Question? Just ask us!
Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
InspectAPedia ® Home
AGE of WATER HEATERS
ALTERNATIVE HOT WATER SOURCES
ANODES & DIP TUBES on WATER HEATERS
ANTI SCALD VALVES
APPLIANCE EFFICIENCY RATINGS
AQUASTAT CONTROL Functions
BACKDRAFTING HEATING EQUIPMENT
BACKFLOW PREVENTER, HEATER WATER FEEDER
CARBON MONOXIDE - CO
CHECK VALVES, WATER SUPPLY
CLOGGED SUPPLY PIPING
CROSS CONNECTIONS, PLUMBING
DEBRIS in WATER SUPPLY, Water Heater
DRAIN a WATER HEATER TANK
ELECTRIC WATER HEATERS
FLOODED WATER HEATER REPAIR
FREEZE-PROOF A BUILDING
GALVANIC SCALE & METAL CORROSION
GAS BURNER Flame & Noise Defects
GAS FIRED WATER HEATERS
GAS PIPING, VALVES, CONTROLS
HEATING COST SAVINGS METHODS
HOT WATER SUPPLY
HOT WATER IMPROVEMENTS
HOT WATER DELIVERY SPEED UP
HOT WATER EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT
HOT WATER PRESSURE EXPANSION RATE
HOT WATER PRESSURE LOSS
HOT WATER PROBLEM DIAGNOSIS
HOT WATER QUANTITY IMPROVEMENT
HYDROGEN SULFIDE GAS
INDIRECT FIRED WATER HEATERS
MANUALS & PARTS GUIDES - HVAC
MIXING / ANTI-SCALD VALVES
NO HEAT - NO HOT WATER: HEATER DIAGNOSIS
NOISE, WATER HEATER
ODORS IN WATER
PIPING IN buildings, Clogs Leaks Types
RELIEF VALVE LEAKS
RELIEF VALVES - Water Heaters
SCALE REMOVAL, WATER HEATERS
SEWER GAS ODORS
SOLAR HOT WATER HEATERS
TANKLESS WATER HEATERS
THERMAL EXPANSION of HOT WATER
THERMOSTATS, WATER HEATER
TIMERS for ELECTRIC WATER HEATERS
WATER HEATER ALTERNATIVES
WATER HEATER ANODES, DIP TUBES
WATER HEATER AIR INLET
WATER HEATER DEBRIS FLUSH
WATER HEATER DRAIN PROCEDURE
WATER HEATER EFFICIENCY
WATER HEATER FLUSH PROCEDURE
WATER HEATER NOISES
WATER HEATER PROBLEM DIAGNOSIS
WATER HEATER PROPERTIES
WATER HEATER SCALE
WATER HEATER SAFETY
WATER HEATERS for HOME HEATING USE?
WATER ODORS, CAUSE CURE
WATER PIPES, Clogs Leaks Types
WATER PRESSURE TOO HIGH: DANGERS
WATER PRESSURE LOSS DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
WATER QUANTITY IMPROVEMENT
WATER SOFTENERS & CONDITIONERS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
Water heater energy efficiency comparisons: this article describes and compares the energy efficiency or operating costs of different types of water heater systems. We list methods for improving water heater efficiency and hot water usage, the efficiency of how we use hot water, and how to reduce the contribution of hot water heating cost to the total building energy bill.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2013 InspectAPedia.com, All Rights Reserved.
A Quick Comparison of Water Heater Types by Efficiency
By 2010, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, water heater efficiencies could be organized and described by an energy efficiency factor. Water heater types are listed below in order of overall energy efficiency as follows:
But, currently (2012) unless your electric utility company is offering preferential electricity rates (such as off-peak energy use or an "all electric home" discount), even though modern electric water heaters have a higher efficiency factor than oil or gas fired water heaters, don't assume that an electric water heater is the most sound environmental choice.
These energy efficiency factor ratings do not include variations in life expectancy of the water heater, but ACEEE rated all of the water heaters at an expected 13-year life except oil-fired that they rated at 8 years.
The shorter life of the oil fired equipment, combined with its lower EF (if these are accurate estimates) mean that the per-year operating cost of oil fired water heating equipment is more than its competitors. These ratings also do not compare BTUH input rates of the different equipment and thus don't say anything about the hot water recovery rate.
Also, the purchase and install costs of these different types of water heating systems vary widely, from a low of $820. for a typical high-efficiency electric storage type (tank) water heater, to $4,800. for a solar water heater with electric backup. Costs do not include installation labor nor the effect of financial incentives, to this cost for solar hot water is over-stated.
Often efficiency improvements in hot water use (or production) include include recommendations for installing restrictions on the flow rate of hot water in a building (flow restrictors or restrictors combined with an anti-scald valve), either right at the fixtures, or at the water heating device. You are trading off total flow rate for reduced water heating costs.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about water heater efficiency & efficiency improvements
Questions & answers or comments about the efficiency ratings of different water heating methods & how to improve water heating efficiency or reduce hot water heating costs.
Ask a Question or Enter Search Terms in the InspectApedia search box just below.
Technical Reviewers & References
Related Topics, found near the top of this page suggest articles closely related to this one.