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Estimate water heater replacement cost in your zip code

What is the scope of your project?

Small
This project includes replacing a 50-gallon water heater, connecting the new heater to your existing plumbing, and average labor and material costs. Code compliance may incur an extra cost.
Large
This project involves replacing a 90-gallon water heater, connecting it to existing plumbing, and average labor and material costs. Code compliance may incur an extra cost.
 
What is the average cost to replace a water heater?

The average cost of installing a 50-gallon water heater ranges between $800 and $2,800. It can go from as low as $400 for a natural gas tank single-point system to as high as $10,000 for a tankless solar system.

How do water heater costs vary?

Your complete water heater installation or replacement cost takes into account a number of factors, such as the type and size of your hot water heater in gallons, installation labor by a local, licensed and insured plumber, the system type (whole house or single point), energy-efficiency certification and other special features of a new water heating system.

The cost also depends on the amount of work required to bring your plumbing up to code, the length of the product warranty, the cost of the permit and your location

Types of water heaters

Here are some popular water heater options for your home:

  • Gas water heaters

Gas water heaters are reliable, energy efficient and therefore used quite commonly. What’s more, these heaters cost less and are quite easy to install.

However, they aren’t as efficient as other types of water heaters and may cost more to run. A common issue that homeowners face is that their cold water is not being heated properly. This is generally because of a faulty burner or pilot light. Having said that, the parts of such heaters are easily available and getting them repaired or replaced is not an issue.

  • Electric heat pump water heaters

As the name suggests, electricity powers an electric water heater. It heats up your water supply by absorbing any heat that’s in the air and transferring that heat into its tank water. Therefore, an electric heater works the best where the climate is hot.

  • Conventional tank water heaters

Conventional water heaters work by storing gallons of water within an insulated tank. It then heats up the water at the top and stores it until you require the hot water.

Fortunately, they’re one of the cheapest water heaters available and don’t require much maintenance. At most, you might need to replace a burned out heating element. A conventional, well-maintained water heater should last you at least 12 years.

On the downside, they take up considerable space and aren’t very energy efficient

FYI: Tank water heaters can work with both gas and electric.

  • Tankless water heaters

A tankless water heater allows you to have a constant supply of hot water. It may cost you more to buy, but if you often require hot water in your home, it’s your best and most convenient choice. What’s more, it’s eco-friendly and there is no chance of the water cooling down or the hot water running out.

The downside to tankless water heaters is that you can't use hot water for two different things at the same time. Apart from the high cost to buy and install them, you will also need frequent maintenance checks.

  • Solar water heaters

A solar water heater draws its energy from the sun. It’s the most energy efficient of all heaters. The energy transfers to a closed loop system with a heat-conductive material. It then heats the water in the tank, and hot water flows out. Needless to say, solar water heaters, though expensive to set up, lessen the energy costs in the long run.

However, a solar heater often requires a backup plan or alternate fuel source, such a gas line or electricity, for cloudy days.

Know your tank sizes

The capacity of your water heater tank determines how much hot water you will have available at once. You can choose your tank water heater size as per your requirements. Here’s an easy way to go about it:

  • 30-gallon tank – one to two people in the house
  • 40-gallon tank – two to three people
  • 50–60-gallon tank – three to four people
  • 60–80-gallon electric system or a 50-gallon natural gas or propane system – more than four people
Do you require water heater permits?

A permit is almost always required for water heaters. There will be an inspection once the work is done to make sure your new water heater has been installed or replaced properly, and that it will not create a hazard to the building occupants.

Unfortunately, there are many things that can go wrong with a water heater installation. The dangers may include scalding, bacteria growth, fuel gas leaks, fires or explosions, water leak damage, structural instability or carbon monoxide asphyxiation.

Make sure that someone who is properly trained and licensed is the one to repair, replace or install your water heater . They will make sure that all the safety features are in place, and that the heater (whether running on solar power, propane, gas or electricity) is installed to the current local plumbing code.

Without a permit and inspection, a hot water heater replacement can be extremely dangerous.

