Water Heater Replacement
Are you running out of cold water more frequently? Is your water tank dotted with rust spots? If so, it might be time to look into replacing it. Like all plumbing equipment, water heaters eventually wear out. When that happens, you’re left with two choices. First, you can try to live without one, subsisting on cold showers and shivering hands. Or, if you live in the Bellingham area, you can give the plumbing experts at LaVergne's Plumbing and Heating a call.
To learn if a new water heater replacement is in your future—and things you can do to prolong your investment—read on.
Schedule water heater installation in Bellingham by calling 360-685-8098
Signs It’s Time to Replace Your Water Heater
At LaVergne's Plumbing and Heating, we understand how confusing the choice between repair and replacement can be. A lot of the time, you might not even know there’s a problem with your water heater. To make it easier to determine if a new water heater is on the horizon, we’ve assembled a list to help you assess your need:
- Your Unit is Over a Decade Old: Was your water heater in place when you moved in? Was it there to watch your kids grow up? If it’s pushing double digits, replacing the unit is often more economically advised than repairing it. At that age, trying to band-aid the problem is like trying to save the Titanic with duct tape.
- Rusty Water: What color is your water when you first turn it on? If it’s an ugly, rusty red, that’s a sign your unit may soon need replacement. This sediment builds up in improperly cleaned units and can signal both tank degradation and bacteria growth.
- No Hot Water: You turn on your hot water and get cold water that never warms up. Hopefully, you check before you step into the shower. This unpleasant scenario is the most obvious sign that something’s amiss with your water heater. Check the circuit breaker and pilot light. If neither help, give LaVergne's Plumbing and Heating a call for a free water heater quote.
- Odd Smells: Take a sip from a glass of tap water. What does it taste like? Smell like? If there’s a metallic tinge to it, that’s a sign that your water heater’s tank is breaking down and impacting your water supply.
- Thermostat Issues: Is the water from your tank warm, but not hot? Are you sure it’s set to at least 120°F (49°C)? If neither helps, reach out to us for prompt service and a potential replacement quote. The inability to reach the target temperature is a telltale sign that your heating element is burning out.
- Odd Noises: Are loud cracks and popping noises keeping you up at night? These occur when sediment build-up starts impacting the heating elements and water tank. While this can sometimes be solved with cleaning, it can also be a good time to get a quote on replacing the unit.
- Frequent Repairs: Are you and our plumbers on a first-name basis? Have we been out to your house more than twice this year? This is a sign that your major water heater components are breaking down. In cases like this, installing a new unit is often more economical than propping a dying one up.
- Leaks: Leaks are never a good sign. If you see water puddling around your unit, it’s a good sign that the seals on the tank have failed. Replacing the unit—perhaps with a tankless model—is typically the best solution.
Why a Professional Water Heater Installation is Vital
If you’re thinking about installing your new water heater yourself, you might want to reconsider. It’s not an easy project, and the consequences of messing up can be deadly. You wouldn’t represent yourself in court or try to do your own brain surgery. And, you shouldn’t install your own water heater either. Below are a few risks to taking a DIY solution to water heater replacement:
- Explosive Elements in Play: Most water heaters in Washington are powered by natural gas. This gas is extremely flammable, and a mistake during installation can spark an explosion, harming yourself and your property. Is the few hundred dollars you’ll save putting the unit in yourself worth the risk?
- Carbon Monoxide Poisoning: An improperly vented water heater can give off carbon monoxide at dangerous levels. Because this deadly gas is odorless, if it’s building up in your home, you won’t be aware. A true plumbing professional knows how to properly vent your unit to protect you and your family.
- Poorly Matched Units: The people who sell water heaters at your local hardware store aren’t likely to be product experts. They have the best intentions, but they might recommend a unit that’s too big or too small. The only way to ensure you have a unit that suits your family’s needs is to let a team of plumbing or HVAC experts tackle the installation.
- Home Resale Issues: When the time comes to sell your home, that DIY water heater installation might come back to bite you. You’ll have to pay to have it permitted and inspected. If it fails inspection, you’ll be stuck paying someone to fix your errors. When you’re trying to move, that stress is the last thing you need.
- No Peace of Mind: If something goes wrong in the first couple of years after a DIY water heater installation, you’ll be stuck paying for the repairs yourself. When you work with a professional team—like the one at LaVergne's Plumbing and Heating—you can rest easy knowing our work is warrantied and guaranteed.
At the end of the day, the risk to you and your family aren’t worth it. Go the stress-free route and let a professional handle your new water heater installation in Bellingham.
The Best Way to Protect Your Water Heater Investment
Ensuring your water heater operates safely is important. These units have numerous safety devices that require annual testing. The only way to confirm they are operating as intended is to schedule an annual water heater inspection. These yearly visits do more than guarantee your home’s safety, however.
Water heater maintenance also keeps your unit running efficiently. During regular operation, calcium and other minerals build up in your system. These sink to the bottom of the unit, serving as a barrier between the heating element and the tank. This makes it harder to produce hot water and can lead to weak spots in your tank. During our checks, our technicians will flush your water heater, freeing it from clogging sediment buildup.
Skipping recommended maintenance visits can drastically decrease your system’s lifespan. While visiting your home, our plumber can spot minor issues before they lead to a problem that requires whole system replacement. They will also test all components for any signs of weakness or misfire. When done, they’ll report these findings back to you.
Invest in a quick tune-up on your water heater to protect the investment you made in it. Call 360-685-8098 to learn more about our water heater maintenance programs.
When it Comes to Water Heater Installation from Bellingham to Mount Vernon to Anacortes Area, Trust Our Plumbers