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Traditional vs. Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless vs. traditional water heater

You may be wondering if a tankless water heater is in your family’s future. Perhaps you’re tired of lukewarm showers, especially if you share a home with teenagers who forget there are other people in the house. Maybe you have limited storage in your home or condo and want to explore a space-saving tankless water heater. Regardless of your motivation, Michael’s Plumbing of Central Florida is your source for water heaters in Orlando and central Florida.

Tankless water heaters and their traditional counterparts have advantages and disadvantages, including storage space, ease of use, energy costs, repair costs, and longevity. Read on to see which water heater is right for you and your family.

What’s the difference?

A traditional water heater is likely what you grew up with in your basement or laundry area. Water is heated with gas or electricity and stored in an insulated tank that typically holds between 30 and 50 gallons of water at your desired temperature. When you need hot water, it’s sent directly to your kitchen, bathroom, or laundry room.

A tankless water heater is also known as an “on-demand” water heater. That’s because water isn’t heated until you need it. A tankless water heater relies on high-powered burners to heat water as required rapidly. They, too, tend to run on gas or electricity.

Initial costs

Traditional water heaters are easier on your wallet, at least initially. Unlike the more complex tankless water heaters, traditional water heaters are simple and usually don’t incur high repair costs. However, traditional water heaters may result in higher utility bills. They also may require specific retrofitting during installation, which adds more expenses to the bottom line. Tankless water heaters can cost more than twice as much as traditional water heaters.

Energy efficiency and lifespan

Tankless water heaters come ahead in energy efficiency comparisons, offering more than 20% more energy efficiency than the traditional models. They also have a life expectancy of more than 20 years, according to, compared to about 10-15 years for traditional storage models.

Which one is best for your family?

You want a water heater that provides hot water for all your family’s needs, including washing, bathing, or cooking. Traditional water heaters will have 30 to 50 gallons of hot water waiting for you when you step into the shower, while the tankless water heaters will heat as you go. However, tankless water heaters may not sustain more than one hot water activity at a time. So, if you’re taking a shower while your spouse is washing a load of laundry, you may find your shower is a little chilly. On the other hand, a traditional water heater usually supports about three hot showers in a row. If you’re fourth in line, you may face a cold reality.

If you are thinking of going tankless, Michael’s Plumbing of Central Florida can help you with this critical decision. We can cover all your hot water needs, including installing or repairing any water heater. Please schedule an appointment now or call us at (407) 219-9772.

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