Tankless Water Heater FAQ

Below is a list of frequently asked questions (FAQ) we receive from readers about tankless water heaters

What is a tankless water heater?

Conventional water heater has a holding tank, typically 40-50 gallons, which holds water which has been heated to the desired temperature.  A tankless is exactly what the name implies there is no storage tank to hold the hot water.


How does a tankless water heater work?

When there is a call for hot water (turn on the shower) the tankless water heater turns on and heats the water to the desired temperature. Once the shower has been turned off, the tankless is shut off.  For a more in depth on how a tankless works click here.


Is a tankless more energy efficient then a traditional hot water heater?

Yes. A standard tank water heater keeps the water in a storage hot all times. Energy is used to keep the water hot even when there is no demand for hot water. This is know as standby heat loss. A tankless water heater only runs when there is a call for hot water. A tankless does not have standby heat loss. Typically, in Denver you can expect a 20%-30% energy savings when using a tankless virus a conventional hot water heater.


How much does a tankless water heater cost?

Replacing a tank water heater with a tankless water heater is about 2x -3x times more.  Most of the cost is in the installation. The units themselves do cost more, but installing new venting, maybe a larger gas line, and running electric adds up. There are many Denver plumbers that can provide you with an estimate.


Can install my new tankless in the same place as my old hot water heater?

Sort of. All most all tankless water heaters need to be mounted on a wall. So it will be in the same general area of your old water heater.


Can I use a tankless water heater with hard water?

Yes. Depending on the unit you buy, you might need to have the unit serviced more frequently to have the lime flushed out.


Can I install my on tankless hot water heater?

Yes, but we highly recommend that you have a licensed plumber install a new unit. There are many variables you need to consider when installing a unit.  Also, you might void the manufacture’s warranty if you install it.


Do they make tankless to run on liquid propane (LP)?

Yes most manufactures make units to burn LP or natural gas.


Do they make electric tankless water heaters?

Yes they do. There are a few manufactures that make electric models.


Why do I need electricity for my gas fired tankless water heater?

Most tankless require to be plugged into a wall outlet. The power is need to run the micro computers. Also, some units do not have a standing pilot light and use electricity to ignite the gas. Finally, some units have a fan to eject the exhaust gas.


My old water heater ruptured and flooded my basement. Can this happen with a tankless?No. There is holding tank. However, there is a small chance that the tankless could leak and left unchecked could cause damage. We recommend shutting the water off to your house if you are going be gone for an extend amount of time.