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Are Instant Hot Water Heaters Worth It?

A running hot shower

Are Instant Hot Water Heaters Worth It?

If you currently have a storage tank hot water system and want to replace it, chances are an instant hot water heater is in the mix. The low emission water heater is a preferred option at a time when energy efficiency has never been more important. 

Now, if you’re worried about a lack of knowledge surrounding instant hot water heaters, it’s okay. Starting with the basics, they are:

  • Referred to as instantaneous or continuous flow hot water systems
  • Small and easily installed on walls
  • Economical, using gas to heat water with an electric ignition
  • Versatile, delivering between 10-32 litres of water per minute depending on the model

Still sitting on the fence despite the brief introduction? Let’s dig in more. You can only know whether something is worth purchasing if you have a thorough understanding. That’s why Mr Emergency is ready to run through the key features of instantaneous hot water so you can sit back and enjoy an instant hot shower!

The Pros and Cons of Instant hot Water Heaters

Image of Instant Hot Water heaters on the roof of an apartment building

Pro: Instant Hot Water Supply

As the name suggests, hot water is delivered to your home instantly. There are no delays once a certain amount of how water is used, unlike storage tanks. For example, a tank holding 250 litres could run out of hot water following successive showers in a busy home. However, an instant hot water system will continue to deliver a fresh supply on demand.

Therefore, when you turn on a hot water tap, hot water endlessly flows. There’s no limited supply that can be drained and needs to be reheated and replenished. Back-to-back showers for the kids will be no problem at all.

Con: Temperature Inconsistencies

Unfortunately, despite the unlimited flow, there are some temperature and supply inconsistencies. Instant hot water systems can provide between 10-32 litres of hot water per minute. 

In a large house with multiple bathrooms, one lone unit might not be able to cater for simultaneous showers. If it’s too small there will be temperature fluctuations. The larger systems that deliver 26-32 litres of hot water per minute are less likely to have these problems. Their increased output can cope with higher demands. Meanwhile an additional unit could be the perfect solution if you have an existing smaller capacity water heater, such as a 16 litre unit.

Pro: Longer Lifespan

Instant hot water heaters deliver longevity and reliability. When paired with appropriate maintenance you can even expect a system to last for 20+ years.

Storage tanks have a more finite lifespan of up to 12 years. Continuous water storage means the insides corrode and rust despite the best efforts of a sacrificial anode. You avoid those concerns with an instantaneous hot water system.

Internal parts are easily replaceable, and the risk of catastrophic failure is greatly reduced. There’s no chance of a giant water leak or water damage. You have more control over any faults and a licensed technician can quickly address any concerns.

Woman running a hot bath in a spacious bathroom

Con: High Upfront Costs

Longevity is contrasted by increased upfront costs. The technology involved with an instantaneous hot water system means you will pay more upon purchase. Therefore, you want to take a look at the ongoing costs to help balance out any expenses.

For example, an electric continuous flow system installed at a home with solar power will cost next-to-nothing to run. Likewise, a gas continuous flow unit would provide reduced costs compared to an electric storage tank. All of these considerations will help you work out whether higher upfront costs are worth it.

Pro: Reduced Running Costs

As touched on previously, there are significantly reduced running costs. For example, an electric storage tank could cost a family of four over $900 per year. An efficient instant gas system would cost closer to $250 annually.

With the ability to save thousands of dollars within a few years you can enjoy instant benefits from instant water heaters. Just keep in mind that running costs will be reliant on local utility prices, supply charges and fluctuations in pricing. 

Pro: Energy Efficient

If you’re wondering whether an instant hot water heater is worth it, this could be the decisive factor. All gas instantaneous hot water systems have to meet Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS). They are regulated and clearly marked with an Energy Rating label. 

A gas system can produce as much as a third of the carbon emissions an electric system does. And since electric water heaters do not have to come with energy star ratings it is harder to make informed decisions. Instant gas systems have the relevant information for a clear and trustworthy purchase. So not only can you save money, but your reduced greenhouse emissions benefit the environment. 

Instantaneous Hot Water: In Conclusion

Ultimately the decision rests on your shoulders. Thankfully, Mr Emergency is always here to help. Our hot water experts are happy to run through all the pros and cons to determine whether this unit is right for your home. We will help you achieve the perfect outcome! Call now to book your local Mr Emergency technician.

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