What is a hot water system warranty?
A hot water system warranty assures protection against defects in materials and workmanship, upheld by the Australian consumer law, ensuring remedy during the warranty term.
Manufacturing defects are remedied at no cost within the warranty period, as required by law, ensuring product reliability.
Warranties require manufacturers to cover repair costs or replacement of defective parts within the warranty period. Most product service agreements stipulate that installation and maintenance, carried out over many years, must be in line with the manufacturer’s warranty specifications for the warranty to remain valid.
Standard hot water system warranties cover manufacturing and component defects, excluding issues caused by normal wear and tear, poor water quality, insufficient maintenance, or misuse.
Anodes, seals, and heating elements, components which naturally wear out over time, are usually exempt from coverage and are considered consumer responsibilities.
Typical warranty periods for hot water systems
In Australia, the standard warranty period for most hot water systems is 6 years for parts and labour, though it can range from 5 to 12 years, depending on the brand and model.
Rheem offers extensive warranties of up to a decade on parts and labour for electric and gas heaters, as well as solar hot water units for single-family homes. Heat pump and solar hot water systems often come with slightly longer coverage of up to 12 years.
Often, Warranty periods may include lifetime labour for efficient heating system operation, with a definite term for labour warranty. The parts warranty covering replacement costs typically exceeds the labour warranty, which usually spans 1-2 years, ensuring repair costs are covered.
Some manufacturers offer extended warranty options for purchase to lengthen the parts and labour coverage periods related to hot water heat. Evaluate extended warranty costs judiciously as system failure risk increases over time, potentially incurring considerable expenses.
What is covered under a standard hot water system warranty
A standard hot water system warranty typically covers the following components and services:
- Water storage tank
- Heating elements
- Thermostats and control units
- Valves and fittings
- Electrical parts like pumps and circuit boards
- Labour and call-out fees for the first 1-2 years
The inclusions, like tank warranty, can vary slightly between brands and models. But as a general rule, a standard warranty on a storage or continuous flow water heater will cover faulty parts and repair work stemming from manufacturing defects that cause premature failure during normal use.
Factors like water quality or poor maintenance that shorten system lifespan are not covered under Australian regulations. Corrosion from inadequate water chemistry causing tank lining damage over time is not covered under warranty or eligible for compensation. Pro-rata warranties may offer compensation for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or costs, which does amount to major failure responsibilities, translating to more out-of-pocket expenses over time.
It’s important to check the fine print, mindful of Australian consumer law, of your specific hot water system’s warranty documentation to understand more about what is and isn’t included in your coverage.
Common exclusions from hot water system warranties
There are several common situations and issues that standard hot water system warranties do not cover. Understanding these exclusions, which come with guarantees enshrined in Australian consumer law, is crucial to avoid voiding your warranty coverage.
Typical exclusions include:
- Normal wear and tear over time, influenced by your water conditions
- Corrosion or faults due to water chemistry/quality issues
- Lack of proper maintenance as per the manufacturer’s instructions
- Damage caused by incorrect use or operation
- Faults resulting from improper installation by unqualified technicians
- Issues caused by events outside the manufacturer’s control e.g. power surges
Hot water system warranties fundamentally cover what does amount to a major failure due to manufacturing defects under normal use, although the scope of coverage can vary. If lack of maintenance or water quality shortens the lifespan from what would usually be expected, it would not be addressed under warranty.
If an unlicensed or untrained technician installs or services the unit incorrectly, this may void coverage, leading to dilemmas where goods repaired or replaced are not protected under the warranty. Using the hot water system for unintended purposes, outside its specified design parameters, could also invalidate a warranty.
Checking your hot water heater warranty documentation is key to comprehending the coverage we receive and ensuring you are well-prepared before any issues arise.
Making a claim under your hot water system warranty
In the event of a fault, it’s crucial to promptly lodge a warranty claim for your water heater by contacting the manufacturer or installer directly.
the process, have the following information ready:
- Model number of your new hot water service system
- Serial number or identification details
- Original proof of purchase showing the date installation was completed
- Documentation of all scheduled maintenance performed
- Details about the nature of the fault or failure
Ensure to have this information on hand when you promptly call us for comprehensive advice; our team is committed to providing support you can rely on for your hot water concerns in collaboration with the manufacturer/installer. They will usually pose initial inquiries to diagnose the issue and establish if it falls within the scope of the warranty we receive.
