Water Passes Over Heating Element to Ensure Endless Hot Water
Like all pieces of equipment in our world, technology for them eventually changes and improves over time. This is true for tankless water heaters. Technology of the past used to make these systems quite less desirable than they are now, but with recent advancements, you and your family can enjoy many benefits from having one installed in your home.
So, when we talk about this technology, what exactly do we mean? And how do tankless water heaters work?
Tankless Water Heater Operation
The operation of a tankless water heater is not that much different than that of a conventional system. However, tankless units only heat water on demand so they aren’t operating as frequently, or generating hot water when no one needs it.
So, here’s how the tankless makes this on-demand heating possible:
- When you turn on the hot water tap anywhere in the home, the cold water flows through a pipe and into the unit.
- That cold water passes over a heating component, either a gas burner or an electric element.
- That heating component heats the water that you receive through the faucet.
- Once the hot water tap is turned off, the tankless unit shuts down. This process doesn’t start again until the hot water is turned back on.
It really is that simple. The days of waiting for a storage tank to fill up before you get hot water are gone! The only downside to this is the flow rate is limited by how much water the tankless can put out. This is about 2 to 5 gallons of hot water per minute and is often enough for almost every home.
Pros and Cons of Tankless Water Heaters
What at first is considered a “con” is actually not as bad as it sounds. The initial cost of a tankless water heater is greater than that of a conventional unit. But, long-term, over the course of its 20-year life, you will more than pay for it in energy cost savings.
The U.S. Department of Energy has estimated that homes using less than 41 gallons of water daily can save up to 34% on energy costs with just one tankless water heater. These savings aren’t even taking into consideration the fact that you won’t have to replace the unit as often. A conventional water heater will need to be replaced roughly every ten years as opposed, again, to every 20.
For more information on tankless water heating, or to schedule a consultation, contact Feehan Plumbing & Heating today!