If you have owned your home for a while, you may be considering replacing your hot water heater. Or – in the worst-case scenario – you may have found that your hot water heater has broken, leaving you without any hot water at all! Before you run out and buy the first available heater, you may want to consider your options; some can save you a drastic amount of money in the long run, reducing your energy bills and water usage by being more efficient and better able to handle your family’s hot water needs.
When you are comparing hot water heaters, there are a few things you want to consider:
- What are you and your family’s hot water needs?
- What is the EF (energy factor) rating for the unit you are looking at?
- What is the first-hour recovery rate (for storage tank heaters) or flow rate (for tankless heaters)?
- What type of water heater are you most interested in getting?
Consider this – heating your water is usually the second largest expense in your home, accounting for up to 18% of your overall utility bills. When you want to replace your hot water heater, consider choosing a hot water heater with a higher EF. A higher EF means a lower overall energy cost as your heater will be more efficient at heating the water and delivering it to you. On average, a family can spend between $400-600 a year on water heating alone, but choosing the most expensive, most energy efficient water heater may not always be the best choice.
It is true that upgrading your water heater from an old, outdated model to a newer, energy-efficient model is going to save you money annually, but you need to consider your household needs and whether the increased up-front cost of the equipment and installation will be worth it in the long run. For example, if your family uses a lot of hot water – say you are a larger family, or you often have guests – a tankless water heater may be your best option; it can save you up to 50% in energy costs over a conventional gas heater and is fairly small, freeing up floor space. However, if you live alone or with a partner only, you may want to consider a more conventional model. Your energy savings may be less, but your up-front cost will be lower as well!
The best way to make this kind of decision is to speak to a local plumbing professional, like the team at Proficient Plumbing & Heating. When you work with a professional team, they will let you know what the best choice for your home will be, and can give you advice about any potential rebates or tax incentives you may be able to receive by upgrading your hot water heater. These rebates are another way installing a newer, more efficient hot water heater can help you save money; with a lower up-front cost or money back, your new heater will pay for itself in just a few years’ time.
So if you have noticed your hot water heater is getting older or is not working the way you want it to, get in touch with Proficient Plumbing & Heating. We’ll help you choose the perfect water heater for your home and get it installed efficiently and affordably.