What Water Heater Is Best?

Water Heater Buying Guide

In a recent test, Consumer Reports evaluated six electric and gas whole-house tankless water heaters from companies like Bosch, Navien, Noritz, Rheem, Rinnai, Tempra, and Trutankless, among others.A tanked water heater from Rheem, one that is gas and one that is electric, as well as an electric heat pump water heater from Rheem, which is a variant on a tanked water heater, were all used to compare the outcomes.Based on the results of an industry-standard ″heavy usage″ test, we compared the performance of natural gas and electric tankless water heaters to that of their conventional tank equivalents.The test was conducted using a high draw pattern, which equated to the use of 84 gallons of water per day.

The daily equivalent of taking many showers, running the dishwasher, washing one load of clothes, and repeatedly turning the tap on and off.Temperatures at the intake for gas models were 58° F, while temperatures at the outlet for electric models were 74° F (plus or minus 2° F).The intended outlet temperature was 120° F, and the test employed these temperatures.

The tankless water heaters performed so similarly to one another that we calculated an average of the results from each batch, both gas and electric, and compared that score to the performance of the conventional gas and electric storage tanks, as well as the performance of the electric heat pump model, to determine the winner.As a result, we do not have model-level ratings for refrigerators, as we do for other major appliances.We computed the payback period for both new and replacement installations based on the purchase price, yearly energy cost, and an estimate of the cost of installation, among other factors.Tankless units that were installed in lieu of an existing storage tank had a longer payback period than those installed during new construction.

For further information, see our reviews of gas and electric water heaters.

Best water heaters 2022

  1. Home
  2. Best-picks

(Image courtesy of Getty) Having one of the top water heaters will allow you to go on with your day without having to worry.It’s critical to invest in a dependable water heater, especially as we approach the cooler months.You’ll want your water heater to be as energy-efficient as possible, whether it’s the finest electric water heater or the best gas water heater.When it comes to selecting one of the greatest water heaters, the first question that will arise is whether to go with gas or electric.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages.While a gas water heater will continue to operate in the case of a power loss, they are more expensive to purchase up front.Even while electric water heaters are initially less expensive, the energy costs associated with running them are likely to be higher in the long run than with gas water heaters.

Rheem water heaters are also equipped with smart capabilities that allow you to monitor your water heater’s temperature from your smartphone.While choosing the best electric water heater or gas water heater, one of the most important design considerations to consider is the capacity of the water heater you’re considering.An Energy Star accreditation as well as a fantastic guarantee are also included as additional benefits.If you don’t have a lot of extra room, you might want to check at the best tankless water heaters as an alternative.

1. Rheem Gladiator Water Heater: Best overall water heater  

The Rheem water heater is a durable and reliable water heater that has a fantastic 12-year warranty.


Yes, it is Energy Star certified. Warranty period is 12 years.

Reasons to buy

+ Low-emissions burner that is environmentally friendly+ It has EcoNet capability Plus It is covered by a 12-year warranty.

Reasons to avoid

– Not suitable for households with more than 4 occupants.In terms of water heaters, Rheem is an excellent, mid-level brand that isn’t too pricey.Its reputation as a manufacturer of long-lasting, dependable water heaters makes it an excellent choice for most households.The firm provides water heaters in a variety of types, including gas, electric, tankless, solar, and hybrid.

In order to create our guide, we looked at the Rheem Gladiator water heater as a starting point.With an Energy Star rating and a 12-year guarantee, this gas water heater is an excellent choice.The EcoNet Wi-Fi Kit and smartphone app that comes with it allow you to operate and monitor it remotely.

Additionally, if there is a leak or other issues, this EcoNet system may give you notifications.In order to safeguard you, the gadget immediately shuts down if a buildup of potentially flammable vapor occurs.You won’t have to worry about replacing or cleaning a filter, though, because this machine is designed to work without one entirely.See our Rheem Gladiator 50-Gallon review for more information.

2. Westinghouse Lifetime Electric Water Heater: Best water heater warranty  

Set to last a lifetime, the Westinghouse Electric Water Heater will save you money in the long run.


The product is not Energy Star certified. The warranty is for life.

Reasons to buy

+It’s built to last a lifetime +Large 80-gallon storage capacity

Reasons to avoid

-Expensive As a result of its large 80-gallon tank, the Westinghouse Electric Light Duty Water Heater is an excellent choice for families and anyone who want a large amount of hot water quickly.Other noteworthy aspects of this water heater include the tank’s stainless steel construction, which makes it far lighter than other water heaters.The stainless steel also helps to reduce the accumulation of scale within, which means it should last far longer.

  • While this water heater has a high price tag of over $1,000, it comes with a lifetime warranty that makes it an excellent investment.
  • The thermostat is simply adjustable, allowing you to quickly regulate the temperature of the water in the tank to ensure that it is just suitable for you and your requirements.
  • See our Westinghouse Electric Light Duty Water Heater review for more information.

3. Rheem Performance Platinum Smart Electric Water Heater: Best electric water heater

A smart water heater with a 10-year warranty, the Rheem Performance Water Heater is Energy Star rated.


Yes, it is Energy Star certified. Warranty period is ten years.

Reasons to buy

+Long warranty+Energy efficiency+Intelligent control system

Reasons to avoid

-Heavy -Expensive The Rheem Performance Platinum Smart Electric Water Heater comes out on top as the best electric water heater in our comparison guide, according to our findings.This water heater is both quiet and energy efficient, and it comes with a 10-year warranty.With its hybrid heat pump, it is more energy efficient than ordinary electric heaters on the market today.

