Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Traditional Water Heater vrs Tankless Water Heater - which is right for you?

Traditional Water Heater stores and preheats 30-50 gallons of water in a tank. That preheated water is used whenever someone showers, does the laundry or washes dishes. The tank then refills to be reheated once again.

Tankless Water Heater uses a heat source (electric or gas) to warm up cool water on-demand whenever you need it rather than storing hot water in a tank.

Pros and cons of traditional water heaters


  • Lower initial cost - A traditional water heater installation can be half as much as a tankless water heater.
  • Easy and inexpensive to replace - Less installation complications means that there’s less that can go wrong.


  • Higher utility bill - They heat and reheat water at a pre-set temperature regardless of your water needs. This increases your utility bill—especially during the winter.
  • Bigger and harder to place - They occupy more room and can’t be placed outside.
  • Can run out of hot water - Ever been the last in your family to get the shower? It’s a chilling experience. This problem can be avoided by purchasing a larger tank (although that will be more in energy costs, as well.)
  • Shorter life - Lasts 10-15 years. This means there’s more turnover and therefore you have to buy them twice as often as a tankless water heater.

Pros and cons of tankless water heaters


  • Saves money in the long run - According to, “For homes that use 41 gallons or less of hot water daily, demand (or tankless) water heaters can be 24%–34% more energy efficient than conventional storage tank water heaters.”
  • Doesn't take up much space - They are small and can be installed in more places—even outside on a wall.
  • Lives longer - Lasts 20+ years. Almost double a traditional water heater’s life.
  • Delivers hot water on demand - Provides two to three gallons of hot water per minute on demand.


  • Higher initial cost - Costs $2800 to $4500 installed (depends on the model and who you get it from).
  • Retrofitting adds to upfront cost - Replacing a traditional water heater with a tankless system is more complicated. So that increases the installation cost even further.

Which water heater should I choose?
Pick the water heater that best fits your water usage, lifestyle situation, and budget.

According to, an Energy Star tankless water heaters can save you about $100 annually.

So if you can handle the high initial costs, you can save more money in the long run by switching to tankless. Tankless can also be a good choice for large families because you have more people consistently using more hot water.

However, a traditional water heater may make more sense if you are on a limited income and need a quick replacement.

If you have any questions, please give us a call - 208-246-9716.


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