Many advances have been accomplished in the last decade for more efficient, eco-friendly home-comfort systems, whether it’s upgraded ductwork design, cost-efficient ventilation, sealing up your home or energy-wise heating and cooling equipment. However, one area that has been overlooked is water heating. But with the gaining popularity of tankless water-heating systems in recent years, that has changed.
Tankless Water-Heating System
Traditional storage-tank water heating accounts for as much as 25 percent of the average home’s energy usage. That exorbitant amount may be cut in half with a tankless system, depending on variables such as household flow rate, implementing a combination of tankless systems and sizes, and the source for heating water. Tankless systems deliver this efficiency by supplying hot water on demand. Energy is not wasted with standby heat loss or storage.
Options for tankless water heaters include whole-house systems and single point-of-use units. Whole-house systems are designed to provide hot water for an entire household. However, just as traditional storage-tank water heaters have limitations, tankless systems do as well.
- Whole-house systems: Larger households may require two whole-house systems to provide enough hot water when multiple outlets are in use, such as the shower, dishwasher, washing machine and a sink. If you don’t run all of these appliances at the same time, then one whole-house unit may be fine.
- Single point-of-use units: An excellent energy-saving option is to implement one or more single point-of-use units in your home. These units are installed to a specific outlet, such as the kitchen sink. This lessens the burden on the whole-house system, providing enough water on demand for your entire home.
One primary factor when choosing a tankless system(s) is the heating source. Water heated with gas provides more than double the flow rate of electrically heated water. However, gas systems are generally more costly to install, requiring specific criteria for ventilation and location. For long-term efficiency, you may find it more advantageous to install two electric-heated tankless systems.
Call Robert R. McGill Air Conditioning for a home evaluation to determine your family’s tankless water-heating needs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about tankless water-heating systems and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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