If you’re in the market for a new water heater, you may be considering going tankless. Though you will save energy by not having to heat and reheat water that’s being stored in a tank water heater, tankless systems have some drawbacks as well. Compare tankless systems with traditional storage tank water heaters to determine which is the best fit for your Grand Traverse County home.
In a tankless water heating system, cold water flows through the heater and is heated up by either gas burners or an electric heating element, and then flows out of the hot water tap. There is no stored hot water, and the water is heated as it’s needed. There are relatively few parts in the tankless water heating system, so it requires less maintenance and is less likely to malfunction than a storage tank water heater.
Storage Tank Water Heaters:
- Continually heat water in their storage tank so that hot water is ready to use when needed.
- Have a shorter life span than tankless heaters.
- Have a limited amount of heated water for use at a time (called the “first hour” rating).
- Have continual standby heat loss no matter how well the tank is insulated.
Tankless water heaters:
- Provide a continuous stream of hot water.
- Do not have the same heat loss as tank water heaters (though if they have a continuously lit pilot light, there will be some energy lost).
- Have a higher initial cost versus storage tank water heaters
- Have a longer life span, generally, than their storage tank counterparts
- Can be used to boost high-need appliances such as dishwashers, or as an addition to solar water heaters.
- May have difficulty if the demands of the household require multiple uses for hot water at the same time (such as running the dishwasher and taking showers). This issue can be alleviated somewhat by installing additional point-of-use tankless heaters or scheduling the hot water use more effectively.
For help determining if a tankless water heater is a good choice for your home, contact our experts at Team Bob’s Heating Cooling Plumbing. We have been “The One You Can Recommend” in the Greater Traverse City area for more than 30 years.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Traverse City, Michigan and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about tankless water heating and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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