Are Tankless Water Heaters Too Small For Big Jobs?
We seem to feel more secure around larger people, objects, etc. Suppose you are a celebrity hiring a bodyguard. Who would you rather have protecting you? A 5-foot-2-inch, 110-pound teenager or a 6-foot-5-inch, 300-pound ex-football star? Tankless water heaters and water heaters tend to have the same effect.
That large tank in your basement or mechanical room is extremely reassuring. You know that there is water inside constantly warming up to fill your bath tub, sink or dishwasher. If you’ve never used a tankless water heater, it can be difficult to fathom how that compact, wall-hung unit can heat the water for an entire house or place of business. When you find yourself needing a new water heater, the temptation to stick with the larger tank-type unit can be decisive.
Unfortunately, your faith in size may be misplaced, because that larger tank-type heater will bring even larger headaches: higher energy consumption, a shorter life span and the threat of bursting. A properly-sized tankless unit from Noritz, on the other hand, will effectively handle any application without these problems.
According to Jason Fleming, Sr. Marketing and Customer Care Manager at Noritz, properly sizing a tankless water heater depends on climate and household needs.
Climate impacts the flow rate a given water heater can deliver. “Consider the differences between heating water in Los Angeles versus Chicago,” explains Fleming. “While in Los Angeles incoming water may be 65 degrees Fahrenheit, in Chicago it might be 45 degrees, and both water heaters need to raise the temperature to 120 degrees. Thus, in the colder climate, the water heater needs to heat incoming water by a greater amount to meet the desired temperature, which requires a more powerful unit — as measured in BTUs per hour — to maintain identical flow rate.” Essentially, a colder climate will require more BTUs and a warmer climate, fewer — assuming household needs are equal.
Household needs are rarely equal, however, and that is the second part of the equation for sizing a water heater. For example, a household in Florida that uses three times the amount of water in a given hour than a household in Alaska may need a larger unit to meet demand, despite the warmer climate.
No matter what your water needs, Noritz has a tankless unit to meet them, and you can use the Noritz tankless sizing calculator to find out what will work best. Tankless units may be much smaller than tank-types, but they will easily handle any water demands while using far less energy. In fact, their small size is actually an advantage in that it opens up space in your basement, mechanical room, etc. In warmer sections of the country, you can even install them outdoors.
It may be that we naturally feel safer around larger things, but when it comes to tankless versus tank, David beats Goliath.