If you know you’ll have to replace your water heater in the near future, do some research before buying a replacement. Generally speaking, a water heater will last 10-12 years, though that number can be lower or higher depending on what sort of water is being heated (is it hard water?), maintenance frequency and whether the water heater was high quality to begin with.
Your first decision should be whether to choose a traditional storage-tank water heater or to try a tankless water-heating system. The cheapest option at purchase is to choose the same type that you already have, meaning if your old water heater is a gas-fueled storage-tank model, replace it with the same thing. However, if you also consider lifetime costs of your new water heater, switching to a tankless system might make better sense.
A tankless version heats water on demand as you need it, either with a gas burner or electric heating element. Since there’s no standby heat loss, you only heat the water you need, which saves on energy. Over time, these systems can save money over traditional water heaters. While tankless water heaters are more expensive to install, especially if you have chosen a gas-fueled model, this year new federal minimum energy-efficiency standards for storage-tank water heaters will raise their costs significantly, both purchase and installation. When that happens, a tankless water heater might start making more economic sense.
Remember, when choosing any type of water-heating system, sizing is important. If your water heater is too small, you’ll frequently run out of hot water. Even a tankless water-heating system, if it’s not big enough to handle your household demands, won’t be able to accommodate more than one or two simultaneous water uses. You can gauge the right size storage-tank water heater for your home by considering the capacity of your old water heater. If a 55-gallon tank was sufficient before, it should work now as well.
For help finding the right water heater for your Monmouth County home, please contact us at Aggressive Mechanical Contractors, Inc.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Monmouth County, New Jersey and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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