These days, there are more options for water heaters. It used to be that you had one—the traditional tanked water heater—and it was assumed that running it would take up most of your utility expenses. Now, you can choose between tank or tankless models, different water capacities and energy efficient options. Before you call a water heater service in Las Vegas, NV for this task, you need to have a good idea of what you need. Here are five factors to consider when choosing a water heater:
- Model: Your options for a water heater include tank, tankless and hybrids of the two. The best for your home depends on space, demand and whether your current environment can accommodate it. If you already have a tank water heater, it is likely easy to replace it with one just like it. However, if you would like to make the energy efficiency plunge into a tankless or hybrid model, you will likely pay more for installation and need major changes to your plumbing.
- Fuel type: Your choices are also affected by whether your water is heated by natural gas or electricity. Traditional tank heaters and tankless heaters are available for electric or natural gas, but most hybrid models only run on gas. Natural gas is far more efficient and you will enjoy a better selection of Energy Star models than you would with electric. If you currently have an electric water heater but your other appliances run on natural gas, it may be possible to convert your water heating needs to gas. This will raise your installation costs, but may be worth it for lower heating bills.
- Size: You must consider the size of the water heater to assure it meets demands, but also so it fits in the space provided. Generally, a household of one or two people only requires a 23 to 35 gallon tank, but a larger household of five or more needs at least 56 gallons. It may be tempting to switch to a larger tank, but that 80-gallon tank may not fit where there was once a 56-gallon model. So, even if it is time to upgrade, you must have the space for it first.
- Demand: While you want to consider size on a traditional water heater, for tankless, your measurement is in gallons per minute. This is the amount of water it can heat on demand. This rating depends on the temperature of the groundwater (55 to 60 degrees in Las Vegas) and the number of fixtures running. A shower demands one to two gallons per minute, and a clothes washer requires one and a half to three gallons a minute. If they are both running, that can be five gallons a minute. It is often a good idea to assume the worst possible scenario for water heater demand and make that your standard for choosing a tankless hot water heater.
- Location for installation: If you are switching from a tank water heater to a tankless or hybrid, there are additional considerations for installation. They may not be able to occupy the space where your current water heater resides, and if it is not possible to ventilate them, these may not work for you. However, if you are switching out a tank water heater for something similar, you need to make sure it fits in that space or you may not be able to close a closet door or get to that tight spot in the basement.
For water heater service in Las Vegas, NV and the surrounding areas, call the experts at Orchard Plumbing today.