A lot of folks are wondering if now is the time to switch their tanked water heater over to a tankless. Although future energy codes require a certain efficiency rating on water heaters, there are a few other factors to consider.
Tankless water heaters are expensive to install, and repairs are generally more expensive on them. That being said, they are 15% more energy efficient than tanked water heaters. The staff at North Lake Plumbing are certified to install both Rinnai and Rheem tankless water heaters, and have been installing them for years. Here’s a list of pros and cons that Ken put together on tankless water heaters.
Pros – Tankless Water Heaters
- Unlimited hot water, for multiple showers
- Energy efficient
- Space efficient
- Altitude (Lake Tahoe is at 6,330 ft above sea level) requires a more powerful water heater. Water heaters are 22% less efficient at altitude. Tankless water heaters heat better than a tanked water heater.
Cons – Tankless Water Heaters
- Expensive, you do not save money in the long run
- Installation costs
- Repair can be difficult
- Hard to install
- Government will require them in the future
- They can freeze in the winter, requiring the whole unit to be replaced
- They need to be cleaned once a year
- Altitude: water heaters in Tahoe have to work harder to heat water. We are 4-6000′ higher than the Valley and Bay Area.