  • Due to the fact that it is a smart water heater, the Rheem Performance heater sends notifications to your phone if something isn’t quite right or if any water leaks are discovered.
  • This water heater is ideal for a home with up to five inhabitants since it can manage four back-to-back showers as well as water demand from three bathrooms.
  • Additionally, this water heater offers useful smart features such as the option to switch it into High Demand mode for plenty of hot water and a Vacation Mode for when you are away.

This water heater can give you servicing reminders when you download the appropriate app, allowing you to extend the life of your tank to the greatest extent feasible.Check out our Rheem Performance Platinum Smart Electric Water Heater review for more information.

4. A.O Smith Signature Gas Water Heater: Best gas water heater  

The A.O Smith Gas Water Heater is a great budget option and is great for family homes.


No Energy Star certification is available.Warranty is 6 years.

Reasons to buy

+Good value for money +Perfect for families

Reasons to avoid

-A shorter warranty period The A.O Smith Signature Gas Water Heater is the most affordable option in our guide to big water heaters, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be shortchanged in terms of performance.Sure, it lacks some of the more advanced features found in some of the other models, but for the price, this water heater is excellent for heating enough water for a household.The features that it does have have been thoughtfully designed.

  • The use of a push button ignition makes the starter procedure quick and simple, and the LED status indication makes it easy to keep track of things if something goes wrong.
  • A.O.
  • Smith is a well-known brand that provides a solid and dependable water heater without charging an exorbitant price.

See our A.O Smith Signature Gas Water Heater review for more information.

5. Bosch Tronic 3000 T ES4 Water Heater: Best point-of-use water heater 

A fantastic and compact water heater that is designed for point-of-use plug in with ease.


No Energy Star certification is available.Warranty is 6 years.

Reasons to buy

• Simple installation • Fits beneath sinks • Rapid heating of water

Reasons to avoid

A little tank is all that is available.Bosch Tronic 3000 T ES4 Water Heater is designed to be put on a wall or on the floor, and it is particularly suitable for use beneath sinks.It is powered by a 120V outlet and comes with a six-year guarantee.

  • This water heater is not intended to give enough hot water for an entire family to shower after each other, and it only has a four-gallon tank, but it is intended to quickly heat water in a single location.
  • Because of its quick recovery time, you won’t have to wait for hot water for very long.
  • Its tank is encased with glass, which provides excellent insulation and allows it to operate at 98 percent thermal efficiency.

The Bosch model is an excellent choice if you want a water heater that can be utilized with a single point of use.It is suitable for usage when one person takes a shower for around 10 minutes, or when a small washing machine is utilized.Check out our Bosch Tronic 3000 Mini-Tank Electric Water Heater review for more information.

Buying a water heater: efficiency ratings

Although the efficiency criteria for gas and electric water heaters differ, both rely on the Uniform Energy Factor (UEF) rating system, with higher-scoring machines producing more hot water while consuming less electricity.When applying for an Energy Star certification, electric water heaters with tanks up to 55 gallons must have a UEF of at least 2 in order to be eligible.A UEF of 0.64 or 0.68, depending on how much water is used during the day, is all that is required for gas water heaters with tanks up to 55 gallons of storage capacity.

  • Tanks larger than 55 gallons require considerably more stringent requirements.
  • Choosing a water heater that is close to or above the Energy Star criteria will save you money on your utility bills, however the most energy-efficient heaters are typically the most expensive.

Water heater warranties

It’s possible that you’ll be tempted to make a selection only on the basis of features and pricing while searching around for a water heater.However, the value of a solid warranty should not be underestimated, because in a crisis, you’ll want to be confident that you’ll be able to get your house back up and running as quickly as possible.To avoid being without hot water for an extended period of time, it’s important to get a model that comes with an excellent warranty…………………………….

  • Water heaters typically have a lifespan of eight to twelve years, with their associated warranties often covering six to twelve years of use.
  • There is a catch, however, in that labor guarantees are often only valid for one calendar year.

How much do water heaters cost?

The cost of installing a new water heater in your house will typically range between $700 and $2,000 on average.Electric water heaters are typically priced between $300 and $700, not including installation.Gas water heaters, on the other hand, range in price from $400 to $1,000.

  • The cost of a water heater, on the other hand, is heavily influenced by the brand, tank size, and efficiency rating of the heater.
  • However, despite the fact that it may be tempting to open the installation instructions and attempt to install your new water heater on your own, the majority of homeowners lack the requisite skills and expertise.
  • By hiring a professional installation, you are certain that you are getting someone who understands precisely what they are doing and how to do it properly and safely.

In addition, several manufacturers only sell their water heaters through professional installation.Installers are also frequently able to make recommendations about water heaters for your property.Since the most majority of plumbers are qualified and certified professionals with years of important expertise, it is well worth the extra expense to have them install your water heater.

Take some time to read online consumer reviews about plumbers in your region on websites such as Yelp, HomeAdvisor, Angie’s List, and other similar sites to locate the best plumber in your area.Labor, supplies, and the removal of the water heater are all included in the installation price.Generally, you should expect to pay between $300 and $500 to have an installer replace your old water heater with a modern type, however the price may vary depending on where you reside.For example, if you want to change the kind of water heater in your house, you should expect to pay up to $1,500 (and sometimes much more) to upgrade your home’s electrical or natural gas connections to the required standards.Make sure to obtain quotations from three or four different area plumbers in order to discover the most competitive pricing possible.

Permits & inspections

Before you can install a water heater in your house, most towns and counties need you to get a permit.If necessary, the certified plumber you choose can secure the appropriate permissions as part of the installation process, depending on your location.To be sure, you should check with them or your local building department to find out what permits are required in your particular site before moving forward.

