The costs of utilities have always been on the rise, leaving conscientious homeowners scrambling for alternative solutions to the ever growing pains of water-usage and electricity. However, in the East County area of San Diego, a new technology has become a popular item among home buyers: the tankless water heater. Capable of lowering your home costs and energy usage by 25%, it isn’t hard to see why you should think about getting a tankless water heater. Here’s some basic information about them:
How Tankless Water Heaters Work:
Starting from the average hot water tank, hot water must push out cold water already in the pipes before it can reach its destination. This not only takes time but can also be an annoyance. The advantage of tankless water heaters is that hot water is there the instant the faucet, shower, or other device is turned on.
In large households, sometimes more than one tankless water heater is installed where there are excessive demands. This can include places such as hot tubs, remote bathrooms, a booster for a solar water heating system, and so forth. Either a gas or an electricity element is used for heating the water, which is provided at a rate of 2-5 gallons per minute.
Advantages of Tankless Water Heaters:
- They are 24-34 percent more energy efficient for homes using 41 or less gallons per day
- They are 8-14 percent more energy efficient for homes using around 85 gallons per day
- Most units have a life expectancy of more than 20 years compared to 10-15 years of the average storage water heater
- They do not waste energy with a constant pilot light, as a standard water tank does
- They are a space saver, small and wall-mounted
- They can be installed anywhere, including a basement, utility room or a garage
- More than one unit can be installed if required
- They do not require a storage tank
Installation and Maintenance:
To receive the most benefit from a tankless water heater it is extremely important that it be properly installed. This will assure that the optimum amount of energy savings is obtained. Installation involves things such as the local building code, fuel type, climate, and safety issues. Therefore, it is extremely important to have installation done by a licensed and qualified plumbing and heating contractor. It is not a good idea to try to install the unit yourself. An owner’s manual accompanies each new unit and will provide information regarding proper maintenance.
More and more modern homes are installing these units. They are not only practical but eliminate the irritation of standing by waiting for hot water to appear. As time goes on it is expected that the old tank type hot water heater will become obsolete.