Best Tankless Water Heaters | An Ultimate Guide

It is often said that two birds in the bush are better than one bird flying away, well I don’t really know what that means (tongue in cheek) but what I do know about is the best water heaters. If you are looking to upgrade your water heater to something larger, something with more capacity or you are thinking about going green and helping your environment as well as keeping the running costs down then you are at the right place.

Tankless Water HeatersWe have all seen massive electricity bills that are jaw droppers but this doesn’t need to be the way. With a little forethought and research, you can have a water heater that will deliver copious amounts of water at temperatures that could boil an egg and have the satisfaction of knowing that the power bill will be less than it used to be. Oh, Bliss.

However, where do you start with this seemingly impossible task? The best water heaters are within every salesroom that you wander into checking out the tankless water heaters or so you would be led to believe by the enthusiastic staff. First of all, it is advisable that you choose the source of energy you will be using ie electric tankless water heaters, gas, solar, oil furnace….whatever the source the task is to decide on one of these or others if you have access to something else.

Related heater article: Choosing the best garage heater.

Choosing the Best Tankless Water Heaters

If you are serious about the environmental impact you will be thinking maybe solar water heaters system is the way to go or possibly tankless water heaters with believe it or not electric tankless water heaters. These systems are very popular for people who want to have a more self-sufficient lifestyle. Without going into too much detail here in the introduction page I would like to recommend you look around first and check out the information on the best water heaters that we have provided for you right here.

Water Heater Buying Tip #1

How to keep your water heater in good order after purchase. Depending on the type of heater you have to try to drain the water from the heater vessel every 6 months or so, sediment build up in areas that have hard water can complicate things. So if you are about to purchase your choice of best water heater it may be advisable to buy one that has an easy option to drain the tank.

Water Heater Buying Tip #2

Read the EnergyGuide label for the first-hour rating. At any given time this label tells you how much hot water will be available. It´s not efficient to buy a system that will output more than you would need, the trick is getting the right balance between your needs and meeting that need efficiently. Gas water heaters tend to have higher first-hour ratings than electric types using similar sized tanks.

Water Heater Buying Tip #3

Have a look at tankless water heaters. Consider the on-demand systems where cold water is heated as per your requirements. Their efficiency derives from not wasting energy by keeping the water hot in storage tanks, and you never run out of hot water as it is always there waiting to be heated if and when you turn on the hot water faucet. The flow rate is limited to about four gallons per minute, though, so you may need more than one if you want to have a shower and run the dishwasher at the same time.

Tankless Water Heaters ­ Are they as good as they say?

Hot water like electricity is one of those things that isn’t thought about until it is not there, and in reality, it is the way it should be. When this occurs you realize that it is important to your lifestyle and becomes very important, so a failed hot water system moves up on the priority list from nowhere to number 1. So now you have a broken down hot water system and you have no idea what to do. Should you replace that old water heater with a tankless water heater, on-demand water heating system that is more efficient and convenient?

Tankless Water Heaters ­ On Demand Systems

So having endless hot showers without having to worry that the hot water is what you would like. Normal water tank storage Tank Water Heatersystems have about a forty gallon storage tank giving the household, funnily enough, forty gallons of hot water. After using all of the stored water the heater has to heat up the fresh water to the thermostatically set temperature which can take 30 minutes to an hour depending on your system. In contrast, tankless water heaters supply hot water on demand continuously. That means you can stand and soak in luxurious hot water basically forever under a constantly supplied stream.

In America, tankless water heaters were unknown till a few years ago where they now are becoming very popular. Some of the reasons they are becoming so popular are:

  • They need much less space than a storage tank. and last longer than storage tanks.
  • Are reportedly more energy efficient
  • They are compact, about the size of a medicine cabinet and you can literally mount one on a wall.

I know water heaters sellers will tell you tankless water heaters are a breeze to install, but PLEASE, seek professional help when you are choosing the right one for your particular needs.

