Tankless Hot Water

tankless hot water

tankless hot water
Medline Breaks Ground on New State-of-the-Art 350,000 Square-Foot Distribution Center in Prattville, Alabama
MUNDELEIN, IL–(Marketwire – 12/07/10) – Medline Industries, Inc., the nation’s largest privately held manufacturer and distributor of medical supplies, officially broke ground today on a new state-of-the-art 350,000 square-foot distribution facility in Prattville, Alabama. The new facility is expected to be fully operational in 2011 and initially employ 30 people. It will serve hospitals …
Are electric tankless hot water heaters as efficient as they claim?

Especially the larger 3 bathroom, kitchen, laudryroom rated size models? Usually requiring at least 2 – 220volt 2- 60AMP breakers?

Tankless water heaters are more efficient than tank water heaters because tank water heaters are continually losing heat energy through the tank walls.

The better you insulate your electric hot water tank (for example, by wrapping it in a thick tank insulation blanket), the lower the relative benefit of switching to a tankless heater. I suspect that most of the claims of improved efficiency by tankless hot water heater salespeople assume that the electric hot water tank being compared to the tankless heater doesn’t have an insulating blanket. Add the blanket (and a heat trap in the hot water pipe coming out the top of the tank) and you will probably find the benefit is far smaller.

If you pay different rates for your electricity based on the time of day it’s used, electric tankless hot water heaters can actually be more expensive to operate than tank heaters, because people tend to shower at times of day when electricity is most expensive. And if you don’t pay for time-of-use, you will someday soon – utilities all over the world are increasingly switching to time-of-use billing, where the rate is highest from around 8am to 6pm and lowest from around 11pm to 5am. In fact I’ve read that in Japan, where electric tankless water heaters were very popular, the government is actually providing financial incentives to get people to switch to storage electric hot water tanks – ones that warm the water hotter when power is cheapest, and then blend in whatever percentage cold water is required, at any given time, to provide the right output temperature.

My advice is to stay away from tankless electric water heaters. If they seem like a good deal today, they won’t tomorrow. They may save you money in the short term, but the sudden spike in demand they cause for your utility, at a time when power is often the most expensive to buy on the spot market or produce at your local power plant, are going to motivate most utilities to push you in the other direction – that of heating your hot water when power is cheap, and using it at your convenience.

Of course, since only about 33% of the original heat from a coal or natural gas power plant reaches your electricity meter as electricity, any electric heat is inherently inefficient compared to a natural gas hot water heater, if the electricity is generated from fossil fuels. Something to consider if you are partly motivated by a desire to cut your CO2 output.

Hot Water Heaters : How to Clean a Tankless Hot Water Heater