When it comes to keeping your home both functional and comfortable, your water heater plays an important role. Not only do you need hot water in order to bathe and shower in comfort, you also need it to ensure that your dirty laundry and dishes are properly cleaned. If you are in the market for a new water heater, you’ll need to decide whether you want a traditional or tankless model. Our team at Minyard Plumbing, Inc. has extensive experience with both varieties, and in this article, we’ll be going over the differences between traditional and tankless water heaters to help you decide which is right for you.
Traditional Water Heaters
Traditional water heaters are also known as tank storage heaters, and they do just what their name suggests: heating elements heat the water in a large insulated tank (typically holding 30 to 50 gallons), and that tank stores this hot water until it is needed. When you turn on hot water from your faucet or showerhead, or start your washing machine or dishwasher, the water heater sends the water through your pipes to its destination. Tank storage heaters give you plenty of hot water, so you are less likely to run out, but keeping that water hot and ready uses a significant amount of energy.
Tankless Water Heaters
As their name suggests, tankless water heaters do not have a reservoir of hot water, but instead use high-powered burners to rapidly heat water on demand. According to energy.gov, tankless water heaters are ideal for households that use 41 gallons or less of water per day, as they can be up to 34 percent more energy efficient than the conventional variety. Although they tend to have a higher upfront price, tankless water heaters also typically last 20 to 30 years, which is double the typical lifespan of a tank storage heater and are therefore a worthwhile investment.