Are you in the market for a new water heater? Are you thinking about going tankless? If your answer is yes, then you have probably heard about its energy-saving features. But, before you run out and buy one, make sure you know the facts as there’s a lot more to know. Here are six things about tankless water heaters to consider before installation.
Image via Flickr by 401(k) 2013
One of the first things to consider when comparing traditional water heaters with tankless water heaters is their difference in cost. Prices range anywhere from the low $200s to over $3,000, and that does not include installation costs. Plus, you get what you pay for — don’t expect a $200 tankless water heater to supply enough hot water for a large home quickly.
Tankless water heaters are ideal for homes that do not need multiple hot water sources running at the same time. If you want to multitask with a tankless water heater, consider purchasing a larger unit to make sure there is enough hot water to meet your needs. Additionally, be aware that water temperatures may fluctuate as the heating coils keep up with the output of water.
Storage Tank Option
Although many people like tankless water heaters because of their lack of tank, it is important to consider whether you want a water storage tank. If you like having instantaneous hot water, or you plan on multitasking, you will want to think about adding a storage tank. Storage tanks vary in size and accommodate a range of needs.
It is only natural to want to save money, and Energy Star statistics state that a tankless water heater will save you an average of $95 per year compared to an energy-saving conventional water heater that can save you $20 per year. Although that may not seem like a large savings, it amounts to approximately $1,500 more saved over a lifetime.
A newer trend among builders and homeowners is to maximize every square foot of a home. Not that there was a ton of wasted space in the past, but spaces such as under the stairs, utility closets, and garage space are now optimized for use. A standard water heater requires several square feet of space both in diameter and in height for it to exist. However, a tankless water heater is wall mounted and leaves plenty of room for you to use the extra space for storage or other utility. Plus, if you are looking to sell your home and you have a tankless water heater, you have more usable space, which increases the value of your home.
Tankless water heaters have many more parts than traditional water heaters. What does this mean? There is the potential for more repairs and thus more repair costs. You may say “that’s no big deal because the warranty will cover it,” but are you sure? Many companies are not offering warranties on these products because they haven’t been around long enough to know how long they will last, and many manufacturers are out of business before a repair is needed.
So ask yourself, “Am I going to save more money in energy savings than I am going to spend on repairs?” If the answer is yes, great. If the answer is no, then you have to base your tankless water heater decision on the other factors.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider when choosing whether to install a tankless water heater. Don’t make this decision based on product hype — know the facts, and base your decision on what is best for your home.
Featured photo credit: Image via Flickr by 401(k) 2013 via flickr.com
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