  • This will also assist you in determining if you are responsible for obtaining the permit or whether the contractor will handle it.
  • Upon completion of the installation, a representative from the organization that granted the permit will check the water heater to ensure that it conforms with the applicable building codes.

Gas vs electric water heaters: which is right for you?

A new water heater for your house isn’t inexpensive, which is why you’re probably spending some time thinking about how you’re going to power the device.The first thing to understand is that electric heaters are the most environmentally friendly alternative available, and choosing one of them will mean that you are making a more environmentally friendly choice for the globe.The use of electric water heaters is also more energy efficient, albeit the cost of electricity raises the cost of operation over that of gas-powered water heaters.

  • As previously said, you may still use your gas heater during a power outage, which means you’ll have one less thing to worry about during a crisis situation.
See also:  How To Increase Water Pressure On Well Pump

Lifetime energy costs

The Federal Energy Management Program has developed a calculator that allows you to estimate the yearly and lifetime energy expenditures of a new electric or natural gas water heater (FEMP).Also included is a comparison of your predictions to those of basic models, FEMP guidelines, and the most efficient models currently available in the market.This calculator can assist you in determining if the additional cost of a more energy-efficient model is worth it over the course of its useful life.

How many years does a hot water heater last?

When you invest a significant amount of money all at once on a hot water heater, the issue of lifespan becomes a worry.Tank style water heaters, on the other hand, have a lifespan of eight to twelve years on average – depending on whether or not you have hard water in your location and whether or not you undertake regular maintenance to maintain the heater functioning at optimal performance.According to our research and consultations with plumbing specialists, you can anticipate a new water heater to last around ten years after installation.

  • Setting away a small amount of money every year to assist offset the expense of replacing it when you do need to replace it might help alleviate the stress of having to shell out a large sum of money that you weren’t expecting to have to pay.
  • In addition, we discovered that many plumbing professionals recommend installing a hot water filter to help limit the amount of silt and minerals that enter your water heater and cause it to malfunction.
  • If you install this additional system, it may be possible to double the lifespan of your water heater; however, we recommend talking with your local plumber first to see whether it would be worthwhile in your location.

When should you replace your water heater?

  • To determine that your water heater isn’t operating correctly, you don’t have to be a professional plumber. However, knowing the signs and symptoms of a malfunctioning water heater can save you from losing your hot water completely. Keep an eye out for any changes in the quality of your hot water, such as brown water or metallic tastes, which might signal that your storage tank is rusting on the inside.
  • If you notice a rapid drop in the amount of hot water your heater delivers, or if the water never gets totally hot, it might be the consequence of an inefficient, worn-out or broken heating element.
  • A reduction in the volume of water flowing through the faucets might signal that a pipe has been clogged with silt, hard water deposits, or another material.
  • If the sound of your water heater changes as it is heating water, especially if you hear popping and cracking, this might indicate a problem.
  • If you notice water leaking directly from the water heater, it is likely that something has to be tightened.
  • Given that the typical lifespan of a water heater is around 10 years, any water heater that is more than 10 to 15 years old should be considered for replacement, even if it is still in good working order.

Water heater safety

Your water heater, like any other important household item, requires regular maintenance and care in order to perform its functions properly.Homeowners are advised to examine the parts of their water heater at least once a year, according to insurance firms.The ventilation system, the pilot light, and the temperature or release valve are all examples of such components.

  • Instructions for using your heater should be included in the handbook you got from the manufacturer when you made your purchase.
  • If you have any doubts, this handbook should be of assistance in determining how to conduct a thorough inspection of your appliance.
  • If you are unable to find the information you want in the handbook and you need to inspect the state of your heater, you can always contact a local plumber for expert guidance and assistance.

Since 2013, John has been conducting research and writing reviews for Top Ten Reviews on home security and smart home technologies.He not only writes about smart homes and home security and safety, but he also writes about other home technology goods such as HVAC systems, garage door openers, and other such items.In his leisure time, he likes doing home improvement projects, writing, and hiking.

Best Water Heaters Of March 2022

Despite the fact that both natural gas and electric water heaters have their own set of pros and disadvantages, any comparison is complicated by an array of other considerations.Because electric water heaters are far more energy efficient and do not directly rely on fossil fuels to function, they are the most environmentally friendly alternative if environmental sustainability is important to you.The cost of operating an electric water heater can be significantly greater than the cost of operating a natural gas water heater.

  • A gas water heater will continue to operate even if the electricity is gone.
  • Electric water heaters, particularly those that are Energy Star certified, can qualify for federal and even state tax credits, which can result in significant savings.
  • These discounts may not appear to be significant at first glance, but do a thorough calculation before making a purchase—you may be pleasantly surprised!

Tank vs. Tankless

Tankless water heaters are expensive and time-consuming to install and set up, but the energy savings they provide in the long run might be well worth the expenditure in the long run.Tankless water heaters provide an unending supply of hot water since they do not require a tank, which might accumulate rust or sediment build-up or pool in the tank.Check out our Best Gas Tankless Water Heaters of 2022 if you want to learn more about tankless hot water heaters.

  • Tank-style water heaters, on the other hand, are simple and affordable to install, and they have the advantage of delivering hot water considerably more fast than tankless water heaters can.
  • A second advantage of tank-style water heaters over tankless water heaters is that they offer a more steady flow rate, which enables you to more reliably deliver hot water to several appliances and faucets at the same time—but not on an unlimited supply.

