Energy Efficient Water Heaters

By: Bob Willoughby

In this article I will cover energy efficient water heaters. We will nottalk about the energy efficient tankless water heaters because they are coveredin detail in a previous article. Go to our web site to see it.

Energy efficiency is a hot topic right now and new technologies are beingintroduced everyday. We recommend that you do not wait until you need a newwater heater to do your research. You may find yourself buying what ever isavailable, instead of what is best! This is not a good plan since your hotwater heater is the biggest waste of your energy costs. So do your researchnow, and double check it just when you are ready to purchase.

Consumers have a tendency to purchase their heater based on size. Actuallythe First Hour Rating (FHR) is more important to consider. The FHR representsthe amount of hot water that the unit will deliver during a busy hour. Estimateyour family’s usage during the peak hour usage and find a unit with a FHR thatwill cover it.

The most energy efficient water heaters are generally gas fired. Electricresistance is an expensive way to generate heat and not as environmentallyfriendly. Before you make the final decision, check with your utility companyto see if they have any incentives that may make electricity more attractive.

Besides the standard gas and electric energy efficient water heaters thereis the indirect water heater. This type is only for consumers who have aboiler. It uses your boiler as its heat source. This type of system eliminatesa lot of the heat loss through the flue, as associated with the gas firedheaters.

The next type is a heat pump water heater or desuperheater.? With thistype the electric is used to move the heat from one place to another instead ofactually creating it. The heat source comes from the heat in the outside air orthe area where the unit is located. This type is not very common and harder tofind.

Solar water heaters use the sun to heat your water. They are very expensiveand hard to calculate the cost because there are so many factors that affectit. These would include the amount of sun, where you live, which way your roofis facing and the amount of hot water that you use. If everything is rightthough they offer a virtually cost free hot water from a renewable energy.Seems like solar power was hot, then cold and now it seems to be making acomeback. There seem to be many opinions out there for and against solar power.The drawback is that you must have some type of backup system for when there isno sun.

So the bottom line is that this is a very big decision. Make sure that youuse every available resource to do your research before you spend your hardearned money. If you make a mistake, you will be paying for it for a long time!

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