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Tankless Water Heaters

Need to take a shower during a winter morning? Don’t worry about your quick hot water needs. Advancement in plumbing technology has made it possible to have hot water any time of the day, anywhere in the house! No more scheduling of hot water use in the house. Everyone can be supplied with hot water almost instantaneously! Introducing the new tankless water heater!

What are Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless hot water heaters can be a great solution to your home’s hot water needs. They instantaneously heat the water on demand, there’s no more waiting time; you get it when you need it.

Tankless water heaters are available in electric, natural gas or propane models. Point-of-use models can provide hot water for the sink; a whole house model can supply hot water to several bathrooms, sinks, washing machines and others, in an instant! The water flows through very hot heating elements and then is supplied directly to your faucet or shower. You will always have hot water anytime, and you'll have no fear about the possibility of a leak from the tank.

Get the one that’s right for you. Consider the type, gas or electric, which will suit your needs most, and the tank capacity you need; whatever the size, they work the same way.

These new innovation water heaters deliver hot water when it is required, without having to store the water in tanks. It is a great energy savings for the owner because the heaters don’t emit the energy costs that go with storage water heaters.

It costs merely a few dollars per month to run, and heating water usually accounts for 40% of the energy bill, which only means additional savings for you! They are more expensive than the conventional heaters, but they last longer.

How do Tankless Water Heaters Work?

New technology has crafted these innovative water heaters without storing the water in a tank. When the hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe into the unit, and the water is heated by either a gas or an electric element. Because of this, tankless water heaters provide a constant flow of hot water; there is no need to wait to fill up the storage tank with enough hot water. However, the output of a tankless water heater is limited by its flow rate.

A typical tankless water heater supplies hot water at a rate of 2–5 gallons per minute. In some cases where there is a simultaneous demand for hot water (like people showering at the same time while the washing machine is on), the heater may not be able to supply enough hot water. If this happens regularly, this problem can be solved by connecting several tankless water heaters for simultaneous demands of hot water, or just install a separate tankless water heater for the appliances.

Advantages

• For homes using more than 86 gallons of hot water every day, these heaters are about 8%-14% energy efficient than conventional storage tank heaters.
• For homes using less than 41 gallons of hot water every day, these heaters are about 24%-34% energy efficient than conventional storage tank heaters.
• An even greater energy savings of 27%–50% can be achieved if a demand water heater is installed at each hot water outlet.
• It is very efficient, and yet occupies a very small space; a tankless water heater can be installed on any wall or compact spaces. They can be installed on the interior or exterior wall of the home where it will not take a lot of space.
• Provides an endless flow of hot water. There’s no need to endure a freezing shower if you’re the last one out of bed.

Disadvantages

• Require a larger up-front investment; it costs more than the conventional water heater tank
• Can run short of hot water during busy days
• Needs airing to avoid overheating

How to Choose the Right Model

Determine which model is suited for your home. Consider these important points:

Water Flow Rate - Calculate how much hot water you will need at one time, which is called the flow rate. Flow rate is measured in gallons per minute (GPM). Check the flow rates for the hot water applications. To find the GPM you need, add the GPMs of the major hot water applications that you always use at the same time.

FunctionWhole house or Point of Use – Tankless water heaters are usually whole house systems, heating water as it is demanded. This kind of system can deliver hot water to more than one location at a time. Point of use systems are units that supply instant hot water to a particular location. These systems are used to supplement a whole house system when additional hot water is needed.

Fuel Type – Most water heaters are fueled by gas or electricity. Gas type requires a slightly larger up-front investment, must be vented outdoors for safety, cost less to operate, and not affected by power outages. Electric types usually cost less than gas models, easy to sustain, do not require venting, boils the water instantly, and rates high in energy factors.

Also consider additional features such as:

Self Cleaning - This feature is important to save time and prevent sediment buildup which will prolong tank life and sustain the heater’s efficiency for an extended period of time.
Recovery Speed - If your household uses a lot of hot water, it is good to consider a model with a fast recovery speed, which needs a shorter amount of time to heat the water.
Auto Shutoff Valve - This valve concerns only gas models. In case of a movement on the ground of a sudden considerable increase in the flow of gas, this valve halts the flow of gas, thereby preventing fires.

What are you waiting for? Save money and indulge in performance. These new tankless water heaters are made with the latest technology that provides optimum competence in energy and utility costs. It is a smart investment that will definitely increase the value of your homes with premium technology and energy efficiency. Make an appointment with your dependable professional plumber now to discuss your options.

