What is a tankless water heater?

Most people in North America currently use a tank-type water heater to provide hot water in their homes. A storage tank water heater keeps water hot 24 hours a day, even while you’re at work or sleeping. A tankless water heater, on the other hand, does not store hot water. It heats the water as you use it. There are a number of common tankless water heater FAQ. We have attempted to answer many of them here. Take a tour and see how a tankless water heater works.

How can a tankless water heater instantly heat water?

When you open a faucet, the flow of the water triggers the heater to turn on. Whether you use gas or electricity, the powerful gas burners or electrical elements will turn on, rapidly heating the water as it passes through the unit. The water is heated instantly.  The time it takes to obtain hot water is related to the distance the hot water has to travel from the water heater to where hot water is being used. The burners or elements then shut down when you shut off the hot water. The energy that is consumed is only for the hot water that is being used.

What are the advantages of using a tankless water heater?

Because a tankless water heater turns on when you open a hot water faucet and turns off when you close the faucet, the energy that is consumed is only for the hot water that is being used. Since there is no storage of water, and thus no constant heating and re-heating of stored water, you’re not wasting energy heating water when you don’t need it, such as when you’re sleeping or not at home. This energy savings translates to dollar savings for you and reduced impact on our environment. Furthermore, since a tankless water heater heats the water as you use it, you can have an endless supply of hot water. There are other advantages of tankless water heaters.

How much money can I save?

Depending on which model of tankless water heater you purchase, and what size storage tank you have now, and if it runs on gas or electricity, you could save anywhere from 5% to 69% off your hot water heating bill. How? Most homes use hot water for a cumulative total of about one hour per day, yet they typically keep 40 or 50 gallons (oftentimes more) of water hot 24 hours a day. Having a system that eliminates the storage and heats water only as you use it can dramatically reduce your energy consumption.

Can it really provide an endless supply of hot water?

Yes. Because storage tank water heaters store a finite amount of water, when that amount is depleted, your shower goes cold and you have to wait for the heater to heat the water back up (known as recovery time). Because a tankless water heater heats the water as it passes through the heater, you can never run out as long as flow limitations are not exceeded.

Are there other benefits of a tankless water heater?

There are many advantages of having a tankless water heater in your home or business. Besides the money savings and endless hot water they also have an impact on the environment by helping conserve water and natural resources. They also take up less room than a traditional tank-type water heater so you save space.

Will I still get the hot shower I’m used to now?

Yes, provided you buy the right tankless heater for you (see our Products page to find the right model). Tankless water heaters are able to function at a variety of temperatures that you can choose, and can produce hot water at the same flow rate as your standard single-headed shower provides now.