Written on: November 21, 2022
Is it harder to get your water to be as hot as you’d like? Are you noticing your energy bills inching higher and higher without big fluctuation in your hot water usage? Is your hot water looking rusty out of the tap? These are all signs that it’s time to think about replacing your water heater.
If you have a traditional, tank-style water heater that’s hitting the ten-year mark or is already past that, you’re probably used to running out of hot water. On busy mornings, when everyone needs to shower and get out of the house, someone likely ends up with a lukewarm experience. That’s never the best way to start the day! We’ll put this simply: Don’t wait for a breakdown to look for a new hot water heater. Start doing your research now and let the professionals at Pico Propane and Fuels help you install a new more efficient propane water heater.
Storage tank water heaters are exactly what they sound like: it’s a big storage tank, typically about 20 to 80 gallons, that keeps all that water hot, so it’s ready when you next need it. These types of units use a thermostat to make sure the water is hot enough when you want to use it, heating water to the set temperature and then reheating it as it cools. This is called “standing heat loss” and it’s the main drawback of this type of water heater. They can use propane or electricity to heat the water—so how much hot water you use can have a big impact on your energy bills.
Storage tank water heaters are quite susceptible to rust and corrosion, which can lead to leaks. You need to stay vigilant for signs of deterioration. Further, you are limited by the size of your tank and how much water it’s able to hold.
On the plus side, storage tank water heaters are relatively inexpensive to purchase. More energy-efficient models have become available, and you can also add additional insulation to reduce heat loss. All that said, they can still end up costing you more to operate in the long run.
Tankless water heaters save energy by instantly heating water the moment when you need it. When you turn on the tap, water flows through the unit and is heated instantly by a propane-fueled heating element. When you turn off the tap, the unit stops heating water. Compare this to the cost of operating a traditional water heater, which requires you to keep a tank holding many gallons of water hot and ready to use all the time.
As a result, you can enjoy virtually unlimited hot water—while seeing savings of up to 40% in your monthly heating costs!
You’ll save space as well as energy. Tankless water heaters are compact—about the size of a suitcase—and can even hang on a wall or in a closet, freeing up room in your basement or utility room. There are several different sizes designed to fit different needs. Rather than total gallons, their output is measured in a flow rate of gallons per minute. The more hot water you need at the same time will require a higher flow rate.
The main downside to a tankless water heater is price—but they will pay for themselves in savings over time, vs a storage tank style, which will cost you more over its lifespan on average.
Want to learn more about your water heating options? The pros at Pico are here to help. We sell and install a broad selection of high-efficiency water—including storage tank and tankless styles, and we can help you choose the best option for your needs. We can also help you take advantage of money-saving rebates, too.
Enjoy energy efficiency and comfort with a new water heater! Contact us today to get started.