Tank Capacity and First Hour Rating

  • The greatest hot water heater for your home will also depend on the tank capacity that is appropriate for your family’s requirements. Depending on the amount of people living in your home, this is a simple calculation to make: A family of one to two people will require 20 to 35 gallons of water
  • a family of two to four people will require 35 to 50 gallons of water
  • a family of three to five people will require 50 to 60 gallons of water
  • and a family of five or more will require sixty gallons or more (add 10 gallons per person).
  • A hot water heater’s first hour rating (FHR) is also important to examine. This rating tells you how much hot water the tank can generate in an hour when it is fully heated. The FHR should be able to provide enough hot water to meet or surpass the amount of gallons required for any and all simultaneous activities that your household may engage in. A few estimations of hot water use will assist you in determining the most appropriate FHR for your home: Bathing or bathing consumes 20 gallons
  • washing dishes (by hand) consumes six gallons
  • running the dishwasher consumes 14 gallons
  • using the washing machine consumes 30 gallons

Ease of Use

One last consideration to consider when purchasing a new hot water heater for your house is the convenience with which your new appliance will be operated.Many new electric hot water heaters are equipped with digital displays, which allow you to monitor and regulate your hot water heater more easily and effectively.Others may come with an app and be controlled over a Wi-Fi connection.

  • Lastly, some of them are smart home equipped and can connect with other smart gadgets in your house, such as the Amazon Echo (yes, you can talk to your water heaters now).
  • While they may not be your top options when shopping for a new hot water heater, the additional functionality they provide may be an essential element to take into account in order to make your life simpler in the future.

From dishes to laundry to showers, so many household tasks depend on a water heater. We selected nine reliable options to help you choose yours.

Every editorial product is chosen on its own merits, while we may be compensated or earn an affiliate commission if you purchase something after clicking on one of our affiliate links. As of the time of writing, the ratings and pricing are correct, and all goods are in stock. 1 / 10 Family Handyman, courtesy of homedepot.com and lowes.com, respectively.

What Is a Water Heater?

  • Regardless of whether the water is from a municipal or private source, it all enters your home cold. Unless you enjoy taking cold showers, you’ll want to find a technique to warm it up. It’s time to turn on the water heater. Water heaters raise the temperature of your home’s water supply, regardless of whether the water is being circulated through the heater or is being held in a reservoir tank. The heater may do this through the use of a flame or a solid heating component. Natural gas, propane, and electricity are all options for powering heaters. Some of the most important considerations when purchasing a water heater are as follows: Price: In addition to the purchase, installation, and any additional work such as running vent lines or upgrading your electrical service, the total cost includes all applicable taxes and fees.
  • The type of fuel used is a matter of personal taste. Almost usually, the simplest and most cheap alternative is to continue using the same type of fuel that your current heater operates on.
  • A 40-gallon tank offers enough hot water for a home with two residents, and a 50-gallon tank is sufficient for a home with four or five occupants, depending on your demands. Get the largest tank you can afford for a group of six or more people.
  • Tankless vs. traditional: Tankless units heat the water as it travels through their coils, resulting in an unending supply of hot water. Traditional units store the water in a tank. The disadvantages are that the cost and installation fees are greater.
  • Energy efficiency: Although better efficiency units have a higher initial cost, the energy savings often more than offset the cost of the unit within a short period of time. Tankless systems are likewise more energy efficient, but because of their greater cost, they require a longer ″break-even″ period to be profitable.
  • Tank construction: Tank heaters can become clogged with silt, which reduces their energy efficiency and shortens their service life significantly. You may manually empty them to lessen this danger, or you can search for versions that include self-cleaning components and ceramic-lined tanks to reduce this risk.

2 / 10 via homedepot.com

Best Tankless Water Heater (Electric)

Tankless water heaters only create heat while the water is being drawn from them.Saving money on your energy bill by not keeping a tank of hot water always available is a great way to start saving money right away.Units such as the Rheem Performance Tankless Electric Water Heater have the ability to deliver around seven gallons per minute, meeting the hot water requirements of the entire house.

  • However, in order to generate that much heat, you’ll need to dedicate four 40-amp double-pole breakers to this heater, which will take up a large amount of room in your electrical breaker box.
  • We like this model since it is straightforward to operate.
  • In addition to the temperature being displayed on the unit’s face via an easy-to-read LCD display, the single dial on the unit’s face permits changes in one-degree increments.

In addition, Rheem’s five-year guarantee provides peace of mind.3 / 10 from lowes.com is available now.

Best Tankless Water Heater (Gas)

When it comes to pricing and performance, the A.O.Smith Signature Series Tankless Water Heater achieves an excellent balance.Although gas tankless units have a higher initial purchase price than electric tankless units, the reduced running expenses often offset the higher purchase price throughout the unit’s lifetime.

  • A single tank of water from this manufacturer delivers enough hot water to run three showers at the same time.
  • In addition, it has earned the Energy Star designation, indicating that it is one of the most energy-efficient machines on the market.
  • It will require a vent line due to the fact that it is gas-fueled.

If you’re intending on doing the installation yourself, be sure you follow all applicable rules and obtain any necessary permits.Now is a good time to shop at homedepot.com.

Best Traditional Tank Water Heater (Electric)

The WiFi-enabled leak detection and auto shut-off capabilities of the Rheem Gladiator series have garnered a great deal of attention.Though these are unquestionably appealing attributes of the Gladiator 50-Gallon Electric Water Heater, they represent only a portion of the reasons we like it so much.The 12-year guarantee outperforms the coverage provided by most competitors, and it is accompanied by a three-year labor warranty.

  • The auto-clean option helps to prevent sediment buildup, which can affect the life of a water heater.
  • You can also monitor and manage the Gladiator from your smartphone with the Rheem smartphone app.
  • Now is a good time to shop at lowes.com.

