Are you considering upgrading to a tankless water heater? This modern alternative to traditional storage water heating has grown increasingly popular in Annapolis and Pasadena, MD, in recent years. Switching to a tankless model could be a good choice if you’re hoping to increase efficiency and convenience.
Understanding Storage Tank vs. Tankless Water Heaters
Storing hot water in a large, cylindrical tank has been the go-to solution for most American households for decades. These units operate by channeling cold water into a tank where it’s heated by a gas burner or electric element. The tank holds the water at a steady temperature of 120 to 140 degrees F, ensuring hot water is available when needed. However, this constant readiness makes storage water tanks susceptible to standby heat loss.
That’s why tankless water heaters were invented—to save energy by heating water on demand. With tankless water heating, cold water enters the unit and flows through a series of coils, where it’s heated on the spot before heading to your faucet, showerhead, or plumbing appliance. This instantaneous heating method is the perfect fit for energy-conscious Maryland homeowners.
Benefits of Tankless Hot Water Heaters
Now that you understand how tankless water heaters work, you may wonder if this is the right fit for your family’s hot water needs. Consider the many benefits this technology offers to help you decide.
Lower Energy Costs
Transitioning to a tankless water heater is an effortless way to adopt a frugal energy consumption habit. Unlike traditional tank versions, tankless models don’t engage in a never-ending heating cycle. Instead, they power on only when needed, thus reducing their operating hours significantly. This on-demand approach eliminates standby heat loss, resulting in energy savings of up to 34% compared to a storage tank system.
Endless Hot Water Supply
The concept of running out of hot water mid-shower is a common complaint in households with traditional water heaters. Waiting at least 10 minutes between showers is tedious, especially when you’re already running late. Tankless water heaters offer a far better solution. The absence of a tank means you enjoy an uninterrupted hot water supply. The waiting game is no more, so your family can take endless back-to-back showers without worrying about the water turning cold.
Traditional water heater tanks typically last eight to 12 years. They must contend with a full tank of corrosive hot water 24 hours a day, which takes its toll. By comparison, tankless water heaters boast a lifespan of 20 years or more. This longevity stems from the reduced wear and tear of on-demand operation, making a tankless unit a wise long-term investment.
Space is a precious commodity in any home. A traditional water heater’s bulky tank consumes a significant chunk of your utility space. In contrast, the compact design of a tankless water heater, which is roughly the size of a carry-on suitcase, allows you to reclaim your space. A wall-mounted installation further adds to the unit’s spatial efficiency, making it a modern and sleek solution for your home.
Gas vs. Electric Tankless Water Heater
If you think a tankless unit could be right for your Annapolis or Pasadena home, the next question is what fuel type to choose. If you don’t already have a natural gas line, you might find an electric tankless water heater appealing. However, you should know that electric models tend to have higher operating costs than gas versions because of the higher cost of electricity. Therefore, if natural gas is available, a tankless gas water heater could be the way to go. Speak with your installer to get a professional opinion tailored to your circumstances.
Other Considerations about Tankless Water Heaters
Opting for a tankless water heater is a surefire way to modernize your home and lower your utility costs. However, as with any significant home upgrade, it’s important to consider both sides of the argument to ensure you’re making an informed decision that aligns with your household’s needs. Here are a few downsides of tankless water heaters to bear in mind:
- Higher initial cost: The upfront tankless water heater cost can be two to three times higher than a traditional storage unit, especially if electrical or venting modifications are required to accommodate the installation. Although the initial investment is higher, the monthly energy savings and longer lifespan help offset the cost over time. A tankless unit is a long-term investment that makes the most sense if you plan to live in your home for many more years.
- Limited flow rate: Large households with simultaneous hot water demands could stretch a tankless water heater past its limit. For instance, running the shower, dishwasher, and washing machine at the same time will likely result in lukewarm water for everyone. To work around this, you may need to install multiple tankless units, which are small enough to mount inconspicuously under your kitchen sink or high on the bathroom wall.
- Cold-water sandwich: If you shut off the water or lower the flow rate to a trickle, the tankless unit shuts itself off. This means when you restore the hot water flow, the temperature may drop before it heats up again. Although this “cold-water sandwich” is a minor inconvenience, the overall energy efficiency and endless hot water supply outweigh this drawback for many homeowners.
Schedule Tankless Water Heater Installation in Annapolis or Pasadena, MD
At Barstow and Sons Heating and Cooling, we proudly install ultra-efficient Navien tankless water heaters to save you money every month compared to a traditional water heater. The stainless steel components offer enhanced corrosion resistance for dependable performance and an impressively long lifespan. We are a local, family-run business with over 40 years of experience, ready to meet all your water heating needs. Call us today at 410-777-9185 to schedule tankless water heater installation in Annapolis or Pasadena, MD.