All homeowners need appliances to make their homes more comfortable, convenient and efficient. And, as technology of appliances improve, we benefit even more with more efficiency and more convenience. So goes it with traditional tank water heaters and the evolution into the tankless water heater.
One advantage to the traditional tank water heater is that it has over 100-year-old technology, thus it has stood the test of time. However, the hot water is only limited to the size of the tank, it is only 60-65% efficient, we pay to heat and reheat water, has only a 6-year manufacturer’s warranty and its life expectancy is only 8-12 years. Over time, because of heat and pressure, a tank-type water heater becomes corrosive, sediment forms at the bottom of the tank, leaking may occur and more fuel is needed to heat water.
On the other hand, the tankless water heater provides endless hot water. No more letting the shower run until the water heats up, which will save gallons of water each year. A natural gas condensing tankless water heater can save you 61% and a propane condensing tankless heater can save you 43% in energy and money. You pay for only the hot water that you use! Another wonderful advantage of the tankless water heater is that the life expectancy is over 20 years and there is a manufacturer’s warranty of 12 years. The tankless is smaller than the tank water heater, requiring less space, all parts are replaceable and the environment benefits because there is a 35% drop in greenhouse gases.
The tankless water heater has a downside also. You may experience a restricted flow of hot water if another appliance, such as a dishwasher, is running at the same time. The up-front cost is higher and the unit requires annual maintenance.
So, if your water heater is almost 10-years old, if you are noticing water leaks around your water heater, sediment in your water or insufficient hot water, it may be time to get your water heater looked at by a professional. If their recommendation is to invest in a new unit, consider your options. The tank water heater isn’t the only option available anymore.
Maeser / Joni Crume