Examining The Potential Water Heater Replacement Cost

plumber repairing water tank

There are numerous problems, which can diminish the comfort, serenity and peaceful nature of your home. One of the most detrimental is a lack of hot water. In all likelihood, you’ve already encounter inner family squabbles, due to an insufficient amount of hot water. If your water heater malfunctions, you’ll want to get it replaced as quickly as possible.
Unfortunately, many homeowners will have concerns regarding the cost of a water heater. What is the estimated water heater replacement cost? The answer is not uniform and will vary depending on an array of different factors.Within this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn about some of the components that can play a vital role in the cost of new water heater.

Type Of Setup


When scouring the market’s lineup of water heaters, you’ll find that the offering is truly enormous. This can throw a curveball into the equation and make it much more difficult to determine the overall cost of water heater. One of the biggest factors and definitely one of the most impactful will be the type of setup that you prefer. You’ll be able to choose between a gas-powered water heater or an electric-powered water heater. Although both can deliver a sufficient amount of hot water, they’re different in several ways. One of those differentials will undoubtedly be the cost factor.
When trying to figure out how much to replace a water heater, you’ll quickly realize that electric models are slightly less expensive than their gas-powered counterparts. Most won’t be able to parallel the delivery quantities, but they can save you money initially and may be a better option for those operating on a limited budget.

Tankless Versus Tanked

Another thing to take into account, when attempting to determine the cost to replace a water heater, is the unit’s type. Are you looking for a tanked, storage water heater, which will heat up the water and store it until it is ready to be used? Or, do you prefer one of the latest tankless water heaters, which can provide your family with water on demand? Both options are great, but the tanked versions tend to be less costly initially. Unsurprisingly, the tankless water heater installation cost is fairly similar to that of the installation cost of a tank model.
The big difference is the long-term cost effectiveness of both units. Since tankless models utilize much less energy, they can save the consumer money over a period of time. So, the traditional water heaters might save you money upfront, but they’ll lead to additional costs over a period of time.

Installation Location

One thing to consider is the desire installation location. Some homeowners will need to replace a unit within their basement, while others might have a garage unit. What most homeowners fail to recognize is that the overall cost of the replacement can depend on the water heater’s location. If the unit is installed in a tight location, which is difficult to access, the installation cost will most likely jump a bit higher.
Water heater replacements within basements tend to be a little less costly than having a garage unit replaced. Closet installations are typically the most expensive of all. Sadly, there isn’t much you can do, unless you’re willing to opt for a bigger renovation project.

Consider The Capacity Needed


Whether you’re opting for a traditional water heater or want a tankless model, you’ll need to consider your home’s precise water requirements. If your home uses more water each day, you’ll need a bigger, more capable appliance and this will ultimately increase the replacement cost to some degree. In this category, finding the right size storage water heater is easier, since you can just look at the tank’s storage capacity.
With a tankless water heater, you’ll need to delve into the figures and specifications a little more. Be sure to consider the temperature rise and maximum GPM for the model in question. This combination of factors helps to determine the unit’s overall delivery power and its cost.

Whole House Or Point Of Use

Each setup is unique and some homeowners will need to replace several water heaters at once. If you’re working with single point systems, you may be able to scrap by with the replacement of a singular unit, but this will not always be the case. The good news is that POS units come with more generous installation costs, but you’ll need to cross your fingers and hope only a single unit needs to be replaced. If you have a whole house unit, well the entire unit will need to be replaced. This is true regardless of the type of water heater you’re dealing with.

Additional Supplies

Aside from the aforementioned factors, some homeowners will also need to consider the cost of additional supplies. In order to remove the preexisting equipment, it may be necessary to yank out a portion of the water supply line or snip the electric cable.

If this is the case, these items will need to replaced and they’re going to increase the price marginally.

  • Venting
  • Wires
  • Tubing
  • Tools

A professional will add these costs onto the final bill. If you’re performing the replacement on your own, you’ll need to take this additional expense into account, as well as the travel time or delivery fees associated with obtaining these necessities.

Removal And Disposal

Since you’re looking to replace an old water heater and not install one anew, you’re going to face additional charges stemming from the removal and disposal of the unit. Disposing of such appliances must be carried out in the appropriate manner, in order to abide by regulations and local laws. If you fail to follow these laws, you may end up being hit with a fine. So, it is in your best interest to follow these regulations strictly.

Unfortunately, this can increase the replacement cost slightly. If the installation technician is unable or unwilling to dispose of the unit for you, it will be necessary to contact a removal company that will. Either way, the cost of such a service will be less of a sting that the fine, so do not skimp in this area.

Validating The Warranty

Most tankless water heater brands require all consumers to hire a professional HVAC or licensed plumber to install the unit. This requirement ensured the manufacturer that the unit is installed correctly, so all the components will last throughout the duration of the warranty. If the unit is installed incorrectly, the components will become damaged in a very short period of time and these costs fall back onto the manufacturer.

A professional installer will charge anywhere from $150-2,000, depending on what type of installation is required. If electrical wiring, natural gas pipes, and water pipes need to be ran into the home, this will require a more extensive installation process. If you are replacing an existing water heater, the job will be so much easier and cheaper.
Many homeowners will opt to replace their old water heater that utilizes a specific fuel source with one that requires a different type. In this case, a new line will need to be ran into the home and connected directly to the new water heater.

Many of the newer tankless water heaters utilize a 2 D Cell for the burner ignition. In this case, an electric receptacle will not be needed, so you can save a little money on the installation costs.

Qualified Installer

Many manufacturers have a list of service providers that they utilize for installations of their water heaters. Of course, you can always select one out of the phonebook, but before you do, be sure to check with the company’s customer support department. You want to ensure yourself that you receive the maximum warranty benefits, so comply with the warranty requirements.

If the terms written in the warranty do not say anything about hiring a third party plumber, you will need to do a bit of research before hiring. Always read the company’s customer reviews, because they hold a wealth of information. Also, you can check out the BBB website, because it contains a list of professional plumbing companies in your area.

Qualified Installer

As mentioned above, a water heater installation can cost anywhere from $150-2,000, if you hire a plumber. These expenses may or may not include the cost of the actual tankless water heater. The labor costs are always very expensive and can run anywhere between $50 to $150 an hour. This is why it is so important to do your homework, before you invest in a new water heater. Of course, if the existing unit is damaged, you will have no other choice, but to replace it.

If you find yourself working on a limited financial budget, you should always invest in a water heater model that replicates the existing one. For instance, if the existing water heater utilizes natural gas and electricity to function, you should replace it with a model that operates in the same manner. This alone, will save you quite a bit of money, since there will be no need to run any new plumbing pipes or electric wiring into your home.