DIY vs hiring a professional

If you’re trying to decide between a DIY project vs hiring a pro, you must keep in mind that although it’s not hard to install a water heater, it’s best to leave the work to experts. Especially since it may require electrical modifications.

Many building jurisdictions allow you to install a heater if you’re confident enough to do the modifications yourself, and it's your own house.

However, certain building codes require you to hire a licensed electrician. That’s because, improperly installed water heaters can become a fire, explosion and health hazard for your building and its occupants.

Additionally, hiring a contractor will make your bathroom renovation easier, quicker, and hassle-free.

How to replace a water heater?

Knowing how to replace or install a hot water heater will help you plan out your home improvement better, besides giving you an advantage over those who don’t. Here’s a step-by-step guide so that you know exactly what you’re getting into.

  • 1. Turn the electricity supply off
  • 2. Drain the water tank
  • 3. Disconnect the electrical as well as plumbing
  • 4. Remove the old water heater
  • 5. Prepare the new plumbing lines
  • 6. Connect the electrical wiring and supply lines
  • 7. Turn the water on
  • 8. Connect the temperature as well as pressure discharge pipe
  • 9. Turn the main power on
  • 10. Bleed the hot water lines
Why should you estimate the cost of your water heater replacement?

Water heaters play an important role in a house. They ensure that hot water is available throughout your home – allowing you to bathe, wash dishes and do your laundry.

Most hot water heaters come with a 15 year warranty. If yours is 15 to 20 years old, or is not doing its job up to your satisfaction, it’s time for a replacement.

Here are a few water heater problems or signs that your heater is on its way out:

  • You start getting gritty or discolored water
  • There’s an unusual smell in the hot water
  • There’s always insufficient hot water to use
  • The water heater makes weird sounds
  • Its TPR valve is either leaky or faulty
  • The water tank is leaky or rusted

Once you decide to get a water heater installed in your home, you need to know how much of an investment you should have for this home improvement.

Naturally, when it’s time to replace a heater, you have to know the cost in order to calculate what you can afford to spend.

It’s also the best way to ensure that you don’t stumble across any unwelcome surprises during the execution of your project.

Acquiring a free estimate for your hot water heater replacement cost will help you create a realistic budget for the replacement.

How does Kukun’s water heater replacement cost estimator help you?

Getting an estimate through Kukun’s water heater replacement cost estimator is easy. Just follow the steps below to get your custom, personalized total cost in minutes!

1. Enter the type of remodel from the two options below:

  • Replace existing one: This project includes replacing an existing water heater, connecting the new heater to your existing plumbing, and average labor cost as well as material costs. Please note that code compliance may incur an extra cost.
  • Install new one: This project involves installing a new water heater, connecting it to existing plumbing, and average labor and material costs. Please note that code compliance may incur an extra cost.

2. Choose the type of heater you currently have from these options:

  • Electric
  • Gas

3. Select the size of your heater tank/capacity from the following options:

  • 40 — 50 Gallon
  • 50 — 75 Gallon
  • 80 — 105 Gallon

If you have a tankless heater, this is where you can mention it.

4. Enter your property details

Enter the full address to get ROI /recoup value of your house or just give zipcode to get just the renovation cost estimate.

And there you go! Your water heater installation cost estimate is ready!

With this estimate, you can analyze your finance options or hire a professional to get started on the work right away.

We are happy to offer you options for professional remodeling contractors who have worked in your neighborhood and who have been vetted by your neighbors.

You can explore each contractor's profile, check out their online reviews, and view all their previous permits before hiring them.

The best way to replace your water heaters? Always plan ahead

As part of any home improvement project, it’s best to keep a few things in mind:

  • Maintain your budget in order to manage a home renovation seamlessly.
  • Choose the most suitable type of water heater according to your needs.
  • Plan ahead and don't keep anything pending after your project starts.
  • Work with an expert. A professional will ensure that all permits and inspections are up to date.
  • A permit is required. An inspection is done to make sure that the water heater is installed properly and does not create a hazard to the building occupants.
  • Get a written contract from your contractor. The document should include the payment details as well.
  • Be sure to get a warranty or guarantee from your contractor.
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