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Hot Water Heaters 101

Choosing a compatible water heater for your living space is best done through a consultation with a professional technician to help you make an informed decision. Based on the information you gather, you can decide whether to buy a tank or tankless water heater.

The Role of Waters Heaters in Your Home

Whether you need to take a warm bath or shower, cook, wash clothes or do housework, water heaters play a major role in daily modern life. Surprisingly, water heaters have changed little in the past five decades since they were introduced to the market. Now manufactured with some specific refinements, modern heaters are greatly improved, having longer life spans, higher efficiency, and more safety features that minimize the risk of injury and property damage. Water heaters work by converting energy to heat, and then transferring that heat to water. Water heaters are connected to a cold water supply pipe and have at least one pipe for outgoing hot water which is then routed to taps and appliances throughout your house.

The Standard Water Heater

Although electric, propane, and solar-powered models of water heaters exist on the market, the most common water heater used in the United States is one fueled by natural gas. It consists of a steel tank with a heating element at the base and a flue extending down the middle of the tank to release the carbon monoxide that forms as a by-product of burning natural gas. This type of water heating tank also has some type of thermostat control on the tank's body that allows you to shut off the gas and control the pilot light. These thermostats are equipped with a temperature-controlled probe sensor that automatically shuts off the gas if it detects that the pilot light has gone out or fails to light. The inner lining of the tank is coated with vitreous glass to protect it from corrosion.

Despite of this protective coating, a small amount of the water heater's steel is exposed which still makes it vulnerable to rust. As a measure to protect the steel lining from rusting, manufacturers will install anode rods in the tanks, made of either magnesium or aluminum. By means of the electrolysis process, corrosion is diverted from forming inside the water heater and instead forms on the anode rods. however, the tank will rust if the anode rod is completely corroded unless the anode rod is replaced.

Energy Saving Water Heaters

The second highest source of energy usage in the home comes from the water heater. Unlike equipment that meets the minimum federal standard, certified ENERGY STAR water heaters can use 50 percent less energy. They are an easy choice for energy savings, performance, and reliability which can save you significant money on your utility bills. If you need to replace your current water heater, or are planning for an upgrade, consider a model that has earned the ENERGY STAR label.

Most homes have conventional water heaters that hold 55 gallons of water or less. If a standard water heater is going to be replaced with a more energy-efficient model, it may be an inch or two larger than the old one and can likely be placed in the same location.

Benefits of Using a Tank Water Heater

A traditional tank water heater has numerous benefits over a tankless model. First, they are much more affordable during initial installation. If connections are already in place, a tank water heater is very easy to install. Another tank benefit is that it provides you instant hot water for up to an hour throughout your home.

The Benefits of Using a Tankless Water Heater

Contrary to the cost of a tank unit, tankless water heaters initially costs a bit more at installation, but are more efficient long term. In actuality, the higher cost spent to install a tankless water heater pays for itself. You don’t have to fill a tank with water and heat it continuously because you only pay for the hot water you actually use. In some case, you can reduce your energy bills from using hot water by as much as 35 percent. Tankless water heaters are designed to last many years before needing replacement and require very little maintenance.

Making a Decision

Make sure you take all factors into consideration when the time comes to select a water heater for your home. Set a budget for your out-of-pocket installation cost and weigh this against your energy savings long term. Determine how much hot water you actually use every day and consider this factor with how much you're willing to pay on a monthly basis. Both water heater options offer several attractive benefits, but if you find that your monthly budget will end up costing you more than your long term expenses, your decision will be narrowed down based on these factors.

If you have a big demand for hot water in your home, and are using it to perform multiple tasks throughout your home at the same time, a larger tank water heater may be the best option. It's important to note, that purchasing a tankless water heater to fit this type of household environment may be incompatible to meet higher performance needs. An alternative option may involve installing more than one tankless water heater throughout your home to handle different levels of usage. However, following this course of action comes with more upfront expense with installation.

How the NAECA Impacts You

Since April 16th, 2015, the performance standards for appliances, including water heaters, has gotten stricter. According to the mandates set by the National Appliance and Energy Conservation Act (NAECA), virtually all residential gas, oil, electric and tankless gas water heaters are required to carry Energy Factor (EF) ratings that are higher than older models. If you decide to upgrade your water heater to comply with these new guidelines, or need help figuring out what type of water heater will work best within your budget, contact us for more information.

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Hot Water Heater Buying Guide

Selecting a new Hot Water Heater isn't something that most people do frequently. Therefore, it is a good idea to refresh your memory on the important features to focus on while shopping for a new Hot Water Heater. Looking at the various types of Hot Water Heaters, fuel sources, spacing requirements and accessories should provide an informative overview to help you make the right decision for your needs.

