Gas Vs Electric Water Heaters
by robinsonsplumbingIM | Aug 1, 2019
Electric Water Heater
Which is better, a gas or electric water heater? Plumbers are often asked this question, and the answer is not exactly black and white.
While it is true that gas can be cheaper than electric heaters, other factors may offset your energy savings. Your homes hookups, water requirements, and budget could all affect your water heater installation.
Consider the following when comparing gas vs. electric water heaters:
- Installation cost
- Convenience and usage needs
- Environmental concerns
Your water heater should provide an efficient amount of hot water for your needs and be as energy-efficient as possible. Working with a professional plumber could help you decide which type of water heater may be right for you and your home or commercial space.
Do You Currently Have An Energy
That depends on its age. The older your hot-water heater, the more likely youre losing hot-water heater energy savings. Consumer Reports suggests that if your water heater has a 12-year warranty and youve been using it for 15, its likely time to look for one of the more energy-efficient options to maximize hot-water heater energy savings. The Department of Energy has changed the regulations on hot-water heaters that make todays models more likely to offer savings. Additionally, there are many other energy-efficient appliances that can help you cut down on energy usage.
Another consideration when selecting a water heater is the type of energy it uses. While solar and tankless versions can improve home sustainability, water heaters that use natural gas or electricity are still the most common. But are electric water heaters efficient? What about gas units? Lets take a look at gas vs. electric water heaters to find out.
Heat Pump Water Heaters
Heat pump water heaters arent as common as the units weve mentioned so far. Their function more closely resembles that of an air conditioner than a standard water heater.
Heat pump water heaters pull heat from outside your home and, as the name would suggest, pumps it into the tank. According to the Department of Energy, most heat pumps are geothermal, meaning they pull heat from the ground.
This method of heating water has its advantages. When it works, heat pump water boilers can be as much as 2.5 times more efficient than other methods.
If you live in an area with wild temperature swings, though, there will be periods of the year when your heat pump doesnt work at all. Read more about why this happens here.
To account for this, most people with heat pumps have an on-demand system installed in conjunction. This on-demand system picks up the slack for your heat pump but is an added cost and an additional layer of complication for when it comes to both installing and maintaining your water heating apparatus.
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Can A 50 Gallon Water Heater Be Used
With this water heater tank being powered by natural gas, it can reliably provide your home with more than adequate hot water even if you have a large family. The bigger your family is, the more heating water needs, and this 50 gallon natural gas water heater is up to the challenge.
Is it necessary to have a gas hot water heater?
Households would consider getting a water heater to have a steady supply of hot water. With this water heater tank being powered by natural gas, it can reliably provide your home with more than adequate hot water even if you have a large family.
Signs Your Water Heater May Need To Be Repaired Or Replaced
A water heater failure is a major inconvenience for any home. Most families use hot water every day for showers, washing hands, and washing dishes, not to mention the occasional loads of laundry or various other water-related tasks. Icy cold water isnt used too often out of the tap, and it can be a shock when that is all you get out of your pipes! When your hot water heater is acting up or on the last leg of its life, you need fast solutions before ending up stranded without hot water in your home for days or even weeks.
Sometimes a water heater issue is electrical and sometimes the issue is caused by something else. Below we will explore the most common issues your water heater may be facing and whether it is time to repair or replace your hot water heater.
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Watch Our Video And Youll Learn:
- What kind of water heater you have, and how you will know.
- Different type of water heater units.
- Different types of PVC Venting.
Enjoy the transcript!
Troy: Hello, again. Troy, Champion Plumbing. Im here with Dom. Many of youve probably spoke to her on the phone if youve called us. Were going to explain the differences in water heaters so you know what you have. Go ahead, Dom.
Dom: All right, so the most common question I get asked when were quoting water heaters is what kind do I have, how do I know? There is a sticker on your water heater that has the model number, so its going to be this guy right here. Its going to have your model number, serial. You dont really need that if you dont want to give it to us, but its on there, as well. That will tell us the gallon size, if its tall or short and what kind it is. If you dont have that or you cant find it or if its ripped or broken or something, next well ask you to look on top of your water heater. On this particular unit, this is what we call a gravity vent. This on top is just metal and it uses gravity to vent the exhaust up through your chimney. So, if we ask you if it has a metal or plastic vent, this is what were talking about when we say metal.
