One of the questions I get from homeowners looking to upgrade their water heater is, "Should I go with a tankless?"
The short answer is, "Yes!"
Sometimes that's enough to close the sale.
But most of the time, homeowners want a little more information to justify their purchase. After all, quality tankless water heaters cost two to three times more than the usual tank water heater - and if you're retrofitting a tankless where you used to have a tank, there can be some complications. (Which is another great reason to hire a licensed plumber to install your tankless water heater - but, I digress.)
So, here are 3 good reasons why you should upgrade to a tankless water heater!
Reason #1 - Tankless Water Heaters Provide Endless Hot Water
There's an old adage I remember from my sales training years ago: "Sell the sizzle, not the steak."
Endless hot water really is the number one reason I give homeowners - especially up here in the Arizona White Mountains - where a large percentage of our population are seasonal, second-home owners - or Airbnb host.
Why does that matter?
Because you're on vacation! Who wants to take quick showers when they're supposed to be relaxing? Who wants to worry about the water bill or the gas bill when they're supposed to just be having fun?
On the other hand, you could be an Airbnb host... Do you want your guests to enjoy themselves? I worked in hospitality for a short time - and one of the number one complaints we got was "the water wasn't hot."
Nobody wants to worry about having "enough" hot water...
So go on! Take an hour long shower! Draw a steamy bath in that sweet Jacuzzi tub (that you rarely use)! Make the kids do the dishes!
Tankless water heaters allow you (or your guests) to enjoy and relax.
Reason #2 - Tankless Water Heaters Have Terrific Warranties
For those homeowners who are concerned with reliability and longevity, this one is always a good sales point.
The average warranty for a traditional tank water heater from one of the big name brands is 5 years. (Bradford White is 6)
The average warranty for a tankless model (Rinnai or Navien) is 15 years for the heat exchanger - 5 years or more for parts and labor! That means you could replace your tank water heater 3 times before you replace your tankless in order to remain under warranty coverage.
Reason #3 - Tankless Saves Space
Got a small space with a big water heater in it? Wish you had some more storage room?
Tankless water heaters are great for small, cramped spaces, older homes with less square footage - or, newer tiny homes.
Tankless water heaters are about one third the size of a 40 or 50 gallon tank water heater. On top of that, they hang on the wall - instead of sitting on the ground. If you have a small utility closet, the extra floor and storage space can really add up.
Reason #4 - Tankless Water Heaters Don't HOLD Water
I've seen it plenty of times...
Homeowners with a traditional tank water heater leave the house with a full water heater - and come home to an empty water heater and a flood.
40 gallons of water can do a lot of damage.
Even if you turn the water to the heater off at the main, a slow drip or a stream can empty the water heater in minutes.
Does this mean tankless water heater don't leak? Of course not! The benefit is, if you turn the water off, the leakage will be minimal (maybe a gallon or two).
The other benefit is, when you turn on the water to the home, the tankless water heater gets water and - as long as there's fuel and power - is ready to start producing hot water - no muss, no fuss!
For a vacation home or an Airbnb - they're just easier to deal with for your guests.
Bonus Reason #5 - Tankless Water Heaters are Kind of a Thing Right Now...
I always ask homeowners what their plans are for the home. Are they planning to live in it for a while? Sell it? Turn it into an Airbnb? Or maybe just keep it for the family to use as a vacation home...
Depending on your plans, a tankless water heater may help you meet them.
In Show Low, there are several neighborhoods where if you are selling a home, having a tankless can definitely help improve your chances of a sale.
(I personally know of two spec houses in Torreon that were IDENTICAL builds - both for sale at the same time. One had a tank water heater. One had a tankless. The house with the tankless sold first. Just saying.)
So, if you're an Airbnb host, then having a tankless really helps keep your guests happy - they're not worried about running out of hot water anytime soon.
If you own a second home or a vacation home, then having a tankless water heater means easier start up when you open the home up - as opposed to waiting for the tank to fill then having to relight the pilot light, etc.
In both cases, tankless water heaters can also help avoid a flood in your home when you're away.
So, should you get a tankless?
(Hint: The answer is YES!)