The temptation to repair or replace your water heater as a do-it-yourself job might be great. Even if you are handy, you should still make sure that you fully understand the scope of the project before you decide that you are the right person to do the job.
Replacing a hot water heater might seem easy, but there are several reasons why hiring a professional to complete the job is well worth the quoted water heater replacement cost, even with the cost of labor added onto the price of the hot water heater.
In some cases, like going from a traditional tank hot water heater to a tankless hot water heater, the plumbing will have to be replaced or retrofitted for the new style. Retrofitting plumbing isn’t something easily done, so you if you aren’t a trained plumber, you probably shouldn’t undertake the task on your own.
Even if you are sticking to the same style of water heater, you might have to replace or upgrade plumbing that is already in your home or business. It is crucial that the new plumbing work is able to withstand the water pressure. The last thing you need is for an area of pipe to come apart and send water flying. If that happens, you could have a water-damaged building to worry about.
When working with an electric hot water heater, you are working with electrical wiring that carries 240 volts of electricity. Ensuring that you are taking the proper steps while working with that type of voltage is necessary for you to remain safe. While working with that amount of power might not be that big of a deal when you are doing a basic hot water heater replacement, there is a chance that you will need to rewire the circuit if any portion of it is weak, old, or in need of replacement.
If your hot water heater needs to be rewired, you might have to contact a professional. That could delay your project if you are doing it yourself. When you hire a professional from the get-go, you lessen the likelihood that you will have to wait for an electrician to rewire the space.
You shouldn’t attempt to rewire the hot water heater’s connection if you haven’t been trained in electrical work. In some areas, trying to alter the wiring is illegal unless you are a licensed electrician. Even if you live in an area where you can rewire the hot water heater’s connections on your own, you probably shouldn’t because of the electrocution and fire risk.
When you are replacing a gas hot water heater, you have to ensure that the gas connection is properly fitted. You could suffer from illness or even death in the event of a gas leak. In the worst of cases, you might even blow up your home if there is a gas leak and someone creates a spark.
The fee for having the hot water heater professionally installed will pale in comparison to having to replace the contents of your home and rebuild because of an explosion. If you are having a gas hot water heater replaced, having a professional complete the job for you is a matter of keeping your home and family safe.
Some insurance companies will require that you have a hot water heater professionally installed. If you don’t have the work done by a professional, the insurance company might not cover the costs of damage if the hot water heater fails, explodes, or is the cause of the damage to the home. If the home is a rental home, you would need the professional to complete the job because you might be liable for the damages a renter suffers if the hot water heater is the cause of an incident.
In some areas, you need a permit to replace a hot water heater. This means that the work would has to be inspected. It also means that the hot water heater replacement would have to meet the current building codes for your area. When you hire a professional to replace the hot water heater, you won’t have to worry about the permit. Instead, the professional will handle that aspect of the job which can save you considerable time.
Hiring someone to install the hot water heater can save you a lot of time. You will likely have to be home when the work is done, but you can use that time to do other activities. While it might not take that long for you to have a traditional tank hot water heater replaced, having a tankless hot water heater installed can take a lot longer. In many cases, it can take up to 10 hours to install a tankless model.
By hiring a professional to install the hot water heater, you are protecting your investment in the hot water heater, and the investment in your home or business. Taking the risks associated with replacing the hot water heater as a DIY project isn’t really worth the little bit of money you will save by doing the project yourself.