Looking for the best home warranty companies for water heaters?
Great, you’re in the right spot. In this guide, you’ll learn:
- Is it worth it to have a home warranty for a water heater?
- Which home warranty companies cover water heaters in their basic plans?
- What should you look for when picking the best home warranty for water heaters?
- And much more!
We’ve analyzed and reviewed 68 different home warranty options, and below are our recommendations for water heaters specific to your state. Want to find out which coverage is most suited for your needs? Continue reading!
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What's In This Guide?
This sounds easy. Every home warranty will cover something as common as a water heater, right? Wrong! You can definitely get coverage for your water heater, but it is not always included in a basic plan. Beyond that, service fees vary quite a bit, so you have to weigh the whole financial picture laid out in the service contract to make an informed decision.
A home warranty plan is different from your homeowners insurance policy. A home warranty covers standard wear and tear on home appliances and major systems, like air conditioning system, cooktop, dishwasher, garbage disposal, clothes washer, ductwork, and thermostat. Homeowners insurance covers damages from weather and other unexpected events that can hurt your home systems and appliances. Accidental and unexpected structural damage to your home is also only covered by a home insurance policy .
Home warranty coverage and home insurance are similar based on the fact that customers both have to pay a premium and deductible. A deductible is also known as a service call fee, which is something to think about as you consider overall costs and your budget.
Cold water is great for drinking, but you’d hate to be without hot water in your home for any length of time. Water heaters are important, but coverage varies. Unlike some systems or major appliances that are considered add-ons–like coverage for your pool or sump pump– in many plans, water heaters are part of either basic or premium plans without the need to add it on.
Top 5 Best Home Warranties For Water Heater Coverage
Do Warranty Plans Cover Water Heater Replacement?
Generally speaking, yes, a home warranty will cover the cost of replacing a water heater, up to a specified limit. Exclusions apply, so read the user agreement carefully. For instance, Choice Home Warranty will not cover tankless water heaters or commercial heaters over 75-gallon capacity. These exclusions are typical, but not universal, so dig into the specifics of each plan especially if you have an on-demand or solar water heater.
Also, if a water heater has not been maintained–for instance, if there is sediment buildup–often that will disqualify coverage. Read the fine print carefully so you understand what is covered and so that replacement costs don’t become a big surprise.
Did you know water heaters need yearly maintenance? Yep, they do! To make sure you qualify for repairs and especially replacement, make sure you maintain your water heater properly. Here is a helpful video from the fine people of This Old House with a water heater maintenance explainer:
Is Coverage For My Water Heater Worth It?
This is an excellent question. Let’s look at several factors that could play into your decision.
Home warranty purchase is all about risk assessment. In this instance, you have to think about more than just the cost of a water heater–which can be picked up at your local home center for as little as $300 or so, but if you are not handy with home repairs, the installation by a plumber or other service pro will be another fee, probably much more than the yearly cost of a home warranty.
Another factor: how old is your water heater? If it is relatively new–and covered under a manufacturers warranty–a home warranty for this specific system might not be necessary. But if it is older, a home warranty for a water heater might make sense. The average lifespan of a water heater is 10 – 15 years, though that is just an average, and some may not last that long. If you are thinking of selling your home, a home warranty to cover an aging water heater and, for instance, the HVAC system and kitchen appliances could be very attractive. Homebuyers will appreciate a year of coverage that relieves them of some of the worries a home purchase can create.
You might think water heaters would be covered under plumbing systems, but that is incorrect. They fall under a separate category of coverage.
Best Home Warranty For Water Heater Coverage?
Choice Home Warranty is our top pick for homeowners looking for a water heater coverage. Choice has more than 10 years of experience, extends support 24/7 and offers coverage at the basic level.
Home Warranty Costs
With prices ranging from around $400 to $700, the cost of the home warranty could pay for all or most of a water heater repair or replacement. And even with caps on spending for repairs or replacement on home repairs like a water heater, having fewer out-of-pocket costs can make a big difference when something as crucial as a water heater breaks down.
Does A Home Warranty Provider Usually Cover Pre-Existing Conditions?
