Did you know that the average American household spends 18 percent of its annual utility budget on heating water to use for cooking, cleaning, bathing, and drinking? In many parts of the country, that number is even higher because of cold winter temperatures. If you have a traditional water tank, you're heating water 24/7, whether you're at home or at work or school. A good way to avoid this waste of energy is to invest in a tankless water heating system, where you only heat water as you need it, not on a constant basis.
What is a tankless water heating system?
As the name implies, a tankless water heating system gets rid of that large, cumbersome water tank. Instead, the system is about the size of a medium suitcase and hangs on the wall. Via a system of super-heated coils, the system heats water on demand and sends it to the faucet.
Advantages to a tankless system
While the chief advantage of a tankless water heating system is saving energy and energy dollars, it's far from the only reason to switch out your traditional water tank for a tankless system.
1. Saving energy and energy dollars. The prime advantage of a tankless water heating system is reducing your household's carbon footprint and saving money on your utility bills. With a proper installation by a good plumbing company, the average family can save between 27 and 50 percent per year on its water heating bill by making the switch.
2. Unlimited hot water. Have you ever been to a hotel and enjoyed the luxury of letting the shower run a little longer than you would at home, knowing there will be plenty of hot water left for your spouse? With a tankless system, you can have that luxury at home. Since this type of system heats water on demand, you'll always have enough hot water.
3. Saving space. By getting rid of that big, ungainly tank, you'll free up room in your basement or utility closet for other uses. Plus, since the risk of a tankless system that is properly installed by a good plumbing contractor leaking is much less than with a water tank, you can put the system anywhere in your home, even in the attic.
Things to think about before you commit
Of course, like any type of mechanical system, there are pluses and minuses. Consider the following before you decide to commit to a tankless system.
1. Works better for small to medium-size families. A tankless system works best when there are three or less simultaneous demands for water. If your family has multiple bathrooms, does a lot of laundry all day, and runs the dishwasher constantly, this may not be the right choice for your household.
2. Slow response time in larger homes. Since the water needs to get up to temperature and then travel to the faucet that has demanded it, there may be a lag between turning the faucet and getting hot water. This lag time increases the further the faucets are from the system.
While a tankless water heating system may not be the right choice for every household, this type of water heater will reduce your family's energy usage, save you money on your electric or natural gas bill, and free up space by getting rid of that big, ugly water tank.
To learn more about tankless water heaters, reach out to a local plumber.