If you’ve been the last in line to bathe, then you, my unlucky friend, have experienced the frigid shower that comes when you’re “out” of hot water. With a storage water heater, one that collects and stores hot water, this can be a common occurrence. If you’re looking to replace your water heater or if it’s been about ten years since you’ve replaced it, you could be wasting money (and missing out on the comfort of a hot shower!) by sticking by your storage water heater. Tankless heaters, or on-demand heaters, provide water only when necessary, eliminating the need for continual water heating and the need for a water storage tank. Say goodbye to cold showers, and hello to energy savings.
How do they work?
When a hot water tap is turned on, the water travels through a pipe into your unit. If you’re washing dishes, the water will travel to your sink. As it’s traveling through the pipes, either a gas burner or an electric unit heat the water. Since the water is created on-demand, you won’t have to wait for a water storage tank to fill up. Most tankless heaters can produce two to five gallons of hot water per minute. Most tankless heaters also usually keep a small amount of heater water already stored – about a gallon – so you won’t be left waiting for the water to heat up for most small tasks.
Compare that to the traditional storage heaters, which store heated water for eight to ten hours a day when no one is home to use that water. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that 15 to 25% of the energy consumed in homes goes to heating the water. If your household uses a moderate amount of water a day – around 41 gallons, or if you’re not taking long scalding showers or running the dishwasher every evening – tankless heaters can be 28 – 24% more energy efficient than a storage tank.
What do they cost?
While the upfront cost of a tankless water heater is higher than a traditional storage heater, they pay for themselves after just a few years. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, for the average family, a tankless water heater can save an average family $100 a year on their energy bill. That really adds up considering the average lifespan of a tankless heater is 20 years, and because there is no storage tank, they are made of parts that are more easily replaced than storage tanks that typically only have a 10 to 15 year lifespan.
Covenant AC is your heating and cooling expert, so if you have any more questions about switching to a tankless water heater- and turning on your energy savings- contact us today.