Why a tankless water heater might be right for you

December 23, 2014

Tankless water heaters are more efficient than traditional water heaters, but are they the right choice for your household? Here's some insight to help you decide.

Why a tankless water heater might be right for you

If you’ve ever been the last one in your household to jump in the shower, only to have the hot water run out, you’ve probably wondered if there’s a better solution to the tried-and-true water heater that so many of us have. The good news? There is! The bad news? They’re not the perfect choice for everyone. Here’s why a tankless water heater might be your best bet.

The status quo

The usual water heaters we see in buildings haven’t changed a great deal in the last several decades.

  • They’re still basically big cylinders full of water kept hot to meet the demands of anyone turning on the hot water faucet.
  • These tanks usually last about a decade before needing to be replaced. If you’re at that stage, you might be wondering if there are other options available.

It’s a tankless job

Tankless water heaters are, right now, roughly 22 per cent more efficient than traditional storage water heaters. This translates to savings on your energy bills each year, but only about $80 for most households.

  • The real energy efficiency with this concept is that you only use what you need when you need it. Moreover, the lifespan of the system you install reportedly lasts longer than a regular water heater, so you're not creating garbage for the landfill as often.

Unfortunately, many conventional storage water heaters sold still do not carry leading energy efficiency certification, so it can be hard to know how efficient your traditional system really is vs. the newer tankless water heater systems on the market.

Getting in hot water

Tankless water heaters work by basically heating up water on-demand. That means high-powered burners heat water that runs through a heat exchanger and then forces it up through the faucet.

  • Rather than heating an enormous tank of water constantly and keeping it hot "just in case", tankless water heaters work to only heat the water you need, when you need it.

Economic decisions

Simply stated, you can’t use simple economics to evaluate a tankless water heater.

While they may run more efficiently than a storage water heater system, the installation costs are generally more significant than the installation costs of a traditional system.

  • That means you’ll be paying more up front which, when leveraged across the years you’ll be running either system, will cost roughly the same – a reason why most people may be opting for a more traditional water heater.

However, if you live in a tiny house or intend to install a water heater in a cottage where there may be no basement (or a cramped crawlspace), a whole house tankless unit or point-of-use tankless unit could be a real space saver for about the same cost as a conventional water heater over the long term.

If it ain’t broke

If your water heater is working fine then it doesn't make any sense to change it. But if it's nearing the end of its life expectancy, knowing why a tankless water heater might be right for you could help you make an informed decision about your next water heating system.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
Close menu