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Conventional vs. Tankless: What’s The Right Water Heater For You?

homeowner adjusting a tankless water heater in austin

As Austin’s foremost water heater experts, we get a lot of calls from customers asking about water heater replacement in Austin. One of the most common questions we’re asked is “Should I install a conventional water heater, or a tankless water heater in Austin?” The truth is, they’re both good choices, but there are several things you should consider to determine which one is right for you.

In this post, learn more about how both conventional and tankless water heaters work, and the pros and cons of each, so that you can get a better idea of which one is right for your home.

How Conventional Water Heaters Work

A conventional water heater typically stores about 30 to 80 gallons of water that’s kept heated by a burner element below. When you use hot water, the tank fills back up with cold water which is heated up and kept hot until it’s ready to be used. This means that there’s always a finite amount of hot water that can be used, which can be easily depleted any time you use hot water—be it for a shower, a bath, or for your kitchen or bathroom sink.

Moreover, once the hot water is gone it’s gone, until your unit heats the water that’s been refilled in your tank, a process that can take as long as 45 minutes.

How Tankless Water Heaters Work

Tankless water heaters heat water on demand. As their name implies, they’re completely tankless and contain no water reservoir. Instead, tankless heaters have an inflow and outflow valve. When your hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe and into the unit via the inflow valve. Inside the unit, a burner element immediately heats the water, which then sends the water through the output valve directly back to you.

As a result, tankless water heaters deliver an infinite supply of hot water, since the water is heated the moment it’s needed. It also means you can run your hot water taps endlessly, without worrying about exhausting your hot water supply.

How Conventional and Tankless Water Heaters Differ

A conventional water heater is generally less expensive to purchase and install than a tankless water heater. On the other hand, conventional water heaters can run out of hot water, take up space, and can potentially leak, or worse, burst, which could easily end up flooding your house. They also consume up to 20 to 30% more energy than tankless water heaters in Austin, since they have to use energy to keep your water hot until it’s used.

A tankless water heater, in contrast, takes up far less space, can last twice as long as a traditional water heater, and since hot water is readily available, provides an infinite stream of hot water. They’re also significantly more energy-efficient than conventional units, since they only use energy to heat water the moment the water is needed. This makes tankless water heaters in Austin a great choice for large families or for homeowners who like their showers both hot and long.

Keep in mind: While tankless units are often more expensive to replace and install, the energy savings help make up the difference. In fact, since tankless units are more energy-efficient and last-longer than traditional units, many plumbing services in Austin—including Stan’s—regularly offer rebates on tankless water heater installation in Austin. Texas Gas Service also offers rebates up to $650 on the purchase and installation of natural gas, super high efficiency tankless water heaters.

Choose Stan’s For Water Heater Replacement in Austin

Interested in replacing your water heater but not sure which system is right for you?

Contact Stan’s today to speak to a professional Austin plumber who can help you fully understand your options. We’ll walk you through the pros and cons of both conventional and tankless water heaters in Austin, and find out if you qualify for any special residential discounts.

If you need help deciding which type of water heater is best for you, or simply need to schedule a water heater replacement in Austin, give us a call today!