A water heater is every household’s need. The choice of the most suitable water heater is governed by many factors. While few vary depending on your requirement, there are also a set of factors that every water heater buyer must know. The selection of this appliance is best done keeping the output as well as the input in check.
A water heater must not be picked only by its volume output. The volume of hot water that a water heater gives out is as important as the consumption of energy. An energy efficient appliance helps you save on electricity bills. There are numerous options of water heaters to choose from like a range of capacity for different family sizes and fuel options (depends on the availability of different fuels near you). Here is what you must know before buying a new water heater.
Types of Water Heater
The process of buying a new water heater begins with identifying the type you would need. Following are the types of water heater:
- Conventional storage water heater – It stores a certain volume of water in the tank.
- Tankless water heater – It heats water directly when in use and doesn’t hold water in a tank.
- Tankless coil and indirect water heater – It uses the space heating system at home to heat water.
- Solar water heater – It uses solar energy (correctly depicted in its name) to heat water.
Consider Following Things Before Buying Water Heater
After you have identified the type of water heater that will suit your requirement, it is vital to consider the following:
- Fuel: There are different options of fuel available for water heaters. Whether you pick a conventional water heater or a tankless water heater, the cost, as well as availability of the fuel, must be considered. The right fuel or source of energy used for water heating not only affects the annual operation cost of the water heater but also its energy efficiency. The right fuel source is the one that is available in abundance near you at a reasonable cost.
- Size: Every family has different needs. If you have chosen a conventional water heater with a tank, buying the correct tank size helps the uninterrupted supply of hot water. The size, however, must be decided by keeping in mind the size of your family and daily water requirement. A family with young kids will consume more water than a household with all adults.
- Energy efficiency: Energy efficiency is an important factor in determining the right water heater. The appliances that are energy efficient allow saving on fuel bills. Keeping in mind the energy efficiency, you can also work out the annual operation cost involved. Knowing how much the appliance will cost, in the long run, you can quickly identify the right pick for yourself.
Consider Suitable Fuel Type for Your Water Heater
Identifying the right fuel is a tricky task. It involves striking a tradeoff between the cost of fuel and its availability.
As mentioned above, the right fuel is the one that is low on cost yet abundantly available. These parameters help you zero upon the fuel source. Below are the various options of sources of energy:
- Electricity: This source of energy/ fuel can be used for any water heater. It is easily available in the United States which makes it an easy choice. Although available in abundance, you must consume electricity wisely. Keeping a check on redundant consumption of electricity is a good habit every household should adopt.
- Oil: This source of energy is available only in some parts of the states. If you can easily find it in your locality, go for it. It can be used for conventional water heaters with a tank as well as the indirect combination heaters. It can be used to fuel conventional storage water heaters and indirect combination water and space heating systems.
- Geothermal energy: This the go-to fuel for pump based heaters as well as the combination heaters. Since it is available throughout the states, it qualifies as the best choice of fuel for the types of water heaters mentioned above.
- Gas: Gas is available in many areas of the states making it a popular choice to fuel heaters with conventional storage, tankless heaters as well as tankless coil and indirect water heaters.
- Propane: This fuel type is also a good choice as it is available in most parts of the states. Since it can fuel all types of water heaters, it is a popular choice among the homeowners in the area.
- Solar energy: Although abundantly available throughout the states, it is most widely used in the Southwest region. Solar water heaters are the most popular water heaters in this area.
Final Words: Whether you are settling down in a new household or just replacing the water heater, comparing the fuels available in your area with their cost will allow you to make a good buying decision. Lower the cost of fuel more will be the savings in the long run.