Tankless Water Heaters

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Overview

Until a few years ago, tankless water heaters were found predominantly in the commercial accommodation market such as hotels and hostels. But as of late, these gadgets have also entered the domestic market. Though priced much higher as compared to the conventional water heaters, people still consider buying them for the long term utility they carry.

A tankless water heater does not have a tank to store and heat water. The water passes through a duct that is surrounded by a coil. When the coil is heated, the water that passes through the duct automatically gets heated. The water heats as it moves along the duct and so it does not need to be stored anywhere. This heated water then comes out of the outlet for instant use. The outlet is also referred to as the point-of-use. A single house can have as many points-of-use as needed, but they will all have to be hooked to the heater coil arrangement.

The coil itself can be heated either with gases such as propane or natural gas or by means of electricity. Therefore, we have two types of tankless water heaters prevalent in the market today including electric tankless water heaters and gas tankless water heaters.

To list out the benefits of a tankless water heater, the first is the absence of a tank. This saves a lot of space, which is a boon in small-sized apartments of modern times. The absence of the tank also means that the cleaning and maintenance requirement are reduced to a great extent.

Tankless water heaters results in saving a significant amount of energy as well. Since the water is heated as it is drawn out, only the water that is needed at that moment is heated. In regular tanks, a lot of water is heated at once and all of that is usually not utilized at the same time. The leftover water then loses the heat due to radiation and will have to be reheated for the next use, resulting in an unnecessary waste. A tankless water heater can reduce water heating costs by an impressive 25 percent.

With the help of sensors and thermostats, tankless water heaters can achieve a desired temperature. This makes them more versatile in their use, because the water can be heated to the appropriate temperature depending on the needs, such as dishwashing and shower.

Turning to the cons of a tankless water heater, their operating costs can be pretty high. In some cases, the running costs can be as much as 10 times higher than that of the regular tank water heaters. Realizing the economical benefits of a tankless water heater, therefore, can take a considerable period of time. They are economical in houses with many members because the water can be heated as per the requirement. Tank water heaters amount to a lot of wastage of resources in such households.

The efficiency of tankless water heaters is still under a shroud of suspicion. These water heaters may not heat water adequately before allowing it to pass out through the faucet. For that reason, manufacturers recommend setting the thermostat to a degree or two higher than required.

Last Updated: January 20, 2012
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