Generally, home warranties do not cover pre-existing conditions. But what qualifies as a pre-existing condition on a water heater? So, if a water heater is not functioning right now, or it has failed in the past, it probably will not be covered.
How Soon Can You Use A Warranty For a Water Heater After Purchase?
The industry standard for the beginning of coverage is 30 days. Check with the service provider you are considering to confirm their coverage waiting period.
What Should You Look For When Picking The Best Home Warranty For Water Heaters?
Is Your Type of Water Heater Covered?
What kind of water heater do you have? Electric and gas are the two kinds of water heaters home warranty companies usually cover. But these days, solar may be the best energy source for your home. Lucky for you, tankless water heaters are becoming more and more popular. But, your home warranty provider may not be open to covering tankless water heaters.
This is something you need to keep in mind for coverage with any home warranty plan. You have to know your coverage options. For instance, all these items: air conditioner, ceiling fans, garage door opener, and well pump, may be covered, but at different dollar levels, or they may be add-ons.
What Will My Out-Of-Pocket Expense Be?
How much will the home warranty cover, and how much will you likely need to pay? For instance, Total Home Protection has a $500 cap on what they will pay out to repair or replace your water heater. If you have a $1,200 heater, that $500 will help, but don’t expect to get a comparable system without shelling out some extra dollars beyond the home warranty coverage.
Top Home Warranties For Water Heaters Reviewed
Choice Home Warranty
With Choice Home Warranty, you get water heater coverage with a basic plan. They have a very transparent service agreement, with a list of clearly delineated exclusions, so you have a very clear idea upfront about your coverage. You can get a free quote from them for your specific set of circumstances.
- Water Heater part of basic coverage
- Won’t deny coverage for old water heater
- Excludes tankless/on-demand water heaters
- Not available in 3 states
American Home Shield
American Home Shield offers water heater coverage in their Systems Plan, Combo Plan, or Build-Your-Own. It is not available through their separate Appliances Plan. Their plans cover the repair or replacement of components and parts of water heaters, including tankless water heaters, as well as wear and tear on circulation pumps. They do NOT cover auxiliary tanks or repairs or replacement of energy conservation units.
- On-demand water heaters covered
- Their BBB rating is a solid B
- Among the more expensive plans, starting at $49/month
- Service fees between $75 and $125
Select Home Warranty
Select Home Warranty has a B rating with the Better Business Bureau. So that’s great. However, their Bronze (basic) service plan does NOT cover the water heater. In fact, you have to skip both Bronze and Gold and get the Platinum Plan coverage to get water heater protection.
The good news is that Platinum coverage is less expensive–at $37.50 a month–than many other premium plans. Exclusions are similar to others. Not covered are solar or tankless water heating systems, leaks, and pumps.
- Coverage is available
- Platinum coverage less expensive than other premium coverage
- Basic plans do not cover water heaters
- Tankless water heaters excluded
Total Home Protection
The Total Home Protection basic plan covers the water heater. You have to dig a little on their website to find the service agreement with the details on Inclusions and exclusions. There is quite a list of exclusions, such as tankless hot water heaters, low boy and/or squat water heaters, and solar water heaters including all solar components and parts. Plus there is a $500 cap on repair or replacement costs.
- Water heater covered in the basic plan
- Clear about repair replacement cost cap
- $500 cap on repair/replacement of water heater per contract term
- Service agreement not easy to find
First American Home Warranty
First American Home Warranty does not cover a water heater in the basic plan. To even compare plans, you have to provide your contact information. Not cool, First American! So we did that for you, so you can have a sense of what is covered with their premium plan when it comes to water heater protection.
The good news is that they DO cover tankless water heaters, so if you have joined the ranks of on-demand water heater owners, you will be covered.
- Tankless heaters covered
- B+ rating with BBB
- Have to give up contact info to get basic information
- Available only in 35 states
Our Top Pick For a Home Warranty For Water Heaters
With solid coverage at the basic level, along with excellent customer service, our top pick is Choice Home Warranty.
But, if you live in Idaho, Wyoming, Montana or North Dakota, a home warranty that includes water heater coverage is essential. Check out our state pages for more recommendations based on your location.