Tankless water heaters are exactly what you think: water heaters without water tanks. You might also see them called “demand water heaters” or “instant water heaters.” Regardless of what you call them, they’re the energy-efficient alternative to the traditional tank water heaters and can save you time and money.
The Biggest Difference Between Tank and Tankless Water Heaters
If your home has a tank water heater installed, you probably know that dreaded feeling of the water in your shower starting to cool down. Unfortunately, when you’re the last person in the house to take a shower in the morning or the evening, you likely deal with cold water and rushed showers quite a bit. With a tankless water heater, the water can stay warm the entire time because you don’t have to wait for the tank to reheat after each use. Tank water heaters are constantly reheating water, regardless of whether it’s all used. Tankless water heaters heat on demand, which means you save in energy costs.
Deciding Between Tank and Tankless
The Department of Energy (DOE) recommends that if your household is using 41 gallons or less of hot water each day, a tankless water heater can save between 24 and 43% more energy than a tank water heater. For homes using more hot water daily, the savings can be anywhere between 8 and 14%. In short, a tankless water heater could mean energy savings of $100+ annually—but it’s important to make sure the water heater is ENERGY STAR® qualified.
Understanding the Cost
Tank water heaters have less upfront cost. This is why many people decide to install them in their homes and it’s understandable. If you’ve just purchased a home that desperately needs a new water heater and are on a tighter budget, a tank water heater can perform well—especially those with the ENERGY STAR® rating. When you’re thinking further down the line, it’s important to note that the service life of a tankless water heater is often longer. For a tank water heater, you can expect 10-15 years of service, whereas with a tankless, it can be over 20 years with regular maintenance.
Finding Peace of Mind with a Safer Water Heater
One thing that we could mention is that tankless water heaters have a safer exhaust system then STANDARD tank water heaters. This severely cuts down on the risk of CO poisoning.
Tankless water heaters have a safer exhaust system than standard tank water heaters. The heaters are powered by propane or natural gas, depending on the model, so it’s important that a professionally trained technician ensures proper venting is taking place. However, when ventilation is in place correctly, tankless water heaters can severely reduce your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Taking Advantage of Incentives
There are several utility suppliers offering incentives for installing water heaters with the ENERGY STAR® seal of approval. For instance, in the Ames area, Alliant Energy is currently offering a rebate of $200-$300 through the end of the year on tankless water heaters.
Keep Your Home Comfortable—Contact Us Today
We’re ready to help you decide whether a tank or tankless water heater will be right for your family. As a Rheem Pro Partner with ENERGY STAR® certified technicians, we can install, repair, and help you maintain your water heater so you can continue to live in comfort. Contact us today to learn more.