You might not realize the importance of a water heater, but when you are in the shower, and the water suddenly turns cold, it will greatly impact your life. If you have a big family, you will have to schedule shower time around the hot water supply. It will affect not only your daily routine but also your utility bills.
When buying a water heater for your home or replacing an existing one, you need to consider the cost, efficiency, and warranty. Since water heaters can be a costly investment, you need to ensure that the water heater you pick will last you for a long time.
When looking at the different types of water heaters for your home, you need to consider the pros and cons of each of them to help you make the right decision. There are mainly two types of water heaters available in the market – traditional or tank-type water heaters and tankless water heaters.
WHAT ARE TRADITIONAL WATER HEATERS?
Traditional or tank-type water heaters heat the water using two sources – electric or fuel. The fuel-type ones run on propane, natural gas, or oil. Traditional water heaters run by natural gas are the most popular, but few areas also utilize oil-based water heaters.
Traditional water heaters carry out three different functions –
- Heat the water for use.
- Store the heater water in its tank till it is ready for use. It maintains the heated temperature inside it.
- Vents out by-products of heating water such as exhaust gases.
WHAT ARE TANKLESS WATER HEATERS?
As the name suggests, tankless water heaters eliminate the need to insulate and store water in a tank. Instead, it works by heating the water instantly and making it available for use. These offer water only on a need-to basis. Here, water is passed through a heating element such as a coil pipe. When the heat source for the water heater is turned on, the cold water flows through this coil and heats it using electricity or gas. When it is turned off, water does not flow through it, and hot water stops flowing.
WHICH ONE IS RIGHT FOR ME?
The best way to decide which one is right for your home is to determine your needs. Here is a guideline to help you pick the best water heater that is perfect for you –
- If you are looking for long-term savings, a tankless water heater is ideal as it balances the higher investment costs over time.
- If you are running low on cash currently, a traditional water heater would be perfect as its cost, including installation, is quite low.
- If you want to save money on energy, opt for a tankless water heater as it eliminates the need for the heater to work continuously to offer a flow of hot water.
- If your water usage is low, go with a tankless water heater as it will not limit the amount of water you can use at one go without the need to wait.
- If you have a big family with huge water usage, opt for a tank-type water heater as they have much higher flow rates.
Both types of water heaters have their advantages and disadvantages. So, ensure you know what you want out of it to help you make the right decision. If you are still confused as to which type of water heater is best for you, you can take a recommendation from an experienced plumbing contractor.
If you’d like to learn more about 5 signs it is time to replace your water heater.