My Top Picked Tankless Water Heater:

Rinnai RL94iN Natural Gas Tankless Water Heater, 9.4 Gallons Per Minute Review

The Rinnai RL94iN Natural Gas Tankless Water Heater is both a residential and a commercial use hot water heater. It is a top of Best Tankless Water Heatersthe line residential unit and has features that are usually only found in a commercial water heater. The remote controller allows you to select water temperatures at multiple locations within your water system. You can have the dishwasher hot water set at one level and the sink hot water set at yet another level.

Installation of the Rinnai RL94iN requires professional plumbing skills.

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Gas lines, water system balancing, electrical service venting hook up are all required. Installation is not for the average home handy person.

This water heater is of the highest quality and can deliver all the hot water you need endlessly. I recommend the Rinnai RL94iN for its design and construction as well as it’s extended warranty. Consider your needs carefully and then buy this water heater.

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Usage Considerations

The Rinnai RL94i tankless water heater can be used in either residential or commercial building. It is a high volume tankless water heater that can deliver up to 9.4 gallons per minute under best case circumstances. The things you need to consider as you make your selection are the distance the hot water will have to travel in exposed pipes after leaving the water heater. If the pipe runs are short than 9.4 gallons per minute is possible, but as the pipe runs become longer the amount of how water delivery falls off because the hot water has to be heated hotter before leaving the water heater.

Secondly, the temperature of cold water entering the water heater will also determine the final output in gallons per minute, Of course, the colder the water entering the more heating is required to get it to 120 degrees Fahrenheit so the 9.4 GPM will fall off significantly.

It is often best to design an overall water heating system for maximum hot water results. What I mean by this, is that the Rinnai RL94iN will work very nicely with point-of-use water heaters that deliver almost immediate hot water to a sink or shower while the cold water in the pipes is flushed out of the system. Also for the small amount of hot water delivery, a tankless water heater is not good. It takes time for the water to flush out of the piping system, so you have to stand by and wait for the hot water to arrive. But a tankless water heater like the Rinnai RL94iN, combined with point-of-use heaters avoids the problem of small hot water usage.

This water heater and venting system are excellent but probably require professional installation. The venting system is a dual action exhaust and fresh air intake piping system. This water heater gets its fresh air for gas combustion from outside the building.

The Rinnai RL94iN can be ordered as either a Natural gas water heater or a liquid propane water heater, but it is not adaptable. That means you have to select one or the other at the time of purchase, so be clear about what your fuel source will be when you place your order.

As with all water heaters, and especially tankless water heaters, minerals,and calcium in the water are an important consideration. If you have hard water then you will want to get a salt activated water softener to accompany the Rinnai RL94iN. You can find water softeners at the link below.

Another important buying consideration is the type of gas service you currently have in the building where you are going to have the Rinnai RL94iN installed. Not all houses have the volume of gas service required to operate this water heater, so call your gas company and ask about the gas line service in your house.

Finally, this water heater is a heavy duty machine. It can be used as a residential water heater, but also as a commercial water heater in light commercial locations. Since it will serve up to 5 hot water using locations simultaneously, commercial use tends to be more demanding and may require a larger unit than the Rinnai RL94iN.

This is a high-end piece of equipment and will make you very happy if you take into account all the considerations needed to correctly match the water heaters capacity with your hot water needs.

Water Heater

Solar Water Heaters

Did you know that nearly 15% of the average family’s power bill in America is spent on heating of their water! An installation of solar water heaters costs around $7,000 initially, but the benefit of these systems is that the initial upfront cost can be recouped over time ( less than 5 years ). There are further savings to be made by a competent do it yourself-er person by doing most of the installation yourself and afterward getting a qualified person to oversee the work done and get a progress report for enhancements. Keep in mind though that even with a team of several assistants — including a professional — the installation can take up to 2 days

An average family in America has a hot water usage of about 20 gallons per person per day. Now, keeping in mind that it takes about 1 square foot of solar panel to heat a gallon of water. These are averages and each family has differing needs, so the first thing you need to do is determine your families needs and future needs.

