The Facts About Tankless Hot Water Heaters

Rising energy costs have us all thinking about ways we can reduce our usage and consumption– without reducing our quality of life.

In the average home, around 30% of the energy expenses can be accounted for by heating water. One way of reducing that cost is by installing a tankless water heater, which heats water on demand rather than constantly heating and storing it in a tank, thus conserving energy when not in use.

Tankless heaters use high-powered burners to heat water quickly as it passes through a heat exchanger, and they can average around 20% more energy-efficient than gas powered storage tank models, thus saving you money on your utility bill as well as reducing your impact on the environment.

Anywhere from 20-40% of the energy used by a storage tank model is wasted through thermal heat loss. In a tankless model, with no water being stored, this problem is almost completely eliminated. And a tankless model can run all day long while producing hot water; whereas a storage tank can be depleted by a long shower, a dishwasher, and a washing machine cycle, thus requiring a wait period as it builds water reserves back up.

Traditional heaters are generally set at extremely high temperatures (130°F or more) in order to reduce the wait time for hot water. Tankless heaters allow you to set the ongoing temperature closer to the level you will actually use it at, thus reducing the risk of accidental scalding and greatly reducing energy costs (a 10° reduction in temperature can result in about 4% savings in energy costs).

Tankless models typically handle hard water minerals and sediments better (helping your sewer and drain system too). By not storing water, they are not as prone to leaking or rupturing due to hard water scale accumulation, and this helps account for their longer warranties and life spans as compared to traditional storage tanks (20+ years for tankless models; 6-12 years for most storage tank models). And don’t forget the ancillary cost-savings– Tankless models require less plumber service over their lifetime.

And tankless models are much smaller, with electric models comparable in size to a briefcase. Storage tanks take up a lot of room and are costly to recycle.

It’s not usually cost-effective to replace a perfectly good traditional heater with a tankless model, but if your water heater is on its last legs, you might want to consider the upgrade to a tankless heater. Contact My Plumber today at 619-447-5556 to learn what options are best for you!