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Tankless versus traditional water heaters, which is right for you?

 

For homeowners looking to simultaneously save some of their hard-earned money and improve upon their living space, finding alternative and energy-efficient solutions to heating and cooling is often a good first step to take. In this article, we'll be going over the differences between tankless and traditional water heaters.

What is a tankless water heater?

A tankless water heater is exactly what it sounds like: a water heater, minus the tank. Traditional water heaters require a large tank full of standing, heated water at all times to function properly. Tankless water heaters, on the other hand, draw in and heat the water in their systems on-demand. In other words, tankless water heaters eliminate the need to reserve space for storage tanks.

What is a traditional water heater?

Traditional water heaters use 30-50 gallon storage tanks full of heated water to heat living spaces. Traditional water heaters typically use either natural gas or electricity as a fuel, with natural gas being the more efficient - and more expensive - option of the two.

Tankless versus traditional water heaters

There are several differences between tankless and traditional water heaters:

  • Aesthetics. Tankless water heaters will almost always be more aesthetically pleasing than traditional water heaters simply because tankless water heaters don't require homeowners to reserve space for water storage tanks. This also makes tankless water heaters easier to inconspicuously install in a home.

  • Efficiency. Once again, when it comes to energy efficiency, tankless water heaters win. They only use energy when they are turned on, whereas traditional water heaters must constantly use energy to maintain a tank full of hot water in order to work. As a result, tankless water heaters have no ‘standby loss,' and are significantly more efficient - and therefore significantly easier on your water bill - than traditional water heaters.

  • Cost. This category is the first victory for traditional water heaters. They are significantly cheaper up-front than tankless water heaters, making them a good solution for homeowners on a budget that need heat fast. However, the cheaper up-front cost of traditional water heaters should also be caveated with the fact that tankless water heaters can save homeowners up to $1,800 over the life of a heater's system due to their increased long-term energy efficiency.

  • Maintenance. This is yet another win for traditional water heaters, depending on what kind of heater you buy. Low-end traditional water heaters will cost less to maintain than low-end tankless water heaters, while maintenance costs for higher-quality water heaters will remain fairly stagnant whether the heater is tankless or traditional.

In general, most homeowners will probably find that, despite their higher up-front cost, a tankless water heater will be a better option than a traditional water heater due to their increased efficiency, aesthetics and general functionality.

If you're interested in having a new water heater installed in your living space by efficient, affordable professionals, then look no further! Here at Delta Mechanical, we've been supplying our clients with reliable plumbing and heating installation services for more than 30 years. To learn more about what we can do for you, click here.