When your water heater stops working, you may find yourself in a tough spot. The question of whether to repair or replace it can be a tricky one. On the one hand, you may be hesitant to spend money on a new water heater. But on the other hand, you don’t want to get stuck in a costly cycle of repairs. To determine if water heater repair in Conway, SC is worth it, consider the following factors.
Age of the Water Heater
According to Consumer Reports, a tank water heater can last for around ten years, whereas a tankless water heater can last for twenty years or more. If your water heater is at the end of its life, then water heater repair may not be the most cost-effective option. Just as you wouldn’t install a brand-new engine in an old car, you shouldn’t invest in expensive repairs for a water heater that is nearing the end of its life. However, if your water heater is relatively new (and you have had no complaints about it), you may get it fixed rather than replace it.
Water Heating Bills
Have you reached a point where you have to turn the shower knob further and further to get the same water temperature you had gotten used to? This means your water heater is no longer as energy-efficient as it once was and thus needs to work harder to get the same results, leading to higher energy bills.
Your water heater accounts for 14% of your total energy expenditure, so inefficiency is not something you can afford to overlook. Therefore, if your water heater is old and no longer as energy-efficient as it once was, water heater repair is not worth it.
There may have been some changes in your life since your water heater was installed. How much hot water are you currently using? More people in your household means more people washing clothes, taking showers, and flushing toilets, so you may need a water heater with a bigger tank. On the other hand, if everyone has moved out, you may need one with a smaller tank.
Were you happy with your water heater before the issue that caused the repair vs. replacement dilemma? How quickly did your water heat up, and was there enough hot water for everyone? If you’ve reached the point where you have to wait several minutes for the water to get hot before you can use it, or if you have to schedule showers so everyone can use hot water, then water heater repair may not be worth it.
Frequency of Repairs
Eventually, even minor repairs add up. The general rule of thumb is if the repair cost is more than half of what a new water heater would cost, it’s probably preferable to get a new one. This will give you financial security and peace of mind. Constant maintenance isn’t just an annoyance; it could be a precursor to a more serious issue that could cost you a lot of money in the future.
However, even if the cost of repairs does not add up to half the price of a new water heater, you should consider the age of your water heater and the frequency of repairs. How frequently has your water heater needed repairs in the past two years? Is it nearing the end of its life? If that’s the case, water heater repair may not be worthwhile.
Most water heaters have a 6- to 10-year manufacturer’s warranty that includes the cost of replacing the tank if it cracks or leaks during that time. However, this warranty comes with a few caveats. The first caveat is that for the warranty to be valid, the need for replacement or repair must have arisen from a manufacturer’s defect.
The second proviso is that, as you may have seen, these warranties are all shorter than the typical lifespan of a water heater. Hence, the period in which problems arise is significant. The cost will be low if the warranty is still valid, making water heater repair worth it. However, if the warranty is no longer valid, you should consider other factors, such as the system’s age and the recommended repairs.
Repair vs. Replacement
Cost is usually the deciding factor when considering whether to repair or replace your water heater. If the repair cost exceeds 50% of the replacement cost and the water heater is nearing the end of its life, a repair is not worth it. However, you should consider more than just the cost of repair or replacement. Below are some factors you should consider when it comes to repair costs:
- How much will the actual repair cost?
- If you undertake the repairs, how long do you think the water heater will last after that? Repairing your water heater may not be worth it if it only extends the life of your water heater by one or two years
- Does the repair company offer a warranty for any replaced components?
Are you thinking about getting water heater repair? Consider the following costs:
- What will the price tag be for a brand-new water heater? What is the installation cost?
- What about maintenance and operating costs? This will help you determine if water heater replacement is worth it.
Extending Your Heater’s Lifespan
You can avoid the repair/replace dilemma by proactively caring for your water heater. For example, flushing your water heater once a year (which you can do yourself using draining methods) helps prevent severe gunk buildup. Consider examining your unit’s anode rod annually, as it can accumulate corrosion and deteriorate with time.
Call Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Myrtle Beach and Get Your Water Heater Up and Running
Benjamin Franklin Plumbing of Myrtle Beach has extensive experience in water heater repair and replacement in Conway, SC. If you decide to replace instead of repair, we also provide a large selection of new water heaters. Our professional plumbers are here to assist you in any way they can, whether you know exactly what you need or would like some guidance in making the best possible choice. Call us at 843-894-0905 or contact us online if you need water heater repair in Conway, SC.