Solar Water Heater: $1,000-$5,000+; Tankless Water Heater: $1,800-$5,000+, Installed
There are two basic types of water heaters: the traditional kind with a storage tank and tankless water heaters, which heat water as needed.
With all needed parts and labor, hiring a plumber to install a traditional gas water heater costs $300-$3,500 or more, depending on capacity (with 40 or 50 gallons the most common sizes); length of warranty (typically 5-12 years); and the amount of repairs required to meet current building codes. CostHelper readers report paying an average cost of $948 for a 40 gallon unit (ranging $360-$2,800); an average cost of $1,211 for a 50 gallon unit; and an average cost of $1,937 for a 75 gallon unit (ranging $1,300-$3,588).
A tank-style gas water heater can also be purchased at a home improvement store, plumbing supply house or online retailer for $230-$2,000 or more, with installation done separately. Installation costs vary significantly depending on who does the work; the condition of the water heater hook-ups, and if any adaptations are needed to install a new, larger unit in the space. If extensive work is required, installation can cost as much as or more than the water heater. CostHelper readers report paying $70 -$1,706 for installation, for an average expense of $630.
An electric water heater can cost $400-$3,000 or more for complete installation of a conventional storage-tank model and $1,800-$4,500 or more for a tankless model (including a 220V/240V outlet). Electric water heaters typically cost less than gas units but are more expensive to operate.
Solar water heaters cost $1,000-$5,000 or more, with installation usually included in the purchase price.
A central, whole-house, gas tankless water heater can cost $800-$3,000 or more, without installation. Because tankless systems typically require the addition of a 220V/240V outlet and/or larger-diameter gas pipes than found in an average home, installation can bring the total cost to $1,800-$5,000 or more.
Generally, a one- to two-person household needs a 30-40 gallon water heater while a household of five or more needs 50-80 gallons. However, a tank that puts out more than the household uses hourly wastes money and energy heating extra water. Tankless systems avoid that cost and take up less space, but more than one unit might be needed to shower and run a dishwasher at the same time. The U.S. Department of Energy describes the different types of water heaters .
Replacing an old water heater with a similar but updated model is relatively straightforward, but new and more-energy efficient units are often larger, and might not fit the existing space or hook-ups.
Check with the local planning department; a permit and inspection may be required. Replacement water heaters typically are required to meet current building codes, which may mean upgrading the existing water and gas lines, installing new valves and other parts, and the addition of an expansion tank to minimize pressure build-up.
Less expensive units may cost the most to operate. The U.S. Department of Energy explains how to estimate and compare water heating costs .
Do-it-yourself installation is possible, but can be challenging. This Old House explains how to replace a water heater , calling it a moderate-to-difficult project that takes 2-4 hours and requiring basic plumbing skills plus the strength to wrestle out the old unit and carry in the new one. CostHelper readers report paying $385-$750 for do-it-yourself installation of new water heater, at an average cost of $574, while a New Jersey reader reports paying $2,500 a plumber (triple the normal rate) to fix the botched do-it-yourself installation of a 40-gallon water heater.
Shopping for replacing a water heater:
EnergySavers.gov lists tips for selecting a new water heater .
CIDNetwork.com lists tips for choosing a plumber .
Get several estimates. Request and check references, and be sure the company is properly bonded, insured and licensed.
A written contract should include a detailed outline of the work required and materials to be used, and dates within which the project will be done.
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Was curious to see what people are paying and charging for water heaters. I charged 2100$ 1252$ for unit with water supply lines and gas flex. I charged 878$ for labor I had to pick up a day worker to help me move the old and put in the new. Paid the guy 150$
Priced a Nortiz EZ98 install and could not go thru with it. More than I could pay. What was included was, run a new gas line ( have a 3/4 inch line there currently but it needed its own line not shared with boiler), run and new electric outlet to power the unit. Cap off existing exhaust pipe for the current tanked water heater and run a new exhaust line out thru the wall. It also included a descaler filter. Maintenance was covered for the first 3 years. A maintenance flush needed yearly was $200. Couldn't do it.
Previous State 50 gallon starting failing. Replacing with another State 50 gall with 10 year warranty. The last unit only had a 6 year warranty and had zero maintenance on it, ever... and lasted 11.5 years.
Notified the company Saturday and they were onsite Monday morning with and evaluation. Within 2 hours they had the new water heater onsite and installing. The price of the unit is a bit higher than your standard Home Depot or Lowes brands but do your research and this brand is a much higher quality. The installation included new valves and piping the team were professional and very friendly. I've been using the company for over 15 years and have always had STELLAR service.
Brand new water heater, with full install. Brennan had a promotion going on where an expansion tank was included. Got Brennan service through Costco, so got 10% cash back card. Install was quick, done in about 2 hours, hot water a few hours later!
Posted by: Pleased Homeowner in Santa Barbara, CA.
Posted: January 5th, 2019 09:01PM
Brand: Bradford White
Installer: Professional Plumber
$1100 including new water heater ($700), parts, labor, and disposal of old unit. Same-day installation. Did some soldering and exhaust flue work I wouldn't want to attempt from youtube. Feel like I got a great deal!
Installed same day within 4 hours. Stated I needed some extra work to bring some of the plumbing up to code; saw the plumber using a blow torch on some metal pipes. Went from 65 gal to 50 gal as 65 gal types were not an option. Got a smaller expansion tank. Not sure if this was actually required? 2 years labor/install warranty, 6 years parts. This tank has a slightly higher op cost than my old one. Might have been overcharged? Seems like these companies are charging a lot for installation.
