Whether your water heater isn’t heating water like it is supposed to, is leaking, or making strange noises, you might have a problem that needs addressing. Unfortunately, most household appliances won’t last indefinitely, but you may be able to repair an issue if you can identify your make, model, and the age of your unit. Even better, some water heaters are still covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.

If you keep impeccable household records and receipts, you might not need to look for a model and serial number. But most people aren’t that organized. Fortunately, many water heaters have some of the essential information you need to be printed on the label that is affixed to the side of the unit.

Different Manufacturers – Same Technique

Determining the age of your water heater varies slightly by the manufacturer of the unit, but the concept used by different companies is similar. Just about every water heater is going to have a rating plate attached, but it might be in a different spot.

The information on the plate will tell you the manufacturer, model, capacity of the tank (if its a tank heater), the wattage of the heating elements, as well as the year the unit was made. Deciphering this is a bit like reading code, and the key varies depending on the manufacturer of the unit.

How Old is My Water Heater?

If you want to determine the age of your water heater, you first have to figure out who made it. Fortunately, the manufacturer should be clearly listed on the label. Then, you can move on to finding the unit’s age. Here is how you can figure that out with a few of the top manufacturers:

Rheem and A.0. Smith Water Heater Age

Rheem and A.O. Smith are fairly simple. There will be a lengthy serial number (10-11 digits) on the plate, and the first four digits represent the month and year of manufacture. In other words, Serial #0915****** means that your unit was manufactured in September 2015.

Bradford White Water Heater Age

Bradford White asks you to read code when figuring out the age of its water heaters. The serial number will begin with two letters. The first letter represents the year of manufacture and the second the month. You find the latest production codes here.

American Water Heater Age

American Water Heater wants to make it simple for you to read their labels and find the date of manufacture. The serial number on one of these units is also 10 digits. The first two digits tell you the year of manufacture, and the second two tell you which week of the year. So, a serial number that begins with 1220 means the unit was made in the 20th week of 2012.

Need Water Heater Repair or Replacement?

If your water heater brand isn’t listed above, give us a shout for assistance or check out NACHI’s serial number decoder. Remember, your water heater might still be under the manufacturer’s warranty. If you need help with repair or replacement of your unit, want to discuss an upgrade, or just need a few questions answered, give us a call. We’ll make sure you’re taken care of fast!

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