a modern tankless water heater

How Do Tankless Water Heaters Work?

Hot water is an integral part of your daily life, so it's important to have a water heater that suits the needs of your entire household. Here’s some basic information about tankless water heaters.

How They Work

Tankless water heaters provide an endless supply of hot water as it’s needed. When you open a faucet, cold water travels through a pipe to an electric element or gas burner to be heated. The hot water then travels through pipes from the heat exchanger to the faucet. In comparison, a contained water heater keeps water in a storage tank heated to a constant temperature while it awaits use.

There are two types of tankless water heaters: whole-house units and point-of-use units. A whole-house unit provides hot water for an entire home from a central location. A point-of-use unit is much smaller and only supplies hot water for up to two nearby outlets.

Tankless water heaters can be fueled by electricity, propane or natural gas.

Advantages of Choosing Tankless

There are several benefits of choosing a tankless water:

  • No storage tank. First and foremost, you’ll never run out of hot water using a tankless heater because you don’t have to wait for a storage tank to refill. Without a storage tank, tankless heaters also require less room and less energy.

  • Energy-Efficient. Tankless heaters are more energy efficient because they don’t have to continually heat water in a tank. Keep in mind, however, that some gas-fired tankless heaters have a continuous pilot light ignition system that uses energy regardless of water consumption.

  • Long-lasting. Although tankless water heaters cost more to install, they typically last five to 10 years longer than tank water heaters.


Meeting Your Needs

Tankless water heaters are sized based on the maximum temperature they can heat water to depending on the rate at which water is flowing past the heat exchanger. Before you purchase a tankless water heater, it’s important to consider your household’s hot water consumption needs.

A tankless water heater’s output is limited. Even a large gas-fired unit can only heat a certain amount of water per minute. This prevents most whole-house units from supplying multiple outlets with sufficiently hot water simultaneously. One way to overcome this constraint is to install point-of-use units for appliances that require a lot of hot water.


Call Us to Install or Repair Your Tankless Water Heater

Installing a tankless water heater is a difficult and potentially dangerous process that should be conducted by a professional. At Modern Air & Water, we sell and install hot water systems including tanks and tankless heaters. We also provide plumbing and HVAC repair services in the Edmonton area. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today!