20 year old hot water heater


  #1  
Old 02-19-04, 08:53 AM
jdbauer
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20 year old hot water heater

I have a hot water heater that has 'Oct 83' Printed on it. I am assuming that its 20 years old. Recently I have been running out of hot water more and more often. Every Spring I drain the tank and try to remove any junk at the bottom. Do you think I should have it serviced or should I just buy a new one? What brands should I look for / stay away from. I wonder if they make the like they used to? If I goto the store and buy another one is it going to last for another 20 years? What size tank would you reccomend for 2 people who like to take long hot showers?

Thanks!
 
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Old 02-19-04, 11:35 AM
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Hello: jdbauer. Welcome into my Gas Appliances topic.

After twenty years of service, which is far more than most tanks last, replacing the existing one is highly suggested. New tanks are far more energy efficent.

How long the new one lasts or will last, is not possible to determine. 10 years is the normal life expectency. After that time frame, all is borrowed time above the normal service life.

Buy any brand which is popular in your area and has a 10 year warranty. Most are all built by the few builders left and lables of many brands are attached. Warranty counts more, not brand.

Never replace and existing tank with one of less capacity than the existing one. Bad idea. One size larger, if needed and there is space for it, is a better choice than smaller.

Most likely reason for running out of hot water is the internal dip tube is deteriorated allowing cold water to enter across the tank and not just to the bottom. Replacement of the dip tube in the current tank would be wasteful based on it's age.

Shop wisely. Every question asked is always going to be subjected to personal opinions and sales persons desire to sell you what makes them the most profits,etc. Warranties count.
 
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Old 02-19-04, 12:22 PM
jdbauer
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Thanks for the post. I am sure your info will be very helpful. I am getting a feeling for how important the warranty is.... My question is if I have a 10 year warranty and it goes out after 5 years how do the manufacturs fix it. Do they prorate it? Do they repair it? Does the store take care of it. This is my first home so this is all new to me.
 
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Old 02-19-04, 12:39 PM
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Hi: jdbauer

Depending on the problem, the plumber decides how to fix. Internal leaks tanks are pro rated. Parts are often replaced.

Do not assume the store will provide any after sales services. The mfg has plumbers and dealers which provide service after the sale. Which is why buying from large chain stores may not be the best choice. Unless there is a plumber dealer in your area.

My standard quote, as it pertains to consumer purchases:

"Alway's consider the warranties and future service needs for any major appliances you're considering to purchase. Price isn't always the best guide for long term appliance investments."

I think that says it all...

Good Luck
Sharp Advice
 
 

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