Water heaters take up a lot of space and use a lot of energy to provide you with hot water. Recently, tankless water heaters have become more common, providing an alternative to the traditional water heater. Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of a tankless water heater can help you decide whether or not it's right for your home.
The Advantages of a Tankless Water Heater
Tankless water heaters are, first of all, much smaller and subtle than traditional water heaters. They do not have a tank, hence the name, and are most often wall-mounted, taking up about the same amount of space as a fuse box. Additionally, they only heat water as it is needed, making them much more efficient, as there is no heat lost by the idling of the heater. Tankless water heaters can provide hot water for an indefinite period of time, which means that you will never have to worry about the hot water running out anymore.
Furthermore, tankless water heaters have a much longer lifespan than regular water heaters, lasting up to a decade longer if properly cared for. Additionally, tankless water heaters are safer than regular water heaters, as there is no risk of a leak occurring to a ruptured tank. The only way that a plumbing system using a tankless water heater can start leaking water is if the pipes become damaged.
The Disadvantages of a Tankless Water Heater
The first main drawback of a tankless water heater is the fact that they can cost several times more than a regular water heater. Though they use less energy than regular water heaters, which can save you money over time, the high initial investment makes tankless water heaters unviable for many homeowners.
Additionally, it's important to note that tankless water heaters provide hot water with a significant lag time, which means that you may have to wait longer for your hot water than you would with a regular water heater.
It's important to note that a tankless water heater will be either powered by natural gas or electricity, which will require electrical work to be done, or a gas hookup to be installed, in order to properly power the water heater. Gas heaters cost more but tend to work much quicker, while electricity heaters are less powerful but cost much less, and are more environmentally friendly, as they do not use fossil fuels. Gas units will also require annual service in order to be properly maintained and fueled. For more information, talk to a professional like AA Plumbing.