Having your water heater go out on you in the middle of winter—or any other time for that matter—can be one of the most frustrating experiences. You are stuck with no hot water and a lot of decisions to make in a relatively short period of time. With so many different sizes and brands from which you can choose, it can be quite difficult to determine which water heater is going to work the best for you. Trying to understand all of the different energy ratings may seem like something you need to spend hours on… but it doesn’t have to be that way. Knowing what to look for can help simplify the process and restore the hot water in your home in no time.
Fuel Sources for Water Heaters
Electric water heaters use a large coil that hangs down into the tank to provide the water with heat. The coils resemble those used in electric ovens. Generally speaking, these water heaters aren’t as effective as those that are powered from other sources. Electricity tends to be more expensive than propane or natural gas. If you only have a small demand for water, this might be perfect for you.
Natural gas water heaters use gas burners in the tank’s bottom. They are vented through a chimney running through the center and out of the top. Water vapor and carbon dioxide is vented out of the chimney and outdoors through the house chimney or a side vent. Gas pilot lights help produce the flame. Natural gas water heaters might cost more upfront than an electric one, but they are more cost-effective to operate.
Propane units work in the same manner as natural gas water heaters, but they use propane to fuel them. Propane is often used as a source of fuel when the home doesn’t have access to natural gas. Propane is provided by a large tank located on the property. Cost between this model and natural gas models are fairly close in number, as well as overall operating cost involved.
Consider Going Tankless
Tankless water heaters are becoming some of the hottest commodities on the market. Instead of having to worry about water constantly being heated inside of a stored tank, the tankless unit will only heat the water right when you need it. When you turn the hot water on, it triggers a heat exchanger that will quickly heat the water to your desired temperature.
If you make the decision to get one of these units, you will be able to reap the rewards of a rebate on your tax return. You will love the efficiency in these units as well, shaving up to 20 percent off your water heating bill. Since these units heat the water as it flows through the unit, you won’t ever have to worry about running out of hot water. On average, these units will last 5-10 years longer than a traditional tank model.
Sizing Your Water Heater
Once you have decided on what type of fuel you want amongst all of the different water heaters, you need to figure out what the proper size is for your space and usage requirements. If you are replacing your heater, consider how adequate it was in terms of providing you with the heating capacity you needed. If it wasn’t able to deliver enough hot water, you might want to consider upgrading the size of the unit. Consider whether your family is going to grow over the next 10 years. If so, you need to look for larger sized water heaters to accommodate your growing needs.
All Jersey is a trusted NJ water heater repair, replacement and installation company. In addition to water heater repair, we also offer other plumbing services like such as boiler replacement and repair. To learn more about our New Jersey plumbing services, click here.
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