Is a Tankless Water Heater the Best Solution?
A tankless water heater doesn’t have a storage tank to store preheated water in advance. Instead, water is heated the instant it is required.
How Tankless Water Heaters Work
A tankless water heater will heat cold water flowing through the system as soon as the hot water tap is turned on. The heating system can be either an electric element or a gas burner.
A typical tankless water heater will deliver around 2-5 gallons of water per minute, with gas able to handle larger capacities than electrical versions.
Advantages of Going Tankless
For large families demanding a lot from their hot water system, it may struggle with delivering the volume needed. However, if less than 40 gallons of water are used in a day, a tankless system can provide significant energy savings of around 30%. The energy savings drop to approximately 12% when water demand reaches about 90 gallons a day.
One way to get around dropping efficiency rates versus rising demand is to install a tankless water heater at every outlet, which can increase efficiency by as much as 50%. More units mean extra installation costs, but the energy savings will offset this.
Other Advantages of Going Tankless
The initial cost of a tankless water heater is more than a conventional hot water system. However, lower maintenance costs, energy savings, and longer service life bring the total cost of ownership down to comparable levels.
Conventional hot water systems will give you around ten years of reliable service, or 15 if you are lucky. A tankless water heater typically lasts about 20 years.
Using a Gas Tankless Water Heater
You will have the option to install either an electric or gas tankless water heater. Considerations need to be given to the pilot light, as this will be a factor in your energy costs.
In a conventional gas hot water system, the pilot light delivers heat to the water, so its energy is not wasted. A continually burning pilot light in a tankless heater is an energy loss. A few models include an Intermittent ignition device (IID), which gives you the option to turn the pilot light off when hot water is not required.
Tankless water heaters offer many advantages in energy savings, but they’re not the best solution for all situations. Discuss your options with PSI to discover how you can lower your energy costs by making the best choice in hot water system.