Water Heater Installation Cost Calculator

Don’t let your remodeling budget go over-board by hidden surprises – understand what the average installed costs for a hot water heater is in your zip code by using our easy to use calculator.

As an experienced licensed home improvement contractor, I know first hand what it should cost for various levels — from Basic, Better, and of course the best.

The hot water heater calculator will provide you with up to date pricing for your area. Simply enter your zip code and the number of units, then click update and you will see a breakdown on what it should cost to have a new hot water heater installed onto your home

Hot Water Heater Costs Zip Code Units
Basic Better Best
Hot Water Heater – Material Prices $330.00 – $450.00 $550.00 – $750.00 $800.00 – $1200.00
Hot Water Heater – Installation Cost $750.00 – $900.00 $1200.00 – $1450.00 $1500.00 – $2350.00
Hot Water Heater – Total $1080.00 – $1350.00 $1750.00 – $2200.00 $2300.00 – $3550.00
Hot Water Heater – Total Average Cost per Unit $1215.00 $1975.00 $2925.00

How much does it cost to install a water heater?

The average water heater installation cost is between $800 and $1,200, not including the hot water tank. Depending on if you choose a 40 or 50 gallon tank size, a water heater cost $300 and $1,500 on the low and high-end. Labor costs of a HVAC company ranges between $75 to $150 per hr.

Very few home owners don’t realize how important a solid working water heater is, until it stops working – hopefully, not in the middle of a shower… Having said that, a general rule of thumb is to know that the life-span of a water heater is roughly 10-15 years.

How to know when your water heater needs replacing?

  1. There isn’t enough hot water
  2. The water appears rusty – this is due to sediment buildup from over the years
  3. Noises, as sediment builds up the contaminants in the tank heat and cool causing noises in the tank.
  4. Leaks – this happens a lot in older units as the tanks age, the base begins to rot out and leak
  5. Check the age of your unit by looking at the first two serial numbers on your tank, this will represent the year manufactured. If not, look up the model unit.

Tank vs Tankless systems

Tankless water heater systems are considered to be the top-dogs in energy efficiency, however, there are some pros and cons to owning one and I personally do. For one, the cost of tankless water heater installation is about 3x that of traditional hot water tank.  Secondly, you’ll find it hard to run multiple appliances at once consuming hot water – tankless just can’t keep up with a large family. I own a Rinnai tankless gas heater system with a family of four perfectly fine with the occasional loss of hot water – not enough to be upset about. I save on average a $100 per year over a traditional water tank setup.

Tank water heaters these are your traditional heater systems that hold a large reserve of water that’s being constantly heated to maintain hot water. They are cheaper to purchase and install, but this system will cost you more energy in the long-run. Generally, a 40-gallon tank will provide enough hot water for 2-3 people and a 50-gallon will work for 3-4 people. 80-gallon systems are usually for a family of 5 or more.

 Hot Water Heaters – Pricing and Installation Cost Checklist

  • Expect the hot water heater prices to fluctuate between various companies – each and every company have different operation expenses and over-head.
  • Try to get prices in late Fall, early winter – you should expect aggressive pricing discounts by waiting for a contractor’s down season.
  • Try to budget and additional 7-15% more on top of what our calculator gives out for hot water heater costs.
  • Visit every supply house that sell your particular brand of hot water heater and try to negotiate a better price with each supplier – I save on average 20%.
  • A hot water heater installation isn’t an easy task to perform and can leave you with a sore back. You might find it more cost effective to hire a HVAC contractor to perform the work for you. HVAC companies will most always get better prices on Hot Water tanks — saving your back and additional costs of hot water tank, so shop around, ask your neighbors if they can recommend someone.

View Other Water Heater and Filtration Costs: From Gas, Electric, Tankless & More

  • Electric
  • Gas
  • Water Filtration

External References:

  1. Energy.gov — Energy Cost Calculator for Electric and Gas Water Heaters. Added July 17, 2015
  2. Hud Path — Volume 8 Rehab guide – Estimating HVAC/ Plumbing

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