Best Traditional Tank Water Heater (Gas)

The Signature 100 Series 50-Gallon Water Heater from A.O.Smith is a solid appliance that comes at a reasonable price.There are less costly gas heaters available, but the six-year guarantee, self-cleaning dip tube, and ceramic-fused tank shield on this heater mean less possible issues down the line if something goes wrong.

  • We also appreciate the fact that it has an ecologically friendly burner that emits lesser amounts of nitrogen oxide and nitrogen dioxide than a standard gas water heater, which is another plus.
  • Now is a good time to shop at homedepot.com.
See also:  How To Turn Off Hot Water From Water Heater?

Best Budget-Friendly Water Heater (Electric)

The Rheem Performance 40-Gallon Electric Water Heater, which retails for $419, is an incredibly affordable option.Smaller families or houses with an offset usage pattern will benefit from the 40-gallon tank, which requires less energy to maintain heated between uses than a larger tank would.It simply requires a 25-amp electrical breaker, which means it shouldn’t necessitate a major electrical makeover to be put in place.

  • If you’re looking to replace an existing electric water heater, it’s likely that you won’t find a better deal anywhere else.
  • Now is the time to shop at lowes.com.

Best Environmentally Friendly Water Heater (Electric)

If protecting the environment is your first priority, the A.O.Smith Signature 900 Hybrid Water Heater is a great choice.In accordance with the manufacturer, this Energy Star-certified model saves an average home with three to four users more than $300 a year in energy bills.

  • Its hybrid design incorporates a heat pump, which is similar to the one you may already have in your home to heat and cool it, to transport heat from the surrounding air into the water tank and vice versa.
  • Because the heat pump operates at a slower rate than traditional heating, the Signature 900 has two additional heating elements as a backup.
  • It is covered by a 10-year limited warranty and may be eligible for further rebates or tax credits depending on your situation.

Now is the time to shop 8 / 10 via lehmans.com

Best Off-Grid Water Heater

Yes, some households choose to live off-grid by installing a solar array.However, if you are looking for simplicity, a Wood-Fired Water Heater is a good option.This Amish-built water heater is constructed of 3/16-inch welded steel, has a capacity of 15 gallons, and is efficient enough to keep heating new water as it circulates through the tank during operation.

  • This indicates it has the capability of supplying water for back-to-back showers.
  • We appreciate the fact that it is not depending on natural gas or power.
  • However, we must draw your attention to the following statement from the manufacturer: ″Not UL listed.

There has been no pressure testing.If not utilized or placed properly, it has the potential to explode with life-threatening power.″ This serves as an excellent reminder of why it is critical to exercise caution while installing any type of water heater.Now is the time to shop at homedepot.com (9/10).

Best Water Heater for a Big Family (Gas)

If you have six or more people living in your home, you will want a large amount of hot water for bathing and laundry.If running out of water is your primary issue, you’re better off going tankless to provide ″endless″ hot water, or purchasing a heater with the largest tank possible.The tank may possibly be the most cost-effective of the three choices considered.

  • This is due to the fact that big families constantly drain a water heater tank, resulting in the heater not expending energy to maintain the temperature of an empty tank.
  • As a result, big families often require more time to recoup the cost of a tankless unit than smaller households.
  • You should choose the Rheem Performance 75-Gallon Gas Water Heater if you believe a huge tank is the best option for you.

This is practically the largest tank you can buy without going into the realm of commercial-sized water heaters.Shop now at homedepot.com for a 10/10 rating.

Best Water Heater for a Small Household (Electric)

Tankless water heaters are frequently the most beneficial for small families with just one or two persons living in them.The Rheem Performance Self-Modulating Water Heater delivers enough hot water for two people to take showers at the same time without running out of hot water.The majority of homes will use it once or twice a day and then leave it alone, saving you money every time it does not need to heat water from an on-site reservoir tank of water.

  • Two 40-amp circuit breakers are required.
  • However, considering that it costs around $20 more than the more affordable tanked water heater option further up on our list, the energy savings associated with it should more than cover the cost of the heater and any necessary electrical work within a few years.
  • Now is the time to shop.

Original publication date: December 3, 2021

Selecting a New Water Heater

When purchasing a new water heater for your house, look for a system that will supply enough hot water for your family while also being energy efficient, allowing you to save money.Consider the many types of water heaters that are available, as well as the appropriate size and fuel source for your house.Check out the Energy Saver 101: Water Heating infographic to learn more about the many types of water heaters available and how to choose the most appropriate model for your household.

Types of Water Heaters

  • It’s a good idea to be familiar with the many types of water heaters that are available before making a purchase: Storage water heaters, as they are commonly known, provide a ready reservoir (storage tank) of hot water that is sufficient for everyday use. But there are other situations, such as when there is more than one usage for hot water at the same time or when there are guests in the house, where the need for hot water increases.
  • Tankless water heaters, also known as demand-type water heaters, heat water on demand rather than storing it in a storage tank. When properly sized, this sort of water heater is intended to give an appropriate supply of hot water without running out
  • however, this is not always the case.
  • Heat pump water heaters transfer heat from one location to another rather than producing heat directly for the purpose of supplying hot water, resulting in excellent energy efficiency and considerable cost savings.
  • Heat from the sun is used to heat water, allowing you to save money on your electricity cost as well.
  • Tankless coil and indirect water heaters heat water by drawing energy from the home’s space heating system.

