The only way to really know how much your repair will cost is to hire a plumber to diagnose the problem.
However, we can tell you the average cost to repair a water heater in Michigan ranges from $200 to $700.
Why the big price range?
The cost to repair a water heater depends on the following factors:
- What’s wrong with your water heater
- The age of your water heater
- Your water heater warranty
- The quality of the plumber you hire
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Cost factor #1: What’s wrong with your water heater
As you can probably imagine, this is the biggest factor that affects cost.
Some water heater repairs are simple and easy-to-fix while others are complex and require more labor, which makes them more expensive.
To give you an idea of how water heater repair prices can vary, below are some common water heater repairs and their cost:
- Replacing a drain pan: $350-$500+
- Water heater flush: $80–$100+
- Broken thermostat: $350-$600+
- Faulty heating element: $250-400+
- Replacing anode rod: $200–$300+
- Broken thermocouple: $300+
- Leaks: If your tank water heater has a leak, it usually means you’ll need to replace the tank altogether.
Older water heaters (those over 10 years old) typically cost more to repair for the following reasons:
- Parts in old water heaters most likely need to be replaced instead of repaired
- It may be difficult to find replacement parts for some older systems
- An old system will likely have more than one part that needs to be replaced
Learn more about our water heater installations by visiting our traditional tank and tankless water heater pages.
Cost factor #3: Your water heater warranty
If your water heater warranty is still valid, you might not have to pay as much for a repair.
When you bought your water heater, it most likely came with a warranty from the manufacturer called a parts warranty. A parts warranty covers any parts that fail because of a manufacturer error. This type of warranty typically lasts anywhere from 2–10 years, depending on the manufacturer.
That said, most manufacturers have specific requirements to keep a warranty valid. If these requirements are not met, the parts warranty could be considered void.
The following are reasons a manufacturer could void your warranty:
- Your water heater was not installed according to local plumbing codes
- Your water heater has not had annual maintenance from a licensed plumber
- You never registered your water heater with the manufacturer
- Your water heater has been repaired with off-brand parts
- The output temperature on your water heater is much higher than what the manufacturer advises in the owner’s manual
Cost factor #4: The quality of the plumber you hire
As a good rule-of-thumb, the more experienced the plumber, the more expensive they’ll be.
However, if you need a water heater repair or replacement, you want to hire a plumber who will do the job right—the first time. That way, you won’t have to pay for the same service a few months down the road.
Look for a company that…
- Has good customer reviews on sites like Google, Facebook and Better Business Bureau (BBB)
- Can provide proof they are licensed and insured (check this on the BBB or on their website)
- Gives upfront, honest pricing—in writing—on ALL plumbing jobs
- Has guarantees revolving around their service and craftsmanship
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