After doing some research, I see that this was was too much. New Natural Gas 50 gallon tank Water Heater, New Flooring, New Ball Turn Knobs, New Lines, New Drain Pan as per code, All bought by me. I do BELIEVE this was Way Over Priced.
Replaced water heater today, 50 gal Nat-gas. Added expansion tank, extended warranty from 6-yr to 10-yr. All in cost incldg permit etc. Checking this board and realized that I didn't do my research. I just went blank and took the plumbers words at face value.
Replaced a 50-gallon gas water heater in basement, tight space. Included an expansion tank. All in cost 2800 including to extend warranty from 6- yr to 10-yr. now I’m beating myself for not doing my research and not asking around. Clearly I got ripped off.
Our 32 gallon oil fired water heater began leaking after 20 years. Quotes for replacing it exceeded 2700. I got quotes to replace with an indirect . The price was similar and this would eliminate one oil burner to maintain. Beacon Mechanical was prompt and did excellent work for the quoted price.
Posted by: thought about DIY but reconsidered in Bloomington, IL.
Posted: July 21st, 2017 12:07AM
Installer: Redbird plumbing
Paid $387 including an 11% rebate merchandise credit check good on next purchase for 50 gallon Richmond-Reem Essential 6 year gas water heater at Menards (regular price $460, on sale for $430 plus tax)(150lbs). Loaded it into my SUV and we left it boxed in the garage for the plumbers to install. Replaced a 10 year old 75 gallon Richmond gas 6 year warranteed water heater (300lb behemoth) leaking from the top due to corrosion from its exhaust gases (not the fault of the unit - at sometime previously the 4" diameter metal exhaust pipe which vents to the roof had become clogged somehow, and was now functioning well as explained by Brad the plumber. Install price was $285 plus $50 in parts which included 2 dielectric unions and a new shutoff valve for the water supply running into the tank. Took 2 hours to install, I partially drained the tank before they arrived. They are leaving the old tank in the basement to drain for at least another day to avoid carpet rust stains.
To replace 12yr old Bradford 40 gallon with a Rheem 40gallon from Ace cost $449 plus $32 tax and then $177 install by plumber. I really appreciated reading all your stories prior to buying as it gave me a heads up on what to expect and lookout for. The average cost for my area being $115 install from this site, I kinda felt I got a padded bill especially since he didn't use any extra parts to install. But what can you do?
1-yr ago we purchased a 24-yr old home. Existing 40-gallon Rheem water heater installed in 1996 [20 years!] began malfunctioning a couple of weeks ago. Due to interior natural sediment buildup issues per plumber [Hot Water just suddenly stopped flowing out 2 days ago]. After estimate response, pro-plumbers replaced next day with new 40-gal "State Water Heater". They also had to bring it all up to applicable California Code after new Hot H2O Heater codes enacted during prior 20-yrs since last H2O heater install. Disassembly/Removal old H2O heater, Replaced H2O heater, Replace old hot/cold Flex-Lines with new copper Flex-Lines, Add new in-line cold side H2O shut-off Ball-Valve, Add new attachment of "Expansion Tank" with copper piping, Add new "Smitty Pan" and PVC drain to House Exterior, Replace H2O Heater Vent-to-Roof attachment, Add new Nat Gas Line "T"-trap [sediment], Replace old Earthquake Stability Straps. With all that came the sizing, cutting, soldering, new copper pipe, etc.
Getting estimates is a nightmare. I called in Plumb Pros for an estimate and to replace my existing hot water heater,which completely went out. Thank goodness its in the garage only had to put towels down on the wet cement. They quoted me 2,200 because the old heater wasn't up to code. The heater itself would be 1,400. Is this a rip-off?
Viewed some Youtube videos before install. Used Shark fittings instead of solder. Purchased 12 year Rheem Platinum 50g water heater from HD which cost 726 and Shark fittings, overflow pan, and new 24" gas conection cost around 75. Water heater was brought down to basement the previous day. It took about 1/2 hour to drain old unit and 2.5 to install, inspect, and clean up area. Not that difficult, used Plumber Dope on gas line to seal and on the water connections used teflon and Plumber Dope on top of it.
It is interesting to me that you suggest replacing the valve even if there is the smallest leak. This type of thing might seem unnecessary, but I totally agree that you need to take action before you have a problem. Winter is pretty hard on water heaters, so you need to be very certain that yours is prepared. Thank you for the helpful information and the applicable maintenance instructions!
You'll double the life of a water heater if you replace the anode rod every 6-8 years! It's a sacrificial rod that will prevent the tank from being destroyed by electrolisis. Most people never heard of a anode rod and suppliers won't tell you because they want to sell water heaters. The rod cost about $20.00 and only takes about 15 minutes to install! And lastly, remember to drain your tank at least once a year! For an electric tank, turn off power, drain, then refill and turn your power back on! Make sure the tank is filled before you turn the power back on or you'll burn out the heating elements.
After looking online on " yelp " I realized that affordable water heaters, is any but. The installation, included all new plumbing, but the water heater was probably about $700. I paid close to $900 for additional parts and installation. Do not use this company. Check yelp comments before using them. The far majority of the comments are one stars out of 5.
My less than 5 year old BW failed, leaking out of the bottom. Ron came out on a Saturday morning and installed the new unit in about an hour. Now he's taking the faulty unit to the distributor for inspection, and if it comes back under warranty, he'll reimburse me $400. Highly recommend the company.
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