Different people have different reasons why they chose to get a tankless water heaters. Here are the most common ones:
Never run out of hot water!
A tankless water heater heats water as its passes thru its heat exchanger and it is heated for as long as the hot water handle on your faucet or shower is open.
US Department of Energy estimates of an average of 50% saving on your water heating bill. Tankless water heaters save you money in few ways, combined:
- No waste of unnecessary fuel by heating unneeded water
- Tankless water heaters have stage or modulating burners which allows addressing small demands with a small supply.
- Conventional tank type water heater works on an average of 60% efficiency, which means that for every dollar used to heat the water, only 60 cents go actually heating it. The other 40% are wasted and escape thru the chimney. Tankless water heaters work on approximately 82% thermal efficiency. Condensing tankless water heaters are becoming more popular and can achieve 97-98% efficiency. Just like a hybrid car can give you more mileage per gallon, the tankless can give you more gallons of hot water for the same amount of fuel (gas or electric).
- Because a tankless water heater will last 2-3 times longer than a storage tank water heater - you save by not having to spend money to replace a water heater so often.
- By installing the tankless water heater closer to the main hot water consumer (for example: master bath) less wait time is achieved and the water that normally will go down the drain is not wasted, thus - saving money on your water and sewer bill.
Tankless water heaters are wall hung, thus they save valuable floor space. The units can be installed outdoors. By moving the tankless water heater from inside the house to outside extra storage space is created.
Use and waste less energy
As mentioned above, tankless water heaters use less energy because they don't preheat and store hot water, but rather heat it as it goes (when needed); the burner can work on a lower percentage capacity, allowing less fuel to be used for less water needed; they are more efficient - with the same amount of fuel they produce more hot water. And finally, because of their high efficiency rating, tankless water heaters utilizes more (almost all) of the energy intended for heating the water.
High energy efficiency
Convention tank type water heater is 50-60% efficient and its efficiency decreases with the years because of a scale build-up at the bottom of the tank which prevents the heat from the burner (which is bellow the tank) to heat the water. Conventional gas tankless water heater is about 82% energy efficient. Electric tankless water heaters and condensing gas tankless water are up to 98% energy efficient.
Note: Scale build-up occurs in the tankless water heater as well but it is easy eliminated with periodic flushing (de-scaling) of the heat exchanger.
Safety and durability
With its numerous sensors, switches and safety devices tankless water heater is much safer than a tank water heaters. Temperature can be set precisely at the desired degree. Lesser risk of flooding and damaging floors.
Long lasting life
Tankless water heaters are expected to last over 20 years, comparing to 5-6 years on a contemporary tank type. Actually, you may not have to buy a water heater again, ever. Every single part in a tankless water heater is interchangeable and can usually be replaced within an hour - so, if someday something goes wrong, the computer will run diagnostic and find the malfunctioning part which can be easily and inexpensively be replaced.
Depending on the manufacturer, warranty on a residential tankless water heater is between 12 and 15 years on the heat exchanger and 5 years on parts. Commercial is usually 5 years on the heat exchanger and 5 years on parts. Average warranty on a tank type water heater is 6 years. You can find longer warranties like 9 years and even 12 but they are usually prorated and do not include labor which is expensive.
In a tank type water heater water is stored in a tank (naturally) and over time that tank begins to rust which eventually leads to a leak. Over the years numerous debris and deposits sets on the bottom of the tank. Water from that tank is then used for washing, cooking, sometimes even drinking. In a tankless water heater, water is heated as it passes thru a copper or a stainless steel heat exchanger and no rust can occur.
It takes about an hour for a tank type water heater to heat the water to a desired temperature. With every gallon of hot water used, a gallon of cold water enters the tank, which cools the already heated water inside, which makes the burner to go on and eventually you have to wait another hour for the water to get hot again. Tankless water heaters heat the water instantly and for as long as needed, thus providing hundreds of gallons of hot water. By linking two or more tankless water heaters together you can double and triple that hot water production achieving an impressive numbers in thousands of gallons per minute.
Great return on investment
Although a tankless water heater may cost about twice as much to be installed it pays itself fast. The difference between installing a tank and tankless is fast melted by the savings the tankless does. Also, in the over 20 years life span of a tankless water heaters you may replace 3 or 4 tank water heaters costing you not only money but also aggravation and inconvenience.
Can be combined with space heating
Tankless water heater can be combined with space heating for your home. Thus saving on your heating bill as well. Nowadays, many tankless manufacturers offer a combi systems, which combines a tank and tankless into one, making that utility room bigger.
Perfect back-up for solar water heating systems
The tankless water heater will be by passed by during the day by the solar heated water and will only be used to supplement the solar water heater during the night.