Looking to replace your water heater? Here’s some information to help you decide which is best for you.
Here are five common types of water heaters:
Heat Pump Water Heater
Uses heat from the room and/or electricity to heat a tank of water.
- Heat pump water heaters can save more than $3,000 over the life of the unit compared to electric water heaters.*
- They typically have 10+ year warranties.
- They dehumidify the space they are in.**
- Requires open room with 6’ or greater ceiling
- Requires condensate drain
- Reduced savings if in heated space
- Air filter needs periodic rinsing
- As loud as a dehumidifier
*Source: energystar.gov accessed 7/1/16
**Heat-pump water heaters complement but do not replace dehumidifiers, because they operate based on hot-water demand instead of humidity levels.
Electric Water Heater
Uses electric resistive elements to heat water.
- Low upfront cost
- Short “lowboy” versions available
- No combustion
- High operating cost
- Typically shorter warranties
- Not ENERGY STAR®
Gas Water Heater
Uses propane or natural gas. Can have a tank or be tankless.
- Low operating cost (natural gas models at current rates)
- Endless hot water (tankless models)
- ENERGY STAR® rated
- Requires exhaust venting
- High operating cost (propane models at current rates)
- May not work with low-flow fixtures (some tankless models)
Tankless Coil Water Heater
Built into an oil boiler. It has no visible tank.
- Lasts as long as the boiler
- Takes up no additional space
- The least efficient water heating system
- Boiler must stay hot all year long
- Can cause boiler to “short cycle” which minimizes efficiency
- Not ENERGY STAR®
Solar Water Heater
Typically panels on roof plumbed to tank in basement with some backup.
- High installation cost
- Requires backup
- Requires solar exposure
Click here for our Guide to Water Heating.