When you hear the words water heater, you probably think of the traditional tank model, also known as a storage water heater. While this is still the most common type of water heater, newer, tankless water heaters have also been growing in popularity in recent years. In this article, we will go over how tankless water heaters work, as well as how they compare to traditional storage models.
Just as its name suggests, a tankless water heater has no reservoir of stored hot water, but instead heats water on demand. When you turn on a tap, cold water flows into the unit, where it is heated by either an electrical element or a gas burner. In this system, the water is heated directly, meaning you get a continuous supply of hot water without having to wait for the storage tank to heat enough for your shower. On the other hand, the tankless heater’s output does typically limit the flow rate to 2-5 gallons per minute. While this is enough for the average shower, running the dishwasher at the same time may push a tankless water heater to its limit. To overcome this problem, you can install more than one unit to handle heavy demand for hot water.
We have found that the most popular reason for choosing a tankless water heater is to improve energy efficiency. Tankless water heaters have been shown to be up to 34% more efficient than storage models, and this number rises to up to 50% if you have separate tankless heaters for your appliances. If you are interested in reducing your energy consumption and your utilities bill, give our team at Minyard Plumbing, Inc. a call to learn more.