Selection Criteria

  • When deciding on the appropriate type and model of water heater for your house, take the following factors into consideration: Type of fuel, availability, and pricing are all important considerations. The type of fuel or energy source you choose for water heating will have an impact on not just the annual operating costs of the water heater, but also the size and energy efficiency of the heater. More information about choosing fuel kinds may be found in the section below.
  • Size.
  • It is necessary to have an appropriately sized water heater in order to offer your home with enough hot water while also maximizing efficiency. For further information on size, see the sections on the various types of water heaters (linked above).
  • Efficiencies in energy use.
  • Check the energy efficiency of a water heater before purchasing it to ensure that you save the most energy and money possible. More information on evaluating energy efficiency may be found on the sections dedicated to different types of water heaters (linked above).
  • Costs.
  • Preparing for the purchase of a water heater should include estimating the yearly running expenses as well as comparing those costs to the costs of alternative models that are less or more energy efficient. More information on predicting expenses may be found on the pages dedicated to the various types of water heaters (linked above).

Also, look for ways to minimize your hot water consumption, such as washing clothing in cold water instead of hot. In order to save money on your water heating expense, you may wish to investigate additional solutions such as drain-water heat recovery.

Fuel Types, Availability and Costs for Water Heating

It’s critical to examine the sort of fuel or energy source you’ll be using when choosing a new water heater, as well as its availability and cost, while making your decision. The type of fuel utilized by a water heating system will have an impact on not just the annual operating expenses, but also the size and energy efficiency of the water heater.

Exploring Water Heater Options by Fuel Type

The sort of fuel you use and its availability in your location may limit the number of water heaters you may choose from.Listed below is a list of water heater alternatives categorized by fuel type or energy source: Electricity In the United States, traditional storage water heaters, tankless or demand-type water heaters, and heat pump water heaters are all readily accessible.The technology may also be utilized in conjunction with combined water and space heating systems, such as tankless coil and indirect water heaters.

Benzene is a fuel oil. In some parts of the United States, it is possible to use natural gas to fuel traditional storage water heaters as well as indirect combined water and space heating systems.

Geothermal energy is a renewable source of energy. A geothermal heat pump system for the purpose of space heating and cooling is available to people who will have or currently have a geothermal heat pump system installed in their houses around the United States. For further information, please see Heat Pump Water Heaters.

Natural gas is a type of energy source. Available in many parts of the United States for use in traditional storage and demand (tankless or instantaneous) water heaters, as well as combination water and space heating systems, which include tankless coil and indirect water heaters, as well as combination water and space heating systems.

Propane Fuel for traditional storage and demand (tankless or instantaneous) water heaters, as well as indirect combined water and space heating systems, is readily available in many parts of the United States, including the Midwest.

Solar energy is available across the United States, with the greatest concentration in the Southwest, for the purpose of solar water heaters.

Comparing Fuel Costs and Water Heater Types

You should evaluate fuel costs if you have access to more than one fuel type in your location, especially if you’re planning to build an entirely new home.Even if you’re replacing a water heater, you may discover that switching to a different fuel or energy source may save you more money in the long term.For those switching from one fuel type to another, there are additional costs to consider such as the installation of circuit breakers and the running of gas lines to the water heater and venting them outside.

  • For the most up-to-date information on fuel costs or rates, contact local utility.
  • It is also important to consider the type of water heater you buy because it will influence your water heating expenditures.
  • One type of water heater may be more efficient at using a certain fuel type than another type of water heater.

For example, an electric heat pump water heater is generally more energy efficient than an electric traditional storage water heater in terms of heating capacity and efficiency.A further benefit of an electric heat pump water heater is that it may have cheaper energy costs than a gas-fired traditional storage water heater, even if local natural gas prices are lower than electricity rates.

Gas vs Electric Water Heaters: 6 Advantages & Disadvantages

The average lifespan of a hot water heater is between 8 and 15 years, depending on the manufacturer.In this regard, it’s only normal that the day will come when you’ll need to replace the item in question.Following your first investigation, you will be forced to pick between purchasing a gas or an electric water heater, depending on your needs and budget.

  • Although the majority of homeowners would go toward the sort of water heater they had previously, you may be overlooking a hot water system that is more suited to your particular home’s requirements.
  • We’ve included a list of the benefits and drawbacks of both electric and gas water heaters to assist you in making your decision on which system to choose.
  • Let’s have a look at this.


A normal gas water heater is often more difficult to run than an electric water heater when it comes to operation. Because the system is entirely powered by electricity, you will never have to worry about turning on the gas to get it started. The electric water heater becomes considerably easier to manage as a result of this.


When comparing the efficiency of an electric water heater to a gas water heater, electric water heaters outperform gas water heaters.Despite the fact that natural gas hot water heaters are less expensive to operate on a monthly basis as a result of the cheap cost of natural gas, a gas hot water heater consumes more energy and emits waste into the environment.Because the gas waste carries part of the heat away with it, it is less efficient than electric water heaters in terms of efficiency.

  • While an electric heater will utilize the majority of the energy it receives to heat water, it will be more energy-efficient than a gas or oil heater.
  • Having said that, there are certain high-efficiency gas heaters on the market that consume less energy overall.
  • These systems will likely be labeled with the Energy Star logo.


The overall cost of running a gas water heater vs an electric water heater is roughly equal.Gas water heaters cost an average of $1,300 – $2,600 in advance, depending on the model.Because of this, gas heaters have a greater initial cost.

  • The low overall cost of natural gas, on the other hand, means that you will have a reduced overall monthly energy payment.
  • The cost of electric water heaters is the inverse of that of gas water heaters: an electric water heater will have a lower upfront cost (with an average of $950 – $1,500) but a higher monthly cost in general.
  • An article that may be of interest: Why is my furnace making such loud noises?
See also:  What Should Water Heater Be Set At

Maintenance Requirements

If you compare the maintenance needs of gas and electric water heaters, you’ll find that gas water heaters require more attention than electric water heaters.It is likely that you will need to have both systems cleansed on a regular basis in order to prevent deposits from accumulating at the bottom of the tank.In the case of gas heaters, the gas line and gas tanks will need to be examined on a regular basis to ensure that there are no gas leaks or sediment accumulation.

