Water Softeners and Tankless Water heaters go Hand in Hand. We have found that tankless water heaters are very sensitive to hard water; some manufacturers say that their systems can handle hard water up to 10 grains Hardness however we have found that 7 grains Hardness is the maximum you should allow without a Water softener. This conclusion is due to the many service related calls we get in our area that has varying amounts of hard water from 5 Grains to 22 Grains Hard water.
Other Maintenances Considerations for Tankless water Heaters are Annual Flushing of the System which thoroughly cleans the internal parts of the Tankless plumbing system and Sensor components. When our company does a Flushing we also tune up the system and clean out the various mechanical components of the tankless water heater which is important for safety and longevity of the system. As with most systems in your home it needs some annual attention if you want it to perform and last a long time.
Another maintenance tip is to make sure that there venting I always free from debris such as birds, rodents bugs and Bees which accumulate sometimes when not in use for extended periods of time.
Things to Know About Endless Hot Water Heaters
- Never runs out of hot water, so you can imagine the pleasures you can have with hours of hot water!
- Saves up to 50% on your gas bill
- Saves space by eliminating big bulky tanks
- They generally last twice as long as conventional storage tanks
Travel through Europe and other parts of the world, like Japan, where energy is expensive and efficiency is a cultural norm and you won’t find a storage water heater like the ones in North American homes.
In such regions, the tankless water heater is the technology of choice. Why?
Because tankless water heaters outperform their conventional counterparts easily by 20 percent or more. Like storage water heaters, tankless water heaters provide hot water on demand but they do so without storing huge quantities of hot water. In fact, as their name suggests, they have no storage capacity at all.
How a Tankless Water Heater Works
Tankless water heaters for household use are attractive, compact units that mount on the wall in a central location in the home or near the main hot water demand centers. The heart and soul of all tankless water heaters is a device called a heat exchanger—a combustion chamber in which cold water is quickly brought up to temperature. The heat exchanger transfers heat from the burner to the water, heating it instantaneously. A flue pipe vents unburned gases and pollutants like carbon monoxide out of the house.
Here’s how a tankless water heater works: when hot water is required—for example, when someone turns on a hot water faucet—a water flow sensor in the tankless water heater sends a signal to a central control module in the unit. This tiny computer, in turn, sends signals to an electronically controlled gas valve in the gas manifold. The valve opens and allows natural gas or propane to flow into the combustion chamber of the heat exchanger. The gas is ignited by a pilot light or by a spark from an electronic ignition device. Cold water flowing through the pipe in the heat exchanger is immediately brought up to the desired temperature. As soon as the hot water faucet is turned off, however, the water flow through the water heater ceases and the flame goes out. The net result is that you heat only the water you need at any one time.
Did you know...
- Tankless water heaters cost more than their conventional counterparts and are a bit more challenging to install. (This isn’t a job for most do-it-yourself ers.) However, they do provide significant advantages over storage water heaters. As just noted, they heat only the water needed at any one moment. As a result, they are usually at least 20-50 percent more efficient than standard water heaters. That means they provide the same amount of hot water as a storage water tank, but use 20 percent less fuel. Utility bills will be 20-50 percent lower, too.
Because there’s no standby loss, they also produce less waste heat. In the summer, that means less internal heat gain and lower cooling bills.
- Another huge advantage oftankless water heaters is that they outlast conventional water heaters.They’re typically designed to last as long as a conventional furnace or boiler—twenty years or more .Moreover, tankless water heaters are easy to repair. If a part goes bad, it can be replaced. You don’t have to throw the unit out and replace it with a brand new water heater, as you do with a conventional storage water heater, when something goes wrong.
- 25% of every North American household energy dollar is spent producing domestic hot water.
- Nationwide more residential energy is consumed by domestic hot water than on anything else except heating and air conditioning.
- Electricity is the WORST way to heat hot water while natural gas and propane gas are much more efficient, smarter choices.
- Based on national fuel price averages of $1.46/ccf and $0.09/kwh, the cost/100,000 BTU's is $1.46 for natural gas and $2.64 for electricity. Just under 60% of North American households have access to natural gas, and if you don't, propane gas is available to almost everyone and is still a better value than electricity. In addition electric water heaters have only a small fraction of the capacity of gas water heaters. So if you like expensive, short showers, with cold water at the end, use electric; otherwise gas would be a better choice.
- Modern gas fired tankless water heaters are the best alternativeavailable to today's homeowners to reduce their residential energy consumption.
- A typical gas fired tankless water heater costs about 2-1/2 times as much as a standard tank water heater. However it will pay for itself in just a few years or less, and will last twice as long a tank. To determine what tankless will do in your home click here.
- If you are considering a tankless water heater Rinnai is clearly your best choice. On average a new Rinnai is installed somewhere in North America every 3.75 minutes.