Tankless water heaters are common in many homes nowadays. It’s a unit that is easily installed in almost any bathroom and it definitely doesn’t take up much space. Furthermore, there are many sleek and aesthetic designs that can fit any home’s décor theme.
History and Application
The first water heater tank model was invented circa 1894 and while tankless water heater system is a relatively new technology, it’s becoming the much-preferred choice by many homeowners.
In a tankless water heater, cold water is pushed through copper tubes where it exchanges temperature from cold to hot through the forced hot air through the fins of the attached heat exchanger. There are also now digital tankless water heaters where it measures the temperature of the cold water coming in in order to adjust how much gas is regulated to turn it into hot water.
With a tankless water heaters, you could never run out of hot water because you can turn it as and when you need it. A tank water heater will lose heat during stand-by mode, causing it to be only about 75% efficient compared to tankless water heaters with 97% efficiency.
Are they really green and environmentally safe?
As opposed to a tank system water heater where it stores hot water whether you need it or not, a tankless water heater only heats the water whenever it’s turned on. This means it consumes lower energy and heating costs. Homeowners with tankless water heaters installed in their bathrooms say using a tankless unit can save up to 40% on their monthly utility bills.
However, there are experts that argue the use of tankless water heater is not environmentally safe after all when considering the source of energy used to power the tankless unit. For some country, if the energy source comes from a coal-fired plant, then the use of coal to produce energy will be more than the actual usage of a tankless water heater unit.
Having said that, there are other aspects of tankless water heater systems that make it environmentally safe. Compared to a tank system, a tankless unit last longer because it isn’t subjected to water storage and stand-by power around the clock. The parts used to make a tankless unit are often recyclable, thus reducing waste in landfills.
A tankless water heater system also emits less CO2into the atmosphere, reducing the risk of green house effect. The parts that need replacement are made of recyclable materials, hence reducing the need to use new resources and limiting the usage of raw materials and fossil fuel.
Things to look for when purchasing tankless water heater system
If you’re considering buying a tankless water heater system, it’s good to consider these points so you can sure that your unit is environmentally safe. You can also check out Tankless Water Heater Hub for reviews of the best products on the market this year.
- energy saving – One important factor to consider is efficiency of the tankless water heater. Find out from the seller or manufacturer’s website what is the energy saving rate of the unit you’re interested in. It’s good to aim for anything above 30% of energy saving rate with average hot water usage and unaltered energy source.
- Replaceable parts – Make sure your tankless water heater system uses parts that are made of recyclable products and can be recycled. Components and parts made of recyclable products significantly reduce the waste in landfill as well as usage of new resources. It’s also important to make sure in the event of damage, you only need to replace the parts and components affected because there are many water heaters disposed in landfills in United States due to their parts and components can’t be replaced individually.
- Cypress Tree Calculator – Cypress trees have the ability to reduce high amount of CO2 every year. One tree can reduce 31lbs of CO2. Find out what is the amount of CO2 reduction your tankless water heater system capable of so it would equate to the amount of how many cypress trees can.
- Wear and tear – Find out the duration of your tankless water heater system lifespan. A tankless unit should last twice or thrice as long as a conventional tank system. Purchasing a long lasting unit will reduce the need to switch to a new unit altogether should there be any damages.
- Water flow – Typically on demand heaters offer a flow rate of about 2-5 gallons per minute. The flow rate capacity would also usually depend on the desired water output and the temperature of the incoming water. So look for a water flow that would help reduce water consumption in the bathroom, but also still provide a comfortable flow of water for your shower.