How to Choose the Right Water Heater For Your Home


An electric water heater uses electricity to heat your water. They can be tank-type or tankless, but both have pros and cons. Tank-type electric water heaters are great for producing large amounts of hot water, especially in homes with more than 1 or 2 bathrooms. They also cost less to buy and install than a tankless heater. However, because they store the hot water inside the machine, you can’t use all your hot water at once – there has to be enough room in the heater to accommodate the maximum amount of hot water you want at any given time. Also, if you run out of hot water, that’s it; even if someone else in your house is still running warm or cold water into another faucet, they won’t get any. Tank-type electric heaters use the most electricity of all water heaters, so they cost more to operate than other types.

Tankless electric water heaters are best for small homes or apartments with only 1 or 2 bathrooms. They offer unmatched energy efficiency. You can get up to 6 gallons per minute (depending on the model) at any temperature you choose, enough hot water to run two showers and a sink simultaneously, even if everyone in your family is taking a shower. Because tankless hot water heaters don’t store hot water inside the machine, you can use all the hot water available at once, no fighting over who gets their turn first. However, they tend to be very expensive and require professional plumbing installation.

When it comes to choosing the right type of hot water heater for your home, it all depends on several factors. The following guide will help you choose which type of water heater will best serve your needs based upon its intended use:

Water heater Size

Your home’s hot water usage size determines the water heater you will need. Your house will require a minimum of 50 gallons to provide for your total daily hot water use. If your household comprises three or more people, one shower per person each day, and two to two-and-a-half baths per week, you should have approximately 70 gallons in storage capacity. For every additional person in the household, add 15 to 20 gallons. Add 10 gallons if you have an automatic clothes washer and 5 gallons if you have an automatic dishwasher.

Size also factors energy efficiency because certain models allow users to select desired levels of hot water output through different temperature settings on the tankless models.

Energy Source

The energy source of your water heater will determine the cost to operate it. The three major types are electricity, natural gas, and propane gas. Electricity is produced by a power plant that may or may not rely on fossil fuels for its fuel source. Installing an electric water heater in your home adds to greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere. Gas-fueled models provide hot water quickly but release dangerous carbon monoxide gases into your home if connected improperly, leading to health problems. If you have a gas-powered model installed in your home, have it inspected annually by a plumbing professional to ensure proper ventilation and keep it away from possible ignition sources such as pilot lights or open flames.

A propane-fired model provides an energy source that can be easily stored and carried by those with propane tanks on their property or those who purchase the tank from a dealer and install it themselves. Propane models, like gas models, should be checked annually by a professional plumbing service and must be kept clear of any possible ignition sources such as pilot lights and open flames.

Temperature Control

The water heater’s temperature control setting will determine the speed at which hot water is delivered to your home. Models use two general types of controls: traditional thermostat control and instantaneous (or demand) control. Thermostat-controlled units provide approximate levels of hot water output based on preset temperatures typically ranging from 120 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. The time it takes to reach these preset temperatures can vary greatly depending on your home’s hot water usage. Temperature control is an important factor in the performance of a tankless water heater because they provide consistent hot water through instantaneous heating rather than waiting for hot water to be produced and then delivering this heated liquid into your home.

Demand-controlled units, or tankless models, do not have preset temperature settings and instead deliver a high level of energy instantly when triggered by a user opening a faucet. This type of model works very similarly to a light switch in that it turns on when needed and off when not needed, unlike traditional models, which constantly heat the liquid until the selected temperature is reached. Upon turning on, demand-type units can produce hot water within seconds compared to traditional tank-type models, taking several minutes.

Installation Method

The installation method done by your preferred residential plumbing service will impact its overall performance and, subsequently, the amount you pay to operate it. Tankless models require a hard-wired electrical connection with a specific voltage rating, so they should only be installed by a professional electrician, whereas gas and propane-fired units can be either hard-wired or connected with flexible fuel lines installation. Traditional models generally have two options. An indoor installation in which the unit is placed inside your home’s interior space near an existing water source such as a sink, shower. The other option is an outdoor installation that provides flexibility regarding where the unit is placed but requires a standard household water fixture and an electrical source.

Energy Efficiency

No matter what size tank you choose for your electric heater, it’s important to install a water heater that is energy efficient and environmentally friendly. The Department of Energy has created a program to help consumers find appliances that meet minimum energy efficiency standards set by the federal government. There are three levels of qualification: basic, standard, and premium. A basic-efficiency water heater uses less than 50% of the national average for its class, while standard and premium models use up to 16% and 20% below this target. This can lead to savings in both gas and electric bills month to month if you choose when buying a new tank type or system. The price difference between these units may be slightly higher, but the utility cost savings and green impact will be appreciated over time.

