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Why You Should Consider a Tankless Gas Water Heater

If you have ever had to think about how much hot water you have available, the move to a tankless water heater could be one of the most satisfying decisions you make as a homeowner. Once installed, continuous hot water becomes the new standard.

Imagine not worrying about doing a load of laundry, running the dishwasher and multiple people taking showers — all in order or even at once. Imagine being able to set the water temperature higher. It is also possible to create a hot water loop, even without having a dedicated loop in your home. Current tankless heaters can be set to use the cold water lines as a return for the hot side, thereby creating a path to circulate water and keep hot water close to the points of use. With a loop, you will never ask anyone to wait until the water heater catches up. These are the reasons to switch to tankless.

Other benefits include:

  • Efficiency – A tankless gas water heater is more efficient than a tanked gas or electric water heater. Condensing gas tankless models are the most efficient category of water heaters.
  • Lifespan – The unit’s life is longer, even over 20 years.
  • Space – The unit is more compact and can free space for other purposes because storage of several hundred pounds of water is no longer needed.
  • Less Wasted Energy – When you’re on vacation and there’s no need for hot water in your home, the unit simply won’t run.

These are side benefits to the primary – a great experience. You may actually fall in love with it!

Tankless Water Heater FAQs

Q: What is a tankless water heater?
A: A tankless water heater heats water on demand. As stated in the name, there is no storage tank. “When a hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe into the unit. Either a gas burner or an electric element heats the water. As a result, tankless water heaters deliver a constant supply of hot water. You don’t need to wait for a storage tank to fill up with enough hot water.” (Source: energy.gov)

Typically, we do not recommend electric tankless water heaters due to the high electric service requirements. The unit alone may require in excess of 100Amps 240Volts. Many homes only have 100 to 200 Amps total service available.

Q: How much is a tankless water heater? Is it more expensive?
A: Yes, tankless gas water heaters are more expensive than tanked gas water heaters because of the higher up-front cost of the unit and the conversion. You’re likely looking at the $5k range compared to the $1,700 range. However, compared to a single option or two that may never even be used on a new vehicle, this is an investment that will be used every day. At Efficient, we offer financing options for added flexibility.

Q: Do tankless gas water heaters require more maintenance?
A: Some reference the periodic descaling maintenance recommended by manufacturers as a drawback; however, all water heaters have similar maintenance requirements. Some owners choose not to follow them with either device, tanked or tankless. Owners of tankless water heaters tend to have periodic maintenance as the units are more valuable, which in part contributes to longer life.

Q: What if I don’t have access to natural gas or propane?
A: Lack of natural gas or propane is also a consideration. In this case, with sufficient electric circuit capacity, an electric model is a viable option. Otherwise, a high efficiency tanked model is the main option.

Overall, we at Efficient AC, Electric & Plumbing are fans of tankless heaters, have many years of experience with several brands, and we personally use them in our homes. With a quality installation and proper gas sizing and venting, we’re confident you’ll love tankless as much as we do.

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