There are many benefits that tankless water heaters bring to the table, but you should always think it through about switching to a tankless water heater system.
Not only that, you need to see if gas or an electric unit is the better option for your household, but you also have to find out about the power requirements and gas availability in your region. Needless to say, these are only some of the many aspects to consider when choosing a tankless water heater, as it’s not like you’re only buying it for a couple of months.
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How Much Electricity Does a Tankless Water Heater Use?
People in the industry praise the tankless water heaters for their energy efficiency. Since they use fuel only when you’re tapping the hot water, it’s apparent that they will cut down the utility bills from the first month.
Give or take, though, since the initial investment for a tankless water heater is quite significant. If gas models require venting, rending you to make the alterations in your home, the electric models can lead to upgrades of electrical panels. Long story short, you need to have a talk with a professional and see what are the costs for the alterations before placing your order.
Since tankless water heaters warm up water on demand and don’t use a tank for collecting and keeping the hot water, they require less energy than traditional hot water heaters. However, the electricity used by your tankless unit always depends on the demand you have in your application. But at least your tankless unit doesn’t run 24/7/365, but only a couple of hours a day.
The Department of Energy states that tankless water heater systems are 24-34% more effective than tank-style counterparts. We’re talking about households that consume a maximum of 41gallons of water in a day. For the applications with more than 86 gallons of water consumed in a day, the efficiency ranges between 8 to 14%. A model that handles such a high hot water demand is expensive and even requires new wiring in your home. So much about the energy savings (not in the beginning, anyway)
How many watts does an electric tankless water heater use?
If you’re a responsible consumer, you should always get the information on electricity and power needs for your tankless unit. Nevertheless, the power used by a tankless water heater always depends on the size of your family, the personal usage of hot water, and the type of unit you use.
In order to get accurate numbers on your water heater, you should know the number of watts for your unit. You can quickly check your unit’s label for the details. You should be able to find the label on the side of your water heater. The label has to be easy to spot. It’s affixed next to the panel that will put aside when replacing the heating element. It’s fundamental for an electric unit to provide easy access to the heating element at all times.
The label informs you of the wattage and operating voltage of the element. Should your unit work on 240V of power, probably it comes with two elements, so there are two values for the wattage, with one for every element.
For instance, electric tankless water heaters that run on 120V of power present a longer recovery time, which is a negative aspect for most applications.120V require 1,125watts, whereas 240V units need around 4,500 watts. Should your water heater come with two elements, you may be tempted to suppose that you have to increase the wattage for getting the best out of your unit. But it’s not how it works, simply because both elements will not run at the same time.
An electric tankless water heater with two elements and labels informing you about 4,500 watts of power consumption of every component will need a maximum of 4,500 watts and not 9,000 watts.
The age and size of your unit, the temperature you set it to, the amount of water you use in the day, and other factors impact the wattage your unit consumes. Multiplying the number of watts for your heater by the price for kWh by the number of hours you use the heater in a day and dividing it by 1,000 gives you the cost estimate.
Most of the time, using a water heater three hours a day may consume 4,000-watt.
How many watts does a gas tankless water heater use?
Use gas as a primary power source, and it makes perfect sense that gas-fired tankless water heaters don’t need nor consume as much power as the electric models. As a matter of fact, when they’re not running and don’t heat the water, the gas-fired unit only needs electricity for maintaining the electronic sensors up and running. They may also need power for running the circuit powered, but we’re only talking about a low number of watts.
Once the tankless water heater starts running, the electrical load will rise as since it’s necessary for firing the igniter. As venting is fundamental for indoor gas tankless water heaters, some units may need electricity for the power exhaust vent. However, don’t think that electricity consumption is as high as in the case of electric counterparts. Gas models will not need more than a couple of amps at 120V even when heating the water.
Moreover, the gas tankless water heater will not need the same upgrade to your home’s primary service as the electric models.
But it doesn’t mean that gas-fired units don’t come with requirements. On the contrary, many agree that the installation of a gas tankless water heater is a lot more complicated than of the electric models, with venting being the most challenging one.
What’s the fair conclusion?
Both gas and electric tankless water heaters come with ups and downs. Even if the electric models may need upgrades for the electrical panels, gas models may require plenty of alterations for installation and also changes to the gas line. You need to see which type is more affordable for your region and really run the numbers before placing the order.