Tip & How-To about Heating & Cooling
In the past few years the tankless hot water heater has become much more popular. Should this type of water heater be used all the time for every job or is there some places that they just are not the right tool for the job?
Your water heater is something that you depend on everyday to give you a constant supply of hot water for the many things that you do. If you are building a new home or are just looking to replace an existing hot water tank then you need to look at all the possibilities to make a good decision about what your nest appliance should be.
Tankless or instant water heaters are a great way to make hot water. They will provide you with a constant somewhat limited supply of hot water. This means that the flow of the water is limited. Because of the way they heat the water instantly the volume of water running through the heater has to be controlled to get the temperature rise that you desire. The tankless water heater does not store any hot water. When it detects a flow of water in the water pipe the heater turns on and then it shut off when the flow stops. This feature will save energy if you only use water intermittently.
The downside of this type of water heater is seen if you need large flows of water at one time. The amount of fire that is needed to heat large volumes of water quickly is very high and it kills the efficiency that you expect from the unit. Also if you are continually using water then the instant water heater is not the way to go. Because the heater makes hot water so fast a high BTU flame is needed and the instant efficiency is not very good. The savings of this type of heater comes from it not storing water and keeping it hot from long periods of time till it is needed.
So if you are just using hot water a couple of times a day and most of the time the heater is just sitting there waiting for you the instant water heater may save you money. If you are using water a lot of the time or are using large volumes of water quickly then it probably will not be the appliance that you want. Also remember to check on the pricing of these tankless hot water heaters. They are very expensive to buy and install, often costing twice what a normal tank type heater would cost. Check to see if your pay back will be enough to cover the difference in the cost. In many situations the savings will be enough to justify the extra cost. And many times the savings will not be there. You need to research your options and make an informed decision.
Tankless hot water heaters are not well suited for every situation, but in many cases they are a very good money saving option.
Posted by D. Floyd... on
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