Thursday, June 5, 2008

Gas Tankless Water Heaters

When considering a tankless hot water heater, one of the first things to decide is whether you want to go with an electric or a gas mode. Read up on electric tankless heaters in our previous article, and keep on reading if you are looking into a tankless gas water heater.

Tankless gas hot water heaters are designed to be used in whole-house applications. Special circumstances must be met for these gas heaters, which are discussed here. So why replace that old gas water heater with a new tankless model?

A tankless gas hot water heater will provide your house with an unlimited supply of hot water. So you can run multiple showers, then still have the water available to run the dishwasher or the clothes washer. Depending on the capacity of the tankless gas heater you buy, multiple appliances can also be run at the same time. Most models are smaller than a regular water heater, so you may also have some space savings as well.

Costs are certainly a consideration. While a regular water heater is usually about $500, a tankless gas water heater will cost at least double that amount. Paloma, Takagi,and Rinnai are three well known manufactures of gas powered water heaters. Consulting with one or more local dealers is usually the best way to price tankless water heater manufacturers and models.

While natural gas powered heaters will work in most situations, some homes are fueled by propane. Check with your local utility company if your not sure if you have natural gas or propane. Several manufactures including Bosch and Stieble Eltron offer propane powered tankless water heaters.

The Bosch AquaStar line is a popular series, with several models offering between 3-6 gallons of hot water per minute. Higher capacity models will cost more, but are better for large families where several hot water applications are needed at once.

A nice feature with tankless gas water heaters is the constant availability of hot water. Unlike a traditional heater where the hot water may run out based on the capacity of the heater, the tankless heater will continue to pump piping hot water, whether you need it for five minutes or five hours.

Nice to have when someone just filled up the tub!

One final factor to consider is the installation cost that may be involved. A tankless gas hot water heater requires proper ventilation, so check the price and reputation of contractors in your area. In almost all cases, this means a professional installation to ensure the safety of you and your family.

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