Showers and baths. Washing dishes. Brushing teeth. Flushing toilets. It has been estimated that nearly 20 per cent of the energy we use in the home is used to heat water. This is costly for the homeowner, and — in the case of a gas-burning water heater — is not conducive to helping Canada meet its climate target to be a net-zero emitter of carbon by 2050.
And from a practical perspective, every hot water tank has a limited capacity, leading to families facing the awful situation of running out of hot water when they are in the middle of their shower.
The alternative is a tankless water heater. Rather than storing a tank full of hot water, tankless water heaters heat water only as it’s needed. The tankless water uses a heat exchanger to warm the water as it passes through. When you turn on the tap, cold water flows through the pipes, through the heat exchanger inside the tankless water heater, and out the tap at the chosen temperature. They are available either as point-of-use models — units installed right near the point of use, such as the kitchen sink or the bathtub — or whole house, which are larger and provide hot water for multiple points of use.
They will also save homeowners money, while making day-to-day lives easier:
- Constant, unlimited supply of hot water. Because tankless water heaters don’t have a tank holding a home’s hot water supply, they never run out of water. Heating hot water only when it’s needed gives homeowners an unlimited supply of hot water, rather than a depleting stock of hot or warm water.
- No ruptured tanks. Water tanks that hold large amounts of water have the potential to rupture. With a tankless water heater, this risk is eliminated.
- Energy efficient. Since tankless water heaters don’t need to keep a large tank of water heated 24/7, they use less energy. Only heating water as it’s needed reduces standby heat and wasted energy keeping the water tank hot. This is a more efficient choice for homeowners and can help reduce the water heating bill by 20 per cent.
- Can qualify for rebates. By replacing old appliances with energy-efficient products that meet provincial criteria, homeowners can qualify for rebates, saving hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars on home improvements.
- Save space. Tankless water heaters are much more compact than traditional water heaters, a great solution for saving space in closets, basements and especially in small homes. Homeowners can even use small point-of-use water heaters under their sinks to help minimize energy loss.
The trade-off is tankless water heaters can cost up to three times as much as a regular tank water heater up front, but offers more savings on energy bills in the long-term and can last up to 10 years longer than a traditional tank water heater.
Wolseley Canada offers a full collection of tankless water heaters at wolesleyexpress.com.