Look into getting a passive system, which doesn’t use a pump, a pump is routinely installed in systems using solar water heaters to circulate and deliver the hot water. The passive system type is considerably more reliable, longer-lived, and easier to maintain than an active system.

Having a backup system in place just in case you do not receive the minimum solar energy needed to heat the water to a high enough temperature, in this case, it would be wise to have a backup system in place that would alleviate any discomfort to the family.

Gas Water Heaters

Gas water heaters, on average they last around 8 to 12 yrs and account for approximately 15 to 20% of your utility bill. So if your heater is showing signs it is looking at retirement, or if you’re adding to or upgrading your bathroom.

Remember the three cardinal rules of shopping for a standard storage water heater: Take your time in choosing. Get a system that will do the job plus more. Find a heater that will do the job effectively but at the same time effectively doesn´t clear the wallet every bill.

There is nothing so motivating than having an icy-cold shower or a leaking gas water heater that is slowly flooding your basement, this all tends to make all the more urgent to get a new heater hooked up as quickly as possible. But if you choose one based solely on speed of delivery, you may end up with a unit that can´t keep up with household requirements, costs more to operate, and fails sooner than it should.

Electric Water Heaters

The importance of your family needs cannot be underestimated. The whole basis of your quote and installation will balance on these requirements. For instance, if you buy electric water heaters that are too small will have frequent times when the water cools down while in the shower or many other inappropriate times. Conversely having a system that is too large creates an unnecessary financial drain on the household budget through the energy costs associated with maintaining a large hot water storage tank.

A quick look at your home will give you a rough idea as to what you will be needing. For instance, how many bathrooms are in the home, how many members are there in the home, lots of children mean lots of showers, baths and extra clothes washing sessions, and last but not least don´t forget the extra house comforts like the dishwasher. Obviously, a couple living in a large house or a large family living in a small home will not require anywhere near the same capacity water heater as a large family.

Are electric water heaters better or worse than other forms of hot water systems? Well, that is relative to your needs and available energy sources. Someone living in the rural country areas may not have access to gas for example. There are many homes these days that are converting over to solar powered hot water systems to avoid the costly utility bills, although initially, the purchase cost is far higher than electric water heaters.

For convenience, electric water heaters are probably the most common overall but this does not mean that they are the right choice for you. As you can see, there are many factors associated with choosing the system that is right for you whether it be tankless, electric, geothermal, solar, gas or oil burning there is no right or wrong, it all depends on what is right for you circumstances, as long as it meets your needs it is the right choice.

Oil Fired Hot Water Heaters

A lot of American homes that are heated with oil also use their oil supply for their domestic hot water systems. Household hot water heaters are enormous users of energy in the colder parts of the country serving American homes, after the residential heating system and air conditioning systems in summer you would be surprised at the number of oil fired hot water heaters located around the country. Depending upon the kind of house and the number of people living in the house, hot water requirements account for more than 20% of total annual energy consumption.

One of the main advantages that an oil fired hot water heater gives is it´s quick recovery time because of the normal delivery temperature it supplies at heat transfer to the water, which is 2x as fast as natural gas and 5x as fast as electricity.

These days free-standing oil fired hot water heaters now use burners with flame retention heads and other new improvements that can greatly enhance the efficiency of the machine. They can be connected to an existing chimney or, in some cases, the chimney can be installed through the wall if approval from local authorities has been obtained.

Final Notes

Hope this article of best tankless water heater will help you to choose the appropriate heater for your needs. Soon, we will add more products in other categories. Stay with us!

Cristi Thomasson
 

Cristi Thomasson loves to write all new things about Home and Kitchen. She is a passionate blogger and concentrates on modern interior design. She is a contributor of home and kitchen segments of InsiderReviewed.com

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