A Standard vs High-Efficiency Hot Water Tank


A Standard vs High-Efficiency Hot Water Tank

Replacing your hot water tank is a decision you should not make lightly. The ever-changing technology of today's water heaters makes choosing one more difficult. Examining the pros and cons of each type will help you choose the right system for your home.

What Are the Ratings?

There are two very important rating systems a homeowner should pay close attention when deciding on a hot water tank. The first is the energy factor "EF" which tells you how efficient the unit is. The second is its first-hour recovery time for tanked systems or flow rate when you are talking about a tankless system.

Understanding the EF ratings is easy with the higher the numbered units the most efficient. The first-hour recovery time for tanked systems tells you how much hot water it will produce in its first hour. The flow rate for tankless systems indicates just how many gallons of hot water it will produce in usually 2- or 5-minute intervals. Both the EF and flow rates are important information you should consider before purchasing a hot water tank and usually depends on the number of people using the system.

Hybrid Electric Heat-Pump System

Heat pumps are remarkable systems used to produce hot water as well as heat and cool your home. The technology transfers heat from the surrounding air to your hot water tank, which will save energy costs.


  • The lowest operation cost of any system means the most energy savings to you.


  • The initial cost is far larger than conventional systems.
  • Often available in only taller sizes, it may require plumbing modification during install and takes a more space.
  • The heat pump is basically a compressor, which can produce more noise than other systems.
  • Usually requires a larger area as it needs approximately 1000 square feet of surrounding air to function properly.

Conventional Water Heaters

Conventional water heaters, both gas and electric, have been around for decades. Although they are extremely dependable systems, it comes at a cost, as they are the least efficient.


  • Upfront costs are smaller than higher tech systems.
  • They are easy to install.
  • They are cost effective as there are no pumps, fans or other exotic parts to replace.


  • Use the most energy.

Tankless Water Heaters

A tankless water heater, sometimes referred to as an on-demand hot water system, produces hot water as you need it. Since there is no storage tank, the system does not have to maintain the water temperature 24-hours a day. This reduces energy consumption, which can translate into energy savings for you.


  • It never runs out of hot water.
  • It can save between 30 and 50 percent in energy costs.
  • No tank means a compact size.


  • Installation can involve major plumbing modifications.
  • Annual flushing is necessary to remove scale and maintain efficiency.

For answers to your questions, contact The Pink Plumber today.

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