Gas water heaters provide the valuable service of warming up the water that comes out of the hot faucet knobs on your sink or shower. But water heaters have a lifespan and you will one day need to replace your old unit. Research and conversations with installers will provide you with an important decision: should you replace the heater with a similar model or go for an entirely different, tankless model?
Here are the pros and cons of both options.
Traditional Gas Water Heater
Replacing like with like will save you some money as the setup will be essentially the same as it was with your old model. If your old water heater was pushing the late teenage years, there's a good chance that the new model will be more efficient simply due to improved designing over time.
Sticking with a traditional water heater is also the best choice if you haven't experienced any problems with hot water running out in the past. A traditional water heater has a tank of water that is heated all at once and then released into your pipes when you "call" it with a faucet turn. New water is eventually added into the tank but it takes a bit for it to heat up, which means that you can run out of hot water during an extra long shower. But if you haven't run out in the past, then your tank size was sufficient for your household needs.
Finally, choose a traditional model if you were happy with where your old unit was located. These units are large and require a special setup that limits the number of locations they can be placed. But if you were happy with where your old unit was, there's no need to worry about going tankless.
Tankless Water Heater
A tankless water heater doesn't store water, but instead heats the water as it passes through the pipes on the way to the faucet. There isn't a wait or interruption if too much hot water is used, which is great news if your old water heater was cutting off your hot water frequently. A tankless unit can drive your bills up sky high if you suddenly start taking extra long showers every day, but will prove more efficient than the traditional water heater if you keep your usage levels the same.
Tankless water heaters can be positioned nearly anywhere in your home so that the pipes can have closer access to the water. And you won't have to worry about any large leaks with a tankless model since no water is stored inside.
It will cost you more to have a tankless heater installed as it requires an entirely different setup that includes electrical configurations. Reliance on electricity also means that the unit won't work during a power outage.
This information should help you make your decision, but for the best results, work with an experienced plumbing company, like Clean Plumbers BY Phillip Maurici Plumbing Inc, to find the best option for your needs.