In the modern age, we are becoming to expect certain products and services on demand, supplied to us conveniently with a minimum of fuss. Having shelves stacked with masses of DVD’s is quickly becoming a thing of the past, and actually leaving home to browse the limited selection on offer at the local movie rental outlet is has almost become retro, all thanks to high-speed broadband internet and the subsequent availability of video-on-demand services. Advances in technology means that the older accepted way of doing certain things is no longer the only way, and it might even be a far less efficient way of doing things. Whether it’s information sent via an internet connection, or hot water being sent via your pipes, there are a number of more efficient ways to get what you need, and as such, a number of homes are realizing that a hot water heater tank isn’t actually necessary anymore. But what are the alternatives to a tank, and can these alternatives be implemented in all homes?
The Bottom of the Tank
It’s a common occurrence- being the last one in your household to have a shower in the morning, and having to shower in lukewarm or even cold water, since the tank is all out of fresh hot water. This finite supply of hot water is no longer something that needs to be put up with, since there are other options. Those who live in older apartments with a shared tank can often have hot water on a timer- and so if you attempt to take a shower at a different time than usual, hot water might not even be an option.
Don’t Store What You Don’t Need
Traditional water heating tanks keep hot water on standby, ready to flow out of the faucet when you need it. But even if you don’t need it- it stays there, and you need to pay for the electricity or gas needed to heat the water and keep it hot as you store it. A water heating system that doesn’t need a tank is a far cleaner and greener option, and it can be easily installed in most bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms.
What is a Tankless Water Heater?
It’s simply a small installation almost directly next to the faucet, in which cold water is piped in, heated with natural gas or an electrical coil before flowing out of the faucet as piping hot water. While it might seem like a complex process, this actually uses far less electricity than keeping a tank full of water hot and ready for use.
What About the Money?
The cost of installation varies greatly, and depends on how easy it is to install around the faucet in question, and how many faucets you want the on-demand system installed on. There are less connections and less distance for the hot water to travel, so things such as water heater repair are a thing of the past. The US Department of Energy estimates that a household will save an average of $100 per year for each tankless water heater that’s installed. They also last twice as long (20 years) as a traditional hot water tank. Mother nature and your wallet will thank you!