Advanced Plumbing and Rooter Service

316 Peggy Drive
Liberty Hill, TX 78642

Phone: (512) 590-4232

License RMP #42387

white tankless water heater on bathroom wall


Water heaters are modern-day comforts that offer warmth and convenience in the form of deceptively compact units. Traditional gas and water heaters work by storing the water in a tank while simultaneously keeping the heat in. Unfortunately, this uses up quite a bit of energy as long as the water stays in the tank. Ergo, tankless water heaters seek to remedy this by only heating the water when necessary.

But do they actually work, and are they actually more energy-efficient? Here’s what you need to know:

How Does it Work?

Unlike traditional heaters, tankless water heaters don’t store hot water. The process is only triggered once the water starts flowing. Cold water travels through a pipe towards the heater. From there, a gas burner turns the temperature up. As the water moves through the unit, it heats up, effectively producing a flow of hot water.

Propane or natural gas can also be used to heat the water using an electrically-powered element.

It’s important to note, however, that a tankless water heater takes longer to heat and produce water, as it only starts heating once the water starts to flow.

Do Tankless Water Heaters Work Without Electricity?

Tankless water heaters do not work without electricity. Even natural gas and propane-powered tankless water heaters need an electrical supply to function, as they depend on a digital remote or PC board to sense the flow rate of the water. They also need sensors to activate the heating process and keep up the heat as long as the water keeps running to produce consistent hot water flow.

Thankfully, many tankless water heaters use a standard power outlet. To guard against potential power surges or unexpected system shutdown during storms and strong winds, make sure to hook your water heater system up to a battery pack or alternate power source.

Can a Tankless Water Heater Operate During Power Outages?

If power outages are quite common in your area, contact your local plumber to discuss your options. You may have to combine other water heater systems that don’t require electricity with your tankless water system, just to ensure the system doesn’t completely shut down. Solar water heaters are a prime example of water systems that can function without a source of power.

Alternatively, the computer system of a tankless water heater system can be operated using a battery backup. It will be enough to keep propane-powered tanks running for some time even if there is no electricity.

Difference Between a Storage Tank and Tankless Water Heater

Tank water heaters operate by storing and heating water all the time, while tankless water heaters only heat water as needed. Tank heaters also happen to have a limited water supply. Meanwhile, tankless water heaters can continuously supply hot water without running out.

Final Thoughts on Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters can cost a little more than storage heaters, but they’re a considerably great investment for your home. In the long run, their energy efficiency can even save you more money.

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