your current water heater does. Another good option is a tankless water heater. These are smaller units that heat water instantly as you need it. They are sometimes referred to as on-demand water heaters. Larger homes usually need to install two units. One for bathing and one for appliances such as a washer or dishwasher. You can also install another tanked water heater too.
A plumber in Minneapolis can help you save energy by installing a water heater blanket. These special insulation blankets fit snuggly around the water heater and help it to retain heat. When the blanket is installed the water heater does not need to heat the water as often. That is how they help you reduce your gas bill and boost efficiency. Tankless water heaters are much more energy efficient than are water heaters with tanks in them. They also last longer then do water heaters with tanks.
Reliability and Water Heaters
Not much is worse than getting a cold shower because the water heater has gone out again. Anytime your water heater fails to heat up the water in its tank you should have a service call. The most common reason that the pilot light goes out is due to either a slow leak or dirt on the burner. When dirt or rust fall on the burner they cause the burner to produce a weaker flame which can blow out with the slightest of drafts. Tanked water heaters often develop pin-hole leaks above the burner and periodically a drop of water will be enough to dampen the flame causing it to be extinguished. That is a cause for a water heater replacement. However, just because you have a pilot light that goes out does not mean your water heater needs to be replaced. It may only need to be cleaned.
If you have an older water heater, do yourself a favor and have P&D Mechanical inspect it. It is much better to have the unit replaced now rather than in the middle of winter. The inspection may determine that the unit simply needs to be cleaned. Either way, Call P&D Mechanical for all of your plumbing needs. We are experts in tank and tankless water heaters.
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