How to Choose the Best Tankless Water Heater?
Taking showers, washing dishes and doing laundry will require hot water in most cases. As such, having a reliable water heater would be a great solution. There are so many different types of water heaters and one may not really know how to choose one that will suit their needs. Choosing a water heater goes beyond the price factor as there are other critical factors to consider when buying the water heater.
A good water heater should serve you for over 15 years and this why you need to take all factors into account so as to ensure that you have the right model. Ultimately, the tankless water heaters have become quite popular than the storage water heater tanks. These tankless models will also help you save up on the heating costs. It is advisable to compare the various models that are available on the market before making your final decision. We sincerely hope that our guide will help you find the right water heater.
Different Types of Water Heaters:
There are quite a number of types of water heaters, from different manufacturers. The first step in getting a water heater is being able to understand different models of the water heaters so that you can pick the one that suits your needs perfectly. Here are the common types of heaters on the market:
Condensing Water Heater:
For those who use gas as the main heating source for water, you should consider the condensing water heaters. This is a model that has the capacity to take advantage of the gas emissions and heat up the water. It comes with a storage tank with a capacity of 55 gallons.
Heat Pump Water Heaters:
These are models that work perfectly in areas where there are warm temperatures. With the heat pump water heaters, they will take up the heat from the air and use it to heat up the water. This means that you will end up save over 60% of the energy costs. This explains the main reason why they tend to be expensive compared to other models. However, you will be able to recover the cost with the savings that you get from your energy bills. You should only go for this model if you live in regions with temperatures that range from 40° F to 90° F.
Storage Water Heaters:
These are the common types of water heaters, which are found in most homes and office. They comes with storage tanks where the element keeps heating up the water at all times, even when it is not needed. At the end of it all, you will end up spending a whole lot of money on the energy bills. These are not energy efficient and you should avoid them if you can.
Solar Water Heaters:
The solar water heaters are also another type and they have a wide range of advantages. You will need to have solar panels installed outdoors, and this will serve as a great alternative to heating the water. The water is preheated before it is taken to the storage tank for heating and this reduces the energy costs by over 50%.
There are two types of Solar Water Heaters:
- Passive Water Heaters: These are water heaters that circulate the water in a natural manner. They are less expensive as they do not require any pumps to heat up the water.
- Active Solar Water Heaters: This type comes with pumps that will be responsible for the heat transfer and moving water to the storage tank.
Tankless Water Heaters:
Finally, we have the tankless water heater, which has become quite popular in recent years. These will provide hot water on demand as the name implies, they do not have a storage tank. They will conserve a whole lot of energy as the water is heated only when it is needed. They are long-lasting and they tend to stand out from the other models.
Their compact nature makes it easier to install them and mount them on any space available. This is an ideal model that comes with so many advantages that would go a long way in helping you get a continuous supply of hot water and reduce your energy costs.
The importance of Capacity and Size of Tankless Water Heaters:
There is a huge difference between the storage water heater and the tankless models. The storage water tank heaters use the FHR- First-Hour Rating, while the tankless water heaters measure the flow rate using the GPM- Gallons per minute. These are the main aspects that will determine the amount of hot water that you will get in a given period of time.
Peak Demand Output Requirement
45 – 55 Gallons
55 – 65 Gallons
65 – 75 Gallons
75 – 85 Gallons
85 – 100 Gallons
100 or More Gallons
When you are shopping for a water heater for your home, there are a number of things that you ought to consider with the size and capacity being among the main considerations. The capacity will help you determine if the water heater will be able to serve the needs of your family effectively. The good news with the tankless models is the fact that you will not need the water to be stored so as to serve your family.
The demand for the hot water is also a critical consideration. If you have the storage water heaters, the water will be heated up but after a while it will start cooling down. When you need hot water, it will has to be reheated again, which takes up a whole lot of energy. A professional expert should be able to help you estimate the amount of hot water needed. This will go a long way in determining the amount of hot water required in your home.
The instant hot water shower does not have a storage tank and this is why you need to pay attention to the flow rate and not size of storage. The flow rate is expressed as gallons per minute and will help you tell how much hot water you can get in a given minute.
Some models have a very low flow rate and this would force you to install multiple units to serve different points in your home. You should also not make the assumption that your new heater will work perfectly with the old model that was installed in your home.
Features to Consider When Buying a Tankless Water Heater:
The features of a water heater will determine its capabilities and this why you need to pay keen attention on the features. With so many models on the market, one of the factors that you can use to compare different models is the features that they have. Here are some features to look into when buying water heaters:
- Glass- Lined Walls: One of the things that affect water tanks highly is corrosion, which is caused by elements mixing with water. In order to alleviate this, you need to go for water heaters that have tanks with glass-lined walls. This will give the tank a long life that you need.
- Drain Valves: Essentially, most water heaters will come with drain valves that are either made of brass or plastic. It is advisable to consider valves that are made of brass, as they tend to last longer than the plastic ones.
- Anti-Scale: Get a model that has anti-scale features as this will enhance the longevity of your water heater. Scale tends to reduce the overall lifespan of water heaters and you would not want to end up with a model that does not lost for a long period of time.
- Type of Display: Always consider to go for units that have a digital type of display. This will give you a good view of the settings and the current readings. With a clear display, you will be able to adjust the unit to get optimal performance and conserve energy as required.