Types of Hot Water Heaters

Before purchasing a new Hot Water Heater, you'll want to consider the number of family members or how many people will be requiring hot water for showers on a daily basis. Be sure to consider that the more people in the household also increases the need for additional hot water for more loads of laundry and running the dishwasher more frequently.

Also, keep in mind that there are a variety of types of Hot Water Heaters that use various fuel sources, but you may be limited by which fuel sources are available where you live.

Storage Tank

The storage tank design has been around for years, and it is normally reasonably priced and available in a variety of stores and home centers. These may be purchased to run on natural gas, liquid propane or electricity.

In this unit, hot water is generated or heated in the storage tank. People purchase these models based on the number of gallons that the tank can hold and heat, which determines the size you'll want to purchase to provide adequate amounts of hot water when needed.

Always check the recovery rate on each unit you're considering. The recovery rate is the rate at which the unit can reheat water in one hour. Higher hot water demands require higher recovery rates.

Point-of-Use (POU)

The POU is much smaller than most standard units, and it is primarily designed for providing water to garages, workshops or any area where additional hot water may be needed.

Typical sizes range from 2.5 to 20 gallons. POU units are not designed for supplying water to entire households, but they provide hot water to the sink or showers where they are installed such as a secondary bathroom. The majority of units are electric.

Tankless

Unlike storage tank devices, the on-demand or tankless water device does not store or hold hot water. Instead, water will be heated through coils inside the unit. Although it is typically more energy efficient compared to tank heaters, it does have a slow or limited hot water flow rate of about 3.5 gallons per minute.

The on-demand heater models can be purchased to run on natural gas, liquid propane and electric.

Propane/Gas

Water is heated using a burner, but units do require sufficient circulating air around them, which means more space for installation. Typically, these run higher than electric Hot Water Heaters to purchase, but they are normally more energy efficient. Size ranges available for purchase include 30 to as much as 100 gallons.

Solar Heaters

The initial outlay for the cost of a solar Hot Water Heater might be expensive, and you may take some years to recoup costs after your investment. There are at least five or more designs available from which to choose. It's recommended to consult with professionals when considering solar for your particular home design.

Generally, water is circulated through solar collectors on the roof of a home and it's heated from the sun. A pump may be used to direct the water into a storage tank where it flows into a conventional Hot Water Heater to supply hot water to the home.

Hybrid Hot Water Heaters

The newer hybrid heaters use heat pumps to extract heat directly from the air surrounding the heater and work in conjunction with traditional electric storage heaters. Hybrids are larger than regular electric heaters and more expensive initially than other units. Size ranges include 50 gallons up to 80.

These save nearly 60 percent on energy costs, but they require more space for installation and are frequently noisier than standard storage tank heaters.

Fuel Sources

Electric

Electric units heat water via heating elements that are replaceable. These devices are comparatively less expensive than many other fuel sources to run. They're very efficient and come in 20 to 100 gallons.

Propane or Gas

Storage tanks and tankless devices can be purchased that are designed to run on liquid propane or natural gas from your supplier.

Space Requirements

Standard sized Hot Water Heaters fit in most home fine, but there are times where there are space concerns and a lowboy or tall heater fits the available installation space better.

Short or Lowboys

These are much wider and shorter than standard heaters. However, they usually heat the same quantity of water. The lower height makes them perfect for cabinets or crawl spaces.

Tall

Taller heaters may hold 100 gallons, but they are much taller than other designs at 76 inches. These are ideal for garages or basements where height is not such a concern.

Accessories

Most Hot Water Heaters are designed to stand-alone and don't require additional accessories to function. However, in some instances, you might find them handy. Common accessories on the market include Hot Water Heater stands, pans, blankets, alarms, timers and expansion tanks.

Energy Guide Labels

Federal law requires that new appliances carry an energy guide label for consumers that display energy consumption information. When comparing and shopping for Hot Water Heaters, you should check the information displayed on the large yellow and black energy guide label.

The labels typically provide information about the operating costs and annual energy requirements. The information is provided by averages, so your household may vary slightly depending upon usage.

When shopping for a new Hot Water Heater, take the time to compare brands, fuel source options, storage gallons and water recovery rates. You may also have to factor in installation charges if you require the services of a professional. Consider the cost of each model and what the average monthly or yearly costs are to run the unit. Also, think about how long you plan to stay in the house or apartment to recover your investment.

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