Do you suspect that your water heater is no longer doing its job? Perhaps you are considering switching to a tankless water heater, or a more energy efficient model. Any question you might have about them will be answered below, so read on to get the 411 on all things related to your water heater.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF HEATERS
If you need to change out your heater, you have a few options to mull over. Below is a basic list of the different types, as well as the advantages and drawbacks of each:
Conventional gas water heater: When speaking of conventional heaters, we mean that the utility includes a water tank that stores a reserve of heated water on a constant basis. Once this reserve is used, it will take some time to store the hot water. The advantage of a conventional water heater fueled by gas is that it is typically cheaper to run, and it is not affected by power outages. With a gas, the up-front investment is a little higher than with an electric.
Conventional electric water heater: The advantages of a conventional electric water heater include a faster heating time, a cheaper unit overall, and easy maintenance.
Tankless water heaters: Tankless quickly heat up on an on-demand basis, rather than keeping a supply of liquid heated all day long. For this reason, tankless are more energy efficient. On average, a tankless will save you $70-80 in utility costs each year. However, tankless are expensive to install. Since they are relatively new to the U.S., there may be problems with your gas lines allowing for adequate pressure. Units with this issue may require an update, which also requires more expenses. Also, the temperature of the H20 may not be as consistent as with a tank heater. You must reconcile the costs of installation to the energy savings annually.
WHEN TO UPGRADE
A little nervous about the safety and efficiency? A good saying regarding them is “If it’s old enough to drive, it’s probably time to replace it.” The duration and durability of a tank depends on the quality of the liquid and the quality of the tank. Most typically last between 10 and 12 years. But what if it seems like your water heater is doing fine?
We would be happy to take a look at your water heater and give you an efficiency report. In the meantime, here are some reasons why it might be time to upgrade your one when: Your tank is getting up there: As mentioned above, if your tank has reached the legal driving age, it is probably time to get rid of it. Even if it is still running and you do not have any problems with it, the heater is undoubtedly running at such a low efficiency that it is costing you more and more money in utility costs to run it.
You are concerned about efficiency: It is certainly a good idea to upgrade your water heater if you are concerned about energy efficiency. The newer the model of tanks, the more efficient it will be. Since heating water for a home accounts for around 30% of utility costs, upgrading your tank will make a significant impact on your monthly utility bill. You need a bigger tank: If you are dissatisfied with how much hot water you have on hand, and how long it takes for the water to heat back up, there are several options available to you. A tankless one will heat the water instantaneously, allowing for hot water whenever you need it. A larger one will do the trick as well. If your family is growing, a larger one is a good option to consider.
Much like a vehicle, the best way to take care of your water heater and ensure a long, efficient life is to provide proper preventative maintenance. Flushing the system and checking or replacing the anode rod should be done on an annual bases. A system flush and new anode rod will help remove sediment and decrease corrosion. With proper maintenance, your system should run efficiently for a longer time, which will save you money in the long run.