What Is the Advantage of Having a Tankless Water Heater?

Tankless Water Heater Isolated Against a White Background.

A Tankless Water Heater Can Provide a Nearly Endless Supply of Hot Water.

When the time comes to replace the water heater, more and more homeowners make the switch to a tankless unit. A tankless water heater can provide for several benefits over standard tank models. The most prominent of these, the provision of a nearly endless supply of hot water, is dependent on the size or number of units you install in your home. Of course, tankless water heaters also have their drawbacks. At Emergency Sewer and Drain Experts, we serve as the premier installer and repair team for any tankless water heater in Oak Park, Il. If this article fails to answer any question, or if you’ve decided to make the switch and want to schedule installation, give us a call at 708-934-4115.

Tankless Water Heater Installation

Before you commit to tankless water heater installation, you should consider all of the relative benefits and drawbacks. Many people simply hear “endless supply of hot water”, and are immediately sold. Tankless water heaters are not magic, however, nor are they without flaws. At the same time, they can certainly represent an excellent choice for many homes. A tankless water heater performs its duty as water passes through it on the way to your shower or sink. This “as-needed” production can save a homeowner money, as a tankless device does not have to keep an entire storage tank of water at a constantly high temperature.

As for tankless water heater installation, you can put them in a great variety of places. Utility rooms, attics, basements, garages, bedrooms, bathrooms, or even an outside wall can host a tankless unit. This presents a clear advantage over traditional water heaters, which require not only enough room to accommodate their size, but more than a foot of clearance on all sides. As for the digital controller that regulates the temperature of your water, you can place it anywhere, even right in the bathroom for those times when you want to soak in an extra-hot bath.

How Does a Tankless Water Heater Work?

These units heat water directly and on-demand, and so have no need of a storage tank. When you turn on your hot water tap, cold water begins to pass through the heater. This signals the ignition of the electric element or gas burner, which can heat between two to five gallons of water in a minute. Gas heaters create more hot water than electric, but heavy usage can stretch the capabilities of any device. If you want to wash a load of clothes and take a shower simultaneously, for example, you may need more than one tankless heater.

Why Tankless Water Heater vs Tank?

There exists no such thing as a perfect water heater, and even the most expensive models have drawbacks. To know whether a tankless device can ideally serve your needs, consider the various pros and cons.

Tankless Water Heater

Advantages

  • Save Money on Energy Bills
  • Longer Lifespan – Up to 30 years
  • Takes Up Less Space
  • Constant Supply of Hot Water
  • Virtually No Wait for Hot Water

Drawbacks

  • Much More Expensive to Purchase
  • More Expensive to Install
  • Demand from Multiple Sources Can Overcome Output
  • Necessitates Multiple Units in High Demand or Large Households

Which Tankless Water Heater Is Better?

Your choice of tankless water heater involves a number of factors. Things to consider include:

  • Your Budget
  • Your Home’s Size
  • Number of People in Your Household
  • Whether You Prefer Gas or Electric

Tankless water heaters come in a great variety of price points, from economical models intended for small homes or apartments, to very costly units such as the Rheem RTGH-95DVLN Direct Vent Tankless Water Heater. The size of your home plays a major role, since a small residence can take full advantage of cheaper tankless water heater options. Tankless units come in a great variety of sizes and capacities, and some homes will require more than one unit. Your preference between gas and electric devices also matters a great deal. Though most people spring for gas, electric units have their benefits. While a gas heater is more cost-efficient and heats water faster than an electric model, electric heaters are cheaper to purchase and do not require a rooftop vent. Aside from the additional labor involved with vent installation, it also creates one more point of concern for your next roof inspection.

Common Questions About Tankless Water Heaters

Are Tankless Water Heaters Better?

Tankless Water Heater Control Unit Installed on Blue Tile.

You Can Install a Tankless Water Heater’s Control Unit Practically Anywhere.

This depends entirely on situational factors. If you have a small house, or can afford multiple units, a tankless water heater may represent a perfect solution for continuous hot water. If you have a limited budget, standard water heaters are cheaper to purchase, cheaper to install, and require less costly repairs.

Is Tankless Water Heater Gas or Electric?

Tankless water heaters are available in both gas and electric models. The kind you choose should depend both on preference, and the cost of utilities in your area.

How Big of a Tankless Hot Water Heater Do I Need?

This choice will depend on your expected flow rate — i.e. how many gallons of water per minute you expect to need heated — and the desired temperature of the water. A handy online guide can help you determine this for your own household.

Do Tankless Water Heaters Need Maintenance?

Yes. Just as with a standard water heater, you should schedule annual maintenance to ensure the optimal operation and continued health of your device. Unless you have a whole house water softener, the water that passes through your heaters, both standard and tankless, will contain some amount of calcium and magnesium. These minerals will gradually coat your heating element or plug water passageways to limit your heater’s ability to function. The primary purpose of maintenance is to “descale” your heater, and remove the accumulated sediment.

How Long Does a Tankless Water Heater Last?

If properly maintained with annual maintenance, a tankless water heater can last for 20 to 30 years.

At Emergency Sewer and Drain Experts, we are the local experts for the installation, repair, and maintenance of any tankless water heater in Oak Park, Il. For additional questions, service requests, or installation appointments, give us a call today at 708-934-4115.