If your water heater is showing signs of failing and is nearing the end of its lifespan, you might be wondering what type to purchase in the event you need a water heater replacement. Of course, before you purchase a new one, it’s helpful to have your old appliance inspected by a plumber. Sometimes the issues are quite minor and can be repaired easily. However, if it’s time to buy a new hot water heater, there is some information you need to know to ensure you purchase the right appliance for your household.
Drain Flo Plumbing can help you choose the ideal model. We can also install it in your Tampa, FL, home. Proper installation is crucial for your tank to operate effectively and safely. As you begin your search for a new hot water heater, keep the following considerations and information in mind.
Choosing A Type
When you start shopping for a new hot water heater, you’ll have to decide what type to buy. You basically have two options: traditional tank water heaters and tankless water heaters. Which one is best for you?
Traditional Water Heaters
A traditional tank water heater can store anywhere from 20 to 80 gallons of water depending on the size of the tank you install. These models are usually less costly than tankless water heaters, but costs can be deceptive; these models are less energy efficient than tankless water heaters, so they could cost more to operate. Traditional water heaters last about 8 to 15 years when properly installed and maintained. It’s important to hire a professional plumber to install your new appliance so that it’s safe for operation.
How Do Traditional Water Heaters Work?
A traditional water heater draws water into its tank and heats it to the temperature you set on its thermostat. Then, when you need hot water at your home, you have a ready supply–or at least a supply based on the number of gallons that tank is able to hold at once. If you run out of hot water, the appliance will need to heat more, which might take some time–30 minutes or longer to heat a supply of water that’s adequate for your needs (i.e. showering or washing dishes).
Tankless Water Heaters
A tankless water heater is a much smaller appliance than a traditional tank. A plumber mounts the unit on a wall and connects it to your water line. Drain Flo Plumbing has experience with these types of installations. Because these water heaters do not store water like a traditional hot water heater with a tank, they are more energy efficient. They heat water on demand–they don’t maintain hot water in a tank, which means they require less energy to operate.
How Do Tankless Water Heaters Work?
A tankless water heater heats the water when you need it. After a plumber hooks up your new appliance, you can turn on the faucet for hot water and the water heater’s heating element will heat the water as it passes through its system and then through the line and out your faucet. The system is efficient because it only heats the water you need when you need it. These appliances tend to cost more than conventional tanks; however, they can last up to 20 years. Some users don’t find that they produce water as hot as a traditional tank. Talk to your plumber about choosing a type that’s right for your home.
In order for your water heater to work, it will need fuel–gas or electricity. If you have a gas-operated model currently, you’ll need to know if it’s operated with natural gas or propane. You wonder why gas-powered models are more expensive than electric ones. While gas water heaters cost more upfront, their operating costs are less expensive than electric water heaters. So, with an electric water heater, you’ll find that your energy bills are likely to be more than what you’d pay if you used a gas-powered appliance. In either case, your Drain Flo Plumbing technician can hook up either gas or electric models in your Tampa, FL, home.
If you are purchasing a traditional hot water heater, you need to consider the hot water needs of your household. Your plumber can help you choose the ideal size water heater for your home based on the number of occupants in your house and how much hot water you tend to use on a daily basis. Some people who opt for tankless water heaters actually use two models for larger households to ensure that they have adequate water flow for simultaneous usage.
Sometimes space is a factor when choosing a water heater. If you have a compact home, a tankless water heater might be a better fit for your setting. Remember, an experienced plumber can help you evaluate your space to ensure that whatever unit you select will fit properly and be able to operate safely.
While tankless water heaters are more energy efficient than traditional tank water heaters, you should still want to keep energy efficiency in mind no matter what type you choose. Some models are manufactured to operate with greater energy efficiency than others. When shopping for either model, remember that the higher the energy factor listed on the unit’s label, the more energy efficient it will be.
When you’re ready to replace your old water heater, a plumber from our team can help. Call Drain Flo Plumbing whenever you need an experienced plumber to help you maintain, repair, or replace your hot water heater. We serve residential and commercial customers in and near Tampa, FL, with a full lineup of professional plumbing services.