Propane tankless water heaters can provide you limitless hot water. Tankless propane water heaters make a valuable upgrade for your home. They are long-lasting and help you save money in the long run.

Are propane tankless water heaters expensive?

Traditional water heaters are often inefficient. If an entire house shares one, it can run out of hot water occasionally. You can expect a traditional water heater to last for about 10 years. Replacing your water heater with a propane tankless water heater may initially cost a bit more. But the upgrade can easily save homeowners hundreds of dollars annually. The money you save over the life of the tankless propane water heater easily pays for itself.

What is a single point propane tankless water heater?

A single point propane tankless water heater can be installed on the interior or exterior of your home. It should be installed near the water use point, 50 feet or closer. If you use a single point water heater, you will need a water heater for every water source. For example, if you have one bathroom and a dishwasher, you will need two units, unless both of them are very close to each other.

What is a whole house propane tankless water heater?

Whole house propane tankless water heaters are generally installed near an exterior wall to reach the vent. Tankless water heaters can also be installed on the outside wall of a home. One unit can handle the hot water needs of an entire house. The water heater can provide hot water for multiple bathrooms and a dishwasher.

Should I replace my water heaters with tankless?

A tankless water heater is a popular option with forward-thinking homeowners. A propane tankless water heater has no tank, making it much more efficient than a traditional water heater. A traditional water heater is slowly heating water, even when no hot water is needed. It heats that water, and when the water temperature drops, it reheats the water. It does this endlessly, using energy even when no one in your home is using hot water. This is wasteful.

There are several pros and cons of propane tankless water heaters. Weigh the pros and cons before you make a decision. Do your homework to be informed if and when it’s time to replace your water heater.

What are the benefits of a propane tankless water heater?

Smaller size – Smaller size is a clear and visible benefit of a tankless water heater. Instead of taking up a lot of space in your garage, a tankless propane water heater can be mounted on the wall. You can also have it installed on the outside wall of your home.

Unlimited supply of hot water – With a propane tankless water heater, you don’t have to worry about running out of hot water. It can produce hot water for your family all day and night. You could fill up your hot tub with steaming hot water and still not run out.

Less energy required – A propane tankless water heater will require less energy than a traditional water heater. There is no need to waste energy, storing unused hot water.

Can a homeowner install a propane tankless water heater?

Watching professionals on TV shows or YouTube videos can give homeowners a false impression about installing a propane tankless water heater. Plumbing mistakes can be expensive, and they can cause a lot of damage to your home. A faulty water heater installation could also turn deadly. If you install your own water heater, the manufacturer might not honor the warranty.

Here are some of the best reasons you should hire a licensed professional to install your propane tankless water heater:

  • Water heater explosions – Propane tankless water heaters indeed have built-in mechanisms to prevent an explosion, but they are not foolproof. Suppose you don’t know what you are doing the likelihood of problems increases. Propane tankless water heaters are highly flammable. One wrong move could result in a fire or an explosion.
  • Carbon monoxide leaks – Carbon monoxide is called a silent reason because you can’t smell it. When you hire a professional to install your propane water heater, he will ensure it is properly ventilated. Regardless of who installs your propane tankless water heater, always install a CO detector.
  • Loss of warranty – Your warranty doesn’t cover hobbyist installation. Before you try to install a water heater, check the manufacturer’s warranty.

How much does a tankless water heater installation cost?

Water heaters are essential in every home. The average cost of installing a tankless water heater is about $3,000. Depending on your location and your home, you could easily pay more than $6,000.

Can I install a propane tankless water heater?

Not only that you can install a propane water heater, but it also offers the same features as those fueled by natural gas. A huge advantage of tankless water is that it only heats the water when it’s needed. Unlike traditional storage-tank water heaters, they do not suffer standby heat loss. Standby heat loss is a waste of energy. Using a traditional water heater, the water is constantly heated in the tank. You could be out of town traveling for business or on vacation, but you are still paying for hot water you don’t use.

What size propane tankless water heater do I need?

Before installing a propane tankless water heater, you need to consider the right size for your home. If you install a tankless water heater that is too small, it won’t be able to heat enough water. For example, with a low capacity water heater, only one person could take a shower at a time, even if you have a three-bathroom home.

It is also possible to install a propane tankless water heater that is too large for your house. Because larger water heaters cost more, you could spend more money than you should. The goal is to select a propane tankless water heater that is just the right size.

How to find out what size propane tankless water heater do I need?

To replace your current water heater with a propane tankless water heater that is just the right size, you need to consider the following.

  1. How much hot water does your household require?
  2. How much hot water do you need per minute?

What size propane tankless water heater do I need for a family of 5?

If you have a family of five or a household of five, they probably need to use showers or faucets at the same time. When you consider your new water heater’s size, you need to think about how many people will use hot water in the home. The family might also have members who like to take long, hot baths.

In general, a family of five should be fine with a 10 GPM propane tankless water heater. The flow rate in water heaters is measured in gallons per minute.

What size propane tankless water heater do I need to replace a 50-gallon water heater?

Let’s say you currently have a 30, 40, 50, or even 80-gallon water heater, and you want to replace it with a propane tankless water heater. Clearly, the biggest difference is that with a traditional water heater, you might have 50 gallons of hot water waiting for you to use. And with a propane tankless water heater, water is only heated on-demand.

