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Many people overlook the value that a quality water heater brings to their home. Especially when it works great for a long time. In fact, many pay it no attention until something goes wrong. When you think about it, water heaters are an integral part of comfort systems. Whether they’re for home or commercial use.
However, many home and business owners don’t know a lot about how their water heater system works. So little is known about water heaters that our customers rarely even know what features to look for so they can buy the best one. In this guide, we’ll help you evaluate your options so you can select the right water heater for your property.
1. What Are The Types of Water Heaters?
There are three main types of water heaters and they consist of standard tanks, tankless heaters, and heat pump systems. Standard tanks are the most common throughout Phoenix and work by storing, heating and pumping a fixed amount of water throughout your plumbing system. The tanks are large, shaped like metal cylinders and are commonly found in utility closets or garages.
Tankless systems are becoming a lot more popular amongst homeowners in Phoenix, Arizona because they don’t take up as much space. But it doesn’t always mean it’s the best option. They don’t include a holding tank like standard heaters but can still provide immediate hot water. Depending on the size of the system, you can get continuous hot water without worrying about the tank depleting. Some systems are made for “on-demand” hot water beneath sinks; others are for the whole home.
Finally, heat pump systems look like standard traditional water heaters, complete with the large storage tank. However, they’re equipped with compressors that use the heat of the surrounding ambient air temperature to heat the water. Although this is the slowest system, having one of these can provide significant energy savings. The differences of each system are important things to know about water heaters.
2. Know About Water Heaters’ First-Hour Ratings.
First-hour ratings, often displayed prominently on the tank, indicate how many gallons of hot water the heater can produce within the first hour of operation. This will vary and depend on your temperature settings. Home and business owners can easily set their preferred temperatures from a thermostat, much like they do with their HVAC unit.
The first-hour rating will also vary depending on the style of water heater you have, its capacity, and its overall levels of efficiency. This rating is a great way to get an idea of what demands your water heater can handle. If your family frequently uses a lot of hot water, you may want to consider investing in a higher-rated system.
3. Understand Water Heater Efficiency.
Efficiency is another important consideration when it comes to what you should know about water heaters. In general, tankless water heaters were created to establish a more energy efficient system. Especially those that are solar powered. This is because they superheat water as it passes through instead of working harder to heat a large amount of water in a tank.
Standard tank systems are among the lowest on the efficiency rating scale. At the same time, you can always purchase an Energy Star-rated system if you want a better rating. The efficiency scores of heat pumps pretty much fall squarely in the middle of tankless and standard heaters.
Even though the efficiency of a heat pump system is actually quite high, the use of electricity for power makes them more expensive to operate. One thing you’ll want to know about water heaters is that most run off of gas. When considering a replacement, factor in all anticipated costs.
4. What is the Standard Recovery Rate?
When researching recovery rates, know that they normally only apply to heat pump and standard tank systems. Nonetheless, this “rate” refers to the amount of time it takes for the unit to heat water. A higher recovery rate is often inversely related to capacity. Meaning, the more water a system can hold, the longer it usually takes for the unit to heat the water in the tank.
There are, of course, exceptions to this rule. Some water heaters are simply built better and can heat large amounts of water faster. But the inverse relationship is a good thing to keep in mind when making a decision on a new unit. Deciding whether it’s more important to have immediate hot water or a large reserve amount available can affect your purchasing decision.
5. How Much Water Capacity Do You Need?
Last but not least, the capacity of a water heater or hot water tank is just like it sounds. It refers to how much water your hot water system can hold. Again, capacity has an inverse relationship with recovery rate. Therefore, it’s important for you to select a capacity that not only matches your desired recovery rate needs but also will supply your house with an appropriate amount of water on a consistent basis.
Since more and more Phoenix homeowners are starting to purchase tankless heaters, the capacity of water heaters isn’t valued like it once was. But capacity is still important for home and commercial property owners who aren’t interested in paying the higher up-front costs of tankless heaters and prefer to install standard tank water heaters.
Knowing all of the facts about water heaters will definitely help you make a confident decision either way.
We Know About Water Heaters!
When you’re investing in any type of plumbing repair or installation, it’s important that you hire someone who takes safety and quality workmanship seriously. Far too many plumbers provide temporary fixes. We take pride in getting to the root of the problem and helping you avoid further inconvenience.
At Canyon State Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing, we have a team of experienced, certified technicians that are eager to answer any question you might have about water heater repairs or replacements. Whether you hire us to install your new equipment or not, we enjoy providing the Phoenix community with suggestions and tips that enhance the efficiency of their home.
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