How to Choose a Water Heater for Your San Francisco Bay Area Home in 2022
There are a lot of things to consider when choosing a water heater for your home. That’s why Chosen Rooter and Plumbing is here to help make this process easier for you. We know that you’ll need to consider your needs, your household size, and the future when making this decision. So here are some helpful tips from our experts on how to choose a water heater for your San Francisco Bay Area home. Happy heater hunting!
What should you consider?
Energy is a key factor. If finding the right water heater is your goal, then Energy Factor (EF) can unlock efficiency and savings for you. Energy factor shows how much water is produced by a water heater per unit of fuel that’s used in a day. Look for a higher energy factor to determine the most efficient water heater for your home. Just remember to keep the fuel source of the water heater in mind. It takes about three times as much energy to produce a unit of electricity as it does to produce a unit of gas. So, the best way to choose an energy factor when buying a water heater is to compare the EF of water heaters that use the same fuel source.
You may also be thinking about what the climate will look like in the future. Did you know that although natural gas is more efficient because it only requires 1/3 of the energy that an electrical heater needs to deliver, it also leaves significantly larger carbon and methane footprints in the process? Data from 2018 shows that residential and commercial buildings account for more than 40 percent of San Francisco’s total greenhouse gas emissions, with the burning of natural gas responsible for most of that [insert research link here: 2018_sfe_ee_climate_at_a_glance.pdf (sfenvironment.org) may be as HTML code for “natural gas” when clicked on]. That leads the San Francisco Board of Supervisors to unanimously vote on a natural gas ban for new buildings as of November 2020. This move forward means that stoves, furnaces, and water heaters in new residential and commercial buildings in San Francisco will no longer burn natural gas but will use electricity instead. Powering an electrical water heater is a great way to help California reach its future target of carbon neutrality by 2045.
After you decide which fuel source is best for your San Francisco Bay Area home, it’s time to choose between a storage tank and a tankless model. Think about what size tank you’ll need. This will depend on the size of your household and how many gallons of water are used at peak times.
Water heaters with a tank are the traditional type. Storage tank water heaters require little maintenance and are less expensive than tankless water heaters. They usually hold and keep between 40 and 80 gallons of hot water heated so that it’s available when needed. On the downside, they use more energy. If you don’t use that stored hot water, it cools down and must be continually reheated. On the upside, they are designed for the high demand output that’s needed for large families exceeding a small single-family household.
Tankless water heaters are also called instantaneous or on-demand water heaters. They require less space because there’s no tank, which makes them great for smaller single-family households. They use a coil system that heats the water as needed and this saves on energy bills. Tankless gas water heaters and electric tankless water heaters are more expensive upfront, but you’ll save in the long run. They’re extremely energy efficient since they only produce hot water when needed. Keep in mind that they may require you to upgrade your electrical systems, or you may need to buy more than one if you have a larger home.
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Making a decision
We hope this was helpful! We’re available to answer any questions you may have about how to choose the right water heater for your San Francisco Bay Area home. Or if you’re ready to install a water heater, Chosen Rooter and Plumbing can schedule a time that’s convenient for you. We service homes in the San Francisco area and surrounding cities like Daly City, South San Francisco, San Bruno, Millbrae, Burlingame, Hillsborough, San Mateo, and Foster City.