You know you’re spending a lot of money on energy, but do you know where that money is going? The answer may surprise you. Mom’s complaints when you were a kid aside (heaven help anyone who left a light on), most of your home energy spend goes to heating and cooling. The next biggest cost? Your hot water heater, which accounts for nearly 20% of your energy costs. That realization may leave you looking for a more efficient alternative, and you just might find it with a tankless water heater installation.
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What is a Tankless Water Heater?
A tank hot water heater holds between 20 and 100 gallons of water that is kept within a few degrees of your desired water temperature. It does this all day, every day. If you’ve ever boiled a kettle of water, you have some idea of the amount of energy that must be used, even though it’s not being heated to a full boil.
A tankless water heater, also known as an on-demand water heater, works differently. Rather than heating several gallons at a time, a tankless heater heats water as it’s used. It’s far more compact—it doesn’t need to store anything, after all—and it’s also much more efficient.
Common Tankless Water Heater Problems in Sacramento
Tankless hot water heaters may be more efficient than traditional models, but they’re not completely trouble-free. They can suffer some of the same problems, and introduce a few of their own. Give us a call if you notice any of the following issues.
- If your water is warm, but not quite hot, adjust the temperature. If that doesn’t solve the problem, call for service.
- If your water looks, smells, or tastes funny, your on-demand water heater may need service; it doesn’t have a sediment reservoir like a regular hot water heater does and can suffer from hard water deposits and other problems that degrade water quality.
- If you experience temperature swings mid-use, that’s often a sign of a faulty connection or electrical problem. You shouldn’t try to fix this yourself.
- Leaks can happen to any kind of plumbing at any time, and shouldn’t be ignored; your home can suffer severe damage if it’s left unaddressed for too long.
- Because tankless water heaters are electrical, you may notice power fluctuations or surges. If so, call us to make sure the water heater isn’t the cause.
- Higher utility bills are a harbinger of dropping efficiency. Sometimes hot water heater maintenance solves the problem, but if it doesn’t, a replacement may be necessary.
Besides a higher energy spend, why else might you replace a tankless water heater? If repairs are happening more often, you’ll eventually reach a tipping point where you’re edging up on the cost of replacement. A unit may need to be resized if your usage patterns change. And age is a valid reason, too, especially since a tankless hot water heater lasts an average of 20 years (versus eight to twelve years for a traditional model).
Choosing the Right Tankless Water Heater in Sacramento
As good as they are, tankless water heaters won’t be right for every Sacramento homeowner. In homes with high water use, a tank water heater that’s properly sized may be more effective. If you still want an alternative, hybrid water heaters are also worth a look. These work in much the same way as a heat pump, but they come with some caveats of their own. They require a certain amount of square footage from which to draw air, they’re larger and require more clearance (making them a poor fit in crawl spaces and certain other circumstances), and won’t operate as well within certain temperature ranges, though this tends to be less of an issue in the Sacramento area. Let us know your needs and goals and we can help you make the right choice.
Tankless Hot Water Heater Service: The Ace Plumbing Advantage
Why choose Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning? Our team is made up of plumbers who are licensed, insured, and bonded, so you know we’re trustworthy. We’re also highly experienced, working with a wide range of water heaters and brands. And, just as importantly, we’re always on call, offering 24/7 emergency plumbing service to the Sacramento area.