What Are the Benefits of a Tankless Hot Water Heater?
Is a tankless hot water heater the same as hot-water-on-demand?
Yes. Tankless water heaters are demand-type water heaters, providing hot water “on-demand.” Instead of constantly heating water in a tank, regardless of whether or not it is needed in the home at the moment, tankless hot water heaters only heat water when there is a demand for it in the home.
How do tankless hot water heaters work?
When hot water is needed somewhere in the home, a tankless water heater goes to work. Tankless water heaters can be electric or run on gas. Cold water flows through a pipe into the heater and is rapidly heated by an electric element or gas burner as it passes through.
Does having a tankless hot water heater mean I’ll never run out of hot water?
With a traditional storage water heater, you can drain the tank. When that happens it not only takes time for the tank to refill, it takes time for the water to reheat. With a tankless water heater, you will never drain a tank because there is no tank to drain. The only problem you may have with insufficient hot water is if too much demand is put on the heater. Gas-fired tankless water heaters produce the highest flow rates; the typical tankless heater provides hot water at a rate of 2-5 gallons per minute. If someone tries to run the dishwasher while you are in the shower, you could have a problem. To avoid this problem, separate tankless water heaters can be installed for appliances, like dishwashers, that have high hot-water demand.
Will a tankless hot water heater cost less to run than a traditional hot water heater?
A tankless water heater will most likely cost more to purchase than a traditional storage water heater. However, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, tankless water heaters are more energy efficient than storage hot water heaters, so could save you money. The less hot water your household uses, the greater your energy-efficiency improvement. A tankless water heater is 24%-34% more energy-efficient for a home that uses less than 42 gallons of hot water per day, while it is 8%-14% more efficient for a household that uses around 86 gallons of water daily. To achieve the greatest energy savings, 27%-50%, install a tankless water heater at each hot water outlet. ENERGY STAR qualified tankless water heaters can save a household an estimated $100 or more yearly.
Are there other hot water heater options?
The least practical option for our climate is a solar water heater, which would require a backup system. A heat pump works by moving heat from one place to another instead of generating heat directly; it would work best integrated to your home’s heating and cooling system. Another option for an integrated system is an indirect water heater that gets its heat from the furnace or boiler used to heat your home.
What should I do if I have more questions?
Feel free to call us! We can answer your plumbing and heating questions, and provide respectful clean service for your plumbing and heating jobs.