During a normal 10-minute shower, for instance, you use about 10 gallons of hot water. If 3 people take a shower, run a dishwasher or a couple of faucets, and so on, you can quickly use all 50 gallons.

But with the propane tankless water heater, you can relax about your hot water. You don’t have stored hot water in a tank; the powerful heating exchanger in your tankless heater heats the water when you use it.

To replace your traditional 50-gallon water heater, you would need:

  • 10 GPM propane gas tankless heater if you live in the northern part of the USA or in a cold climate.
  • 7 GPM propane gas tankless heater if you live in the USA’s southern part or use very little hot water.

Keep in mind that this is only an estimate. Just to be on the safe side, you might want to buy a tankless heater that is a little bit more powerful than you need. It is better to have a little larger water heater than to not have enough hot water in your home.

Does a tankless water heater require complicated venting?

If you are replacing an electric tank with a propane tankless water heater, you need to do a little planning. High-efficiency units can be vented using inexpensive PVC pipe. The ventilation goes straight through the wall. Unlike traditional water heaters, propane tankless water heater units do not need to be vented through your roof. The tankless water heater is designed to blow exhaust from the unit horizontally. It uses a combustion fan to do this. There are also vent options, including termination points and pipe covers, so homeowners don’t have to worry about how venting will look in their house.

Does a tankless water heater work with well water?

A tankless water heater will work with well water or any water source for that matter. No matter the source of your water, you can use a propane tankless water heater. If your home has hard water, scaling can be an issue. The deposits from hard water can build up within your pipes and may go unnoticed. But many modern tankless water heaters notify you when they need to be flushed. Homeowners can choose to use a water softener to reduce scaling. A water softener doesn’t eliminate the need to flush, but it lengthens the intervals between flushing.

Why is tankless water heater installation so expensive?

Propane tankless water heater installation is indeed fairly expensive. The tankless water heater needs to run its own exhaust vent to the exterior of your home. They require a licensed professional to complete the installation. When you think about a tankless water heater’s long life, the installation cost seems a lot less.

How long do propane tankless water heaters last?

Tankless water heaters cost more to install than traditional water heaters, but they also last longer. A propane water heater is a worthwhile investment because it can last up to 20-years. Compare this to a traditional water heater, which might last less than 10-years. If you plan on staying in your home for a long time, a tankless water heater might be a better investment.

Does a propane tankless water heater take longer to heat water?

It takes longer for a propane tankless water heater to deliver hot water. That’s because, unlike a traditional water heater, a tankless doesn’t store hot water.  It only heats water as needed, on-demand. Your tankless water heater only starts to heat the water when there is demand in your home. As a result, it can take a little longer for the hot water to reach your faucet.

Your water heater’s physical location has a lot to do with how long it takes to get hot water. It could take up to two minutes for hot water to reach the point of outflow in a large house or a cold climate. If you are used to a traditional water heater, you might find this frustrating.

A tankless water heater has a limited hot water output. If several sources need hot water simultaneously, it can be tricky. Propane tankless water heaters can only supply a few gallons of hot water at a time.

Propane Tankless Water Heater Pros and Cons

What are the pros of propane tankless water heaters?

  • No standby loss – Traditional water heaters waste energy by heating and reheating water, even if you don’t use it.
  • Endless hot water – Unlike with a traditional water heater, you never run out of hot water.
  • Longe life span – Propane tankless water heaters can last twice as long as traditional water heaters.
  • Save space – Your tankless water heater will use much less space than your traditional water heater.
  • Lower energy cost – Month-to-month, you will spend less money on gas than you would with a traditional water heater. With the tankless option, you don’t waste gas on keeping water hot that you don’t use.
  • Potential tax breaks – Due to higher efficiency, installing a propane tankless water heater in your home might result in tax breaks or special financing.
  • Propane gas compatible – You can choose from a wide selection of propane gas tankless water heaters.
  • Long warranty – Because tankless water heaters last longer, you can expect a longer warranty than a traditional water heater.
  • Flexibility – You can find a tankless water heater for any size home.

What are the cons of propane tankless water heaters?

  • Slower hot water – Because there is no stored hot water, a tankless water heater is slower to produce hot water.
  • Limited hot water supply – Depending on the water heater’s size, it may not produce enough hot water for your home. The steady stream of water is not the same as unlimited hot water.
  • Inconsistent temperatures – Some homeowners complain about inconsistent water temperatures with this type of water heater.
  • Higher initial expense – Propane tankless water heaters are more expensive than traditional water heaters.
  • More equipment required – Sometimes, homeowners are also required to install a water softener to make sure their propane tankless water heater operates correctly. The additional requirements make this type of water heater more expensive to install.
  • Less value short term – Because it costs more to install a tankless water heater, it will take you longer to make up for the installation cost. You might save money each month after installation, but it might take several years to make up for the installation’s extra cost.
  • Waste of water – Because it takes longer to get hot water to the source, you could waste water as you run cold water waiting for the hot water.
  • Additional maintenance – You might have to perform more maintenance on a tankless water heater than you would on a traditional solution.