You are applying for a new home insurance policy, and the insurer has informed you that the age of your water heater poses a problem. Since it is over 10 or 12 years old, the insurer refuses to cover your appliance. Yet, you know many people who own a water heater that is over 15 years old and is still operating properly. Why such a large disparity?
According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), 50% of home insurance claims are due to water damage, and the culprit is often the water heater. Thus, it is important to inspect your appliance’s overall condition and maintain it when required.
Basically, not all water heaters are created equal. Some models are manufactured overseas, as in Asia for example and may seem like a cheaper alternative. However, you must know that their construction does not meet the same quality standards as Québec’s and their warranty period is usually shorter. These two factors may force you to replace your water heater earlier than expected. Choose a water heater made in Québec instead, as those offered by HydroSolution. Not only will you get a higher-quality and more reliable appliance, but you will also get the best part warranties and customer service.
The Life Expectancy of Water Heaters: Other Factors to Consider
- Water Quality: This is the factor that will most influence your water heater’s life expectancy. If your appliance is electric and your water supply comes from a municipal water system that provides good quality water, the accumulation of sediment deposits will be reduced and your water heater will need little specific maintenance.
- Maintenance: If your water supply comes from a well, or if you live in an area where the water contains high concentrations of minerals, regular maintenance (such as draining your water heater, for example) is then recommended to ensure proper operation and extend the life of your water heater.
- The Quality of the Installation: You may be tempted to install your water heater yourself or call on your friends and family, but the installation must comply with strict electrical and plumbing standards to remain covered. The manufacturer may even choose to void its warranty in the case of improper installation. An installation carried out by a professional reduces the risk of water heater damage.
What Are the Water Heater’s Aging Signs?
- The Overall Temperature of the Water: Does your water seem less hot than usual?
- The Amount of Hot Water: Are you getting less hot water than usual when taking your shower or when filling the bath?
- The Colour of the Hot Water: Does your hot water seem a little rusty or are your clothes stained when they come out of the washing machine?
- The Condition of the Tank: Finally, is there rust at the base of your tank or condensation on the outside wall of your water heater?
THESE SIGNS DO NOT LIE. NOW IS THE TIME TO REPLACE YOUR WATER HEATER.
How Can You Extend the Life of Your Water Heater? Tips and Tricks
- Replacing the Sacrificial Anode: If your water contains high concentrations of iron, acid or any other type of mineral particles, replacing the sacrificial anode periodically is an excellent investment. For a few dozen dollars, a new anode can add several years to your water heater’s life.
- Getting a Water Softener and Draining Your Water Heater Regularly: Still, only if your water is hard, installing a water softener would be a good idea to reduce its mineral content. Combine this with draining your water heater regularly, and you will put the odds in your favour to extend the life of your water heater.
- Operating the Safety Valve Manually: This valve, also called the temperature and pressure relief valve, is designed to discharge water to release any excess pressure in the tank. Operating it manually allows you to eliminate tartar or limescale build-up. It is simple, quick and should be done once a year.
REGARDLESS OF YOUR SITUATION, IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT THE AGE OR THE CONDITION OF YOUR WATER HEATER, CALL US. WE ARE HERE TO HELP!
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