Tankless water heaters have some significant benefits compared with traditional tanks. In the worlds of HVAC and plumbing, there’s always room for innovation. New systems and fixtures are constantly being invented in order to get water and heat travelling through your home in more energy efficient ways. There’s an appliance that straddles both of these worlds: the hot water heater. Here at DUB-L-EE, we do both plumbing and HVAC, so we want to tell you about one of the most interesting water heating innovations to come out in recent years: tankless hot water heaters. To help you understand, let’s take a brief look at how traditional hot water tanks work.
Bulky hot water tanks have been the lay of the land in Albuquerque and around the world for years. A lot of folks use natural gas to heat their water, but some might have tanks heated with electricity. Either way, the principle is the same: the water is slowly heated, then stored in the tank. The water is kept heated, so that it’s still hot when you need it.
There’s a couple of disadvantages to this system. The most obvious is that it’s being heated at all times. That’s because no matter how well insulated your water tank is, some heat is always going to escape. Tank water heaters consume a lot of energy over time as a result, and that means a bigger bill for you.
The constant heating of traditional tanks has another downside: deterioration. Mechanical wear and tear is inevitable when you run a machine constantly, and water heater tanks don’t stop running. That means their lifespan isn’t as high as it would be if they didn’t have to work nonstop.
The third problem is one I’m sure you’ve experienced: you run out of hot water. Water tanks heat water, but not very quickly; after all, they have to run constantly to maintain the water’s temperature. Tank heaters have become more efficient as the technology in them has become more advanced, but we can do better. There’s a water heater out there that eliminates all of the problems we just talked about: the tankless water heater.
Tankless Water Heaters
Tankless water heaters are much smaller than their older cousins – after all, they don’t have tanks! That begs the question: how are they storing the water you’ll need for your hot shower? They don’t.
Tankless water heaters are so efficient at heating water they can heat it on demand. As soon as you need hot water, the system fires up and heats your water within a second or two. That initial burst of heat takes a bit of energy, no doubt, but not nearly as much energy as it takes to keep gallons of water heated constantly 24/7.
You can easily see why tankless water heaters solve all the problems we talked about with traditional water heaters. They heat the water on demand, so there isn’t any worry about there being no hot water left. They consume less energy, and that means there’s less wear and tear; the system isn’t active at all times.
Another major advantage of tankless hot water heaters is that if they break down, you won’t have gallons of water suddenly flooding out into your home; water tanks, on the other hand, can have catastrophic failures that cause a lot of property damage.
Tankless hot water heaters aren’t all upside. There are a lot of businesses that tankless heaters won’t work for. There’s a bottleneck of how much water they can heat at once, so if you’re a restaurant expecting hot water to be sprayed on dishes round the clock while your customers wash their hands, you’ll probably need a tank. Tankless heaters also have a higher upfront cost, but the tradeoff is substantial. Most homeowners will save more in energy than they spend on the upfront cost if they stay in their home for the lifetime of the heater.
The Right Heater For You
We’re going to allow ourselves a small brag. One of the best things about DUB-L-EE is that we do HVAC, plumbing, and home renovation; that means we have a lot of experience to draw on, and we can take a holistic approach to your home’s plumbing and appliances. A tankless hot water heater might be right for you, but it might not be. The way your home is set up, how much hot water you use, your budget, and other factors might all affect whether or not you should go the tankless route.
We’ll be there to help you decide what kind of water heater is right for your home; we’ll go over a variety of options with you, and we’ll do the math on the pros and cons of each. Once you’ve decided what heater is going to suit your needs, we’ll get all of the necessary permits from the city and get it installed for you.
We’ll provide you with a clear estimate for the costs of the water heater and installation. We’ll discuss with you whether or not there are any adjustments that need to be made to your home’s electrical grid, or if any other changes need to be made. We’ll encourage you to ask any questions you might have, and we’ll make the entire process as transparent and easy to understand as possible.
Humans have become more aware of the value of conservation efforts – not just for their pocketbook, but for the planet, too. Tankless water heaters are a green solution that save you money, exactly the kind of innovation the world needs as we look to find better ways of using energy to maintain our standard of living. Whether your home is big or small, we’ll find a tankless heater that suits your needs; we’ll go over all the advantages and disadvantages of each option for you, and in the end, you’ll have a heater that works for your home.