Troy: And the venting, sometimes, is black, right, plastic?
Troy: How do they find us?
Troy: There you go. Thats a crash course in water heaters. Give us a call.
How To Drain A Water Heater
Did you know you should drain and clean your tank-style water heater every year? If you dont, you could be drinking milky water.
Whats milky water? Well, it definitely doesnt come from a cow. Milky water is water with hard water minerals, other sediments, and rust. Gross right?At Monkey Wrench Plumbing, we know how to maintain all types of water heaters, and we service them all over the LA area. We want to give you that hard-earned knowledge so you can take charge of your homes plumbing.By the end of this article, you will learn why tank-style water heaters need to be drained, when they need to be drained, what equipment you need, and how to do it.
Quick Answer: How Do You Tell The Difference Between A Gas And Electric Water Heater
Start by looking for an access panel on the side of the water heater. If you remove it and see a blue flame, thats a pilot light, which only gas models have. Connected pipes are also indicators of gas, while an electric water heater will simply have a cord going into the top or side of the unit.
How To Tell If Forced Air Heating Is Gas Or Electric
Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for made purchases.
How would you know whether your home has forced air heating? If you dont know, then you might want to read this article.
Forced air heating is a type of heat pump system that uses electricity to move warm air through ducts into rooms.
This type of heating is commonly found in homes built before 1978.
You can easily identify forced air heating systems by looking at the vents in the walls. These vents should be located near the ceiling.
They usually look like round holes in the wall. The vents are connected to an exhaust fan, which forces warm air out of the house and back into the outside environment.
If you have any doubts about what kind of heating system you have, it is best to hire a professional to inspect your home for you.
A qualified HVAC technician will be able to determine the exact type of heating system you have.
If you live in an older home with forced-air heating, there is a good chance that your home was originally designed to use natural gas as its primary source of heat.
You may not even realize that you have a natural gas furnace until you need to replace it.
However, many newer homes use electric heating instead of natural gas. In these cases, you will find that the vents in the walls are actually electrical outlets.
Can An Electric Water Heater Give Off Gas
Therefore, any fuel-burning appliance in your home is a potential CO source. Electrical heaters and electric water heaters, toasters, etc., do not produce CO under any circumstances. But improperly operating or improperly vented appliances can produce elevated even fatal CO concentrations in your home.
Understanding Water Heater Energy Usage
Most of us turn on the faucet and dont pay much attention to how the hot water arrives until, of course, it doesnt. We tend to take the hot-water heater in our homes for granted.
But ignoring your hot-water heater might mean passing up an opportunity to gain some hot-water heater energy savings. Water heater energy usage makes up about 18% of the average utility bill, after all. You can find hot-water heater energy savings a few different ways. But knowing how to choose a hot-water heater thats energy-efficient from the beginning is the best way to lower your energy costs from the first time that heater kicks on.
Problem : Water Is Leaking From The Unit
Water is supposed to stay inside a water tank. If you see water pooling around the tank or around the pipes leading to the tank, there is definitely an issue that needs immediate addressing. Leaks dont normally stop on their own. If ignored, they can lead to significant property damage as well. Not only will you be facing wet furniture, carpet, walls, and other belongings, but you could have to deal with invasive mold as well. It is best to take care of a hot water tank leak as soon as possible.
There are a few reasons why your water heater may be leaking. One of the reasons could be due to the expansion issues of the tank itself. After countless cycles of heating the water in the tank and the metal expanding each time the water is heated, it may start to form fractures. These fractures may only leak a slight amount at first but can turn disastrous when the pressure becomes too much to handle.
Loose connections to the water tank could be another possibility of why water is leaking around the tank. Sometimes these can be tightened by a homeowner, but other times a professional may need to replace them. A leaking pressure/overflow pipe could indicate an issue with the unit or that the relief valve is malfunctioning. It is best to call a professional to inspect these parts and make sure the unit is working as it should.
Electric Rv Water Heaters
Typically, electric RV water heaters are a combination of gas and electricity. This type of RV water heater can be especially beneficial if you are one that likes to both boondock and hook up at a local campground.
These types of water heaters usually cost a bit more upfront than a gas/propane water heater, however, maintenance and upkeep costs tend to be the same.
