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  • G&C Plumbing and Heating

Your Water Heater Buyers Guide: Know How To Pick The Right Heater For Your Family!

A water heater is a big investment in your home. You wouldn’t buy a car or make another big purchase without learning a bit more about it – and the same goes for water heaters! So in this water heater buyers guide, we’ll take a look at some of the basics you should know about buying a new water heater. Let’s get started.

Common Types Of Water Heater – Your Options

Let’s start with the basics, and discuss the top 3 most common types of water heater available.

  • Storage tank water heater (electric or gas) – This is the hot water tank you’re likely familiar with. Using an electric or gas water heater, a volume of water is heated and stored in the tank – then dispensed whenever you use hot water in your home. They’re affordable, but take a long time to refill after use, so it’s very important to get a properly-sized tank to avoid running out of hot water.

  • Tankless, on-demand water heaters – Tankless water heaters don’t have a storage tank. Instead, whenever you turn on an appliance that uses hot water, a powerful gas or electric heater turns on, heating the water to the required temperature almost instantly. Unlike tank-based water heaters, these heaters will never run out of hot water. They also are more energy-efficient, since hot water does not have to be stored when it’s not being used. However, they’re more expensive. And, since the overall hot water flow rate is usually lower than a tank-based heater, they can struggle if you are running a lot of appliances that are using hot water simultaneously – such as a shower, sink, dishwasher, and washing machine.

  • Heat pump water heaters (hybrid) – Heat pumps sort of work like a refrigerator, but in reverse. They take in air from around them, and move the heat from the air into the water. They’re up to 2-3x more efficient than standard electric tank-based water heaters. However, they are quite expensive, and have very strict operating requirements, such as a room that remains between 40-90ºF year-round and required space around the tank.

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