Water heater selection guide

Written by Rebecca Hayes. Posted in Blog

Which type of water heater is right for you?

Heating water accounts for up to 20 percent of the average home’s energy budget. Of course this varies from household to household based on demand. Selecting the right type and size water heater is important to your overall energy budget.

Currently there are 4 major options for consumers to heat their water.

  • Storage tank water heaters in either gas or electric are the most traditional method, and the least expensive to purchase and install.
  • Tankless hot water heaters (instant hot water) only heat the water you use, instead of keeping heated water stored. These are more energy efficient and cost less to run. If space is an issue this may your best option.
  • Hybrid hot water heaters meld an electric storage-tank heater with a heat pump that captures warmth from the air. You may see an annual savings of about 60% over electric-only models. However, if your water heater runs on natural gas, it probably won’t save you much to switch.
  • Solar water heaters supplement an electric heater with heat from the sun’s rays. You could save up to 80% over electric. How much a solar water heater will save you is generally based on where you live. This may be a great option here in sunny California.


  • Tankless water heater size is based on a formula made up of flow rate, number of hot water devices and desired water temperature. It’s better to have a professional help you decide what size to purchase.
  • Storage tank and hybrid water heaters capacity is also based on a formula based on demand and peak usage. Even if you are replacing an existing unit, it’s best to have a professional plumber consult with you about the size you need for maximum comfort.
  • Solar-based systems are based on collection and storage and should be sourced by a professional contractor. A small (50- to 60-gallon) storage tank is usually sufficient for one to two three people. A medium (80-gallon) storage tank works well for three to four people. A large tank is appropriate for four to six people.

The plumbers and technicians at Village Plumbing & Heating in the LA and San Fernando Valley areas of Southern, CA have had thorough training to help you select the right hot water heater for your family. Call us today for a free consultation and quote. 1-800-585-2600.

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/water-heaters/buying-guide.htm EXTKEY=SG72H00&gclid=CIX15ui_hL4CFe9r7AodcTIAyw

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