Whether in the form of a surprise cold shower or unexpected basement leak, the time will come when your hot water heater needs to be replaced. Sometimes the cost of repair weighed against the replacement cost makes your decision for you. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, there are a number of factors you should consider before selecting a new water heater.
Types of Water Heaters
Before purchasing, you should know that there are primarily five types of water heaters: conventional storage, demand, heat pump, solar, tankless/indirect. Speak with Geisel to determine which type is right for you.
Go Beyond Capacity
Most heaters are categorized on a capacity basis. However, it’s important to look at the first-hour rating, or FHR, because it indicates how much hot water you can expect in an hour of use. To determine how much water you need, evaluate the busiest hour of day in your household. You can use estimates such as 20 gallons for a 10-minute shower (or a load of laundry), four gallons for washing your face, two gallons for shaving and 10 gallons for using the dishwasher. Once you have arrived at your total, ensure that the FHR number (located on the Energy Guide label) at least meets this figure.
Choose a Long Warranty
In addition to thicker insulation and more durability, most longer-warranty heaters have better heat transfer and bigger burners for faster water heating.
Thanks to being held to higher efficiency standards mandated by the federal government, newer heaters contain more insulation, which can be bulkier than older models. Therefore, if you’re replacing a heater in a tight, small space, measure the new model along with its location, so you’ll know it’ll fit.
In a challenging economy, cost is an important consideration for most people. However, before you buy the cheapest water heater, take some time to do some research. You might find that a model that costs more upfront actually has lower operating costs.
If you are considering purchasing a new water heater, Geisel Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing is happy to answer questions or offer expert advice.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information, click here to download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Geisel Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing services Western Cleveland. To get started, check out our website.