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Frequently asked questions about water heater installation & replacement companies

Can a homeowner install a water heater?

While it may be easy to purchase a new water heater, homeowners are advised to hire a licensed plumber to install it. First, the old water heater needs to be disconnected and safely disposed of. Next, the new water heater which may run on gas, electricity, or propane needs to be safely connected. Installing a water heater can pose a host of hazards. A qualified, licensed professional will know how to work safely with each of these power sources. A pro will know that in most jurisdictions, a permit is required for any water heater installation. An improper installation could even result in an explosion.

If you suspect it is time to replace your water heater, you have a number of options to choose from. It may make sense to consult your plumber or water heater installation pro about which type of water heater to choose for your needs. They can advise you about which type of fuel is best for your water heater: electric, gas, or propane. A water heater expert can let you know which tank type is right for you—there are water heaters with a tank and those that are tankless. Finally, they can help you choose a tank size from 30 to 80 gallons.

Do I need a plumber to install a water heater?

Water heater installation requires specialized knowledge, skills, and tools. While it is technically legal in many places for homeowners to install their own water heaters, experts advise hiring a licensed professional such as a plumber. Most building jurisdictions require a permit to install a water heater. This is so that the water heater can be inspected after it is installed to make sure it does not pose a danger to those who live in the building. Not only can an incorrectly installed water heater be hazardous to your home, but the inexperienced installer runs the risk of harm during the installation process. Any water heater installation will involve dealing with electricity, gas, or propane. A pro will know how to work with these energy sources.

It may make sense to hire a qualified, licensed plumber to install your new water heater. A plumbing professional can carry out the installation safely, efficiently, and up to code. Hiring a water heater installer offers you peace of mind, and can save you money and headaches down the line.

What is the downside of tankless water heaters?

Tankless water heaters are also called “on-demand” water heaters. They only heat water when it is required. This eliminates the need for a storage tank. It also allows homeowners to save money because tankless water heaters are not constantly heating a large tank of water in case the hot water is needed. There are smaller tankless water heaters that are installed next to the point of the hot water use. Larger tankless water heaters serve a whole house.

Having a tankless water heater installed has some benefits including cost savings. However, tankless water heaters often cannot supply enough water for simultaneous use. So, a homeowner could not run the dishwasher while a family member showers. If you have a tankless water heater installed, you may need to upgrade your home’s electric service because the water heater draws a lot of electricity to heat water quickly. Depending on the tankless heater’s system, water temperature can fluctuate uncomfortably when water pressure varies in different parts of the house. Before having a new tankless water heater installed, it makes sense to do your research.

Is a tankless water heater worth it?

If it is time to have a new water heater installed in your home, you may be weighing the costs and benefits of each type of unit. Tankless water heaters are a newer technology in the HVAC marketplace. The initial cost of a tankless water heater is higher than the cost of a conventional gas, electric, or propane water heater. On the other hand, a tankless water heater can last up to twice as long as conventional water heaters from when they are installed to when they need to be replaced. So, the initial outlay of cash may save money in the long run. Additionally, a tankless water heater saves on energy costs because the unit does not have to constantly keep a big tank of water hot and ready to go.

If you are weighing the advantages and disadvantages of various water heating systems, it may make sense to consult a water heater expert. They can walk you through the pros and cons of each type of water heater. A pro can help you decide whether a tankless water heater is worth it.

How do I know if I need a new water heater?

It can be easy to take your water heater for granted if it quietly provides a steady supply of hot water when you and your family need it. However, if the water temperature begins to fluctuate you water heater may need to be replaced. If your water heater seems to be leaking, or if there is a water build up around the heater it could be failing. When you notice changes in the quality of water that is flowing from your hot water taps it could be time to have a new water heater installed. No homeowner wants to go for long without hot water if they are accustomed to a steady supply. If your water heater is showing signs of breaking down, call a plumber or water heater expert to do an in-home inspection.

A water heater repair or installation professional will have the skills, tools, and experience to assess your system. They can advise you about whether it makes sense to repair your water heater or whether it is time to have a new one installed.

How often does a water heater need to be serviced?

After you’ve had your new water heater installed, it is important to keep it well maintained. Regular servicing will help your conventional or tankless water heater in good repair so that it serves your home well. Both tankless and conventional water heaters should be flushed at least once a year. If you live in an area with very hard water, you may need to have the water heater flushed more frequently. While you may not notice it on a day-by-day basis, sediment builds up in a water heater over the course of a year. Over time, you could start to notice sediment emerging from your taps.

Flushing a water heater is not a complicated process, but it requires experience, skill and strength. It may make sense to have a qualified professional flush your water heater annually. In addition to saving you time, and the hassle of flushing the heater yourself, a pro can spot any other trouble that might be brewing in your water heater before it becomes an issue. Remember to follow up on water heater maintenance after the initial inspection.

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