  • In any event, we recommend that you have at least an annual checkup performed on both systems to protect the longevity of your water heating system.


The methods for installing a gas or electric water heater are simple and uncomplicated….Switching from an electric water heater to a gas water heater, on the other hand, might be a challenging process.Because the gas lines will need to be moved to a new place, this will be a more challenging procedure.

  • The construction of another vent will include cutting or drilling into the side of your house……………………..
  • This, in turn, raises the cost and length of time required for installation.

Environmental Drawbacks

Electric heaters, by their very nature, are more environmentally friendly.As a result of their energy efficiency and the fact that they may be fuelled by renewable energy sources, these systems cause less damage to the environment.Alternatively, natural gas water heaters use natural gas that is extracted from the Earth in a wasteful and damaging manner.

  • This results in a significant amount of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere.
  • As a result, gas heaters are often considered to be less environmentally friendly.
  • Are you having difficulty determining the root cause of low water pressure in your home?

We will send a team of professional plumbers to your home in Arlington, VA to evaluate your hot water heater and water lines to find the cause of the problem.

How to Save Money On a Gas or Electric Water Heating Bill

Although you like the convenience of being able to run your hot water whenever you want and for as long as you want, let’s be honest: receiving a high-priced energy bill isn’t very enjoyable. Here are some more things you can do around your house to save money on your monthly energy bill, regardless of whether you pick a gas or an electric water heater.

Use Cold Water for Laundry

Using cold water during washing cycles will save you an estimated $67 per year if you have a gas water heater and $161 per year if you use an electric water heater, according to estimates.The fact that most modern detergents do not require hot water to be effective means that you may save money on your monthly power bill in a relatively simple manner.Related Article: How to Select the Proper Water Heater Dimensions

Set the Water Heater Thermostat to 120 Degrees Fahrenheit

With every 10 degrees Fahrenheit drop in water temperature, you may expect to save around 3 to 5 percent on your monthly water heating bills. Families with babies and toddlers should also lower their thermostat to 120 degrees to prevent burns from searing hot water.

Avoid Taking Baths

According to the average, one bathtub full of water is comparable to two individuals having a bath at the same time. When compared to a shower, this takes a greater quantity of gas or energy to operate.

Invest In Low-Flow Shower Fixtures

Installing low-flow shower fixtures is another method of lowering your monthly electricity expenditure. A low-flow shower fixture reduces the quantity of hot water you use, allowing you to save anywhere from 25-60 percent on your water bill each month.

Deactivate Water While You’re Not Using It

Those little seconds when you forget to turn off the water while washing your hair or brushing your teeth pile up over the course of a day. During these brief intervals, you might want to consider shutting off your water. This includes shutting off the shower while shampooing or turning off the faucet while brushing your teeth, among other things.

Water Heater Services Near You in Virginia

Please contact our team of professional plumbers at (703) 543-9649 if you are still undecided about whether an electric or gas water heater is the most appropriate option for your family.The water heater in your home is one of the most vital components in the house.If your water heater breaks down, our crew is available to perform water heater repair services around the clock.

  • Additionally, we provide sump pump repair, furnace installation, gas line replacement, and air conditioning repair amongst other services in the HVAC and plumbing fields of expertise.
  • We provide plumbing solutions in Virginia cities such as Alexandria, Arlington, Centreville, and Reston.
  • We also serve the surrounding areas.

To obtain support, please contact our staff right now!Read this related article: The Reasons Why Your Furnace Isn’t Producing Warm Air.

Learn some of the pros and cons of each fuel source, and find out about newer, more efficient types of water heaters that could save you money down the line.

Image courtesy of supplyhouse.com If you’ve had the same hot water heater for more than 10 years (which is the typical lifespan), it’s a good idea to think about changing it before the appliance stops working and puts you in a difficult financial situation.Before you begin looking for a new water heater, though, you must first choose which type of energy source it will use: natural gas or electricity.Despite the fact that both types are very similar, there are some distinctions between them in terms of possibilities and efficiency, for example.

  • To help you pick the right sort of water heater for your requirements, the following guide will go through current water heater technology and break down some important aspects.

The decision of gas versus electric water usually boils down to the type of power already in the home.

  • SupplyHouse.com technical expert Daniel O’Brian argues that in most circumstances, people will simply use whatever is already installed in their homes. ″In most cases, people will simply use whatever is already installed in their homes,″ he adds. Almost all homes have access to electricity, and many have access to both natural gas and electric power. If you just have access to electricity, on the other hand, the decision is straightforward: you’ll need to select an electric water heater, such as AO Smith’s 50-Gallon Proline Residential Electric Water Heater (available from SupplyHouse). For rural residents who, in most cases, do not have access to natural gas, an electric hot water heater may not be the only option available to them. When using propane, customers may purchase a gas water heater, such as the Rinnai 160,000 BTU Condensing Tankless Water Heater, and then a Rinnai Natural Gas to LPG Conversion Kit (both of which are available from SupplyHouse), which will allow them to convert the unit to propane usage. Input ratings are given to both gas and electric water heaters. This is a measurement of how much gas or electricity is needed to heat the water in the tank every hour, and it is expressed as a percentage. The amount of gas used is measured in BTUs, while the amount of electricity used is recorded in watts. According to size, the average input rating for a gas water heater ranges from around 30,000 to 180,000 BTUs on average. Water will be heated more quickly by a machine that has a higher BTU rating.
  • A typical electric water heater has a power input ranging from around 1,440 to 5,500 watts, and the same concept applies: The higher the wattage, the more quickly the water heater will heat the water.

