Instant Hot Water Shower System – Best Choice for Homes
All homes need a reliable heating system for a consistent supply of hot water. Imagine not being able to take a hot shower in the morning on your way to work. Indeed, an instant hot water shower system has become an undeniable necessity.
There is much to discuss when it comes to the comparison of different types of water heaters. The bottom line in categorizing water heaters is whether it is any of the following:
• Conventional water heaters with storage tanks.
• Tankless water heaters or on-demand water heaters
In recent years, an instant hot water shower system is preferred for new installations. Its main feature is the elimination of bulky water tanks and heat water only when needed. Aside from this, another reason why instant water heaters are more popular is the supposed energy savings compare with conventional water heaters.
Aside from supplying hot water for showers, heaters also produce hot water for other home uses such as washing clothes and washing dishes. As such, around 18% of energy consumed by an average home goes to heating water.
Classifying an instant hot water shower by fuel source
There are two commonly used fuel sources around the country: gas and electricity. Regardless of the fuel source, an instant hot water shower system will function the same. Nevertheless, comparing a water heater according to the fuel source helps a homeowner decide which one is better according to the following parameters:
• Water pressure
• Operating cost
In general, an instant hot water shower system using gas costs less. They also have better flow rates than electric-fueled water heaters. However, one downside of gas-powered water heaters is the stringent regulations and the chimney requirement. Therefore, gas-fueled heaters are best when the home or building already has a chimney.
On the other hand, an electric instant hot water system often costs more to operate in the long run. In spite of this, electric-fueled water heaters are preferred for new installations because there is no need to upgrade to a gas line or install a chimney. Since the installation cost is less than that of a gas-fueled water heating system, electric systems are often preferred.
There is no consensus on which type of fuel source is better. There are pros and cons to each one, and it depends on the preference of the homeowner or the recommendation of the installation technician. Other factors that help in choosing include the current condition of the home or site, the energy-efficiency, and the overall savings on operational cost.
Why choose an instant hot water shower heater
Heating water on demand makes instant hot water shower systems attractive for homes where there is a need for consistent hot water. If you have a conventional heater, there is a chance hot water had run out even before you had a chance to hit the shower. Running out of hot water is not a concern with a tankless water heater.
• An instant shower water heater is compact
For homes with limited space, it is not efficient to use a conventional water heater with a large tank. If installed outside the house, it becomes an unsightly piece of equipment. Instant water heaters are compact and perfect for apartments, condominiums, and single-person dwellings.
• Instantaneous shower heaters help save energy
Taking hot showers during the day or night often consume the bulk of power allocated for heating. Storage tanks waste energy, especially without proper insulation. This is not the case with tankless water heaters when heating is only when hot water is needed. Nevertheless, instant hot water systems are not entirely energy-efficient as minimal heat is still lost as hot water travels along pipes.
• Flexible installation options
Eliminating a large storage tank makes instant hot water shower systems easy to install. You also have several options to consider on how you want the system installed at different areas around the home. For example, if you’re going to reduce heat loss, you can install the water heater close to the water output. This will further increase the energy efficiency of the equipment.
• Longer life-span
A conventional water heater usually lasts for around 10-15 years. On the other hand, a tankless water heater may last upwards to 20 years with proper use and maintenance.
Another point of discussion concerning installing an instant hot water shower system is the flow rate. This is important with electric instantaneous water heaters where the flow-rate is often lower. One solution adopted by many homeowners is to install point-of-use heaters. For example, in a home with two bathrooms, it is more efficient to install two separate instant hot water shower system than rely on one.
Advantages of point-of-use water heaters
While it may be true that showers take up a majority of hot water used in any home, it is equally important to consider how the size or the demand affects the performance and efficiency of an instant hot water shower system. As such, installing point-of-use heaters can significantly improve the hot water supply in many areas around the home such as kitchens and laundry rooms.
• Increased water pressure and higher temperatures
If you put an instant hot water shower system near the source, you can enjoy warmer temperatures because the water does not have to travel through pipes and lose heat along the way. Low water pressure is also a problem if you live in an apartment building with design flaws. A point-of-use water heater ensures that you get a good supply of hot water for showers every time.
• Increased energy-efficiency
The energy-efficiency of an instant hot water shower suffers due to heat loss in pipes. Even if tankless water heaters are already considered more energy-efficient, you can boost the energy savings by installing point-of-use heaters.
• Increased durability
For larger homes, the strength of a water heater can suffer from consistent use. If there are multiple points of use such as several bathrooms, a kitchen, and a laundry area that uses hot water all the time, installing several instant hot water systems reduce the workload and improves the performance of each heater. Enhanced use of space. Point-of-use water heaters further improve the efficient use of space in your home. Instant water heaters are quite compact and can be placed under the sink for kitchen faucets or near the shower enclosure.
Point-of-use instant water heaters are standard in homes with large water consumption. By using an instant hot water shower system either at the point or use or as the overall water heating system for the home, there is estimated savings of at least $100 a year.
Boosting the performance of your shower water heater
Since it is a fact that an instant hot water shower system is more efficient than a conventional heater, it is also necessary for a homeowner to know the necessary maintenance and caring tips to guarantee consistent performance and overall durability. Even if your heater is newly installed, neglecting to adhere to maintenance and proper caring tips may compromise the potential of the heater and reduce its expected lifespan.
The biggest enemy of an instant water heater are mineral deposits. Over a period of consistent use, minerals from hard water will accumulate in the system and will be detrimental to its performance. To counter the effects of mineral deposits, follow the steps below:
• Before flushing your instant water heater, check the manufacturer’s manual for instructions. If you have an electric instant hot water shower system, turn of the electricity supply from the main breaker. For gas-powered heaters, cut-off the gas supply for safety.
• After turning off the fuel source, the next step is to turn off the source of water as well as the exit point of hot water.
• The following procedure entails fastening a hose to a pump while the other end is attached to the cold water valve. Use another hose and connect it to the hot water valve. The other end of the second hose is submerged in a bucket full of distilled vinegar.
• Pump vinegar into the heater to flush out mineral deposits. Allow the vinegar to flush the system for around one hour and thirty minutes. After flushing with vinegar, replace with cold water to rinse off any vinegar and mineral residue.
• Lastly, you should also ensure that the filter screen is clean by rinsing off any dirt stuck to it.
After cleaning the entire system, re-attach any loose parts and check that the heater is back to regular working order. You need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the manual as the steps may vary depending on the heater make and model.
Flushing your instant hot water shower system helps maintain its condition. You need to do this annually, preferably before the winter when the demand for hot water is at its highest. In addition to regular flushing, you should also consult local experts like Fisher for concerns and issues regarding repairs and replacements. Expert heating technicians can address any underlying issues undetected by an untrained eye. With regular expert consultations, you can avoid heating problems in winter which is when you need hot water the most.
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