Tankless Water Heaters
Tankless water heaters, also called demand or instantaneous water heaters, heat water on demand without the use of traditional storage tanks. Tank water heaters generate standby heat losses by keeping storage tanks full of hot water, even when hot water is not required. Devoid of storage tanks, tankless water heaters supply hot water only when needed and thereby cut the standby energy losses associated with traditional storage tanks.
Interested in installing a tankless water heater? Submit the form on your right and receive multiple quotes.
How a Tankless Water Heater Works
When an electric or gas tankless water heater is fed with cold water, a flow activated switch turns on a heat exchanger responsible for heating up the water to desired temperature. Electric resistance heating coils function as heat exchangers in electric units while gas fired burners using natural gas or propane are heat exchangers for tankless gas heaters.
Energy Efficiency Maximization
Sizing and installation are key requirements in optimizing the energy efficiency of your tankless water heater. For this reason it is highly recommended to let professional plumbers handle the installation work on your behalf, even if you are a do-it-yourself fan.
For proper sizing the following variables need to be factored in:
- Volume of water (measured as flow rate in GPM) the unit will be required to heat
- Cold water temperature entering the unit
- The ideal temperature of hot water coming out of the unit
The above factors will determine the correct type of tankless water heater suited to your home.
Types of Tankless Water Heaters
Electric or gas tankless units come in two main types: Point Of Use(POU) or Whole House.
These units can be installed throughout the household at various points of use such as under kitchen sinks, bathroom faucets and showers. POU tankless units are dedicated use heaters and therefore supply hot water to a single fixture at a time.
Whole house units have a higher GPM flow rate and therefore the capacity to serve more than one fixture at a time for simultaneous demands of hot water. The flow rate will determine the size and number of whole house heaters for your property.
Gas versus Electrical Tankless Units
|Installation Costs||Special venting requirements push up installation costs and may prolong return on investment period||Cheaper than gas due to no venting requirements|
|Operating Costs||Unstable operating costs as gas rates are predicated to rise drastically in the future||Already cheaper to run than propane gas in many areas - electricity costs are considered more stable and are expected to increase in a much slower rate than future gas prices|
|Flow Rates||As much as 8 GPM or even higher in warm climates||
|Venting||required||no venting required|
|Maintenance||Yearly maintenance||no maintenance|
Despite having high installation costs, properly sized and professionally installed tankless water heaters will provide households with long term energy saving and unlimited supply of hot water on demand.
Does your tankless water heater need repair? Just submit the form on your right and receive plumbing estimates
Tankless Water Heaters Brands
- Bradford White
- General Electric
- Monitor Products
- Stiebel Eltron