Shopping for a water heater? Read this guide

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Purchasing a new water heater can be intimidating. It’s difficult to sort through the seemingly endless models, capacities, and possibly useless features. The reality of the situation is that if you do your research ahead of time, and know exactly what you’re looking for, the process is rather straightforward. There are three things you’ll want to keep in mind before you being pricing.

Types of Heaters

Before you can start looking around for a new water heater, you must first decide which type is the best fit for your needs. There are multiple options for models, as well as multiple options for how you heat the water. The most common type of water heater is a storage tank water heater. These models include an insulated tank which stores the heated water until you need it.

Becoming increasingly popular is the tankless water heater. Rather than storing the heated water, tankless water heaters use heating coils to heat water as you need it. These models can be more energy efficient; however, they provide only a limited flow of about 3.5 gallons per minute.

While some might only need a tankless water heater, some might find a solar water heater matches their needs better. It’s important to identify exactly which type of water heater will best suit your needs and start pricing from there. When considering what’s best for your needs, check out what’s recommended on


Capacity is an important feature to consider. When you’re shopping for water heaters, most are priced according to how many gallons they hold. There are a few things to take into account when figuring out your water needs.

Consider the first-hour rating for storage-tank water heaters and the gallons-per-minute rating for tankless heaters. To learn more about the gallons per minute for tankless models, be sure to check out your family might use 100 gallons a day, you aren’t necessarily using 100 gallons of water at once. These ratings will signal to you how much hot water you’ll get over a set period of time.

Added Features

An important thing to consider when purchasing your water heater is what specific features you might need. An important feature to keep an eye on is the type of warranty included if any. Typically, warranties on water heaters will last from 3 to 12 years. While some are deterred by the extra cost of longer-warranty models, models with a longer warranty tend to also have larger elements and think insulation.

Anti-scale devices are becoming increasingly popular for storage tank models. For those who have had difficulty with mineral scale at the bottom of previous tanks, this might be something to look out for; although, they can shorten the life of the heating element. If you do want an anti-scale device, look for models with longer or thicker elements.

Making a large purchase like a water heater can be stressful. With just a few considerations, you’ll be on the right track to finding the perfect model for you.