Tankless water heaters have increased in popularity due to the space-saving design and the efficiency claims. But as more people who grew up with traditional tank heaters consider switching over, certain myths can arise and potentially dissuade the purchase.
Here are a few of the tankless water heater myths – and why they, like the heater, don't hold any water. Discuss your tankless water heater options with your plumbing services provider today.
Myth: Tankless Heaters Skyrocket Gas Bills
Tankless heaters can be either electric or gas powered. There's a myth that a gas-powered heater will send that utility bill sky high because the gas needs to always be on to heat the water. But this myth comes from a misunderstanding of how the unit heats the water.
A tankless heater doesn't hold onto a large reservoir of heated water that's waiting for you to call it through the pipes. Instead, when you turn on the faucet, water comes down the pipe, over the gas-powered heating element, and on through the pipes to the sink. The gas only needs to be on for as long as the water is passing through, which is shorter than you'd imagine for most uses.
Now, if you make a habit of taking hour-long hot showers, your gas bill might go up slightly, but not any more than it would with a tanked heater that needs to replace and heat that reservoir water as you use it.
Myth: You Can't Take a Long Hot Shower
So you need to take short showers to keep your gas bill down? Or you need to take short showers because the heater can't keep up with the demand of a slow, hot shower? Nope, the length of hot water output is another tankless heater myth.
The unit heats the water as it passes through the pipe so you don't have a reservoir that can run out of hot water in the way that a tanked water heater does. But there's also a limit to how quickly your unit can heat how much water how hot. In other words, you don't want to run your hot water at full blast for your entire shower because that will overburden your system to heat all passing water at full strength.
Instead, turn the hot water partly on and turn on a hotter burst occasionally if necessary. This will allow your unit to keep up with you easily and you can shower at your leisure.
Myth: Tankless Heaters Send Out Superheated Water
On the opposite side of the rumor spectrum is the myth that a tankless heater overheats the water and risks burning you. This myth arises from the fact that the heater does need to heat the water far more quickly than a tanked heater, which leads some to believe that the water itself can become overly heated.
As with a tanked water heater, a tankless unit has a thermostat setting that allows you to set a maximum water temperature. You don't want this to be so high it can cause burns but it also can't be so low that bacteria can grow and thrive in your piping. Check your owner's manual for the ideal temperature range for your unit and make sure the temperature stays there.
For more information about tankless water heaters, contact a company like R Acres Plumbing Company LLC.