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Need A New Water Heater? Considering Tankless?

You have a house full of teenagers that don’t seem to understand the meaning of a quick shower. Between sports, workouts, swimming and sweaty household members, you are constantly running a load of laundry. Top that off with the dishwasher loads, you are using a lot of hot water. Now, you are about to have another 5 bodies added to your house when your relatives come visit. It will be great to see them, but what you are not looking forward to is the line at the shower. You are bound to have several cold showers this week.  That old water heater just cannot keep up these days. It is probably time to call Godby and upgrade the water heater before it decides to go out on you in the middle of crazy Cousin Eddie’s shower. But what should you do? Should you get a new standard water heater or upgrade to a tankless water heater, which you’ve heard a lot of buzz about lately?

Lets look at how each works and see which one works best for YOUR situation.

In a traditional water heater system, there’s a large tank that holds and heats water. In order to give you hot water when you need it, the tank continually heats the water to maintain a constant temperature. The water heater tank not only heats the water, but it stores that water, at a set temperature, until it is ready to be used. Since the water is always being heated, you have standby heat loss. This causes energy to be lost even when no one is using hot water. Problem is, when you have a house full of people or you have the laundry going, the dishwasher running and just your own crew around, hot water can run out leaving you or your guest with an unpleasantly cold shower. This is especially a problem if your water heater is not properly sized for your home and demand.

The tankless water heater heats your water on demand. As you turn that faucet, the water is heated by a powerful heat exchanger.  This exchanger is activated by the incoming flow of water. So, when you turn on your hot water tap, the incoming water circulates through the activated exchanger, which then heats the cold water to your preset temperature. Hot water galore! You can wash clothes and STILL get a hot shower even when you are the last one in line.

Want to free up more room? The tankless water heater takes up very little room compared to a traditional water heater. They are about the size of a large suitcase and are installed on your wall. This can potentially free up some valuable square footage.

Why don’t more people have a tankless? Cost. It can seem like a large chunk of change to lay down compared to a standard water heater, but even though it may cost more at first, you can save money in the long run. The tankless water heaters can save you up to 20% on your bill each month. Beginning in spring of 2015, the Department of Energy instituted new regulations requiring traditional tank water heaters to be even more efficient. These new regulations are making some standard tank water heaters larger and more expensive, therefore closing the gap in price with the tankless. Between these new regulations and the possible tax breaks and utilities rebates offered for a tankless water heater, you are looking at some cash back in your pocket. Not to mention, tankless water heaters tend to last 5-10 years longer than a tank water heater. Money in your pocket and crazy Cousin Eddie never has to take a cold shower again!

Things to keep in mind when deciding on a new tankless water heater:

  1. Your fuel source. Do you use gas, electric or propane? An all electric house has options, but they require a substantial amount of power. You would probably have to upgrade your electrical panel to accommodate an electric tankless water heater.
  2. Your requested demand. How many people are in your family and how many appliances do you have that could be running at once, swiping that hot water you need? Your demand can influence size or type of tankless water heater.
  3. Incoming water temperature. As a homeowner, knowing the temperature of the water coming into your house from your source is important. This temperature could be a weighing factor on your water heater decision. The water from your source needs to be heated to your preset temperature. If that water coming in to your home is colder than “normal” then it causes more work on your water heater’s side. This could allow the tankless water heater to have trouble keeping up with your demand. This is where a technician from Godby could help you.

This is not a “one size fits all” sort of situation. Carefully look at all of your needs and decide accordingly. Need help? Call Godby.

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