How Tankless Water Heaters Work Compared to Traditional Tank Models

How Tankless Water Heaters Work Compared to Traditional Tank Models

Sep 26, 2013

Are you looking to replace the water heater in your Orlando area home? In addition to traditional storage tank water heaters, there is another option you may not be aware of. Tankless water heaters – also called “on-demand” heaters – are an energy-saving way of providing hot water to your home.

How a Tankless Water Heater Works

  • Unlike their traditional counterparts, tankless water heaters do not have a storage tank to hold heated water. Instead water is heated on demand.
  • When a faucet is turned on, cold water passes through the tankless system.
  • As the water travels through the pipes, it is quickly heated by either an electric or gas burner.

Because water is only heated as it’s needed, there’s no energy loss from continuously keeping water warm as happens in a regular storage-tank water heater.

Factors to Consider

While tankless water heaters are a good energy-saving way to heat water, there are several things to consider when comparing them to traditional water heaters:

  • Considerable energy savings are possible with tankless water heaters. Tankless heaters can be as much as 24 to 34 percent more efficient than traditional models.
  • Tankless versions typically have flow rates of 2-5 gallons per minute (gpm). This generally allows two uses at the same time. For example, you can run both the washing machine and take a shower. Storage-tank water heaters have higher flow rates that allow as many as four uses at once. The problem is that they will run out of water at some point, while a tankless water heater will continue to provide hot water indefinitely, as long as there aren’t too many simultaneous uses. That issue can be addressed by installing additional point-of-use tankless units to supplement the whole-house unit.
  • Have you ever had to wait for hot water to heat up? Tankless units can provide heated water on demand for an extended period of time without wait.
  • Tankless style heaters have useful lives of 20 years or more in contrast to 10-15 years with traditional storage-tank heaters.

For more information about how tankless water heaters can work in your home, please contact us at Rinaldi’s Energy Solutions. We’ve been serving the home comfort needs of Central Florida since 1969.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Orlando, Florida and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about tankless water heaters and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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