Are you tired of running out of hot water? Is your family growing and you need more hot water to meet all of your household needs? Thinking about upgrading to more energy-efficient appliances? Wish you didn’t need to have a bulky hot water tank in your utility room?
Surprisingly, tankless hot water heaters are the solution for all of these common problems in Calgary homes. Tankless hot water heaters are sometimes also referred to as instant hot water heaters or on-demand hot water heaters. They are compact appliances that only produce hot water when required in your home.
Advantages of tankless hot water heaters over hot water tanks
Hot water tanks require heating a large volume of water to your desired temperature, and continually re-heating the tank full of water as it slowly cools until the hot water is needed in your home. Keeping this large tank of water continually at the right temperature is an inefficient and energy intensive solution compared to heating the water as it is needed.
Tankless hot water heaters are relatively small appliances compared to hot water tanks. They are typically wall-mounted with also helps free up space in your home.
Tankless hot water heaters are considered some of the most efficient water heating home appliances. The cost of operating an instant hot water heater is less than what it would cost to use a hot water tank.
Tankless water heaters do not require standby energy usage to keep the water warm, so your energy usage will likely be less than what is needed for a traditional hot water tank.
Tankless hot water heaters are well suited to both residential and commercial uses due to their ability to accomodate high volumes of hot water demand. They are also and variable demands.
If you have variable amounts of water usage in your home, using a large amount some days, and minimal amounts at other times, an instant hot water tank is a good fit because it can easily manage a variable demand for hot water.
No delays in water supply due to a tank of pre-heated water getting exhaused. Tankless hot water heaters can continually generate hot water as needed.
How Tankless Hot Water Heaters Work
When you turn on a hot water faucet, cold water circulates through a heat exchanger inside the tankless hot water heater. The water is heated by either a natural gas burner or an electric element and then flows directly to where the water is in demand. The water is not stored between when it is heated and when it is distributed for use in your property. Consequently, tankless hot water heaters can in theory supply endless hot water as it generates the hot water whenever needed.
If you are familiar with hot water tanks, you’d be accustomed to waiting until your hot water tank is full enough to use, and being cautious about using too much hot water that you’d drain the tank and have nothing left for other uses in the home for a while. This is not an issue with tankless hot water heaters, but the amount of hot water that can be generated at any given time is limited by the appliance’s flow rate. The flow rate is the amount of water it can produce per minute. Tankless water heaters typically deliver hot water at a rate that ranges from 2 to 5 gallons per minute. The flow rates produced by tankless water heaters fuelled by gas are usually higher than those produced by electric ones. Different sizes and models of tankless hot water heaters will have different flow rate capacities. Large commercial grade tankless hot water heaters will have the capacity to deliver hot water to a large number of appliances and faucets at once, but many residential models will not have such a seemly unlimited capacity. A home with many occupants and a small, undersized tankless hot water heater might experience some of the same hot water shortages that would be experienced with a traditional hot water tank.
The Cost of Tankless Hot Water Heaters
The upfront cost of purchasing a tankless water heater is typically higher than that of a hot water tank, however, tankless water heaters typically have lower operating and energy costs and last longer than conventional hot water heaters, which helps to offset the higher upfront cost. Most tankless water heaters have a lifespan of over twenty years. They also feature easily changeable pieces, which may add many more years to their lifespan as they are easier to service and maintain.
Better Energy Efficiency
Tankless water heaters do not suffer the standby heat losses typical of hot water tanks. There are some insulating tactics that can be used to decrease the energy losses of hot water tanks, but they cannot beat the overall efficiency of not needing to regularly heat and maintain the hot water tank temperature while it is waiting to be used in your home.
Installation Process for Tankless Hot Water Heaters
Maximizing the energy efficiency of your demand water heater is possible by ensuring that it is installed and maintained correctly. Proper installation of a hot water tank requires following important safety protocols and local regulations. Most tankless hot water heaters in Calgary are natural gas-powered. Natural gas installation requires professional installation and a municipal license to install. The ventilation of the hot water tank is also important and it’s best to consult a professional technician to ensure the appliance is installed and vented correctly to prevent any safety or regulation concerns. 180 Plumbing & Heating are experts at installing tankless hot water heaters and licensed gas fitters so we can ensure your tankless hot water heater is installed correctly from start to finish.
Tankless Hot Water Heater Maintenance
Depending on the size and usage of your hot water tank, it’s recommended to de-scale your hot water heater annually or semi-annually. To de-scale your tankless hot water tank, you need to have an isolation package installed on the bottom of your tank. This is an add-on that give you the ability to isolate the water lines that are feeding the house and adds two valves that you can use to flush your tankless hot water heater. With this kit, you’ll also get additional pipes and a small pump. Using a container with a cleaning-strength vinegar, the lines and pump are connected to the valves on the bottom of the tankless hot water heater and the vinegar is circulated through the appliance for about an hour. This removes any sediment that has built inside the heating coil and throughout the water heater. Once this process is complete, you can disconnect the pump and open the cold water and allow it to flush the appliance for about 5 to 10 minutes, and remove all the vinegar. The tankless hot water heater can then be disconnected from the isolation package pipes and connection to the house can be restored to resume heating water for your home. Doing this maintenance regularly will substantially lengthen the life of your hot water heater and reduce the efficiency it loses over time. Contact 180 Plumbing and Heating for all the maintenance you need completed for your tankless hot water heater. Get in touch with us today.