Buying a new tankless water heater can be stressful, mostly due to the fact that there are many types of tankless water heating systems available. Because your new heater is a significant investment for your McHenry plumbing, you should choose your heater with care. Before you make a purchase, learn about all of the different types of tankless water heaters and find out which option is the best for your home.
Types of Tankless Water Heaters
As far as energy efficiency goes, electric tankless water heaters are frontrunners. They have an energy efficiency as high as 99%. Whether you want to save money on your energy bill or do your part for the environment, an electric heater is a viable option. It’s also an excellent choice for those who don’t have much space.
If you already had an electric heater, you might want to stick with the same type. Installing a gas heater requires you to make some changes to the space, but a new electric heater will be easy to install.
As you might expect, an electric heater uses an electric coil to heat your water. It needs to be close enough to be hardwired and must be in the vicinity of hot and cold water lines.
Unlike electric heaters, gas heaters require a connection to a gas line. While they are less efficient than their electric counterparts, gas heaters are more powerful. For large families and businesses, gas heaters are a practical option. They can meet the high demands of multiple people and appliances.
Generally, gas heaters cost more than electric ones. Some rely on a condensing unit, which makes the system more energy efficient. A condensing unit uses heat taken from exhaust fumes to warm up the water.
Large commercial operations have demands that can’t be met by basic gas or electric water heaters. For large-scale operations, a commercial heater is a necessity. They have a high BTU and a high flow rate, which keeps the water warm and flowing.
Most commercial systems use natural gas or propane as a fuel source. Each model varies significantly, so you should thoroughly research your options before making a selection.
Small Heating Systems
Individuals who are on a budget or want a portable option should consider using a small tankless water heater for their McHenry plumbing needs. Although they are small in size, they still hear up water for homeowners.
Small heaters are available in gas, propane, or electric forms. Typically, they aren’t powerful enough to work well in homes with multiple rooms. But for studio apartments and single-room applications, a small system can get the job done.
Hybrid Water Systems
If you love the idea of a tankless water heater but also want something hi-tech, you might want to purchase a hybrid system. The heater moves hot air into the water tank as it’s needed, but also relies on electric heating to warm water.
These heaters are particularly efficient because you have a say in how the water is heated. If you want to meet high demands, you can keep the system on the electric setting. But you improve your energy efficiency if you only use the electric component to heat water on demand.
How to Choose the Right Type for your McHenry Plumbing
There’s no shortage of tankless water heaters on the market. If you’re overwhelmed by the selection, there are a few factors you should consider:
Your Home’s Water Usage
Before you pick a type of heater, estimate your hot water needs. You can do this by calculating how many gallons per minute you need. Think about the appliances that run at the same time, like your shower and dishwasher.
To avoid running out of water, you should assume the maximum water usage. Even if you don’t always do your laundry or shower while your dishwasher is running, it probably happens sometimes. Think about all the possibilities and crunch the numbers.
The Ground Water Temperature
If you live in a warm climate, the ground water will be relatively warm. But people who live in cool climates have ground water that could be much colder. As a result, you would need a system that’s better equipped to heat the water more.
In McHenry, the cold winters make ground water cold. You should look for a unit that is powerful enough to keep your water warm, regardless of the season.
The Size of Your Home
Of course, the size of your home also matters. How many bathrooms do you have? If you only have one bathroom, you may be able to get away with a water heater that has 140,000 BTUs. But if you have two bathrooms, your water heater should have at least 190,000 BTUs. As the number of bathrooms increases, so does the recommended BTUs.
How Many People Live in Your Home
A family of six has more demand for hot water than a family of three. In addition to taking more showers, the larger family has more dishes and laundry to do. Therefore, they need a water heater with a larger capacity.
The Importance of Making the Right Choice
There are several reasons you need to choose your new heater with care. For one, it’s a large investment. If you’re unhappy with your choice, you need to live with it for years to come.
Secondly, the wrong heater will break down frequently. You’ll find yourself in constant need of tankless water heater repair. But if you do your research, you will get a heater that can withstand your needs and endure through time. In the long-run, this saves you money on repairs.
Finally, there’s the issue of your comfort. Living without enough hot water could make your life miserable and uncomfortable. To prevent this from happening, you should speak to an expert.
An experienced McHenry plumbing technician will be able to tell you more about the types of water heaters. If you’re interested in learning more, contact us at J. Blanton Plumbing. Call us with any questions or for tankless water heater repair.