Energy Efficient Water Heater Options

Considering a new water heater? Or are you having issues with your current water heater? Seaside handles installation, repair and routine maintenance of all types of water heaters, both tanked and tankless. Often our customers will ask “What do you recommend – a tanked or tankless?” There is no perfect answer to this question, it depends on the individual preference and situation.

Using our years of experience and knowledge, we can help with installation of a new water heater that meets your needs while ensuring energy efficiency. Your water heater is a very important aspect of any home — when neglected, they can age prematurely, leaving you in the cold and with costly repairs.

Seaside Plumbing has years of experience and knowledge, making us specialists in gas, electric, power vent gas, and tankless water heater systems. Give us a call and we’d be happy to schedule service for your water heater or discuss what type of water heater may be best for you!

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    Gas Tankless Water Heaters


    • You have on demand, endless hot water that will not run out.
    • Tankless water heaters are generally smaller and more compact, saving space inside of your home.
    • Water is only heated when you need it which makes tankless units more efficient and cheaper to operate in most cases. Some units boast an energy factor of up to .96!
    • They have a longer life expectancy of about 20 years (as opposed to 10-15 years for a standard tanked water heater).


    • Tankless units are more expensive than traditional tanked water heaters and the installation costs are generally higher. In some remodeling scenarios installation costs can be significantly higher.
    • While tankless water heaters are more efficient, many recent studies have found the payback on actual energy savings vs. the initial cost of the unit to be longer than what is advertised. Again, it depends on the individual situation and usage (and certainly more research will continue to be released), but it is worth noting.
    • Most tankless water heaters require a minimum flow of .5 gallons per minute in order to ignite the water heater and deliver hot water to fixtures. If you turn your faucet on at a trickle, it will most likely not be enough to ignite the water heater. There are hybrid units on the market that are tankless water heaters with a small 2 gallon storage tank inside of the units – they specifically address this issue (among other things) and allow you to get hot water even at a trickle.
    • Most units require both gas and electric to operate, in the event of a power or gas outage, you will not have hot water.

    We typically do not recommend electric tankless water heaters for a whole house scenario. They need a serious amount of electrical amperage to operate, in most cases 4 double-pole breakers are required to be dedicated to this appliance. A typical home does not usually have that extra space in their breaker box to run an electric tank-less water heater.

    NOTE: Tankless water heaters have endless hot water, but it is NOT instantaneous.  Ask us about recirculation options to reduce your wait time for hot water.

    Traditional Tanked Water Heaters


    • Tanked water heaters are typically cheaper for both the material and the installation.
    • They have been around for a very long time, so the technology is proven and widely understood.
    • You will receive hot water at a fixture, even if the water is turned on at just a trickle.
    • In the event of a power or gas outage, you will still have a temporary supply of heated water in the tank available for use.


    • The amount of hot water you have is limited to the size of your tank, so you can easily run out of hot water, having to wait 30-45 minutes in order for the tank to heat up again.
    • Tanked water heaters have a shorter life span of 10-15 years, they are also prone to bursting once they get to the end of their life expectancy which can cause flood damage to your home.
    • They are continuously heating the water in the tank making them less efficient, subject to standby heat loss and thus more expensive to operate.
    • They are larger, bulkier and take up more space inside your home.

    Both tanked and tankless water heaters should be routinely maintenanced and flushed in order to operate efficiently and properly. Sediment can gather on the bottom of tanks or within the tankless units which can affect the lifespan, water quality and in some cases void the warranty.

    A qualified and licensed plumbing contractor should be able to give you an estimate in writing with all of the details spelled out on either a tanked or tankless water heater. BEWARE of low estimates! It’s very important that tankless water heaters are installed correctly and sized to sufficiently meet your demand. Tankless water heaters must also be properly vented and sometimes require upgrading your gas line to a larger size – this is where many contractors will cut corners in order to get the job.

    Win a FREE Water-Saving Toilet!
    Sustainability is something that is very important to us. We are all so fortunate to have a clean supply of water, it truly is a precious resource – however that supply is severely limited so we all must do our part to reduce water usage. As part of our commitment to sustainability, we want to eliminate all of the old water-guzzling toilets so we will be giving away 4 free low flow toilets every year.