With an efficient water heater in your home, you can enjoy ready access to hot water for all your daily needs from washing dishes and clothes to taking a soothing bath. If you’re in the market for a new water heater, there are several things that you’ll need to consider when trying to decide on the best water heater for your Sanford, FL home.
Compare Fuel Sources
The first thing that you need to think about when you’re shopping for a water heater is the fuel source. There are five primary options to consider. Each has its own pros and cons. The primary consideration for many homeowners will be the availability of the fuel source. While electricity is an easy option that your home almost certainly has access to, a fuel source like propane or oil may be harder to come by. Here are the top options you should consider:
- Natural Gas: Natural gas water heaters deliver fast access to hot water. They’re often cheaper to operate than oil, propane, or electricity. Most still use electricity to run, however, and gas water heaters must have proper venting.
- Oil: Oil-powered water heaters have the highest recovery rate of any water heater. They offer flexible venting and high input rates. However, you must have an oil storage tank and schedule regular oil delivery. There are fewer models available in the world of oil water heaters than there are for other water heater types.
- Electricity: Electric water heaters are affordable, simple to install, and easy to maintain. They don’t require venting like natural gas heaters. There’s very little direct energy loss, making this an energy efficient pick. Electric water heaters can take longer than other options to heat up.
- Liquid Propane: Propane water heaters are very similar to natural gas. The primary difference is that the fuel comes from a propane tank and not a utility pipeline, so you’ll need to consider the time and money invested in tank maintenance.
- Solar Power: Solar water heaters feature solar collectors where the thermal energy from the sun heats a non-freezing fluid. The fluid then circulates through a heat exchanger that transfers the heat to the water.
Decide on Tankless Vs. Storage Tank Heaters
Storage tank water heaters
are the most traditional option, but you can also opt for a compact tankless water heater. Water heaters equipped with a tank keep hot water on hand at all times. A tankless water heater, on the other hand, provides hot water on demand. This eliminates the energy waste that happens when a water heater must maintain a tank of ready water at all times.
Tankless water heaters are either gas-powered or electric. Water is heated directly as it passes through a pipe in the unit.
Examine the Equipment Size
As you’re shopping for water heaters, you must consider the “First Hour Rating.” This number tells you how many gallons of hot water you can produce in an hour. You’ll need to consider your peak demand in gallons.
This is determined by calculating the gallon per minute flow rate of hot water appliances and figuring out how many of these you use at one time. If you run a load of laundry, a load of dishes, and your shower at once, you’ll want to add up the flow rate for all of these appliances to see how much hot water you might need in an hour.
The physical size of the equipment is important as well. A standard residential tank water heater can have a capacity anywhere from 20 to 80 gallons. You’ll need to make sure that you have room for this type of installation. A tankless water heater is the most compact option, making it a great choice if you have limited space.
If you’re interested in a new water heater installation
, contact our team members at Del-Air Heating and Air Conditioning now. We can assess your home and needs and help you explore all your options. Our experts will recommend the water heater that’s best for your budget, home size, and daily needs so you get exactly what you’re after.