Tank vs. Tankless Water Heaters

Traditional Water Heaters VS. Tankless Water Heaters: Which One Is Better?

When it’s time to furnish your new home or replace your old water heater, it’s important to consider the cost, efficiency, and lifespan of your new water heater. Considering that heating water consumes as much as 14% of a home’s energy budget, the one you choose will not only have a lasting effect on your quality of life but will have a long-lasting effect on your wallet, as well.

What’s the Difference between a traditional and tankless water heater?

A Traditional water heater or storage tank water heater is the most common type of water heater found in homes. Its components are an insulated tank, typically stores and preheats 30-50 gallons of water, and it’s fueled by electricity, natural gas, propane, heating oil, solar or other energy sources. A pipe emerges from the top to deliver hot water to its destination, bathroom, kitchen, or other sinks.

As you can imagine, to heat a large tank full of water, the heating element gets very hot. When considering this type of water heater, plan on a call to the plumber every several years to replace its heating elements and every 8-12 years to replace the entire water heater.

The tankless or On-demand water heater uses a heat source (electric or gas) to warm up cool water on-demand whenever you need it rather than storing hot water in a tank meaning it will only provide hot water when you need it. When a hot water tap is turned on, cold water travels through a pipe into the unit, and either an electric element or gas burner heats the water. As a result, tankless water heaters deliver a constant supply of hot water on demand.

You don’t have to spend time and energy for a storage tank to fill up with enough hot water. And because hot water isn’t stored in a tank, there is also no heat loss when the water heater isn’t operating, which can save you lots of money and tons of worries. And let’s not forget its more compact, wall-mounted design.

Here are other things to bear in mind:

Consider how many fixtures and appliances need hot water to determine the best size unit for your home. Assume a larger gallons-per-minute (GPM) if you think you require a lot of hot water. Take also into account your water usage. Consider, tankless hot water heaters; they are available at point of use or whole-house sizes.

Fuel Type:

Tankless hot water heaters are available in either electric or gas (propane and natural) models. If you are deciding to have electric, check for voltage and amperage requirements. The gas version will need some electric to operate, but venting will be the bigger concern.


The cost of a tankless water heater is higher than that of a traditional storage water heater, but tankless will serve longer and have lower operating and energy costs, which balance its higher purchase price. Many tankless water heaters have a life span of more than 20 years. In contrast, storage water heaters last only 8-12 years.

If you have a problem with deciding what size, type, and brand of water heater you should use, contact Einstein Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling (888-671-7767 or email us at support@einsteinplumbing.com), we will help decide the water heater that best suits your home. We also offer plumbing, heating & cooling, and sewer & main line services in  BendEugenePortland, and Salem; Washington: BellevueSeattle, SpokaneTacoma, and Vancouver; and Las Vegas, Nevada.

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5 thoughts on “Tank vs. Tankless Water Heaters”

  1. I am a big fan of tankless water heaters, some people do not like them however you have to take into account . I am a member of a heating forum where a a member was saying he had recently installed a Rheem model and as a result was saving 200 dollars a year on his energy bills. He said the site he was used to find his unit was http://tanklessheaterguide.com/

    First is whether you need a gas or electrically powered unit, this will probably come down the the cost of these respective to your specific area, often gas is cheaper. Another advantage of gas units is that they tend to be higher capacity and more powerful, making them more suitable for larger families and big residences.

    However electric units are becoming very advanced now with companies like Stiebel Eltron and EcoSmart really pushing the technology forward to the point where these are now very powerful units that can rival gas models. Other things to take into account are your budget as these units can be expensive and please remember to have your tankless water heater professionally installed to ensure you qualify for the warranty scheme of the manufacturer you opt, usually it will be void otherwise.

    Hope this helps

  2. Tankless water heaters have instant hot technology which makes him best in this segment. The tankless unit is affordable and energy efficient, there is no water storage for it, tankless can give Instant Hot Water Heater whenever needed by the user.I have read all your article and I must say it was a whole pack of best water heater.

  3. If you are planning to purchase tankless water heater tank ,you must read about Tankless water heater from here. It will help you to know about which product is best suited for you. There are lots of reviews are available for you about different products. On Demand Water Heater

  4. I have personally used both the types of water heaters – there is absolutely no doubt that tankless water heaters are more convenient to use. I picked up my tankless heater after checking out about them on hotwaterheater.reviews . They haven’t disappointed me even once in last 3 years!

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