Electric and gas hybrid water heaters can heat your water up much more quickly than a typical gas/propane RV water heater. This is because you can use the electric and gas elements at the same time. If you are only using the electric feature, your water will take longer to heat up than a gas RV water heater.
Electric water heaters will draw from your battery energy in order to run, so its usually best to be hooked up to an electric source when using your electric RV water heater. Many campgrounds have included electricity.
Inside A Water Heater
Let’s take a quick look at the components that work together in your water heater to make your morning shower so satisfying:
Now, let’s see how all these parts work together to provide you with hot water.
If your electric water heater is taking longer to bring water to temperature than it used to, the bottom heating element inside the tank may have burned out. It may also be time to use your tank’s drain valve to remove accumulated sediment.
How Do I Know If My Heating Is Gas Or Electric
Most houses these days rely on forced hot air to warm their spaces. But their heating sources arent always the same. Some forced air systems use gas furnaces while others use electric furnaces. There are many reasons why someone would choose one over the other and it is important to know which heating system you have in your own home.
Gas heaters are cheaper to run and work faster and more efficiently. However, electric heaters are cheaper to install, last longer, and are safer than gas furnaces. But ultimately, the choice comes down to availability. If natural gas isnt widely available in your area, electric may be the way to go.
But how do you know if your heating is gas or electric? Follow this guide to find out which kind of furnace your home has.
Check The Water Heaters Pilot Light If You Have A Gas
Gas-powered water heaters have a different mechanism for heating the water. These appliances use methane or natural gas to operate a burner that heats the water, similar to a stove heating a water-filled kettle.
Hence, one way to tell if gas hot water heater is on is by looking at the pilot light. The hot water tank has a small viewing window for checking the pilot light. You can look through the opening to see if the pilot light is on or not.
Some water heaters have an open window, causing gusts of wind to snuff out the pilot light flame. You can check your users guide to see how to re-ignite the pilot light.
Other problems can also cause the pilot light to stay off. Assessing for gas leaks should help you decide whether to call a professional or not.
What Does A Electric Water Heater Look Like
Electric water heaters look similar to their gas-fueled cousins. They both use an insulated storage tank jacket made of steel, with insulation between the storage tank and the tank jacket to reduce heat loss of the heated water. The main difference between electric and gas water heaters is the heat source.
Functions Of An Electric Vs Gas Water Heater
Along with being built differently, the functionality you get with an electric vs a gas hot water heater varies as well:
- Electric water heaters are more expensive to install, and in most cases, gas water heaters will be more cost effective. Even still they are less efficient than their electric counterparts.
- The cost you will pay for a gas water heater on a monthly basis depends in part on the cost of gas or propane at the time.
- During a power outage, a gas hot water heater can continue to function while an electric model will be out for the duration of the outage.
Take the time to choose the right hot water heater for your home, ensuring you have the best model for your situation. If you are looking for a water heater replacement before the change in regulation, whether gas or electric, call Rooter Master Plumbing Services: 800-380-0336
Why You Need To Drain A Water Heater
Tank-style water heaters need maintenance because of drumroll, please…hard water. Hard water is water with large amounts of dissolved calcium and magnesium in it. This hard water creates a scale that does the following to your water heater:
It eats through and rusts the metal
Reduces its efficiency
To stop all of that from happening, you or a plumber can drain your tank-style water heater. But, how do you know if you have hard water? Well, if you live in the US, you have naturally occurring hard water. But dont just take our word for it. You can easily test your water with a water hardness test.
Gas Water Heater Or Electric: Factors To Consider
Lets look at each type of water heater individually to establish an understanding of their characteristics before we compare them head-to-head.
In the interest of transparency, well note that our Phoenix water heaters include both electric and gas-powered units. In other words, we dont have a preference were more interested in helping you decide which unit is truly right for your home.
Gas Vs Electric Water Heater Which Is Right For You
Your water demands and your home or businesss hookups play a vital role in choosing the right water heater for you.
There are benefits to both gas and electric water heaters. While gas water heaters may cost less to operate, they can be more expensive to install. Electric water heaters could potentially have a higher operating cost, but installation likely costs less.
Tankless water heaters, heat pump systems, and conventional storage tanks should all be taken into consideration, too. With so many factors in determining your water heater needs, it is suggested that you rely on the expertise of Robinsons Plumbing Service before making an equipment decision.