Tankless or conventional water heaters: Which is best for you?

Published On: May 6, 2015Categories: Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters first arrived on the North American marketplace in the early 1980s, but primitive technology limited their popularity until much more recently. Homeowners faced with unexpected plumbing repairs need good, honest, non-technical information in order to make the best buying decisions. That’s why we’re offering you:

Tankless 101

Most people are familiar with conventional water-heating equipment – that large storage tank occupying an entire closet, or that clanks and bangs in the basement.

Tankless options are just that, systems which don’t have a storage tank, but, rather, heat water only when it’s needed, such as when a tap is turned on, or equipment (such as a dishwasher of laundry machine) creates demand. This type of function is also called by a variety of other names, including instantaneous, inline and on-demand.

How it Works

Conventional equipment heats water that isn’t needed, then stores it until somebody turns on a tap. There are three major disadvantages to this system:

Wasted cash. Heat is inevitably lost from stored water, no matter how well the tank is insulated.

Wasted space. Large families need large tanks, which take up space that could be better used.

Wasted time. If the tank is located well away from a sink, shower or other appliance, it can take time for hot water to reach its point of use (which also involves water- and fuel-usage penalties).

Pros and Cons

Tankless units instantly heat water as it flows through them. No hot water is retained, so no energy is lost. Other advantages include:

  • They can be installed immediately beside the point of use, so there’s no waiting, and no waste.
  • Flow is always plentiful, whereas conventional tank systems typically restrict pressure quite noticeably
  • Energy savings are immediate, upon removal of older equipment.

Tankless systems can have a higher initial cost, both in terms of equipment purchase and installation. Beyond that, the only major disadvantage to tankless technology was an inability to serve multiple points of use simultaneously. This failing has been lessened considerably by design advances.

Modern tankless units can supply large households, where everyone gets up for work or school at the same time. These modern units can provide showers, sinks and dishwashers simultaneously while saving energy.

If you’re considering a tankless hot water heater but have questions, we hope you’ll give us a call at 877-768-7239. We’ll help you make the right decision that’s perfect for what your family needs. We serve all of Northeast Ohio, offering expert installation and removal of your old equipment. Call today to learn more or to schedule an appointment.

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