The Best Water Heater Warranty Coverage

Plumber repairing an hot-water heater

A water heater warranty comes with your new product. After it expires, a home warranty can continue protection. See what company provides the best coverage. | Photo Credit: Shutterstock © Minerva Studio

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You might not notice your home’s water heater until it breaks and you’re left with a cold shower. At first, you may be covered by a water heater warranty, but that may not last its lifespan.

Our team provides unbiased information on products and services available across a variety of industries, including options for top home warranty companies in the U.S. We evaluated several appliance warranties to find what providers offer the best water heater warranty and coverage. 

See why we chose American Home Shield and Select Home Warranty, then compare quotes between these industry leaders below.

In This Article:

Water Heater Warranty Overview

A water heater warranty is a manufacturer’s warranty that comes with a new product. Usually, the warranty period will be encoded in the model or serial number of the water heater. Depending on what company made the water heater, you may need to register your product for the warranty to apply. 

How long are water heaters under warranty? 

Water heaters installed for use by a single family are typically under warranty for six to 12 years.

How many years does a hot water heater last? 

Tank-style water heaters typically last eight to 12 years. Tankless water heaters can last more than 20 years. 

How much does it cost to replace a hot water heater? 

The average tank-style water heater costs around $400 for the unit and between $250 and $500 for the labor. Tankless water heaters are around $1,000 for a new unit, and labor costs tend to run between $450 and $1,200.

Water heater replacement isn’t cheap. A home warranty can offset those costs in the case of a broken or old water heater.

Home Warranty Resources

Water Heater Coverage with a Home Warranty

Home warranties give homeowners, buyers and sellers peace of mind in the event that an appliance or system needs repairs. Home warranties are not required, but having one helps save time and money. They also connect you with a licensed, insured professional who can repair or replace damaged or broken appliances or systems in your home. 

Water heater warranties and home warranties are different contracts. Home warranties are a separate purchase from your water heater and offer coverage when the manufacturer’s warranty doesn’t apply. They cover water heaters and other systems and appliances such as:

  • Clothes washers
  • Clothes dryers
  • Garbage disposals
  • Refrigerators
  • Stoves/ovens
  • Built-in microwaves
  • Cooktops
  • Dishwashers

Most home warranties can be purchased at any time regardless of the age of the home or how long the homeowners have lived in it. Generally, home warranties cost between $400 and $700 with service fees that range between $60 and $100 per call.

There are many advantages and some drawbacks to having a home warranty plan for the appliances and systems in your home:

For a small monthly fee and service call fee (usually a flat rate), you can receive repairs or replacements on covered appliances and systems you use every day.Most home warranty companies require you to wait 30 days between purchasing a policy and the start of your coverage. 
Most companies offer flexible plans for every budget type, plus several companies provide discounts and referral bonuses.Many warranty plans have coverage limitations or require you to purchase additional coverage for certain appliances and systems.
Many companies allow you to customize your plan, so you only cover exactly what you need. 
A majority of home warranty companies allow you to file a claim at any time, including nights, weekends and holidays. 

american home shield

Best Overall: American Home Shield

American Home Shield offers three plans. Its ShieldSilver Plan™ covers 14 major systems, including hot water heaters. The ShieldGold Plan™ covers the systems covered by the ShieldSilver Plan™ and adds coverage for major kitchen and laundry appliances up to $3,000. The ShieldPlatinum Plan™ covers all 23 systems and appliances in the ShieldGold Plan™ and adds $1,500 of roof-leak coverage. It also increases the coverage limit on appliances to $6,000.

Water heaters are covered under all three American Home Shield warranty plans. The online sample contract states that all components are covered, including tankless water heaters and circulating pumps. 

The ShieldSilver Plan™ also covers:

  • Air conditioning and ductwork
  • Heating and ductwork
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing (including stoppages)
  • Instant hot/cold water dispensers
  • Garbage disposals
  • Ceiling fans 
  • Doorbells

The ShieldGold Plan™ adds 9 essential appliances regardless of age, make or model, including:

  • Refrigerators
  • Ranges/ovens/cooktops
  • Clothes washers
  • Clothes dryers
  • Dishwashers
  • Built-in microwaves
  • Freestanding ice makers
  • Garage door openers

Warranty plans range from $49.99 per month to $59.99 per month. Service fees range from $75 to $125 per call and vary based on your monthly payment.

Offers coverage for items with undetectable pre-existing conditionsRequires 30-day waiting period before servicing starts
Sliding scale for service call costsCoverage limitations for air conditioning systems
Discounts available for referrals, additional properties and retail productsAdditional coverage required for some items like pools and pump systems
Coverage for tankless water heaters 

Find the Best Home Warranties for You

Detail of a technician using a wrench to tighten a fitting
Photo Credit: Shutterstock © Minerva Studio

Best for Value Shoppers: Select Home Warranty

Select Home Warranty is a great option for price-conscious consumers.

The company has three home warranty coverage plans: Bronze Care, Gold Care and Platinum Care. Platinum Care is the most popular plan and is a combination of the Gold and Bronze plans. Water heaters are only covered under the Gold and Platinum plans.

Gold Care also includes: 

  • Air conditioning
  • Heating 
  • Plumbing 
  • Electrical
  • Ductwork

Platinum Care adds:

  • Plumbing stoppage
  • Clothes washer
  • Clothes dryer
  • Garbage disposal
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove/oven
  • Built-in microwave oven
  • Cooktop
  • Dishwasher
  • Garage door opener
  • Ceiling fans

Plans range from $34 to $42 per month. If you pay the cost up front, you can get two free months of coverage. 

Claims can be made 24/7 by phone or online. Once the claim is received, you’ll pay a service fee, and Select Home Warranty will send a local licensed professional to repair or replace your covered item. 

Budget-friendly pricing and discounts for paying up frontRequires 30 day waiting period before servicing starts
Option to choose appliances only or systems onlyDoesn’t cover solar or tankless water heaters, leaks or pumps
Low coverage costs for add-ons like pumps or lawn sprinklers 

Further Reading:


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