A hot water heater is a device used to heat water. Hot water is essential for a variety of uses, including cooking, cleaning, bathing, and space heating. There are two main types of hot water heaters, tank and tankless. Tank type is commonly used in North America, while tankless is more common in Asia. Both are available in both electric and gas varieties. When shopping for a hot water heater, you’ll want to consider how much water you use, the size of your home, and the location of your plumbing fixtures.
Electric water heaters are the most energy-efficient, but they can be more expensive than those powered by natural gas. They typically require an annual plumbing service. The cost of a basic 30-gallon electric tank can range from $500 to $800. Besides being a good option for budget-conscious consumers, these heaters are Energy Star certified. Some utilities offer funding to offset the higher first costs of energy efficient models. If you choose a gas model, you may need to install electrical venting.
Natural gas is cheap, but the energy it produces contributes to global warming. It is also the most convenient to use in cities. In Europe, the most popular type of heater is a tank, while in South Asia the more commonly seen type is the tankless. These heaters can be fueled by natural gas, propane, or heating oil.
Natural gas is also cheaper than electricity. But in North American households, the average household spends $2,024 on energy every year. This can be especially costly if you live in an older house with poor water pressure. To avoid this, replace old pipes and increase the pressure.
Gas heaters, like their electrical counterparts, are most often used in temperate climates. In these regions, it is important to have a continuous supply of hot water. Most traditional heating vessels cannot provide this. For this reason, thermosyphoning is a popular method for domestic hot water heaters. Rather than have a storage tank, the hot water is heated by a burner at the bottom of the tank. Combustion gases vent through a flue that runs down the center of the tank.
Recirculation pumps are also used to recirculate water from the output side to the faucet. This hot water heaters saves water and reduces the amount of time you need to run the faucet to clear out the piping. Although these are not a preferred choice for heating water, they can help if your existing water heater has low pressure.
A basic tank-type water heater can be installed fairly easily. You can also get a top-mount model for easier installation. However, a hot water leak is a potential problem, and it is likely you will need to replace your entire water heater when this happens.
Tankless hot water heaters are more compact than their storage counterparts. They can be sized to fit your specific needs. However, they do not have the capacity to keep up with demand. Thus, you should calculate the number of hot water fixtures in your home and choose a tankless model that will accommodate your needs.