How Does a Tankless Water Heater Work?

A tankless water heater works by heating the water that flows through it making the storage tank of a standard water heater unnecessary. When a homeowner with tankless water heater turns on the faucet, cold water travels through a water pipe into the tankless hot water heater, and then it is immediately heated using gas or electricity. The water then travels out again to be used by the homeowner right away.

When it comes to comparing the benefits of a tankless water heater vs tank, a standard hot water heater is not as efficient. A standard water heater works by storing the water, heating it and maintaining that temperature until it is needed. The hot water is drawn to the top of the tank ready for use, but it is possible to run out of hot water, and the energy necessary to maintain the heat of the water compared to that of the tankless water heater is vast.  A tankless water heater, vs tank, is therefore vastly more energy efficient.

Will I Get More Hot Water from a Tankless Option?

The average heating rate for a tankless water heater is 2-5 gallons per minute. The water is heated immediately as it flows through a tankless hot water heater, giving you practically an unlimited amount of hot water available. If you are comparing a tankless hot water heater to a tank, a standard hot water heater can only provide as much hot water as the tank can contain, before needing to reheat if it gets to the point of running low.

The most common size standard water heater, 50 gallons, can provide enough water for 3-5 people to shower within a single hour. Depending on the size of your family and your schedule, you may or may not run into issues in terms of running out of hot water. If you have similar showering schedules or need to run the dishwasher or washing machine at the same time, this may pose a challenge.

One great benefit to owning a tankless water heater is the unlimited hot water needed to complete all your chores as and when you need to. Or that it allows multiple people to shower/ bath consecutively.

What is the Installation Cost for a Tankless Water Heater?

A tankless hot water heater will cost more in terms when it comes to the initial purchase and installation, in fact, the initial can sometimes be up to 3 times more. If you were to purchase a new standard, storage water heater, then you’re looking at around $650-$850.

The tankless water heaters come in two varieties – electric and gas-powered. An electric tankless water heater can be purchased for under $1000, while a gas-powered tankless water heater could cost around $3000.

However, despite the initial cost, there are financial benefits to choosing a tankless water heater vs tank water heater. Choosing a tankless water heater means you are very likely to save money on your energy bills going forward. Many families save around $100 annually, but the more water you tend to use the more you are likely to save by making this transition.

A standard hot water heater will last around 10 years, while a tankless hot water heater should last approximately 20 years. This should also be taken into consideration when factoring in the initial cost of purchase and installation.

The team at TNC Mechanical Cooling & Heating, Inc. in Monson, MA., is ready to assist. Serving clients throughout Western MA, the family-owned company offers a wide range of HVAC services. We are a Mitsubishi Electric Ductless Pro Contractor. Visit us online for more information or call (888) 284-3892 to schedule an appointment.