As you prepare to invest in a new hot water heater, the challenge is often to find one that can meet your requirements. Tankless water heaters can actually fit a wide range of water-heating needs and have plenty of benefits, including their energy efficiency. Read on for five tankless water heater benefits.
How Tankless Water Heaters Work
Most homeowners are familiar with conventional water heaters, which keep a constant amount of hot water in the tank. A tankless water heater heats up the water as it flows through on its way to you. As the water passes through the pipes, an electric element or gas burner quickly brings the water up to the proper temperature.
The average tankless heater is able to provide hot water at about two to five gallons per minute. Larger families may want to consider a gas-fired tankless water heater instead of an electric model as they have a higher flow rate.
5 Benefits of a Tankless Water Heater
If this is something you’re considering for your home, you’ll be happy to hear there are plenty of benefits of a tankless water heater:
1. They Take Up Less Space
A tankless unit is designed to be compact and can be fixed to a wall in an alcove or cabinet. Some homeowners even choose to have it installed outside of their property with an anti-freeze kit. This can be of particular use to owners who have smaller properties and need to be smart with their space.
2. They’re Safe and Clean
Conventional hot water heaters rely on a tank, which means water collects in a contained space. If the water isn’t used in a set period of time, it can become stagnant. This allows rust and bacteria to collect in the tank and could cost the owner in maintenance fees.
Since water is only moving through a tankless water heater when the water is being used, the water doesn’t have the chance to become stagnant. This makes tankless models a safer and cleaner option when compared to tank water heaters.
3. They’re Known for Their Durability and Lifespan
Tankless hot water heaters also benefit from being particularly durable and low-maintenance. Requiring only annual cleaning of their coils, these heaters continue to run efficiently with minimal effort on your part. If they do malfunction, the parts are easy to find at local hardware stores or through a professional plumber. Long-lasting units typically have a lifespan of up to 20 years.
4. They Have a High Potential Output
Many families use a lot of water at once, especially when everyone is getting ready in the morning. Some tankless water heaters heat 13.2 gallons every minute, and multiple units may be combined to produce even more hot water on those busy mornings. As these heaters can produce a constant stream of hot water, they eliminate the risk of running out of hot water and having to wait for water to heat up before you can hop in the shower!
5. They’re Energy-Efficient and Environmentally Friendly
An important factor when purchasing any appliance is how much it will cost to run. As tankless units are extremely energy-efficient, running at between 83% and 94% efficiency, they can reduce your carbon footprint as well as your energy bills.
They cost so much less to run because they only pull enough energy to heat the water required at a specific point in time. It’s a benefit of tankless water heaters that your home, your wallet, and the environment will thank you for.
Disadvantages of a Tankless Water Heater
While there are plenty of benefits of a tankless water heater, there are some drawbacks as well. For many, the benefits outweigh the disadvantages, but it’s still important to get the whole picture, so you can make the right decision for your family.
They Can’t Always Keep Up with Demand
Even though tankless hot water heaters can put out quite a bit of water in a short period of time, they still can’t always keep up with the demands of large families. Even the largest gas-fired model won’t be able to supply enough hot water for these households. You may run into problems if you’re trying to run the dishwasher and take a shower at the same time.
This disadvantage can be overcome by installing separate water heaters specifically for appliances and other hot water devices. You can also consider connecting multiple water heaters in parallel for simultaneous demands.
Pilot Lights Could Cause a Loss in Energy
Tankless models put some of their energy toward pilot lights. In some models, this could cancel out the benefit of being energy-efficient when it comes to your utility bills.
Electric tankless water heaters tend to have lower water flow rates than their gas model counterparts. Yet gas usually burns through pilot lights quickly. The actual cost of operating the pilot light varies from model to model, so you should weigh the pros and cons of each type before coming to a decision.
One way to combat this is to turn off the continuously running pilot light when you’re not using the water.
They Can Cost More Upfront
Most tankless water heaters cost more upfront than tank heaters. They tend to be more expensive to purchase and install than conventional units.
Those costs are sometimes offset by their longer life expectancy. You can expect yours to last for 20 years or more, compared to the 10 to 15 years of conventional water heaters.
If it’s time to install a new water heater, it’s a good idea to consider the benefits of a tankless water heater. Taking up less space, the right appliance can lower the amount of energy and water you use. A tankless water heater could be an excellent investment if you’re looking to save a little green while going green.
It’s best to talk to a professional about what size and type of water heater is best for your home. Speak to our water heater experts at C&W Plumbing to see how you can benefit from installing a tankless water heater in your home. To schedule a consultation, call 972-395-2597.
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