difference between copper and plastic pipes

26 Oct. 2018

Should I Purchase a Tank Storage or Tankless Water Heater?

When considering whether to purchase a tank or tankless water heater either as a new water heater install or to replace your existing water heater, there are several questions worth considering. Is one better than the other? Read on to learn all the facts before making your next purchase decision...

Tank Storage Water Heaters

Tank storage water heaters are the classic form of water heaters more commonly used in most homes and businesses. The tank storage water heater offers several advantages. Most notably is upfront cost. Tank storage water heaters require a much lower initial investment when compared to tankless water heaters. A typical tank storage water heater may cost between as little as $500 to $800 on average.

Despite being less costly upfront, tank storage water heaters can result in greater expenses over time. Consider the operation of a tank storage water heater in that it requires water to be heated and reheated over time - regardless of whether or not there is a need for hot water at any given moment. This can result in significantly higher utility bills.

One option is to consider purchasing a gas powered water heater which may result in significant savings. Gas powered water heaters can be up to 50% more cost efficient than electric water heaters. This of course requires that a gas line be present or installed prior to operation.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters are a more recent development with a design intended to offer greater energy efficiency. A tankless water heater works by heating water on-demand as it is needed. Rather than requiring water to be stored in a tank, with tankless water heaters, water is heated by gas or electric coils instantaneously.

Tankless water heaters typically have a greater overall lifespan than their tank storage counterparts lasting for up to 20 years or longer. However they can also be more costly to repair should maintenance be required.

One major functional disadvantage of tankless water heaters is that they have limited output meaning that if a large quantity of hot water is needed at any given time, it may have difficulty keeping up with demand. For instance, if multiple showers or appliances require hot water at the same time, the result may be a lack of sufficiently hot water at one or more faucets or exit points.

Final Thoughts

Now that we’ve discussed both the advantages and disadvantages of both tank storage and tankless water heaters, which one is right for you?

It really all comes down to your personal preference.

If upfront cost is your greatest concern, a tank storage water heater is most likely the best choice offering a significant price advantage.

If you have a large household size or require a greater throughput of hot water at any given time, consider the tank storage water heater to prevent those ever so daunted ice cold showering experiences.

If you don’t want to wait for your water temperature to catch up when you first turn on the faucet, opt for a tankless system for immediate access to hot water on-demand.

If lower long-term utility and operational costs are your concern, consider choosing a tankless water heater. Go for a gas coil tankless water heater to see the greatest cost savings over time.

We hope this article has helped you better understand the difference between tank storage and tankless water heater systems. If you’re looking to purchase a new water heater for your home or business, give us a call and we’ll be happy to guide you to the best solution.