Water heaters are one of the biggest drains on a house’s energy, especially as they begin to age.There are a few things to consider when picking a new water heater. First, which system should you get? Here are some of your options:
- Traditional storage tank systems heat water which is then stored in a tank until ready for use. Unfortunately, the water stored in the tank is always losing heat. Your system will always have to be working. Still, with new types of insulation, these tanks are much more efficient than they were a decade ago. The U.S. Department of Energy advises looking for insulation values of R-12 through R-25.
- Tankless systems are another option. These systems heat water when it is being used in the house. It is much more efficient because the water does not need to be stored. Without a backup reservoir of hot water, however, there is a limit to how much can be used with one system. A different option is the installation of multiple small tankless water heaters wherever hot water is used. Without the tank, these systems can fit into smaller spaces.
- Other options include a solar water heater or a heat pump system. Although both are much more efficient than their gas burning counterparts, both need a temperate climate that New York does not provide year-round. A solar system, however, can be added to what you already have for a green, energy-efficient alternative for when the weather allows.
Once you’ve decided on a type of water heater, there are a couple more questions to answer. First, specifically, which one should you buy? The answer to this is to buy as efficient a system as you care to afford. Lower energy bills will quickly make up the difference, eventually putting extra money in your pocket. The second question to answer is which contractor you should use. Pick someone who you can trust.If you have any questions about your options, feel free to contact the professionals at T.F. O’Brien Cooling and Heating.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, click here to download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.