Tankless water heaters have become a popular alternative to the standard energy-hungry water heaters found in homes and businesses. In staying true to their namesake, they work on the principle of heating water instantly without storing it in a tank. If you’re looking to buy a new water heater, you should consider this relatively new, energy-efficient option.
According to EnergyStar.gov, the average home spends 15% of its overall energy usage on heating water. Whether it’s the washing wachine, dishwasher, bath, etc., these are all instances where heated water is commonly used. Each time you turn the faucet on the hot water setting, the water heater uses energy to heat the water before sending it through the pipes and to the faucet.
Tankless Water Heaters 101
Unlike their counterpart, tankless water heaters only heat water when there’s an immediate demand for it. The reason why storage (tank) water heaters use so much energy is because they maintain hot water at all times, even when it’s not being used. Standard capacities for storage water heaters can range from 20 to 80 gallons, which requires a relatively high amount of energy to stay heated.
Tankless water heaters only heat water when there’s an active demand for it. If a family member turns on the hot water in the bathroom, it will pass the water through a large heated coil before sending it to the bathroom. Since water is only heated when someone in the house needs it, tankless water heaters use far less energy than their storage-based counterpart.
It’s estimated that replacing a storage water heater for a tankless model can yield 20-30% energy savings. Of course, the exact savings varies depending on a number of different factors, but there’s no denying the fact that tankless water heaters are more energy-efficient.
Water Heater Energy Tips:
- Wash clothes on cold water setting.
- Install a tankless water heater.
- Take shorter showers.
- Brush teeth with cold water.
- Shave while you’re in the shower.
Other Benefits of Owning a Tankless Water Heater
In addition to their energy-saving benefits, tankless water heaters also require less space. As you can see in the photo above, they are small, box-shaped devices that are typically installed on the side of the house. You don’t have to worry about filling up your closet or laundry room with a bulky, unattractive water heater, as it fits right onto the side of your home.
Tankless water heaters eliminate the possibility for leaks. A leaking stroage water heater can cause thousands of dollars worth in damage, saturating carpet, floors, furniture and everything else nearby. Thankfully, tankless models don’t have this problem since they never store water.