Replace a working, old water heater?

mrpandyMarch 15, 2011

My electric water heater (AO Smith) is original to the house, which was built in 1987. It works fine and I have never done anything to it execept drain it twice (to move it).

Since it is 24 years old, should I replace it now to avoid an emergency repair that is probably coming?

I will be replacing it with just a standard, no frills electric like the GEs at Home Depot. Are the new water heaters that much more efficient that I would notice the difference in my electric bill?

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"If it ain't broke don't fix it"

Electric water heaters have the same efficiency as they always did; the difference in modern heaters is better insulation to reduce standby loss. All things considered, your utility bill probably won't change much.

Were I you, I would pull the anode and make a determination from its remainder what life may be left. Sounds like your water is ideal.

If you haven't updated the inlet/outlet piping to prevent heat loss, doing so will yield savings with any heater.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 6:55AM
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My heater is 26 years old (electric). I am in the process of replacing it with a Rheem Marathon. I chose to do it on my schedule. ...not Christmas Eve which is when mine will fail.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 11:35AM
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How much damage will result when the tank rusts through and leaks?

It is on borrowed time, but if it is in an unfinished basement I would leave it but check it over VERY carefully at least once a month looking for leaks.

You may get a slightly better price on install if it is not an emergency also.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 2:28PM
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