Over the past few decades, water heaters have come a long way. One of those advancements is new technology for tankless water heaters. While those advances are good news for your energy bill and water needs, they have made it difficult for homeowners to select the right tankless water heater. There are many options available, and choosing the right model could seem impossible. Check out this buying guide and learn how to pick the right tankless heater for your McHenry plumbing needs. 

Why Should You Go Tankless?

If you’re reading this guide, you’re probably considering the purchase of a tankless water heater. But you need to be fully committed before you buy your first heater. Before you start shopping, you should understand all the benefits of having a tankless water heater.

More Hot Water

A hot water system that uses a tank can only supply as much hot water as the tank can hold. As a result, your household will sometimes run out of hot water. Large tanks provide enough hot water to homes, but those tanks come at a high cost.

Because a tankless system heats water as you need it, it gives you unlimited hot water. The right model will give you enough hot water to meet all of your household’s hot water needs. 

Decreased Energy Bill Costs

Although tankless water heaters cost more than tank heaters, they save you money on your utility bills. Tank heaters constantly heat water, whether or not you’re using the water. But tankless systems only heat the water as you’re using it, which is energy efficient. The heating element only turns on when you turn the hot faucet.

With a tankless system, you can save up to 40% on your energy bill. Over the years, that really adds up. 

Get More Space

While a tankless system only takes up some wall space, a tank system takes up a significant amount of space. Don’t lose precious space in your garage or basement for a large tank. With a tankless heater, you lose minimal space. 

How to Choose the Right Size

One of the most important details about a tankless heater is the size of the product. Each model has a unique temperature and flow rate, and these numbers matter. If the water doesn’t get hot enough or flow fast enough, your heater won’t get the job done. 

Determining the model size involves looking at how many appliances in your home need hot water. Then, you need to figure out how much demand each appliance has. 

For example, a shower might have a requirement of four gallons per minute at 104 degrees. A dishwasher may only demand 1.5 gallons per minute at 110 degrees. If you think you’ll be running the shower as you run the dishwasher, you would need a unit that could handle 5.5 gallons per minute.

Don’t get overwhelmed by the calculations. If you speak to someone who does tankless water heater repair and installation, you can ask them what size heater you need. 

The Types of Tankless Water Heaters

You also need to consider which type of tankless heater is best for your home. If you choose a non-condensing design, the system will make hot exhaust. In addition to installing the system, a plumber will also need to install a vent. 

Eliminating the need for a vent, a non-consenting system uses two heat exchangers. The second exchanger takes the exhaust from the first exchanger and uses it to heat your water even more. As a result, the system is more efficient than a non-condensing system.

As a final option, there’s a hybrid tankless heater. This model has a small holding tank to store some heated water, thereby preventing you from running out of hot water. 

What Does a Tankless System Cost?

The prices of tankless water heaters vary greatly. For a small, basic system, you might pay as little as $500. But a system with enough power to handle your home’s needs could cost as much as $3,000. 

When picking a system, price matters. That said, you shouldn’t just go for the cheapest tankless heater you find. In addition to looking at the up-front cost of a system, you should also consider the energy savings. The more energy efficient the model, the more savings you’ll experience over time. 

In addition to paying for the heater itself, you also need to pay for the installation. You should only work with someone who is experienced with McHenry plumbing and who is licensed and insured. Typically, the cost of installation varies from about $700 to $2,000. The price varies according to the rates of the plumbing company and the difficulty of the installation. If you’re only replacing a tankless system, the cost won’t be high.

What Model Should You Buy?

Because tankless water heaters have become quite popular, there are many brands and models of heaters available. After you decide on a size and type of tankless heater, you still have some decisions to make. 

One of the best ways to go about this is to work with a plumber. If you use a plumber who has experience with tankless water heater repair, they will know which brands to avoid and which ones will give you the most value. 

When it comes to your home, quality matters. Choosing a water heater that uses cheap parts or has low efficiency will only hurt you in the long run. If you want your heater to last and to keep your water the ideal temperature, you need to purchase a quality system. Otherwise, your water heater may fail.

You should also consider the warranty. Although most tankless heaters come with warranties, the terms of those warranties vary. Pay attention to the fine print and choose a product that has a lengthy warranty. 

Who to Choose for Your McHenry Plumbing

If you need to buy and install a new tankless water heater, call us at J. Blanton Plumbing. Our team is ready to advise you on your purchase and to install your new system. Let us handle your McHenry plumbing needs.