At Foothills Heating and Cooling in Denver, our customers often ask what are some pros and cons of a tankless water heater. Today, let’s take a look at both sides so that you can better determine whether installing a tankless unit is the right option for your needs.
Pro 1: Energy Saver
There is no doubt: tankless water heaters use less energy. It has no tank to keep hot throughout the day and night, so there is no standby energy loss. A standard water heater will generally use about 225 therms of energy a year. Alternatively, the tankless water heater will only use 150 therms. This means you not only save energy, but you could save yourself money on energy costs in the long run.
Pro 2: On-Demand Hot Water
Another great benefit of a tankless water heater is that you never really run out of hot water. You can take a pretty long shower and enjoy hot water the entire time. Unlimited hot water delivered on-demand is especially convenient for large families or if you have extra guests who visit frequently.
Pro 3: Longer Lasting
Tankless water heaters typically last longer. The warranties for the heat exchangers will typically last for 12-15 years, up to 20 years. Traditional water heaters with a tank can have a 6-year warranty, while some have a 9 or 12-year warranty.
Con 1: Initial Cost
Tankless water heaters cost more for both the installation and for the unit itself. The installation cost is higher due to the special venting requirements and the need for larger gas lines. You’re welcome to talk to one of our experts who will walk you through the costs of both options.
Con 2: Limit to the Amount of Water at Once
Though you can get unlimited hot water, the amount that gets delivered at one time is limited. While a traditional water heater pushes through as much hot water as the pipes will hold, the flow for a tankless water heater is limited by the amount of water that can be heated as water passes through the unit. For better flow, a larger unit may be required.
Con 2: Amount of Time to Deliver Hot Water
Tankless water heaters can take longer to deliver hot water at first. Traditional hot water heaters have a heated tank of hot water at the ready, so it doesn’t take long to deliver hot water. For tankless water heaters, all the water that was in the tubing has cooled and that water will be delivered ahead of the newly heated water which can be a chilly surprise if you get in the shower before the hot stuff gets there.
Con 3: Hard Water is Hard on Tankless Systems
This is a large drawback to think about. Hard water can destroy a tankless water heater. Depending on how hard your water is, a tankless water heater can be ruined in as little as two years. If you have your heart set on one, we can set up your piping to make it easier to flush and clean out your system on a regular basis.
If you have weighed the pros and cons of a tankless water heater and have made a decision, give us a call at Foothills Heating and Cooling in Denver. We can answer any questions you might have and get whatever water heater you choose installed and ready for a long, hot shower.