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How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Water Heater Element in Tampa, FL?

What you’ll actually pay to replace a water heater element for your electric water heater depends on the following factors:

  1. How Many Elements You Need Replaced
  2. The Heating Element Material You Choose
  3. The Contractor You Hire

We’ll cover those cost factors in more detail. In this article, we’ll cover the following information:

Let’s start by looking at why water heater elements give out in the first place...

Let the Professionals Help You out When It Comes to Your Water Heater 

Need help right away? Give us a call or schedule an appointment online and we’ll quickly send over one of our certified plumbers to fix your water heater.


What Causes a Water Heater Element to Give Out? 

Only found in electric water heaters, the heating element is the part that actually heats the water that’s delivered to your home.

The following situations can cause a heating element to fail:

  • Power surges: Any power outage caused by storms, lightning strikes or sudden power loss can cause the electrical components in a heating element to fail.
  • Sediment buildup: Over time, minerals in the water can build up on the element itself, which makes it lose its ability to heat the water. Sediment buildup is especially common in areas with hard water, which means we’re prone to it here in Florida.
  • Corrosion: In addition to causing sediment buildup, minerals in the water can also corrode the water heater element, causing it to malfunction or stop working altogether.
  • Turning on a tank without hot water: If your tank is empty but the heating elements are left on for a long time, that could cause them to overheat and wear out.

Factors That Determine How Much You’ll Pay to Replace a Water Heater Element 

 #1: How Many Elements You Need Replaced 

Your electric water heater has 2 heating elements: an upper element and a lower element.

If one of the elements goes out, you’ll notice lukewarm water. If both go out, you won’t have any hot water at all.

Since it requires more labor and parts, if you need both heating elements replaced you’ll pay more than if you just need one replaced.

#2: The Heating Element Material You Choose 

You can choose between 3 different types of water heater elements:

  • High-density (least expensive): High-density heating elements are made with copper and are usually coated with zinc. They have the shortest lifespan because they are more prone to corrosion.
  • Low density (mid-priced): Low-density heating elements are made from copper and coated with magnesium oxide and nickel to make them more resistant to corrosion.
  • Extra-low density (most expensive): Extra-low density heating elements are built with stainless steel, which makes them very resistant to corrosion. These heating elements usually come with a lifetime guarantee.

#3: The Contractor You Hire

More experienced contractors typically charge more for their services. But they also do the job right the first time which prevents you from spending money on additional future repairs.

We’ll share a few tips to help you find a quality contractor:

  • Verify that the contractor is licensed and insured (more on why that’s important in the section below).
  • Make sure they have a good business record:
    • How long have they been in business? The longer, the better.
    • How are their online customer reviews? The more positive reviews on sites like Better Business BureauGoogle, and Yelp, the better.
    • Are they upfront with pricing and willing to give you a written estimate? That’s a sign they’ll stick to their word and won’t throw you any surprises once the job is done.

Why Hire a Professional? 

You’ll come across some sources online that say you can do this job yourself. But we have a few reasons you should hire a professional instead:

  • It’s time-consuming: Replacing a water heater element usually takes around 2–3 hours if you try and do it yourself. However, it usually only takes 1–2 hours for a professional.
  • A professional has the right tools and skills to do the job. So you don’t have to go out and buy the parts, make sure they match your system, get a water heater element wrench, etc.
  • Liability: Replacing water heater elements is dangerous because you’re dealing with the combination of water + electricity. If something goes wrong on the job and you do it yourself, you’d be 100% responsible for the damage that occurs to yourself or your home.

But if you hire a professional that is licensed and insured and something goes wrong on the job, they’ll be financially responsible for any damage that happens to them or your property.

Need a New Water Heater Element? 

Just give us a call. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have or help you schedule an appointment with one of our trustworthy and friendly plumbers.

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