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Tankless Water heaters – 
are they the right fit for your household?

Written by Mark March, Plumbing Manager, Irr Supply Centers, Inc.
Imagery by Noritz 
Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless Water Heaters continue to gain prominence in residential homes across our region, but are they the right fit for your household? Most people have no idea of the brand or size of their water heater, but they know “it’s that round thing in the basement.”  That is, until they wake up one morning and don’t have any hot water. Tankless heaters are a great option when installed 
properly, however, all household factors should be considered before making the decision to install one.
    Here are just a few reasons why Tankless Water Heaters are favorable:
1. They provide endless hot water – as long as you have a water supply and a fuel source, they will keep heating water without a hiccup;
2. They are highly efficient – most are 95% efficient meaning that 95  out of 100 percent of the energy that is put into them will be converted to heated water;
3. They are only running and making hot water when you need them – a standard tank-type water heater is very inefficient at 59% and runs frequently to keep the water hot in the tank 24 hours a day.

What are the Tradeoffs?
Tankless water heaters consume a lot of energy when they are running – picture five kitchen stoves running on high all at the same time. That is why they heat water so quickly. Another is the misconception that it is instant hot water.  Although the water does get up to temperature in less than five seconds, it takes time for the heated water to mix with the water already in the plumbing lines and travel to your faucet or shower. Finally, some new appliances such as dishwashers and front load washing machines operate in a way that does not allow the tankless water heater to turn on to heat the water for your wash cycles.
    Tankless water heaters have a great warranty and are highly reliable. If you are considering a tankless water heater, review its features and benefits; and determine if it is right for your household. As always, use a licensed, insured and certified plumbing contractor for plumbing projects in your home.

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