Do I Need To Replace My Water Heater?


A soothing hot shower before work can be quite a pleasure. However, if the water heater takes too long to heat, it can be annoying. You might think that you need to replace a water heater, but there might be some other solutions if it is in good shape. Let us explore some of the sources of water heating delays and know if it is possible for you to fix them.


Whether gas or electric, all water heaters come with a set recovery time that is the amount of time it takes to heat the water once it has been emptied. The amount of time your water heater takes will be given in the instruction manual. This recovery time will depend on a number of factors such as –

  • Size of the Water Heater – Larger water heaters will take more time to fill up completely and heat.
  • Tank’s First Hour Rating (FHR) – The higher the FHR rating of your water heater, the faster your water heater will heat.
  • Type of Fuel Used – Typically, gas units are much faster compared to an electric heater.
  • Water Temperature – If the water is cold, it will obviously take much longer to heat.
  • Age of the Water Heater – Over time, the water heater will lose its efficiency and take more time to heat.


You turn on your shower and wait for hot water, all this while the water is going down the water wasting water, money, and time. So, why does hot water take so long to come out of the shower? Here are some of the top reasons –

  • Location of Water Heater – The greater the distance of the water heater from the top, the longer it will take to get hot water.
  • Volume Restriction of Water – If you have a volume restrictor on fixtures such as the showerhead, it will slow the flow of water from the pipes.
  • Water Heater Failure – Most water heater has a shelf life of ten years. If your water heater is older, it will become less efficient and more prone to failing.
  • Accumulation of Tank Sediments – Over time, mineral-based sediment gets deposited at the bottom of the tank on the top of the heating element. It will cause the water to heat slowly.
  • Small Unit – If your water heater is too small compared to your hot water needs, it will greatly deplete your hot water supply.

These are just some of the common causes for the water taking too long to heat up. There may be other reasons such as the water heater not being installed properly or a loose or damaged In-line valve.


If you are facing any of the issues mentioned above, have a professional check your water heater to determine the actual cause of the problem. They’ll be able to fix any issue without the need for any replacement. If the water heater is beyond replacement, they suggest a more appropriately sized water heater for your growing family. In the case of an older water heater, it is best to have it replaced with a tankless water heater as they do not have to refill themselves and offer a constant flow of hot water.

If you’d like to learn more about if a tankless water heater is worth it.

Click here, if you’d like to learn more about water heater repair and replacement.If you’d like to learn more about Workhouse Plumbing, click here.

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