Gas water heaters tend to have higher initial costs than comparable electric water heaters but can also cost less to operate.

It is ″mostly dependent on how large, efficient, and high-quality your water heater is,″ according to O’Brian, that the cost of a water heater would vary.As a rule of thumb, ″the greater the cost, the better the unit will perform.″ Although a gas hot water heater, such as the 50-Gallon Proline Gas Water Heater, will cost more upfront than an electric hot water heater of comparable capacity, such as the 50-Gallon Proline Electric Water Heater (both available from SupplyHouse), the cost of a gas hot water heater will be less over time.Get expert adviceFind qualified plumbing professionals in your area and receive free, no-obligation estimates for your job.

  • + On the other hand, operating a gas water heater is typically less expensive than operating an electric water heater since, in many parts of the country, the cost of natural gas is lower than the cost of electricity.
  • In O’Brian’s opinion, ″depending on where you reside, it could make more sense to choose one option over the other.″ ″In the long run, it’s your monthly payments that will cause you problems.″ While the price of a water heater is essential, it shouldn’t be the sole issue in your decision to purchase one.
  • The cost of operation, efficiency, and performance should all be taken into consideration while making your selection.

Electric water heaters (particularly electric heat pump water heaters) can have higher EF ratings than gas water heaters. 

  • The energy factor (EF) of a gas or electric water heater is a measurement that compares the amount of hot water produced per day by the heater to the amount of fuel consumed by the heater each day. More efficient water heaters have an efficiency factor (EF) that is higher than 1. While the efficiency of gas and electric models is generally equal, especially when comparing models from the same brand and size, certain types of electric-powered models—such as heat pump and hybrid heat pump units, which are discussed further below—have an efficiency advantage. You can find an appliance’s energy efficiency rating (EF) on the device’s box or in the paperwork that comes with the appliance. In accordance with Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations, every new conventional water heater must be labeled with a bright yellow and black Energy Guide label that includes the appliance’s energy factor as well as the following data: The sort of fuel that is used by the water heater
  • Its anticipated yearly running costs are as follows:
  • An estimate of the amount of energy consumed annually (in BTUs or watts)
  • A logo from Energy Star (if the water heater satisfies the criteria set out by Energy Star for water heaters)
  • Tank capacity (measured in gallons)
  • Rating after the first hour (see below)

The Energy Guide label will not appear on products purchased online, but reputable retailers such as SupplyHouse.com provide all of the technical details about the products they sell, ensuring that you have all the information necessary to make an informed decision when purchasing a home energy efficiency product. Image courtesy of supplyhouse.com

Certain types of gas and electric water heaters are inherently more efficient.

Neither fuel type claims to be the most efficient; instead, manufacturers have developed extremely efficient subcategories of water heaters for each kind of power source that are available.

Efficient Gas Water Heaters

  • Condensing water heaters are designed to absorb and recycle energy that would otherwise be lost, therefore increasing the overall efficiency of the equipment. Condensing gas water heaters, as opposed to ordinary (non-condensing) gas water heaters, collect and recycle hot water vapor instead of directing it via a flue and out of the building. The AO Smith 50-Gallon Power Vent Gas Water Heater is one example of a condensation unit. Of course, there are advantages and disadvantages to using these units: Water heaters using condensing technology are more costly than comparable non-condensing models.
  • Condensing water heaters offer lower operating costs than non-condensing models
  • condensing water heaters have greater first-hour ratings and recovery rates than non-condensing models
  • a gas line must be connected before the water heater can be used

Efficient Electric Water Heaters

The heat pump water heater is the peak of efficiency in the world of electric water heaters.This water heater functions by extracting heat from the surrounding air, making it particularly well suited for usage in warm areas, such as the Mediterranean.However, heat pump water heaters, such as the Stiebel Eltron 58-Gallon Accelera 220 Water Heater (available from SupplyHouse), are more expensive than non-heat-pump models (they can cost between $800 and $2,500 more than a standard electric model), but they are the most energy-efficient water heaters available on the market right now.

  • In order to maximize the efficiency of hybrid heat pump water heaters, such as the AO Smith 50-Gallon Voltex Hybrid Heat Pump Water Heater (available at SupplyHouse), the user may select from a variety of operating modes for different scenarios.
  • The majority of hybrid heat pump units, for example, feature a ″holiday″ mode that lowers running expenses while no one is home.
  • If you choose a hybrid heat pump over a regular water heater, you might save up to 80% on your hot water bills, depending on the type.

These appliances, on the other hand, must be put in a space of at least 1,000 square feet, which means that while they are an excellent choice for a large garage, they are not suitable for a tiny utility closet.

Efficient Water Heaters Powered by Gas or Electricity

Gas and electric-powered tankless water heaters, often known as ″on-demand″ or ″point-of-use″ (POU) water heaters, are available in a variety of configurations.When a faucet or an appliance is switched on, these smaller configurations work by sucking water into the system through a heating element.Because they heat water as it is used, they may be up to 35 percent more energy efficient than a standard tank-type water heater.

  • They are also more affordable.
  • Gas-powered tankless water heaters are available in two varieties: condensing and non-condensing.
  • For example, Rinnai’s 180,000 BTU Non-Condensing Water Heater (available from SupplyHouse) can be either condensing or non-condensing.

The amount of hot water that can be pushed out at once is restricted, so size the device according to how much hot water you’ll need, says O’Brian, who also notes that ″you will never run out.″ Notably, because they do not hold ho

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.