Tankless water heaters are just what they sound like—hot water without a tank. Instead of heating water and then storing it in a large tank till you’re ready to use it, a tankless water heater heats on-demand, allowing for a steady flow of hot water whenever you need it. Tankless water heaters definitely offer some advantages over tanked heaters, including increased energy efficiency, a constant supply of hot water, and the ability to have multiple units in one house to maximize hot water production.
How Tankless Water Heaters Work
Tankless water heaters can be installed just about anywhere—because there’s no tank, it takes up little or no floor space. Typically, however, the unit will be installed close to your electrical panel to minimize the amount of wiring required. Many homeowners will have it mounted to the wall in the same location as their previous tank water heater.
The unit itself consists of a gas-powered or electric heating coil surrounding the water pipe that activates when the hot water tap is turned on. Cold water is diverted to this pipe and is heated on demand. This way, hot water is available shortly after activating the tap, at a flow rate that easily manages one or possibly multiple outputs at the same time.
Pros and Cons of Tankless Water Heaters
Deciding on the right water heating system for your home will depend heavily on your household’s needs. One of the biggest pros of a tankless water heater is that it’s more energy-efficient, because it only uses energy to heat the water you actually use, as opposed to heating in bulk and then storing. If your family uses fewer than 41 gallons of hot water per day, a tankless water heater can be up to 34% more energy efficient than a conventional tank water heater, and if you install a tankless heater at each tap, that could increase to up to 50% more efficiency. The savings on energy—and therefore on your energy bill—are even more marked if you choose electric water heaters rather than gas; gas heaters use a bit more energy to power a constant pilot light, though they can be more effective at immediate heat production.
Because there is so much variety in the size and style of tankless water heaters, you are able to customize a system that works best for your household, whether that’s numerous small units throughout the home or a larger, whole-house system. Regardless of the configuration you choose, the spatial footprint is much smaller than a tank water heater, which means it won’t take up as much floorspace, freeing up even more valuable space in your home.
Tankless water heaters often have a higher initial investment than tank water heaters. However, the longevity and efficiency of tankless water heaters will contribute to offsetting the initial cost. To make getting a tankless water heater even easier for you, Simply Green Home Services has a $0 upfront lease-to-own financing program, which gives you an affordable monthly payment.
Depending on the choice of gas vs. electric heaters, it is worth noting that a power outage may impact your ability to access hot water. This is nothing new to the average homeowner, but tanked water heaters often retain a small supply of hot water that can, for short outages, make the difference between a warm or a cold shower. That being said, that same quality—retaining a supply of heated water available at all times—also contributes to less energy efficiency, as maintaining a heated supply requires consistent power use. Whether you go tankless or tank, the options are endless. Interested in finding out more about your water heating options? Contact Simply Green Home Services today for expert advice about how to best serve your family’s water heating needs and still make an economical, energy-efficient decision!