Meet Tom Geramonos, our plumbing field manager at ServiceOne! This week, Tom wants to explain why hybrid water heaters are a game-changer.
There is nothing more aggravating than wanting to take a relaxing hot shower, turning your shower on, and realizing that you have NO HOT WATER! You do not realize how much you LOVE your HOT WATER until you DO NOT have HOT WATER! Your water heater might not be something you think about every day, but most of us love and often take for granted the comfort we get from our hot water. Once you are reminded how much you love your water heater, you want the replacement process to be as quick and painless as possible.
If your existing water heater is more than 10 years old, it needs replacing! Call your favorite plumbers at ServiceOne Air Conditioning and Plumbing. We will provide you with top notch service as well as fast, amazing, and efficient service. We will provide you with multiple replacement options so you can see all the benefits available to you. WE OFFER AMAZING FINANCING OPPORTUNITIES! We will go over the size and fuel type of your water heater and then start talking about the efficiency of these options. When we talk about efficiency, we should also talk about the cost which is what is really going to make a difference in your pocket at the end of the day.
What is the Efficiency Rating?
If you look at any water heater, you will see a sticker on it that says “Energy Guide.” This sticker will provide you with the annual estimated operating cost for that unit, given on a scale. Where your unit’s rating ends up on that scale is going to tell you how energy efficient it is compared to other models. If you are shopping for a new water heater and want to make comparisons, you can often look up these ratings on the manufacturer’s website. When you find a unit that has a figure on the lower end of the scale, you may want to consider upgrading to one with a higher number because that means that it will use less energy. These ratings can be found at: www.ahridirectory.org
Old vs. New Water Heaters and Efficiency
Traditional water heaters that are more than 15 years old are likely to be much less efficient than new ones. A tank-type water heater has a useful life of about 10 to 15 years, and the unit’s efficiency is going to decline with time. This means that it is costing you more per month to heat the water in your home, often so much so that you would be better off replacing your water heater to start getting some cost savings.
One of the things that can reduce the efficiency of a traditional water heater is sediment buildup. Hard water often contains sediments like iron, calcium carbonate, sand, magnesium, and grit. This sediment can settle at the bottom of your tank over time and reduce its efficiency. That same sediment can creep into the mechanics of your unit and weaken the tank’s structure, both of which are likely to cause problems.
You may also be facing efficiency issues because your old tank simply doesn’t suit your family’s needs, causing it to work too hard. If you have a 40-gallon tank that is trying to serve a family of six people, everyone is going to suffer. When your tank is not big enough, no matter how old it is, it is time to think about an upgrade.
What is the difference in efficiency between electric water heaters and hybrid water heaters?
Standard Electric Tank:
Typically, electric tanks come with an EF rating of roughly 0.90%. While this rating is comparable to a tankless system in some ways, there are some subtle differences. This is not an indicator that you will get the same cost savings that you will a tankless water heater powered by gas. With this type of tank, heat is transferred to your water through several elements that are made “red hot.”
High-Efficiency Electric Tank:
This type of tank is like a standard tank, but it has better insulation. The EF rating on it can be as high as .94-.95%, so it can save you another $10-$15 per year in utility costs. Not a huge difference.
Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater:
THIS IS THE GAME-CHANGER! The water heater you have been waiting for. The tank that is going reduce your water heating costs by up to $250-$300 per year or more. How does that work? Remember that the Efficiency Factor is all about energy inputted vs. energy converted to heat for your water. A hybrid heat pump water heater preheats your home’s water using ambient air temperature, so the amount of electricity used to heat your water is much lower in proportion to the amount of hot water you get. Some utility companies and other entities like to support this technology with rebates, so for some, a switch to a heat pump water heater is a no-brainer.
Call ServiceOne Air Conditioning and Plumbing, and we’ll help you choose the water heater that’s right for you.