Even though you seldom think about it, your hot water heater works all the time. Unfortunately, the odds are that your unit will break down. 75 percent of hot water heaters will fail. The cost of the unit PLUS the water damages averages more than $4000. Leaks are even more expensive to restore if located on the second floor.
Hardworking heaters have a limited life; don’t try to extend the timeframe beyond the recommendation, Some signs of imminent failure include: water accumulation beneath the heater, hissing or whistling sound characteristic of a worn valve, chronic hot water shortages. Simple actions can improve your unit’s efficiency and longevity. A little attention and care will not only extend the life, but might also prevent an indoor flood of dirty water.
Several factors can add up to a total loss; the worst is when the steel water storage tank corrodes through. As the water in the system is heated, minerals separate and settle at the bottom of the water storage tank. Over time, mineral and salt deposits will accumulate on the bottom of the tank; they corrode the tank liner and heater elements. Then the corroded bottom of a tank literally fails. The rusted out bottom breaks open and all the held water spews out. This deluge of up to 50 gallons of silty, rusty water could spill 1 or 2 inches of