If you want to go a step further and take an eco-friendly approach, the tankless or demand water heater is the way to go. These units tend to produce significantly less greenhouse gas emissions than personal storage tanks because they only heat water as needed by using high electrical currents. The price for this type of unit is higher than other types but can save money on power bills through increased efficiency. If you’re looking for a long-term solution that will help reduce your carbon footprint, consider one of these options when buying a new tank type or system for your home.


Pricing can also play a role in choosing the right size for your home. If you choose a too-small unit, there will constantly be complaints of your tank running out of hot water before everyone has finished showering. On the other hand, buying an oversized unit can cost more money in energy bills, or you have to call plumbing companies to replace it sooner than necessary. Therefore, before making any purchase, gather as much knowledge about the product and decide what fits your family’s needs best.

Many people tend to go with the least expensive option available when purchasing appliances. However, it isn’t wise to choose this route when deciding on your new water heater. Water heaters are extremely important for your home and cost more than the initial price tag. Many different features can help determine how much money you will be spending every month on heating the water in your house. Although these options might seem overwhelming, speaking with a professional can help make this decision easier by providing expert advice based on experience.

Maintenance Requirements

When you are ready to make your purchase, choosing a water heater with more features is wise than just heating the water. A tankless coil model might be best for providing both hot and plentiful hot water. And, if you’re already familiar with one type of heater over the other due to experience, then choosing another of the same type will be easy since you’ll know how often the elements need replacing or what kind of maintenance from plumbing contractors is needed regularly. Knowing what to expect from your new water heater before buying it will help ensure its long life in your home.

There are two distinct categories for checking up on a water heater: visual inspection and functional testing (including draining and flushing the heater). There are two kinds of water heaters: gas-powered and electric resistance.

A gas-powered model should be checked for rust and sediment build-up around the burner/igniter unit and within the exhaust system (regularly) but not drained or flushed.

An electric resistance model should be flushed every six months to one year, depending on usage, and it should also be checked for sediment build-up in the same area (regularly). It should be drained once a year. Some models might need to have their heating elements replaced periodically; check your manufacturer’s instructions before doing this yourself.

Operating Costs

It is beneficial to consider operating costs when choosing a water heater. Operating costs are the additional expenses associated with the heating of water continually. There are three types of costs associated with your water heater: purchase price, installation cost, and operating or operating costs. To find the answer about what will be the most economical solution that meets your needs, you should consider all these factors.

Operating costs include the quantity of energy required, efficiency of heat transfer, and usage cycle (time between start-up and shut-down). The most popular water heating element is an electric resistance that runs on electricity. Two water heaters use electric resistance elements: storage tank and instantaneous. Electric resistance heating is the least economic method of supplying hot water for domestic purposes, but it is also one of the most available ways because it uses existing electrical power supplies in the home. It’s fairly simple to use and doesn’t require much skill in its installation.

Storage Capacity

Another thing to think about is how much storage capacity you will need. Tankless heaters are very popular because they can deliver water on demand, saving money and energy. However, if you live alone or only have one person in your household, then it might not be necessary to install a tankless heater. Storage tanks work well for larger families where everyone needs access to hot water at the same time. Whichever type of unit you choose, always remember that more storage is better than less storage, even though all appliances seem like they should come with large tanks these days. You’ll want to compare each model based on its price per gallon of storage capacity, knowing which one is the best deal.

A water heater is essential to every household, and there are numerous types of water heaters out there that can suit any home or requirement. It is important to choose the best model that will suit your needs and work well with the space available – so choosing a reliable brand and checking all kinds of specifications before buying can save time and money in the long run.

You need to consider what kind of water heater will best suit your needs, especially considering the above mentioned factors. It might be helpful to think about the requirements that need to be satisfied by your household’s current or future hot-water system, then use these categories to determine which of this article’s relevant features are the most essential.

For instance, if it is most critical for you to ensure that all family members have access to unlimited ample hot water during peak hours, consider whether purchasing an electric-resistance tankless water heater would allow this. On the other hand, if it would be beneficial for you to save on monthly energy costs while ensuring the additional safety of your home members, you might want to consider getting a tankless water heater with an electric heat-storage element.

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