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How Old is My Bradford White Water Heater? – Average Age

Fact checked by Stephen Conklin

how old is my bradford white water heater

Are you one of those people who always find themselves asking, how old is my Bradford White water heater? The Pennsylvania-based, employee-owned water heater company has been around since 1881. That is why it is natural for some people to ask how old their water heaters are now.

Knowing the Bradford White water heater age helps you determine if it is time for a replacement. You can also take precautionary measures to extend the water heater’s lifespan by a few more years.

Whatever the reason, determining your Bradford White water heater’s age is easy-peasy.

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How Do I Check My Bradford White Water Heater’s Age


There are two ways you can determine the age of Bradford White water heater.

The first one involves deciphering the water heater’s serial number. Manufacturers put serial numbers in their products to differentiate their models from others. It is not that different from your fingerprint. It is yours, and no other person has exactly the same fingerprint pattern.

The same is true with Bradford White water heaters. They also have serial numbers to distinguish one unit from another.

You can check your Bradford White water heater’s serial number on the tank’s rating plate. The rating plate gives you several pieces of information about the water heater, including its model number and serial number.

You can locate the rating sticker on a tank unit’s midsection. A Bradford White tankless water heater may also have the rating plate on the unit’s lower third portion.

The Bradford White water heater serial number consists of two letters and seven or eight numbers, depending on the Bradford White manufacture date. Water heaters with a seven-digit numeric code were produced before December 2007.

All water heaters the brand manufactured from then on have an eight-digit number sequence.

  • You can decipher the age of your appliance by analyzing the alphanumeric sequence.
  • If you do not like to do that, you can always search online by typing your water heater’s serial number. It is a straightforward process that should give you the information you require in seconds.

What Does the First Letter of the Bradford White Water Heater’s Serial Number Indicate


Looking at the first letter will give you an idea of the water heater’s production year.

Bradford White began using its alphanumeric serial number in 1984 with the letter A. Hence, you can expect a water heater manufactured in 1988 to have the letter E as the first letter in the alphanumeric sequence.

However, you must realize that the company did not use the following letters in its year sequencing: I, O, Q, R, U, and V. It leaves the water heater with only 20 letters to use.

That is why products manufactured in 1984 and 2004 have the same first letter. The same is true with water heaters in 1986 and 2006, and so on.

What Does the Second Letter of the Bradford White Water Heater’s Serial Number Indicate

The second letter shows its month of manufacture. You can think of the two letters as the Bradford White water heater date code.

Like the first letter that uses only 20 letters, the second letter only uses the letters A to M (except the letter I) to denote the 12 months we have in a year.

Hence, if the first two letters of the alphanumeric sequence are JC, you know that Bradford White manufactured the water heater in March (letter C) 1992 or 2012 (letter J).

It would be easy to determine the Bradford White water heater’s age at this point. Suppose your water heater has XB for the first two letters. In that case, you can say your water heater is now over 20 years old (X=2001, B=February).

What Does the Number Sequence of the Bradford White Water Heater’s Serial Number Indicate

The number chain after the first two letters in a Bradford White water heater’s serial number indicates the product’s order in the manufacturing process.

For example, suppose your water heater has the serial number XB18790972. In that case, you know that the Bradford White water heater is the 18,790,972nd unit it produced in February 2001.


Determining how old is my Bradford White water heater is as easy as looking at the device’s serial number and deciphering it. It would be wise to remember the following.

  • The first letter corresponds to the production year, starting with 1984 and excluding I, O, Q, R, U, and V.
  • The second letter indicates the water heater’s production month, using only A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, J, K, L, and M.
  • The number sequence can have seven digits (models before December 2007) or eight digits (units after December 2007).

Why don’t you check out your unit today?

Read more: Guide to determine the age of AO water heater and Whirlpool water heater.

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