Water Heater Questions San Diego, CA | Point Loma Electric and Plumbing

Hot Water Heater Questions

Here are some answers to the most common questions we get about hot water heaters.

How long do hot water heaters last?

Most traditional tank water heaters typically last about 10 years. Tankless hot water heaters have a much longer lifetime, and most come with a 12-year warranty.

There are quite a few variables involved in hot water heater replacement. The cost will vary based on the size, the brand, the length of the warranty, any extras and the difficulty of installation.

In San Diego, the cost of replacing a standard tank hot water heater typically ranges from $1900 to $5000 depending on the specific situation.

Tankless hot water heaters cost more to purchase and install than traditional tank water heaters but with their efficient energy use and longer lifetime can actually cost less than a traditional tank water heater of 10 years.
Installation of tankless hot water heaters can vary widely because it’s possible that work may need to be done on both the gas lines as well as addition of a dedicated electrical circuit. Installation of tankless hot water heaters can range from about $3500 to $9000 depending on a variety of factors such as brand, size, warranty and if gas or electrical work is required.

Yes, permits are required for hot water heater replacements. They can be purchased by either the homeowner or the contractor. If you choose to obtain the permit yourself, be sure the contractor will guarantee that the water heater will be installed to meet codes and that if there are any corrections needed that they will make them at no charge.

Yes regular maintenance will extend the life time of your hot water heater and can save money on future repairs as well as save you money because it will operate more efficiently. Standard tank hot water heaters should be drained and flushed annually but no less than every 3 years.

Tankless water heaters should be serviced every year for maximum performance and lifetime. Installation of a water purification and conditioning system that removes dissolved minerals from the water will also help extend the life of your tankless hot water heater.


Tankless hot water heaters will not run out of hot water if it’s sized properly for household usage.

Quality tankless hot water heaters can last up to 20 years and will save an average of $150- $300 per year in energy savings. They only use energy when hot water is actual being used.

Tankless hot water heaters take up less space than tank hot water heaters and can be mounted outdoors


Tankless hot water heaters can cost more upfront to purchase and install and may require work on the gas line as well as a dedicated electrical circuit.

Tankless water heaters need to be serviced on an annual basis

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