Heating water in a home is a necessity. Twenty percent of the energy our homes use are to heat water for bathing, washing dishes, laundry and cooking. This energy use with traditional water heaters can add up. Tankless water heaters are a solution to a costly traditional unit because they heat water without using a storage tank, which helps to avoid standby heat loss (Standby loss refers to the energy wasted to maintain a specific temperature within the tank). For this reason, tankless water heaters can help homeowners save significantly on their energy bills.
These water heaters are often referred to as “on-demand water heating” because they provide hot water ONLY when needed. Once the faucet is open, water flows into the heater where a sensor turns on the heating exchanger/coils to heat the water to a desired temperature. When the faucet closes, the sensor is automatically turned off, not wasting any extra energy or heat and allowing monthly home energy bills to be much lower. Homes that use 41 gallons or less of hot water daily, these tankless water heaters can be 24%-34% more energy-efficient than conventional storage tank heaters. For homes that use around or more than 86 gallons per day, they can be 8%-14% more efficient. To allow for even greater energy savings, install a water heater at each hot water outlet in your home. This can achieve an energy savings of 27%-50%.
When installing a tankless water heater, one must keep in mind the size of their home. Smaller units on a bigger home aren’t able to supply hot water for simultaneous uses. For example, if you have a smaller unit on a bigger home, you would not be able to take a warm shower while running a load of laundry in hot water. To avoid a problem such as this, one can install what is called a “whole house” type heater or two tankless water heater units. Also, installing a separate unit for your appliances (dishwasher, laundry, etc), which use up a lot of hot water in a home, is another way to avoid the above problem.
If your household is constantly running and consuming warm water with a traditional storage water heater, a tankless water heater is definitely something to consider. Along with saving money on your energy bills, you could also receive a tax credit. For information on qualifying for this, click here.