If additional scrutiny is warranted, you are also entitled to have an authorised technician visit your property to examine the unit and pinpoint necessary fixes, ensuring also entitled goods repaired meet the expected service levels under warranty terms. Timeframes can vary greatly depending on the brand and location, when you can make a claim.
Should the issue be classified as a manufacturing defect within warranty bounds, the terms conditions of your specific warranty might provide a potential replacement refund for a major failure at no extra cost.
You can remain confident of outstanding service when you please select a reliable provider such as Marrickville Plumbing, especially when dealing with claims to home warranty companies or understanding the nuances of your coverage. Our service team will inspect your system and engage with brands and manufacturers to ensure it’s done with meticulous care and precision should your circumstances necessitate a claim.
Factors impacting hot water system warranty validity
Several crucial factors can affect the validity of a hot water system warranty or completely nullify the coverage if not properly addressed:
Water Quality and Chemistry
If mineral deposits, sediment or corrosion occurs due to poor water supply quality or chemistry, Poor water quality can lead to premature damage to components such as heating elements, anodes, and tank liners, leading to warranty claims. Most warranties do not cover the gradual deterioration from tankless water systems, particularly when water quality issues over time do not result in a classified major failure.
To uphold warranty validity, Maintain water chemistry within manufacturer-recommended levels of pH, dissolved solids, and hardness as detailed in warranty documentation. Anodes may need replacing and heaters de-scaled more frequently in hard water areas.
Lack of Maintenance
Routine servicing of new water systems, including replacing critical components like the relief valve and sacrificial anodes over time, and ensuring your water heater can operate efficiently every 1-2 years is crucial. Neglecting prescribed maintenance, leading to subpar quality, breaches warranty conditions and risks voiding coverage.
Maintain a record of all scheduled maintenance as evidence for warranty claims and to obtain information about your system’s well-being. DIY maintenance is not advisable as using unqualified personnel may void coverage.
An unlicensed technician’s installation or deviation from manufacturer guidelines can nullify your hot water system warranty. Using unapproved parts that do not meet required standards could also invalidate coverage.
Ensure licensed plumbers install hot water units in compliance with plumbing codes to maintain warranty protection.
Checking your warranty terms before installation and maintaining your system properly over time is key to avoiding voiding your hot water heater warranty coverage.
Extending your hot water system warranty
Homeowners can extend their hot water system warranty through manufacturers, provided they maintain the heater as per warranty guidelines.
Brands such as Rheem offer warranty extensions for additional labour coverage, which can extend the original warranty by up to five years. This provides longer assurance against component defects and premature failures.
Typically, the manufacturer’s extended warranty, which includes repair replacement options, must be purchased at the time of installation to upgrade the cover. Adding an extension is optional but may be beneficial for:
- High-use households with multiple bathrooms
- Expensive or advanced system types e.g. solar hot water
- People intending to remain in the home long-term
Extended warranty costs differ by brand and model, with additional coverage years typically available at reduced rates. For extended warranty availability, consult with manufacturers such as Bosch, Rinnai, or Dux for further security.
Hot water system warranties vs home insurance
Hot water system warranties and home insurance policies provide different protection against damages and system breakdowns.
A hot water system warranty covers repair and replacement of components in the event of defects or failures stemming from manufacturing or installation faults, which we receive service for. Home insurance generally covers sudden damage from events like floods, storms, or fires, protecting against foreseeable loss and damage, while a quality failure does not fall under these categories.
If a part malfunctions due to a manufacturing issue within the warranty coverage period, Your warranty coverage entitles you to a replacement or refund should a repair fail, guaranteeing a resolution to the issue. But if a tree falls and dents your hot water tank during a storm, or any other reasonably unexpected events occur, your home insurance policy would likely pay for repairs or replacement in this situation.
Hot water system warranties focus on your heater while home warranties cover a wider array of home components and items. The hot water system warranty can span a defined period of years, whereas home insurance renews annually in most cases.
In some scenarios, an issue could potentially be addressed under either the hot water warranty or home insurance. For example, do water heater warranties apply if a pipe bursts and causes water damage as a result of a faulty valve? Check your policy documents to understand exactly what circumstances are covered, including issues related to water heat.
Rather than relying on just one or the other, Comprehensive water heater warranties paired with options like american home shield provide homeowners with robust protection against a range of damages or malfunctions affecting water heaters.